“I’m a Human Being”: Michael Phelps Claims His ‘Many Gold Medals’ Did Not Stop Depression

Published 10/12/2021, 4:39 AM EDT
WASHINGTON, DC – FEBRUARY 28: American swimmer and Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps testifies during a hearing before the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee of House Energy and Commerce Committee February 28, 2017 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The subcommittee held a hearing on “Ways to Improve and Strengthen the International Anti-Doping System.” (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)


When Simone Biles took a stand and opened up about her mental health struggles, the world took notice. Ever since, she is recognized as one of the most influential personalities who uses her platform to spread awareness about the same. Notably, one such person who shares similar traits is a fellow legend, Michael Phelps.

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Even though he won several gold medals in his career, the legendary swimmer was struggling with mental health issues himself. Recently, Phelps spoke about the challenges he faced during his career, reiterating how he is human too.

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Michael Phelps opens up on depression

The ‘Baltimore Bullet’ opened up on his struggles, pulling the shutter on this ‘ perfect celebrity’ image.

“We’re human right that’s the biggest thing. Like, I can’t tell you how many people have walked up and be like ‘you’re Michael Phelps, like how can you be depressed? How can you be sad you have all these gold medals?'” he said.

“This that and the other nearly well. No cause I’m a human being just like you are, and I think that’s the biggest thing. We are all humans and I think that’s the coolest thing for me being able to see people like Kevin Love or other celebrities standing up and talking about the struggles that they’ve had. That’s something that really will help us move forward,” said Phelps.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – AUGUST 14: Michael Phelps of the United States wipes his eyes during a press conference at the Main Press Centre on August 14, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

He put the point forward to help people understand that celebrities have their own problems too. Speaking of the same, he denoted how NBA player Kevin Love’s struggles inspired him to stand up and talk about his own.

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Kevin Love suffered mental health issues

The power forward won the NBA championship with LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016. However, it was a rocky move forward for the talented player. Notably, he opened up on his battle with depression in an essay on The Players’ Tribune.

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“If it hadn’t been for a couple of my closest friends, I don’t know if I would be here today telling my story. You would be amazed at how freeing it is just to talk to somebody, and tell them the truth about what you’re going through,” said Love.

The pressure athletes face is enormous, despite their legendary stature. Hence, it is important to know that they are humans as well. Despite all the glory and achievements, fans need to acknowledge their humane side, rather than viewing them through illustrious career and celebrity persona, especially during tough times.

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To sum it up, Phelps’ has been a prominent figure, who has inspired people with his journey to the top. Unquestionably, he was, is, and will remain a legend.

WATCH THIS STORY- A look Inside Michael Phelps’ Million Dollar Mansion

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Jacob Gijy

481 articles

Jacob Gijy is a US Sports and NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Gijy finished his Masters in Counselling Psychology and worked in a hospital for 2 years before his passion for sports compelled him to find his way to sports journalism. A fan of the great Tim Duncan, he is always ready to pick up a debate with anyone who does not offer the center the respect he deserves.

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