Former NBA star Ben Gordon: "I was obsessed with killing myself"


Ben Gordon, the former Mount Vernon star of preparation, UConn national champion and outstanding NBA player, reports on his personal demons and explains in detail his struggles with depression and the many times in which he almost committed suicide.

In a terrifying ego account in The Players Tribune, Gordon relives his nightly battles and describes them as a big black cloak that suffocated him.

"I would be on the roof of my apartment building at four in the morning, just walking to the edge of the ledge and looking back and forth, walking back and forth, walking back and forth – just thinking I'm really close to do it "B", wrote Gordon.

"I'm about to escape all of this. I was obsessed with killing myself. It's all I've researched, everything I've been thinking about. One night my panic attacks got so bad that I could only think of escape … you become like an animal. It's instinctive. "

It was after his 11th and final season in the league that Gordon lived in Harlem. He no longer had basketball. He was convinced that he was in purgatory and was no longer alive. Gordon had never seen a therapist before, but he couldn't imagine talking about his problems to solve anything.

Ben Gordon plays for UConn
Ben Gordon plays for UConnGetty Images

"I've been a wolf in sheep's clothing throughout my career. But now that I don't have basketball anymore, the wolf is coming out," said Gordon, who played for the Bulls, Pistons, Hornets and Magic. "Now I don't care if I cut my hair Now I don't care about shaving. Now I don't care more than the thoughts in my head. "

Eventually, he got help after being arrested three times between June and November 2017. And it helped him just talk about what was going through his mind and realize that he was dealing with depression.

"The goal doesn't have to be perfection. It can only be peace and acceptance with yourself," wrote 36-year-old Gordon. "I know especially for athletes that it might sound like bulls. It may sound quiet. We are trained to do this It’s almost like we’re brainwashed, but the whole reason I’m telling you my story is because I know – I know – there are players who need help, and about them Players? I would just say don't worry. "