A little less than 48 hours before the NBA All-Star Game earlier this month, Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan posted a simple but revealing statement on Twitter.
"This depression get the best of me," he wrote.
In a story published Sunday, DeRozan spoke at length with The Toronto Star about his struggles with depression and anxiety and the importance of addressing mental health issues, explaining that "we're all human, at the end of the day."
"It’s not nothing I’m against or ashamed of," DeRozan told the newspaper. "Now, at my age, I understand how many people go through it. Even if it’s just somebody can look at it like, ‘He goes through it and he’s still out there being successful and doing this,’ I’m OK with that."
DeRozan, a four-time All-Star, told The Toronto Star that he has dealt with moments of depression since he was a child in Compton, Calif., citing those ongoing issues as one of the reasons why he may appear quiet and "in my own personal space."
The 28-year-old also said he doesn't drink alcohol in part because of how he's seen some his peers use various substances as a means of coping with mental health issues.
He said he's seen friends become drug addicts and some people "drinking their life away."
DeRozan said he received lots of support on Twitter after posting his tweet about depression and wants others who feel similarly to know that they're not alone.
"It’s one of them things that no matter how indestructible we look like we are, we’re all human at the end of the day," DeRozan told The Toronto Star. "We all got feelings. ... (Sometimes) it gets the best of you, where times everything in the whole world’s on top of you."