Los Angeles Chargers right tackle Joe Barksdale has shed light on a very dark time in his life.
Barksdale told Dan Woike of the Los Angeles Times that he has battled severe depression and nearly took his own life in November. The 29-year-old opted to share his feelings with the newspaper in a bid to potentially help others.
"If I could save another person, maybe that's why the attempts (to harm myself) didn't work," Barksdale told the newspaper.
Barksdale was overcome with emotion in November after he learned he would miss a third straight game with an injured foot. He went home and sharpened a knife before his wife, Brionna, talked him into putting it down.
"If I let myself get sad, like really sad, it can go really bad places -- like I could not be here tomorrow," Barksdale said.
Barksdale told the newspaper that he was physically, emotionally and sexually abused as a child, with the now 6-foot-5, 326-pounder admitting that his feelings of insecurity and anxiety were bolstered after he was bullied by older kids.
"Some days, you can talk yourself out of it. Some days, you can't. Some days, it just feels impossible," Barksdale told the L.A. Times. "This is who I am. I am as depressed as I am black."