Deontay Wilder has opened up on his battle with depression and how he wanted to take his own life following the birth of his first child, Naieya.
The world Heavyweight champion admitted his struggles came after his daughter was born in 2005 with spina bifida, a spinal condition that nearly left her unable to walk.
Reflecting on becoming a father at 19-years-old to a child with a disorder, the American boxer said he struggled financially to pay his daughter’s medical bills and this led him to depression. He also said he contemplated suicide shortly after taking up boxing in 2006.
Speaking with BT Sport, the 34-year-old said: ‘The lowest moment for me in my life was years and years and years ago, I think when my daughter was first born back in 2005.’
‘But in 2006 it became very rocky for me, to the point where I lost my family, to the point where I had a gun in my lap and I was ready to commit suicide myself.
‘Those thoughts come to your head – we’re all human. Those thoughts come to anyone’s head that is going through some type of depression or going through different things in your lives.
‘You think the only way to end all of this is to end your life. You are not thinking about anyone else, you’re just thinking about yourself and what’s going on.
"I lost my family. I had a gun in my lap and was ready to commit suicide myself."
— Boxing on BT Sport 🥊 (@BTSportBoxing) February 3, 2020
‘It was very hard being 19, having my first child born with a disorder.
‘We all prayed that are kids are born healthy and when you get a challenge in life, especially when you’re a young adult and trying to go through life and your own path and find your own journey.
‘And then you have a bigger task in front of you and your child needs more love than the normal child and when you’re barely making ends meet when money goes through your hands it goes right through because of bills and other things.
‘You’re going from paycheque to paycheque, I’ve done that, I’ve been there, I know what it feels like.’
Deontay Wilder will take on Tyson Fury in their highly anticipated rematch later this month.