Bulls Insider

Drummond eloquently addresses mental health break

/ by K.C. Johnson
Presented By Nationwide Insurance Agent Jeff Vukovich
Bulls Insider

Andre Drummond addressed reporters at length Sunday evening for the first time since taking a one-game break to address mental health issues that he first publicly acknowledged via his social media accounts earlier this week.

Drummond has since taken a break from those accounts as he addresses personal issues, work the Chicago Bulls’ reserve center acknowledged will be an ongoing process.

“We’re looked at as superheroes, that nothing really bothers us and we don’t have a life outside the game,” Drummond said. “That’s what people fail to understand, that we do have personal lives outside of the game. And it becomes taxing at times. And that superhero cape we have on has to come off at some point.

“It’s OK to ask for help. It’s OK to feel. It’s OK to be emotional. We’re all men, but we have to be OK with having feelings.”

Drummond played in his second straight game since missing Wednesday's home game against the Los Angeles Lakers. He said he’s thankful for the support he received from outside and inside the organization.

“Everybody was there for me,” he said. “Nobody really knew what was going on. I was dealing with a lot mentally and I had to take some time away to really clear my mind and address some things that I’d been neglecting for awhile. And I feel OK.

“I obviously still have a lot of work to do with my mental. But we have a job to do. And that’s to win basketball games and get to the playoffs. So I’m back and ready to play. The stuff personally I can take care of when the time comes. But I still have a job to do.”


It has become more commonplace for professional athletes to publicly acknowledge mental health challenges. Drummond’s teammate, DeMar DeRozan, was one of the first to do so in the NBA, detailing lifelong battles with depression and anxiety during a 2018 interview the Toronto Star.

Drummond addressed his situation in similarly transparent fashion.

“We’re known to be the masculine ones. Nothing bothers us. We have to be the protector, the provider, the one that does everything. I think over the past couple years guys have been expressing it’s OK to shed light on mental traumas and the things we go through,” he said. “It’s OK to share with other people because other people have the same type of journey that we’re going down too. It’s OK to bring them along to let everybody know that they’re not alone.”

Drummond answered “definitely” when asked if being around his teammates and coaches and playing basketball has served as a haven for him.

“Being around people who care about me has been really beneficial for me,” he said. “Obviously, being around my teammates have been a great help for me too. It’s great to be back and to play the game of basketball. I’m grateful to be here.”

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