He was a key figure in the Toronto Raptors’ rise from sporting irrelevance to NBA champions, but DeMar DeRozan’s biggest contribution may prove to be talking openly about his mental health struggles and motivating others to do the same.
In a Toronto Star op-ed, Mark Sinyor, an associate professor in the department of psychiatry at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Medicine, praises the former Raptor for helping shatter the stigma surrounding mental illness, especially among men. Read more here…
When I’m not seeing patients, I devote most of my professional life to spreading messages of resilience because research shows that resilience is actually contagious. Some studies suggest that stories of people overcoming mental health challenges can even save lives.
But it’s a constant battle because illnesses like depression make sufferers feel hopeless and many, especially men, still have the tragic impression that seeking help is weak or even shameful. So when DeRozan opened up, prompting other NBAers like Kevin Love and Channing Frye to do the same, he gave this city and his fans a gift that goes far beyond basketball. — Mark Sinyor
Image by Alex Brandon / Associated Press