Swimming great Michael Phelps revealed that he has battled severe anxiety and depression for much of his life which drove him to consider suicide after his success at the 2012 Olympics.
Speaking at a mental health conference in Chicago on Tuesday, the 23-time Olympic gold medal winner talked openly about his long battle with crippling depression and is encouraging others to get help like he did.
"After every Olympics I think I fell into a major state of depression," the 32-year-old Phelps said.
Phelps said he reached rock bottom following the 2012 Olympics in London where he won four gold medals and two silver. For four days he remained in his room without food or sleep.
Over the past two years Phelps has opened up about his struggles. Once again, Phelps said his depression and anxiety problems have been a staple of his life for the past 17 years.
"We're supposed to be this big, macho, physically strong human beings, but this is not a weakness," he said. "We are seeking and reaching for help."
Phelps won his first gold medal in 2004 at the Athens Olympic Games. That same year the 15-year-old from Baltimore experienced his first "depression spell".