Friday, June 24, 2022

‘Was vulnerable, anxious’: Naomi Osaka opens up on mental health issues

By PTI

PARIS: Naomi Osaka tweeted the following statement announcing her withdrawal from the French Open: “Hello everyone, this is not a situation I ever imagined or intended when I posted a few days ago. I now think the best thing for the tournament, the other players and my well-being is that I withdraw so that everyone can concentrate again on the tennis that takes place in Paris.I never wanted to be a distraction, and I accept that my timing is not a idea was not and my message could have been clearer More importantly, I will never make mental health trivial or use the term lightly.The truth is that I have had long depression since the US Open in 2018 and that I could handle it very hard “Anyone who knows me knows that I’m an introvert, and anyone who’s seen me at tournaments will see that I’re wearing regular headphones, which helps dull my social anxiety.”

‘Although the tennis press has always been kind to me (and I especially want to apologize to all the cool journalists I hurt), I’m not a natural public speaker and I get big waves of anxiety before dealing with the world’s media talk. I get nervous and find it stressful to always try to get the best answers I can get. Here in Paris, I already feel vulnerable and anxious again, and I think it’s better to exercise self-sufficiency and skip the press conferences. “

“I announced this for the time being because I feel the rules are partly outdated and want to highlight it. I wrote privately to the tournament to apologize and said I was more than happy to speak to them after the tournament as the Slams I’ll take some time off from the court now, but if the time is right, I really want to work with the tour to discuss how we can improve things for the players, press and fans, it’s all going well and safely stay, love you, I see you when I see you (heart emoji).

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Here are some key reactions to Osaka’s announcement:

“I feel for Naomi. Not everyone is the same. I’m fat. Other people are skinny. Everyone is different and everyone handles things differently. You just have to allow her to handle it the way she wants and the best way she thinks. “She can. That’s the only thing I can say: ‘I think she’s doing the best she can,’ ‘Serena Williams said.

“I’m so sad about Naomi Osaka. I really hope she’s doing well. As athletes, we’re taught to take care of our bodies, and maybe the mental and emotional aspect falls short. It’s about more than a press conference. Good luck Naomi- we all draw for you !, “said Martina Navratilova.

“It’s incredibly brave that Naomi Osaka has revealed her truth about her battle with depression. At the moment, the most important thing is that we give her the space and time she needs. We wish her well,” said Billie Jean King.

“You never have to make a decision like this, but so damn impressive to take the highway if the forces are not protecting their own. Great respect,” said Warriors guard Stephen Curry.

“Love, respect and positive energy in your way,” Cavaliers Kevin Love directs.

“It’s so sad that we’re in a time that when a young person tells you they need help or an interruption, people respond with anger and a lack of support! I stand with you. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health, “said former WNBA star Lisa Leslie.

The reaction in Japan was largely sympathetic, and one Twitter user urged Osaka to “take a good, long break.”

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“I hope she can eat what she wants, watch what she wants and listen to what she wants. I hope she wraps herself in a soft blanket and takes it easy until she feels satisfied.”

Her withdrawal follows the failure of her decision to boycott press conferences at the tournament, which she said was like ‘kicking people off’.

Osaka is expected to represent Japan at the Tokyo Olympics in July-August, and will be one of the host country’s top athletes at the Games if she participates.

But Japanese fans encouraged her to look at herself first.

“I dare say she might withdraw from the Tokyo Olympics,” one Twitter user wrote.

“It’s disappointing, but I hope she takes her time and gets well.”

Others welcomed Osaka’s openness about her mental health, a topic rarely discussed by public figures in Japan.

Former tennis player Ai Sugiyama said during a morning program that she hopes Osaka’s actions can make a splash and create an opportunity to talk about the athlete’s mental health, ‘reports Sports Hochi.

“There’s a big difference between people’s personalities, and I think we need to consider cases on a case-by-case basis,” said Sugiyama, who has achieved an eight-year world rankings in his career.

“I think the system where you absolutely have to show up and if you do not get a fine is a bit outdated.”

Some Twitter users have questioned whether Osaka feels the tension of competing for titles and speaking out against racial injustice.

“Naomi Osaka is fighting – against herself, against pressure, against fixed ideas, against discrimination,” tweets TV presenter Ruriko Kojima.

“All of this is sure to cause her anxiety. I can’t imagine the pressure on her shoulders. It’s such a different perspective. I hope she gets time to laugh and relax.”

(With AFP input)

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Nation World News Desk
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