ONE Championship atomweight MMA world champion Angela Lee has recently revealed that her 2017 car crash was not an accident…
But a suicide attempt – driven by overwhelming pressure.
She shared what happened in an article for The Players’ Tribune:
My car crash in November 2017 was not an accident. It was a suicide attempt.
I was getting ready for my last title defense of the year; things started to snowball for me.
Pressure, stress, and expectations all began to build up. I had tunnel vision and thought that this upcoming fight was the most important thing in my life.
Looking back now, I had everything I could have wanted at the time, but I didn’t realize it. Didn’t fully appreciate it.
Because I had gotten to a place where making weight for that fight was the biggest thing in the world to me.
Lee contemplated harming herself to avoid the fight:
I told myself: If you don’t get this done, you’ll lose everything.
And, as an athlete, in all honesty, that mentality can be useful and motivating. But it’s also a double-edged sword.
And, with me, I got to a point where I had pushed my mind and body too far.
I couldn’t stop thinking about the shame that would result if I wasn’t able to make the fight.
As someone who had never missed any competition in her entire life, that terrified me. It became all-encompassing.
And ultimately, I got to a point where I would rather take myself out of the equation than deal with what might come.
That’s where my head was at. It was all or nothing.
The end result of such thoughts was a disastrous one:
I just pressed my foot all the way down on the gas pedal. As far down as it would go.
I don’t know how fast I was going. But it was as fast as my car could move.
I wanted to hit the guardrail as hard as I could, and I just remember turning the steering wheel and swerving and then hitting something, and then it was just… rolling.
Rolling and rolling and rolling.
When I opened my eyes, I was upside down. There was shattered glass everywhere. I remember waiting around in that car for a good bit of time, hanging upside down, just basically trying to process everything.
Like… Am I still here? Am I alive?
Angela Lee found courage in sharing her story, though it remains a difficult one:
Everything about this healing process has been a challenge, of course.
It has been far from easy.
But with each time that I share my story with another person…
I still cry. Tears still fall. My voice still trembles. But, each time, it gets a little bit better.
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