Tuesday, July 4, 2017

{allcanada} Ex-NHLer Shayne Corson empathizes with Roberto Osuna’s anxiety issue


Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Roberto Osuna told reporters in late June he has been dealing with anxiety.

"I just feel a little bit anxious, a little bit weird. I'm just not myself right now," Osuna said through an interpreter on June 24. "I feel great physically. It's just more mentally."

It caught the attention of Shayne Corson, a former NHLer that has dealt with severe anxiety issues throughout his life.

In an exclusive interview with Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun, Corson opened up about his history with anxiety, the ways in which it has affected his life, and how hearing Osuna talk about it made him want to reach out to the star closer.

"My instant reaction was, 'I know exactly what you're going through, man,'" Corson told Simmons. "I'm glad he came out with it. I'm glad he had that courage to do that. I tried to deal with it on my own. I wasn't very successful. You get to a point where you're kind of living in a dark hole and you can't climb out of it. It takes over your mind. It takes over your body, sometimes.

"If Roberto wants to talk about this in any way, tell him I'm available. If I can help, I will. I'll be honest, I know how much I suffered. And if I can help one person not go through what I went through, I'm there. This is something we need to talk more about. So many people have it."

Corson played nearly 1,296 games in the NHL (regular season and playoffs) over 19 seasons and struggled through much of it.

It wasn't until late in his playing career that he began to open up about his difficulties.

"As soon as I admitted to people what was going on, I felt better," Corson said. "Talking about it is really important. That's why I'm proud of Osuna. He's dealing with it right away. I'm happy for him.

"Talking about it matters. People I know come up to me and say 'I didn't know you had this, I have that.' You start talking. You find out others struggle too. You can be having a great career (like Osuna) but you don't know what anyone is feeling inside. Nobody really knew what I was I feeling."

Osuna, who recently became the youngest player in MLB history to record 75 career saves, has pitched three times since he first spoke about feeling anxious.

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