A college football player is stepping away from the game after attempting suicide earlier this year, he announced.
Thomas Cole, an Offensive lineman at UCLA, announced his decision on social media while breaking down his demons with mental health that led to his attempt to take his own life.
“I haven’t been present at the Wasserman facility for the past six months. This is because at the start of 2022 I made an attempt to take my own life,” wrote Cole, who didn’t play this past season. “At first I was regretful that I survived my attempt, but thankfully due to the people at the UCLA hospital, Paradigm residential treatment, and my therapist Meg, I have come to a much brighter Outlook for my own future.
“After many months of thorough consideration I have come to the conclusion that football is not conducive for my mental health, and there is more to my life than the game of football,” he continued. Cole then acknowledged the impact of his former coaches and teammates, thanking fellow O-linemen Benjamin Roy, Garrett DiGiorgio, Noah Puleali, and Taka Mahe for bringing him “so much Joy and laughter in a time of immense personal suffering.”
The San Luis Obispo, Calif. native, a four-star prospect, capped off his statement by saying he would always root for UCLA and hoped his words might help others with similar problems.
“I will forever cheer on the Bruins and wish the football program nothing but success,” he said. “Everyone I interacted with at UCLA, from coaches to teachers, Tutors and more thank you so much! You all have had a great impact in my life. For all of those who may be struggling, you are not alone and you are loved. It is ok to ask for help. Thank you to my family for being so loving during this process of learning to live again.”
If you are struggling with suicidal thoughts or are experiencing a mental health crisis and live in New York City, you can call 1-888-NYC-WELL for free and confidential crisis counseling. If you live outside the five boroughs, you can dial the 24/7 National Suicide Prevention hotline at 988 or go to SuicidePreventionLifeline.org.