National Basketball Association (NBA) player Jeremy Lin has recalled some of the racism he experienced on the court and the detrimental impact it had on his mental health.
The 32-year-old discussed some of the abuse he had received whilst on the court during Mental Health Coalition's Instagram Live series.
"One thing that I did last year was I started getting a sports psychologist, which is basically a therapist," he told mental health activist Dr. Jenny Wang and his brother, Josh Lin. ""I didn't realize it, but because of the way I grew up and because of the experiences I had, I ended up just thinking, 'This is just the way it is. This is just the way the world is,'
"It wasn't until I got some mental help that I started to see like, 'Oh no, there are so many traumas that I have gone through.' And when you go through trauma, it means there are wounds there and things that need to be addressed."
Lin revealed that some of the worst racism he experienced was whilst he was on the court and repetitively called anti-Asian slurs.
"I self-combusted and I went crazy," he remembered. "I had a knee-jerk reaction and I didn't handle it well, and I ended up hurting myself and my team."
The revelations from Lin come in the wake of the the three shootings at Atlanta-area spas on March 16, which has sparked an uprising across society to consider more carefully the racism that still exists towards the Asian community.
In a powerful message posted to Facebook, Lin said: "Something is changing in this generation of Asian Americans. We are tired of being told that we don't experience racism, we are tired of being told to keep our heads down and not make trouble.
"We are tired of Asian American kids growing up and being asked where they're REALLY from, of having our eyes mocked, of being objectified as exotic or being told we're inherently unattractive," he continued. "We are tired of the stereotypes in Hollywood affecting our psyche and limiting who we think we can be. We are tired of being invisible, of being mistaken for our colleague or told our struggles aren't as real.
"So here we are again, sharing how we feel. Is anyone listening?"
Author: Jake Wilkin