Former United States Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps revealed Tuesday that he has suffered from depression and suicidal thoughts.
Per Susan Scutti of CNN.com, Phelps shared his struggle with mental health at a Kennedy Forum conference in Chicago.
"Really, after every Olympics I think I fell into a major state of depression," he said. "I would say '04 was probably the first depression spell I went through."
Phelps noted he could also feel some patterns of emotion that weren't "right" at "a certain time during every year."
The 32-year-old also cited the 2012 Olympics as his most difficult time: "I didn't want to be in the sport anymore ... I didn't want to be alive anymore."
Discussing the photos of him smoking from a marijuana pipe published in 2009, Phelps said drugs were his way of running from "whatever it was I wanted to run from."
After leading the U.S. men's swimming team in each of the previous four Olympics, Phelps retired following the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.
He's the most decorated Olympic athlete in history, with 28 total medals and 23 gold medals.