Retired Soccer Star Briana Scurry on Her Post-Concussion Depression

For a long time, retired soccer star Briana Scurry wondered if her post-injury depression was physiological from the hit to her head or because her professional soccer career was over.

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[Briana Scurry] The depression in me was a complicated thing because I actually didn't really think about that. I'm like—okay, am I depressed because my career ended, and I'm making a transition to something else? Or is this depression—have to do with the concussion? So I literally have been thinking about that for a long time, and I can honestly say that it—it is the concussion. Because I knew my career was going to end soon. I know I've done some amazing things and accomplished a lot. So I didn't feel like I'd be depressed about that, because I was excited about the next part of my life that I was going into— because I had done well, and it was just time to turn a page. And so—the more the symptoms continued— answers weren't coming— days and weeks and months turned into years— and I wondered, is this going to be how my life is? That part of it started to really weigh me down, and I literally felt like I was in a hole from, I'd say, toward the end of 2011 into 2012, I really struggled with the emotional side of things. Because I just stopped and took a breath— and looked and—and noticed that it'd been over a year, and I'm still in the same situation mentally—emotionally— and having all these symptoms—as I was a year and a half before. I wasn't getting anywhere. I felt stuck. So that's when I knew that it wasn't the end of my career, that it was definitely the concussion that was giving me these troubles.
Posted on BrainLine January 22, 2014.

Produced by Christian Lindstrom, Justin Rhodes, and Victoria Tilney McDonough, BrainLine.

About the author: Briana Scurry

Briana Scurry is widely thought of as one of the world’s best female soccer goalkeepers. After being named starting goalkeeper for the United States women’s national soccer team in 1994, she helped lead the team in two Olympic gold medals (1996 and 2004), a World Cup  championship (1999), and she had 173 international appearances — a record among female soccer players.

Briana Scurry