Alliance Profile - Denis Douglin
American Professional Boxer, The 2008 National Golden Gloves Middleweight Champion, Amateur Boxer of the Year, Started his Pro Boxing Career 12-0
What past life experiences, physical traumas or genetics do you believe have had an effect on your mental health?
This question is so broad. There are quite a few things that happened to me, that I feel affected me mentally. My ex-girlfriend cheating on me and having a hickey on her neck from someone else when I was 17 was a big one. The crazy part is, it was the same day she met my mother for the first time, so I was really mad. When my mother noticed the hickey, I acted as if, I did it.
I also think my first loss as a professional fighter killed me mentally…I wanted to be like Mayweather and stay undefeated, so when that first loss happened, I felt like a failure. These are just the first two that come to mind. There’s probably a lot more if I sat and really thought about it…but this shows just things that others can relate to, that are such “normal” parts of life.
How did the effects on your mental health appear in terms of symptoms?
As far as my ex cheating on me, it made me feel like I wasn’t good enough for her. She was gorgeous…so I looked at it as if, she was doing me a favor by even being with me and that monogamy wasn’t real! I knew when it happened I should’ve left, but I “loved” her so I stayed…but started to cheat too. I put myself in a very toxic relationship.
As far as losing, I felt like a failure. I lost love for boxing. I knew I was good, but I didn’t really care to see how good anymore. I felt like it didn’t matter. I started just going thru the motions in the gym and turning to women, and liquor for happiness or to change my mood.
When and why did you decide to ask for help to get relief?
I didn’t decide until about a year ago to change my ways. Mind you, the cheating happened over 15 years ago and affected how I viewed all relationships. I just became a womanizer and kept it moving.
With the boxing, one day, I was in the gym, getting the better of a sparring session, with a world champion, like I always do. It just hit me, all of these guys are world champions and live like champions. You’re in the club partying and drinking, every night, and you’re still able to compete with them. What would happen if you lived like a champion too…They wouldn’t be able to touch you! So I made a decision to live like a champion
What methods helped you individually get/feel better?
Just the way I think now and my approach to life makes all the difference in the world! Becoming an optimistic person! Always looking for the positives, in every situation and focusing on that. Life is all about perspective. I just look at everything that happens to me or around as a positive that’s pointing me in a direction, and it’s completely changed my life!
Why did you decide to go public with your story? Who were/are you hoping to help and how?
I’m sharing my story because my marketing agent, messaged me, and thought this would be a great way for me to get my story out. While hearing about what you guy at #SameHere do, I fell into it big like – this is a whole program. I know I was struggling mentally at one point, badly! I wish I had something like this to help me through what I was dealing with. Now that I’m better, I would love to help people get to the same mental space I’m in! It’s great up here lol.
How did people react when you went public with your story?
I haven’t really shared my story, outside of with my loved ones. They were very surprised I felt the way I did because I’m always the strong one that everyone comes to with their problems. It actually made them feel closer to me because they thought I was perfect..: so it was nice for them to see that I’m human too, and struggle just like them. It also made them feel better about their own situations.