Paul Cooke: I've been where Brett Seymour is - depression can strike anyone
DEPRESSION – a silent killer. They are not my words, but the words of a wife in despair.
Roseanne Seymour took to her Facebook account this week to thank fans for their support of her husband, Brett.
The Hull FC half-back is clearly having trouble with life in general right now and, having suffered with depression myself, I write this column from a position of experience.
Back in 2008, Hull Kingston Rovers' club doctor Alan Young prescribed some tablets to help me recover from depression.
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And I will be forever indebted to him for helping me take the first steps on my own road to recovery.
It was a long road, I can assure everyone, and that means Brett Seymour faces a tough time to turn his life around.
I've listened intently and read with great interest peoples' comments following his car crash on Sunday night.
Some have suggested he has nothing to worry about, with a dream job, plenty of money, and good health etc.
Others are saying he should feel lucky not to have the worries many others have, such as struggles to pay their bills, mobility problems or even life-threatening illnesses.
They are entitled to their opinion, I even respect it, but most will never have to live with the pressures of top class professional sport, and so don't know what comes with it.
The glamorous dream job as a rugby player can quickly become a living nightmare, as it appears it has for Seymour.
Let's look at his time at Hull FC, and ask how has he come to the point where his wife is extremely worried about his state of mind?
Firstly, and most importantly, Seymour must accept responsibility himself.
He arrived in Hull with a bad boy reputation, and having been convicted of drink-driving when in New Zealand. He said his move to Super League would help him change. But has he really wanted to change?
I know that unless you are ready to ask for help, and admit you need it, there is no helping you.
Only Seymour knows his own state of mind, and I know that no matter how big a front you put on, and even if everyone's perception of you is of a tough rugby player, nobody knows what's going on in your head when lying in bed at night.
Depression knows not how much you earn, or how good a job you have, it's an illness, which can affect everybody.
In fact, I'd say the more you have financially, the easier it is to self-destruct.
Apart from his wife, this man is 12,000 miles from his other relatives and people he can turn to and trust during difficult times.
And it has been a difficult time for him at Hull.
The club signed him on the length of contract he's on and on the financial package he's on too.
That is not Seymour's fault, and not the current regime's fault, as he was signed by former management and coaches.
But it has been clear to me – and no doubt to Seymour himself – that he may not be in the club's future plans.
Almost the entire off-season saw the club publicly say that they wanted to sign a new a top-class half-back.
They tried to sign two and failed in Rangi Chase and Scott Prince.
Seymour can hardly have felt wanted.
Also though, did Seymour and his agent try and secure an amicable agreement and look to move on and play rugby elsewhere?
Only they will know, but that may have seen Seymour lose out long-term financially. However, Seymour almost lost so much more this week.
There can certainly be no pointing the finger of blame in any one direction in this, many factors have contributed, but lessons must be learned by everyone involved around him.
He needs help and support now, no matter how privileged people think he should feel for being professional rugby player.
What is most important is his health, and that's all that matters right now.
• Email your messages of support to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will print a selection in the Mail and send them all to Brett. Please include your name and location.