These days, mental health has gotten more attention in Hip-Hop culture and society overall leading to more rappers being forthright about their struggles. A recent revelation by Lil Wayne about his own journey and suicide attempt at the age of 12 has caught many by surprise and added to the conversation.
As a guest on the web series Uncomfortable Conversations with Emmanuel Acho, the five-time Grammy Award winner got candid about his battles with mental health and bravely spoke about the pressures he was under at the time, saying he felt he couldn’t talk to his friends or even confide in his strict mom about what he was going through.
After trying to hide his activities afterschool and being found out by a relative, his mother put her foot down stating he wouldn’t be allowed to rap anymore. “When I was told that I couldn’t have what I wanted, what I dream of, what I desired, and that was to rap. I was willing to die for it,” Lil Wayne stated. He found his mom’s gun, called the police to state what he was going to do and pulled the trigger, shooting himself in the chest. Thankfully, police arrived swiftly and rushed him to the hospital, saving his life.
Although Lil Wayne admits that he still deals with his mental health from time to time, he’s thankful for the vast amount of support he’s received along the way. He also expressed that people should really listen with empathy to those on that same journey. “What I wish people knew about mental health is that it’s real…If you are a parent of a kid with a mental health problem or something, even if you think, react with the realest reaction,” he said.
Watch the entire interview with Lil Wayne below.