Serena Williams — one of the greatest of all time in women’s tennis — has announced she’s retiring her racket to focus on her business ventures and family.
After a historic career, including 23 Grand Slam championship wins, Williams shared her decision on Aug. 9 in Vogue magazine, writing that she “never wanted to have to choose between tennis and a family. I don’t think it’s fair.”
Williams said accepting that she’d have to move on from playing tennis wasn’t easy. She hardly talked about it with her husband and couldn’t even speak with her parents about it. But in the midst of it all, she found comfort in speaking to a therapist.
“I’ve been reluctant to admit that I have to move on from playing tennis,” she says. “It’s like a taboo topic. It comes up, and I start to cry. I think the only person I’ve really gone there with is my therapist!”
As one of the latest athletes to express her personal experiences with therapy, Williams and others, like four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka and seven-time Olympic medalist Simone Biles, are leading the way for mental health advocacy in the Black community.