Off the Crossebar podcast: Brandon Turner dealing with side effects of concussions

Brandon Turner
Brandon Turner

We’re seeing it more and more in sports today. Players having to give up the game they’ve given the majority of their lives too due to injuries stemming from head shots. Every pro league that is a contact/collision sport is doing what they can to limit dangerous hits and put player’s safety at a priority. The National Lacrosse League and the world of lacrosse are no different.

Brandon Turner is one of those players. Turner grew up playing lacrosse and hockey. It’s all he’s every really known. He eat, sleeps and breaths the game and it allowed him to play with and against some of the games best.

However, a recent string of major and minor concussions have led to  doctors telling him that he must stop playing. The gut wrenching news wasn’t easy to take but he didn’t let it completely exile him from the game. Turner was immediately taken on as an assistant coach with the Durham Turfdogs of CLAX.

But the story doesn’t end there. A darker side to recurring concussions that we are seeing far too often nowadays has reared its head. This week on the Off the Crossebar podcast, we try to help to lift the shadow, break the silence and bring awareness to mental illness and depression with Brandon Turner.

Tuesday February 12th, was Bell Let’s Talk day- a day where the media giant helped to bring awareness to mental illness across Canada by donating five cents for every text, phone call and tweet made with the hashtag #BellLetsTalk.

1 in 5 Canadians will experience some form of mental illness in their lives and at the same time, 2 in 3 people suffer in silence fearing judgment and rejection.

Depression and anxiety are two major forms of mental illness that affect hundreds of thousands of people all over the world and far too often the stigma of this illness makes it increasingly hard for people to talk about it.

Brandon Turner suffers from depression and in a very open and candid interview, he opens up to not only me, but you as well. “Honestly, other than my girlfriend and my parents, you’re the first person I’ve actually told,” expressed the former WLA, NLL and CLax defender.

A big smile and happy exterior doesn’t necessarily mean everything is going well inside and often people who deal with depression never let on to the demons they battle within.

This was a very tough interview for me personally, as I too deal with depression as well and many other people–the ability to talk with Brandon, be open and honest with those around me, allow me to battle though the tough days and feel better when the clouds move in.

Enjoy this week’s podcast with Brandon Turner and please, learn the symptoms, always be willing to listen and Let’s Talk.

Teddy Jenner is one the leading sources for lacrosse information. He comes by his love of lax honestly with a lifetime of experience, two Mann Cup championships and six years of play in the NLL. Email him at ted.jenner@ilindoor.com, follow him on Twitter @OffTheCrosseBar or catch him on Team 1410 radio in Vancouver, B.C., as the host and producer of the Off the Crosse-Bar Radio Show In 2012, he was awarded the BCLA's Norm Wright Merit Award- handed out to a member of the media deemed to have have contributed to the promotion of lacrosse.

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