CNN interviewed Serena Williams when she was 9. Here’s what she said:
Williams did not, however, speak to CNN about her early feelings, or about what she was going through. The interview was in the form of a recorded Q&A, and CNN did not have permission from Williams to reproduce it on the air.
Here are excerpts from CNN’s video, which was part of a profile on Williams, “The Serena Effect.”
Q: I know you’ve been called a self-pitying, insecure child. Can you explain what you remember?
Williams: A lot of people have made comments on me about [a] negative person, like I feel like I am a victim. And when I was younger, I used to feel like I am a victim of something. Maybe that’s because of me being a little bit different as a person from everyone else? And I feel like when people use words like that, I feel like a victim of myself. I always want to put myself first. And that’s hard…. I am so glad that I am a person, that I have my own identity. I am a strong, brave, and intelligent female, and I am not going to let anyone or anything take that away from me. So yeah, I am a victim of myself, and that’s just how I feel.
Q: What made you decide to take your life?
Williams: I think that I had been through a lot. And I was trying to figure out where I was going to go, what was going to happen. And I had to think about what I needed to do for myself and for my own growth. And I just started talking to my therapist, and he asked me this really tough question. I think he was worried that I wasn’t taking care of myself. He asked me, ‘Are you taking care of yourself, really?’ And I said, ‘I am, but I am just going to take care of myself, but my family doesn’t take care of me.’ And I think if I took care of myself, then I would be able to take care of my family. So I thought, the way to put it into words, I felt like