Barry Buss

October 25, 2022

#MyBTR- April 1983, at age of 18, I walked on a tennis court as a UCLA Bruin 22-0, one win away from breaking Jimmy Connors all-time record for consecutive wins by an incoming freshman. A year later, I had quit the team and dropped out of school to live in my van, drinking and drugging my life away around the clock. What happened? Well, it turned out it was happening all along. I suffered from un-diagnosed and untreated Bipolar Disorder from my earliest ages. The signs were all there. The volatility of the cheating, the tantrums, the choking, the tanking, all sprinkled within stretches of inspired play. A middle of the pack junior growing up, late my senior year I came into my own, making the US Jr Davis Cup Team and earning a scholarship to the defending NCAA Champion UCLA Bruins. It was a feverish year of results, vaulting me near the top of my class in American tennis.  So out of my comfort zone, I cracked under the pressure of elite tennis, succumbing to my self-medicating ways of alcoholism and addiction, anything to tame my raging mind. I would struggle mightily with addiction and mental illness throughout adulthood,

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