During a recent sit-down on former NFL player and sports analyst Emmanuel Acho’s Uncomfortable Conversations series, Lil Wayne detailed attempting to commit suicide as a preteen at the thought of his mother barring him from rap.
“When I was 12 years old, the school year was kind’ve ending,” recalled the New Orleans spitter. “So what the school was doing was they was giving us half days on a Thursday and a Friday, and it may have been a Wednesday as well. But what I would do was just tell moms that I only had a half of day on one of those days, so therefore I stayed out the rest of the whole day like it was a full day.”
Upon discovering what her son had been up to, Wayne’s mother told him she planned on strictly disciplining him, as well as taking away his rap folders and barring him from pursuing music.
“She found out, and so when I got home, on that Friday I think or whatever, I got a phone call from my Aunt [saying,] ‘Boy, you ’bout to get your ass kicked. All that rapping and all that, she ’bout to take that rap folder, she bout to throw that sh*t away,’ and I was like, ‘Wow,'” described the 38-year-old.
From there, Weezy described those threats as being the last straw that caused him to snap and attempt the unthinkable: taking his own life.
“Thoughts everywhere,” recalled the I Am Not A Human Being artist of his reaction after receiving the phone call. “Main thought was, ‘I’ma show you.’ I picked up the phone and I called the police. Yes, I knew where she kept her gun and it was in her bedroom, so I went in her bedroom, grabbed the gun, and I had already made the phone call. I looked in the mirror and did like that [points middle and index fingers to temple]. And of course, it was like, ‘Oh no,’ ’cause I got a little too scared. That was my head, I was like ‘Nah, nah,’ but then I said, ‘Fu*k it.'”
“Biggie was on. I’m looking in the mirror, so you could look through the mirror and the television was behind me cause I was watching the video through the mirror. ‘One More Chance’ was on and I think Biggie was already gone or something,” detailed the “Sucker for Pain” rapper, continuing, “So I was just looking like, ‘You know what,’ and started thinking again. I had to get myself mad and noticed I didn’t have to, that’s what scared me. How I know I had mental health problems was I pulled the trigger.”
Wayne shot himself in the chest. He was ultimately found by police, received medical attention, and was able to survive his injuries, still, he also credits the incident with improving his relationship with his mother, who began to support his passion for hip-hop in the aftermath of the shooting.
“The mom that I knew before that day—on my life and everybody’s life in here—have never met or seen or heard that lady again in my life. So I didn’t die that day, but someone was gone. She never been that way. So as for the parents out there, obviously, that was an eye-opener for her and what she decided to do was [say], ‘I’ll let my flower grow,'” shared the father of four.
In addition to the nearly fatal suicide attempt, Wayne speaks with Acho about managing his own mental health, particularly during his bitter war with Birdman and Cash Money Records, and how their relationship has evolved for the better over the years.
Watch Lil Wayne’s candid chat on Uncomfortable Conversations With Emmanuel Acho below: