According to fellow boxer and close friend Billy Joe Saunders, Tyson Fury's struggles away from the ring led him as far as suicidal thoughts.
Speaking with iFL TV after the announcement of Fury's return to the ring on June 9, Saunders criticised a reporter for an ill-advised question on his past.
Fury stormed out of the ITV interview after he was repeatedly questioned over doping allegations and homophobic slurs.
And, Saunders insists the reporter would not have brought those issues back up had he seen Fury at his worst.
"I don't understand how people can try and pick up on points put behind them.
"If you would have seen him where I've seen him, next to death's door and wanting to commit suicide."
Saunders added: "It was only last year he was on about committing suicide and leaving all his kids.
"And for someone to get over that and come out where they've come...I think the past needs to be left there."
Praising his recovery, the WBO middleweight champion said: "He's at the top of the tree. He wants to get recognised for that again.
"I'm sure he will, but I find it very disrespectful and totally unprofessional.
"When Tyson's on top of the tree again and he does his mega fights, and gets the win, he'll want to interview him again and he won't be able to do it."
Commenting on his resurgence from a dark time away from the ring, Saunders has also revealed he believes Fury will beat Anthony Joshua if the fight happens.
"Me and Tyson watched the fight [Joshua vs Klitschko] and Tyson is very, very, very confident. He's extremely confident.
Watch the video with Billy Joe Saunders below. [Scroll to 3:40 to see BJS discuss Fury]
Speaking to talkSPORT: "AJ did well, you can't take that away from him, he did very, very well. But I think Tyson has got a bit too much for him. Tyson will literally play with him.
"Joshua is a good man, and I think he and Tyson will make history. It's good for boxing to get this fight on. It's the fight fans wants to see and I want to see it too.
"Tyson's already said that he doesn't want a warm-up, he'll go straight in, let's get it on!"