'Fell to s**t': Darius Boyd spills beans on ugly cheating scandal

Pictured right is Darius Boyd on SAS Australia and embracing his wife in the photo on the left.
Darius Boyd revealed on SAS Australia that he cheated on his now-wife during one of the lowest points of his life. Pic: Instagram/Ch7

Retired rugby league great Darius Boyd has poured his heart out about one of the most difficult periods in his life, culminating in his partner leaving him because he was "unfaithful".

The Brisbane Broncos legend - who retired from the NRL after the 2020 season - made a number of brutal revelations about his life and dealing with depression on the reality TV show, SAS Australia.

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Boyd finished his 337-game first grade career at the Broncos, but also had stints at the St George-Illawarra Dragons - where he won a premiership in 2010 - and the Newcastle Knights.

It was during his stint with the Knights where Boyd revealed that his "whole life just fell apart", with his now-wife Kayla leaving him after the NRL great admitted to cheating on her.

“I struggled with my mental health. Seven or eight years ago, my whole life just fell apart, fell to s**t, to be honest — 2014 at the Newcastle Knights was definitely a tough year,” Boyd said.

Darius and Kayla Boyd are pictured here with two of their three children.
Darius and Kayla Boyd have three children together after separating in 2014. Pic: Instagram

“I definitely don’t feel great about that period of my life. There’s a lot of things I would change and do differently. I was just hurting people, letting people down.

“Whether that’s, you know, my mum, my grandmother, my wife, Kayla. I was unfaithful, and yeah, she made a good decision to leave. But yeah, it’s something that I’m not proud of, that needed to happen, too, for us to be where we are today.

Boyd and Kayla eventually reconciled and the couple now share three children together.

However, the former Queensland Origin and Kangaroos representative player admitted that it took hitting "rock bottom", before he began to turn his life around.

Mental health experts helped Darius Boyd turn life around

“I went home one day, I had nothing. No wife that’s sitting there, no family, no friends. You look at old photos, you see this happy, smiling kid who used to play footy and then got to about 27 and there’s not much to show," he added.

“I thought I needed a change, needed to be better. Wanted to grow. That rock bottom moment, I just rang my football manager and just told him I needed some help. I didn’t know what kind of help I needed but I didn’t want to feel the way I felt.

“He put me onto a nurse at a mental health facility. I remember just hanging the phone up and crying. Just instant relief that I knew I’d organised something hopefully better myself, and live a better, healthier life.

“Rebuilding relationships was a challenge. It took time. But definitely in a really good space now (after) some of the hardships we’ve gone through. I’m really happy to be in this space and be able to bring our daughters into a really loving environment.”

Boyd also revealed details of a tough upbringing that saw him estranged from his father and his mother "diagnosed with major depression" when he was just a teenager.

“I never met my father. And my mum and I got estranged when I was probably 15, 16 – for eight years,” Boyd said.

“My mum was diagnosed with major depression, so I moved in with a family for 12 months, which was a challenge. I didn’t speak to my mum for eight years. I was very angry and closed off and probably resented her. I didn’t understand mental health, depression, didn’t understand why my mum couldn’t be there anymore.

“It was hard on me, it was hard on her too.”

Despite the many adversities Boyd faced over the course of his career, the 34-year-old can still count an premiership, a Clive Churchill Medal and the second-most Origin tries for Queensland (28) among his greatest achievements in the sport.

Mental health support for yourself or a loved one can be found by calling Lifeline on 13 11 14, Mensline on 1300 789 978, or Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800. Online support is available via Beyond Blue.

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