As noted, AJ Mendez Brooks, formerly known as AJ Lee, was a guest on SiruisXM’s Jim Norton and Sam Roberts Show to promote the former WWE Superstar’s new book, Crazy Is My Superpower. The interview was re-uploaded on their YouTube channel last week, although it took place earlier this year. Among other things, AJ discussed what name she calls her husband CM Punk by, being diagnosed with bipolar disorder, keeping her condition from WWE, and accomplishing her goals in pro wrestling.
According to AJ, she calls her husband ‘Phil’.
“You know what’s interesting? We were just having this conversation, that if you’re not super-entrenched into [pro] wrestling, you might think it’s really disrespectful to just call a grown man ‘Punk’, so a lot of people tend to say ‘CM’. Right. Somebody asked me yesterday, they go, ‘do you call him Punk?’ and I’m like, ‘what is wrong with you? What do you think?’ Yes [AJ calls him Phil]!”
When asked what ‘CM’ stands for in her husband’s name, Mrs. Punk said it is supposed to be a mystery.
“I think it’s supposed to be a mystery for the fans for the rest of time, so he says something different every time, so I don’t want to break that.”
During the interview, AJ shared that she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at 19 or 20 years old.
“Yeah, it runs in my family, bipolar disorder does, depression does. My brother’s a soldier. He has PTSD. It’s something we’re more susceptible to and I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder around 19 [or] 20 [years of age].”
Additionally, AJ divulged that Punk knew about her mental condition prior to dating, so it never came as a surprise.
“We were really good friends for a long time before we ever dated, so he knew. He knew what he was getting into, I like to say! It would have been great I didn’t tell him, and we got married and I’m like, ‘ha! You bought this!'”
AJ divulged that Punk does a great job of trying to cheer her up during her depressive cycles and even flew in one of her best friends to help cheer her up.
“He tries his best to help me through those [depressive] days and I had one not too long ago and my birthday was a few days away, it was my 30th birthday and I was so excited and I was bummed out, basically, that I was going to miss my birthday because these cycles last maybe a week or two.” AJ continued, “and he was so great and he surprised me and flew one my best friends in to try and lift my spirits for my birthday and it worked!”
Interestingly, AJ indicated that she only told her close friends at WWE about being diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
“Well, no one knew. It was something I kept close to the vest. Only the closest people to me, that would travel with me, or I would hang out with them, I would tell them. I was lucky to have really good friends on the road that I could tell them, ‘okay, look out for me today. Make sure I don’t kill anyone.’ But it was because I have committed to a perfect combination of therapy and treatment, I do feel like I’m able to handle the stress of that and able to power through even when I am having a bad day.”
Also of note, AJ stated that she accomplished all of her pro wrestling goals in only three years.
“For me, there were so many moments in my life where it was just about getting signed, just about getting a job that I could help support my family, and then it happened. Then, I was like, ‘oh, then I have to make new goals.’ And I literally wrote a list and I was like, ‘okay, here are all the things I need to accomplish in [pro] wrestling. This’ll take me a decade, but this needs to happen or I’ll never leave.’ And then, I did them all in three years, a lot of them within the first year, and you’re kind of left in this place where I think people like struggling in a weird way, people are a little masochistic, and they want something to be angry about or fighting for. When you’re content, that’s a strange feeling and so you have to say, ‘what is the next goal? What is the next big thing that I need to accomplish while I’m still healthy, and young, and still have opportunities?'”
Check out the interview in the video above. If you use any of the quotes from this article, please credit Jim Norton and Sam Roberts with an H/T to WrestlingINC for the transcription.