Anyone who has ever suffered from depression will know that how you seem on the outside isn’t always representative of how you’re feeling inside. And that’s certainly true of bubbly TV presenter Fearne Cotton.
In her new book, Happy, the 35-year-old mum-of-two has opened up about her struggle with depression in a bid to tackle the stigma that so many mental health sufferers face.
Speaking candidly about the symptoms that she experienced, the radio DJ described feeling “drained, anti-social and alienated.”
Pin-pointing the early days of her depression when she was working as a morning presenter at Radio 1, Fearne explained that she wished she’d picked up on the signs sooner.
“I had a real lack of energy,” she said. “I felt so drained and my lust for everything that I love wasn’t there any more. I’m very optimistic by nature, I wake up in the morning and I’m very excited about my day, I’m so pumped and enthusiastic about the smaller things in life and that was dead.”
“Everything was a drag and felt heavy,” she continued. “I felt antisocial, cut-off, alienated and they were massive warning signs. Everyone has that light bulb moment that they need to do something differently, but for me it was feeling stuck.”
The ‘Celebrity Juice’ presenter went on to explain that she decided to go and see a GP, and described the “relief” she felt after getting a diagnosis.
“I was prescribed anti-depressants,” she continued. “I decided it would get my head above the clouds for a moment. I’d never taken them before so it felt like it be worth a go.”
Like many parents Fearne was struggling with the strive for perfection, but realising that she needed to let go of the idea of being ‘perfect’ that helped set her on the road to recovery.
“Letting go of ‘perfect’ was important. I was trying to do so many things and putting so much pressure on myself – and why?” she said.
“Perfect doesn’t exist. I cut back a lot on work, and focused a lot more on family. My priorities now are work and family, so going out and socialising are non-existent.”
Crediting her husband Jesse, who she married in 2014, as being instrumental in supporting her throughout her struggle she said: “I’m exceptionally lucky that I met someone who’s so unbelievably free-spirited and curious about life and open-minded.”
“Before, it was just me on my own worrying about whether I should do this job or not, then it became about loving other people and how we divide our time.”
Fearne isn’t the only celebrity to talk candidly about their mental health battle. Last year Adele opened up about her struggle with post natal depression and anxiety, Selena Gomez announced she was taking some time-out from her music career to focus on her mental health and Zayn Malik has also publicly spoken about his own struggles with anxiety. And last October, Amanda Seyfried also opened up about why she doesn’t think she will ever come off the antidepressants she takes to keep her mental illness in check.
By sharing their mental health battles so openly, celebrities hope that those also suffering from anxiety and depression will feel more confident coming forward to seek the help they need to treat their conditions.
According to recent statistics from the NHS one in five women have reported a mental health illness in recent years, compared to one in eight men. Experts advise you visit your GP if you are suffering from symptoms of depression, but you can find out more information about the signs and symptoms of depression and other mental health conditions on the Mind website.
What do you think? Let us know @YahooStyleUK