Sherlock star talks how split from Martin Freeman has affected their children

Amy West

Sherlock's Amanda Abbington has opened up about her split from former co-star Martin Freeman.

As part of the It's OK mental health campaign, for which she is an ambassador, the actress took to Instagram earlier this month to discuss her relationship with her son Joe, 15, and daughter Grace, 12, and how she encourages them to be open with her at home.

"I think it's unsettling if I pretend I'm this Stepford Wife parent," Abbington, who has also appeared in shows such as I Hate Suzie, The Bill and Mr Selfridge, began.

"Nobody is. I'm sure I've given them irreparable damage and they will be going to therapy because of me and Martin at some point.

"If I can teach them to talk about it, say there's nothing to be frightened of or ashamed of with whatever you're going through – whether you get drunk or try drugs, whatever you do – this place where we live is a safe place where you can say whatever you like.

Photo credit: David M. Benett - Getty Images
Photo credit: David M. Benett - Getty Images

"That's what I am striving for and what Martin strives for as well – to create a place where they're not hiding anything."

During the live session, Abbington, 47, also discussed the effects of online trolling and her own struggles with mental health. She recalled how she used to hide the fact that she was taking antidepressants from her kids but now, she's determined not to be ashamed of the ways in which she's trying to help herself.

Photo credit: NIKLAS HALLE'N/AFP - Getty Images
Photo credit: NIKLAS HALLE'N/AFP - Getty Images

"Are you saying they're offensive and shouldn't happen?" she said of her secretive past behaviours. "I don't want that."

Freeman and Abbington started dating while working together on Men Only back in 2000. They announced their separation in 2016, during which they were starring as John Watson and his wife Mary Morstan on the BBC detective drama Sherlock.

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