Jacqueline Jossa has said she wants to show that she is not a “pushover or a doormat” when she takes part in I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here!.
The former EastEnders star believes that people “pity” her, and said she is determined to prove them wrong.
The 27-year-old, who played Lauren Branning in the BBC soap for eight years until 2018, is one of 10 stars heading into the jungle in the ITV entertainment reality show along with the likes of Caitlyn Jenner, Nadine Coyle and Ian Wright.
Speaking before going into the jungle in Australia, Jossa said: “I think people think I am a pushover or a doormat.
“I also think some people pity me. I want to show I am fine, I am up for a laugh and that I will go for it and try my best.”
She said the most difficult part of being in I’m A Celebrity is being herself rather than acting a role, as she has never done that before.
“My old colleagues on EastEnders are going to be shocked,” she said. “I don’t think they can imagine me in there. I don’t like creatures. It is not my thing.
“I have also never done rock climbing, jumped out of a plane or camped in my life. I am not that kind of girl.”
Jossa is married to former The Only Way Is Essex star Dan Osborne, with whom she has two daughters, Ella, four, and Mia, one.
The pair briefly split last year, less than 12 months after getting married, but reconciled after Osborne took part in Celebrity Big Brother just over a year ago.
Jossa said Osborne is supportive of her stint in I’m A Celebrity, adding: “He thinks I am going to be good. He is excited and he’s coming over to meet me when I come out.”
However, she is concerned about being separated from her daughters for so long.
“This is definitely the longest I have ever been away from them and that is going to be really hard,” she said.
“I didn’t know how to face even telling them. In the end, I thought the best idea was to say ‘Mummy is going away for work’ and I would see them soon. My family is so close-knit and I will miss them all terribly.”
But she said she is “really excited” for the “totally new experience”, and that she hopes it will help further her career.
She said: “If doing this programme opens doors for me then that would be so exciting.
“There are loads of things I would love to do, both acting and presenting.”
I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here! starts on Sunday November 17 at 9pm on ITV.