Linda Robson has said that she has been suffering with severe obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), depression and anxiety, which led to her relying on alcohol.
The Birds Of A Feather actress opened up about her time away from ITV show Loose Women, on which she is a panellist, and revealed that she was locked in her house by her family at one point due to her drinking.
Returning to the programme after a year away, Robson said: “I was having a meltdown.
“I came off the wine (as part of a diet), and I used to take a tablet to help me sleep every night and when I came off the wine, I upped the tablet.
“And then I got concerned about taking the tablet, so I went to see somebody about it and they gave me a tablet.
“I had a really, really bad reaction to it. I had a proper meltdown.
“I had really bad anxiety, really bad depression and my OCD kicked into overdrive.
“Everything needed to be spotless.”
Robson, 61, said that her OCD became so intense that she became “a mad woman cleaning every day”.
“At one point I was having four baths a day,” she added.
“I was washing my bedding every day.
“I mean, people joke when they hear someone say about OCD … they think it’s a joke, but it’s not a joke, it sort of took over my life, because I couldn’t clean everything enough.”
The TV star explained that she had a reaction to an antidepressant that she was prescribed that made her “hyper”, and that a doctor later told her that her response was incredibly rare.
Robson told her feelings of guilt “about what I put my family through”, adding: “But at least now I know it wasn’t my fault.
“I was ill. It was an illness.”
She said that Christmas in 2018 was “a real low point” for her, and that she feels that she “ruined” the festive period for her family.
“I was waking up every day and thinking I’m not going to make it through the day, how am I going to make it through the day?” she said.
“The medication was making me hyper.
“Instead of it calming me down, then I started drinking again, and not wine, I was drinking anything just to black out because I just didn’t want to be to facing the day.”
Robson said she felt “utter disgust at how I was drinking, hating myself for what I was putting my family through”.
Robson added that “drink was never the problem” and that she consumed alcohol to medicate herself.
Referring to reports that the police had been called to her house last year, she said: “Yeah they were called. Because I was drinking, (my family) were locking me in, so I couldn’t get out and then I was shouting through the door, ‘Someone let me out!’
“And then the police were called because they thought I’d been kidnapped.
“That was my family trying to keep myself.
“Now, touch wood, I’m off the alcohol completely.”