24/01/2012 09:32 GMT | Updated 24/03/2012 09:12 GMT

Loose Women's Andrea Mclean Was 'Ashamed To Seek Help For Post-Natal Depression'

Loose Women host Andrea Mclean has opened up about suffering post-natal depression, saying she is relieved she is now on the road to recovery.

The star yesterday spoke about the breakdown of her marriage to her partner, builder Steve Toms, after nine years together, admitting that she is still "in shock" following the split.

Now, the former GMTV weather girl has revealed further details about her personal life - she's opened up about the issues she faced following the birth of her daughter Amy in 2006.

According to the Daily Mirror, she said: "Mentally, I had not returned to my normal happy self after having Amy, something I denied for a long time - until the blackness became too big to cover with a smile.

"As one of life's 'copers', it was hard to admit I was struggling. I tried to pull myself together, but it was desperately hard to do.

"I went to work every day, held down two demanding jobs - GMTV and Loose Women - and didn't let anything ruffle me. I made sure the house ran smoothly and the two children were happy.

"But quietly, on my own, I felt I was cracking up."

Despite often becoming tearful at work and hiding herself away when she felt low, the star tried to soldier on at home.

She adds: "At home I did the same. I tidied and smiled and hugged and coped while feeling that if someone poked me just a little too hard, I'd shatter into a thousand pieces."

However, the depressed new mum admitted she thought everyone would be better off without her after she found normal tasks became too much for her.

She admits: "Everything was awful. Amy was so beautiful, I didn't deserve her. I felt like everyone would be better off without me.

"Steve was livid. 'What a stupid thing to say!' he snapped, jumping out of bed. 'I won't have you saying things like that. Just sort yourself out and deal with it.'"

After hitting rock bottom, the TV star sought help from her doctor.

Andrea confesses: "For years I didn't tell anyone that I had been prescribed antidepressants. I felt ashamed that I hadn't been able to 'pull myself together'.

The star is pleased to have been given help, admitting there is nothing wrong with a little assistance in tough times.

She said: "I'm not ashamed any more that I need help to cope, because you know what? Life is hard, and sometimes we all need something to help us get through."


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