Sky News host and former The Apprentice contestant Michelle Dewberry has opened up about her battle with depression, telling The Sun that she had previously had suicidal thoughts.
‘I had made the decision to end my own life. I thought of scenarios of how I might end it,’ Michelle told the paper of her lowest point back in 2012.
‘I even thought about what would have to happen to everything I owned after I died. I didn’t want to go on.
‘It was my mum’s intervention that saved my life. She was my rock, my guardian angel. It was a talk with her that made me realise that I had depression. I was very lucky.’
After explaining her feelings to mum Glynis, Michelle sought help from doctors, even requesting that she be voluntarily sectioned.
‘I thought that was what was best for me. The doctor made me realise I was depressed and had been for years,’ she continued. ‘They gave me antidepressants, appointments with a therapist and regular doctor appointments.’
Michelle pictured in 2006, when she was a contestant on The Apprentice
Michelle said that although she had overcome many challenges in her life, including a childhood with a ‘very abusive’ father and the loss of her sister at the age of 17, it hadn’t previously occurred to her that she might be depressed.
‘For years I channelled my sadness into my ambitions,’ she said. ‘I wanted to prove to people that I could bounce back from anything, that I was tough.
‘I piled lots of pressure on myself. I wanted to make sure I had an extraordinary life to make sure I made up for the loss of her life. I wanted to have the holidays she couldn’t have, have the success in business she could not have.
‘I also wanted nice, material things and would work ridiculously long weeks trying to better myself. Nothing was ever enough. What I didn’t know was how depressed I was.
‘I didn’t think I was depressed. I thought it was just normal. I would go to spa days with friends. I should have been thinking, “What a life I’ve got, sitting in a spa on a week day” but instead I just felt very low. Depression was a constant.’
Since reaching out for professional help, Michelle has thrown herself into charity work, which she says has helped immensely.
‘I am not suicidal now and that is thanks to the charity work and talking about how I feel.
‘The most important thing is having people around you who do not dismiss what is an illness as “someone being a bit sad”.
‘There is a stigma about mental health that needs to end now. If you are suffering, I would beg you to ask for help too.’