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Coronation Street star Beverley Callard opened up about her battle with depression on This Morning, hinting that the soap’s bosses kept her out of big storylines because of the illness.
The 59-year-old actress returned to the show to talk about her ongoing recovery, and told a shocked Holly and Phil that she was once described as “flaky” by one of the show’s production team.
Beverley returned to the Street in May following a two month break, and has previously praised the show’s bosses for the way they handled her illness.
“Simon Blackburn, our producer, just said, “You need some weeks out to get the medication right. He understood straight away but many don’t,” she explained.
The actress, who plays brassy barmaid Liz McDonald in the soap, has battled with depression for many years, and had her condition under control until the medication she was using was taken out of production.
She explained that after nine weeks without the drug, she began to feel much, much worse.
“I totally lacked confidence anyway, and I just got worse and worse,” she said. “I got made up to play Liz and I couldn’t bear to look in the mirror.
“I felt so bad I couldn’t be this confident showy person Liz is. I didn’t talk about it or explain – you feel everything you have to say is worthless. You sink into a black hole. You think, ‘I won’t get better’.
“I was completely suicidal and I couldn’t leave the house. I couldn’t leave the bedroom to be honest.”
The star also admitted that she suspects she could be bipolar.
“My psychiatrist – he’s almost convinced I’m bipolar too,” she continued. “This only happened in the last four weeks. The way he explained it – I don’t get the amazing highs but I get tremendous lows so I don’t get the good bits just the bad bits!”
Happily, now that Beverley has her medication sorted, it sounds like she’s finally on the mend.
“The point I must stress is you do get better,” she said. “As long as you get the right help, be it medication or counselling.”
“I’m very good now. I’ve tried four different medications, but I have finally found the right one.I’m much more level and relaxed now.”