Peter Andre has revealed the full extent of his “crippling” social anxiety, explaining how Robbie Williams helped him to diagnose the condition.
The singer, who is father to four children, opened up about his personal struggles during an emotional interview on This Morning earlier today – for which viewers have heaped on the praise.
Speaking to hosts Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield, the 44-year-old star admitted he has suffered up to 20 panic attacks a day, considered suicide and been treated in a psychiatric hospital.
He said: “This is such an important subject. I get people tweeting all the time saying they’re struggling with anxiety.”
Peter revealed that Robbie inadvertently played a part on his road to recovery after he heard the singer’s wife Ayda Field talking about the symptoms of her husband’s social anxiety on Loose Women last year.
The Aussie star said: “Ayda [Field] was on and she was talking about her husband Robbie [Williams] suffering from social anxiety and my ears pricked up.
“She started explaining that when certain events are coming up, like a red carpet event or if there’s a party, he’ll cancel it last minute or something will happen and he’ll freak out and go ‘can’t do it.’
“And I went ‘that’s what the label is, that’s what I’ve had all these years – social anxiety.”
Peter, who is married to 26-year-old doctor Emily MacDonagh, argued that while medication can make a person feel better, he feels that it’s important to talk about the issue to make steps towards overcoming it.
The Mysterious Girl vocalist explained: “Medication is a bit like sweeping it under the carpet, but I needed the medication to get me to the point where I could talk about what was causing my anxiety in therapy.”
He continued: “I also thought, how many times have I been through a panic attack and nothing has happened afterwards?
“Understanding it’s not going to hurt you makes you stronger, it puts you in a better position.”
Pete’s very candid chat was praised by viewers on social media, with one tweeting: “So inspiring hearing about Peter Andre and how he struggled with anxiety, amazing to find out you’re not alone. #ThisMorning”
Another posted: “@thismorning #ThisMorning Peter Andre.. wish I was where you are with your anxiety.. good to hear it can get better x”
Meanwhile, one person wrote: “Thank you @MrPeterAndre for raising awareness of Anxiety on @thismorning and saying it will get better it means a lot to us suffering!”
Well done Pete for speaking about such an important issue, we salute you.
This Morning continues weekdays on ITV1 at 10:30am.