Susannah Constantine reveals 30-year battle with anxiety made her want to 'end it all'

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Susannah Constantine has opened up about living with anxiety in secret (Credit: ITV)
Susannah Constantine has opened up about living with anxiety in secret (Credit: ITV)

Susannah Constantine has revealed her struggle with anxiety has seen her wish to be hit by a lorry “so that I could put an end to it all.”

The TV presenter and fashion journalist - who rose to fame as part of stylist duo Trinny and Susannah on BBC show What Not To Wear - has opened up about her 30-year battle with the condition on ITV’s This Morning.

Constantine, 57, told Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford: “I would wake up as a child every morning drenched in sweat and that came from, looking back now and that’s only something I’ve done very recently, my mother was manic-depressive and I guess I would wake up every morning scared of how she would be today.

“There was that feeling of uncertainty. Was I going to be abandoned to her illness that day? So I think it stems from that.”

NOTE CONTENT. Fashion experts Trinny Woodall (left) and Susannah Constantine pose naked, joined by hundreds of volunteers to celebrate the country's finest forms by creating a living sculpture on the side of a hill near Lewes, Sussex.
Susannah Constantine posing naked with presenting partner Trinny Woodall for BBC show 'The Great British Body' in 2008 (Credit: PA)

She added: “I would pray that my car would be driven into by a lorry or something, so that I could put an end to it all. But it was just a thought that flashed through my mind… I say that. That is over-dramatic but it was at that moment something [to] take the pain away and then it would go.”

And the reality TV star - who has competed on live TV in Strictly Come Dancing and lived in the jungle for I’m A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! - admitted she still wakes up terrified.

She said: “I woke up this morning with that snowball in my stomach. It’s now starting to melt. Usually by 11am, 12pm it’s gone and I’m okay.”

The boarding school-educated mother-of-three explained she had kept the condition hidden as a coping mechanism.

Constantine said: “I kept it in because for me it was a very personal thing and because I was able to function. And so I started doing things for myself… I believe it has got to come from within you.”

Susannah Constantine and Lee Ryan at the launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2018 held at The Broadcasting House, London.
Susannah Constantine and Lee Ryan at the launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2018 (Credit: PA)

She added: “I now look at it as a haunting. I look at it as the ghost of anxiety has come to visit me and it’s going to pass. So intellectually I know it’s not going to stay with me… I use it as a motivator now.”

Constantine competed in Strictly Come Dancing last year and was the first celebrity to be voted out.

She said: “I don’t know why I did that. It was, without question, the most frightening thing I’ve ever done… I want to give two fingers to it [anxiety]. It’s kind of like smothering it with activity. That actually isn’t a good thing to do. I’ve learnt to sit with myself, to sit with my anxiety and just listen to it and not try to fight it. And again, I think that’s helped me a lot.”

This Morning airs weekdays at 10.30am on ITV.

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