Loose Women has been praised by viewers after a frank discussion among the panellists about their individual mental health struggles.
The ITV daytime show included an all-Black panel for only the second time today (February 4), with host Charlene White joined by Brenda Edwards, Kéllé Bryan and Judi Love.
During the show, the four panellists opened up about their own mental health struggles, with Judi speaking candidly about the “delayed grief” she experienced following the death of her mother.
“I battled with it for a while, because I felt like for me I’m a strong Black woman, I’m always there for my friends and family, and that thought of depression, you don’t want to use that word, you don’t want to have that conversation with anybody.”
Explaining that she was “scared” to seek help and was “afraid to show vulnerability”, Judi eventually reached out to her friends and sister for help.
Kéllé spoke about being sacked from pop group Eternal and being in a coercive relationship, saying she felt “ashamed” to be financially struggling.
“I would encourage anyone to reach out. If you feel like it’s your fault or not, it isn’t the point – the point is that you need help,” she said.
Charlene teared-up as she spoke about feelings of not being capable as a mother, admitting she realised she had not grieved properly over the death of her own mother a number of years beforehand.
Recalling seeking help with a therapist, she added that she cried in the first three sessions: “When I finished those sessions suddenly this huge weight was lifted from me and it felt like I could now become a mother.”
Brenda also welled up as she spoke about the tragic death of her parents when she was four, realised she was struggling and needed help when she was diagnosed with cancer in 2015.
Viewers heaped praise on the discussion, one saying: “The segment about mental health has to be the most powerful and realest segment I’ve seen on Loose Women. There was such a rawness to it. Bravo ladies, we need more of this and definitely discussions like this when it comes to mental health”.
Another added: “It’s rare I sit through a whole @loosewomen but today’s panel have really pulled it out of the bag. More of this please.”
A third said: “Such bold, beautiful and brave ladies! Loving this discussion on mental health.”
Loose Women airs on weekdays at 12.30pm on ITV.
Loose Women Box Set – Here Come the Girls [DVD]
Life’s What You Make It: The Sunday Times Bestseller 2020
Loose Women: Let Loose!: Our Life Lessons Revealed
Happily Imperfect by Stacey Solomon
Behind the Laughter – Sherrie Hewson
The Unwelcome Visitor: The Sunday Times Bestseller
Riding the Waves: My Story – Jane McDonald
Gloria Hunniford: My Life – The Autobiography
This Girl Is on Fire by Andrea McLean
Starting Over – Denise Welch
Behind the Laughter by Sherrie Hewson
We would encourage anyone who identifies with the topics raised in this article to reach out. Organisations who can offer support include Samaritans on 116 123 (www.samaritans.org) or Mind on 0300 123 3393 (www.mind.org.uk). Readers in the US are encouraged to visit mentalhealth.gov.
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