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Caroline Flack’s family reveal she was ‘afraid’ to open up about her mental health struggles

"She didn't want anyone to know she got down..."

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Caroline Flack’s family have revealed the late presenter was “afraid” to open up about her mental health struggles.

The Love Island presenter was found dead at her home in London on February 15, 2020 at the age of 40, after tragically taking her own life.

In Channel 4’s documentary Caroline Flack: Her Life and Death, Caroline’s twin sister Jody and her mother Christine opened up about her secret struggles.

Christine admitted she “always worried” about Caroline, revealing she wasn’t able to handle heartache.

“She had a long relationship when she was in Cambridge but that ended and then we got a call, she’d taken some pills, she spent time in hospital and then you could tell it wasn’t right, her reaction wasn’t right,” the 70-year-old recalled.

“Yeah, she didn’t handle heartbreak well. We went through all the doctors and they saw to her and thought no it’s just a one off but there was always that fear after then that.”

“I don’t know, you always worried in case anything happened.”

Jody said: “It feels so weird talking about it because I know it’s something she never wanted anybody to know about.”

“Each serious boyfriend, she sort of took a lot of tablets, drank a lot, and ended up in an A&E situation a lot of times. She really didn’t think she could cope with that feeling so it was her trying to control it.”

Opening up about the stigma attached to mental illness, Christine added: “She hated the thought of people thinking she was this awful person.”

“She didn’t want anyone to know she got down and I know they say everyone’s talking about it now but I think a lot of people that really suffer with depression still don’t talk about it, they don’t. I think people are still frightened to say it.”

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Caroline and her sister Jody | Credit: Channel 4

Christine said her daughter became “addicted” to reading negative comments about herself online.

“When I was young, if you were bullied at school you could get away from it but you can’t get away from it now because it follows you home, it follows you on your phone.”

“Carrie was the worst one, she would look at her phone all the time. It took her over. There could be 30 nice things said but one bad thing and that was it.”

Speaking about the documentary, she said: “I wanted to show Carrie in a positive light. I wanted all the last months of the things that were written about her and said about her, her being an abuser, and things like that, they’re the things that stuck and got repeated and I just wanted to show she was an ordinary girl, that wasn’t her.”

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“What was shown at the end wasn’t her. She wasn’t perfect but that wasn’t her,” Christine added.

“Everyone was saying you can’t say anything yet but I wanted to show a positive side to Caroline and the memory to be of this positive, nice person, and my daughter, and a sister, she never changed and she was good to us and lovely.”

“For me, it’s when she’s little and you think she’s got that life ahead and you don’t know what’s going to happen with your kiddies, do you?”

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“And you can protect them up to a certain age or time and then it’s just how life goes, all the things that happened to her… and it was just a silly thing at the end that happened… and it ended her life.”

Caroline, Jody and Christine | Credit: Channel 4

Caroline was found dead at her home months after she was arrested for allegedly assaulting her boyfriend Lewis Burton.

The presenter took her own life just hours after she was told she would face trial for the alleged assault – despite the fact that Lewis didn’t want to press charges.

Following her death, the presenter’s management slammed the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) for pursuing the ‘show trial’, knowing how vulnerable she was.

After Caroline sadly took her own life, her family released an unpublished Instagram post the presenter wanted to share before the died.

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In the heartfelt statement, the TV star denied being a “domestic abuser”, and said the incident between her and Lewis was simply an “accident”.

If you have been affected by anything in this article, please visit www.pieta.ie or call 1800 247 247.

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