Jamelia reveals depression to her daughter
Jamelia recently told her 15-year-old daughter Teja about her depression.
The singer-turned-TV presenter revealed to her eldest child - whose father is her former partner Terry Wallen - that she has suffered from the condition ever since she divorced the father of her second daughter, Tiani, 11, in 2009.
Speaking on ITV chat show 'Loose Women' on Thursday (19.05.16), she said: "For me, the thing I can attach it most to was getting divorced. And it completely took me over... I was diagnosed with it about eight years ago. She (Teja) is 15 and I just thought this is an opportunity. I didn't want to really reveal it to her at any point but I just thought, I can't see her just being a little bit down and then calling this depression. I find that, especially with her and her friends, I hear them say, 'Oh you're bedroom's so neat, oh you're so OCD, (Obsessive-compulsive disorder) and I'm just like, 'No, that's not OCD and that is a real condition'. It belittles the real condition.
"So I sat down and had a very honest conversation with my daughter and just explained to her what depression was and why I knew about it. Because I suffer with it myself. And, I mean, she did star crying. But I felt that it was very important for her to learn that lesson and for us to have that conversation on the table."
The 'Superstar' singer apologised to the live studio audience as she welled up and explained she felt unable to cope with everyday tasks and refused to take medication.
She went on: "I was so consumed with sadness. Everyday tasks like making breakfast for my kids - particularly as a single mother - became really tough. In the end, I went to see my doctor who offered me antidepressants - and for me that was a huge turning point. No offence to anyone who does take them, but I didn't want to be medicated. I had therapy instead."
Jamelia - who opened up on the midday show to support 'Loose Women's mental health campaign 'Lighten The Load' which will run for two weeks from April 25 - has learned to manage her depression through recognising the triggers that bring it on.
She said: "That helped me to become aware of what my triggers are. Now I know when I'm in that zone. It can happen very quickly. But now I'm aware of it, I can manage it. I cannot afford to get into that hole again."