Adam Rickitt has given a brutally honest interview in which he talks about battling an eating disorder as a teenager. The former Coronation Street star, who was speaking for Mental Health Awareness Week, described how he first developed bulimia while at boarding school in Cumbria.
"For me it hit crisis point when I was 15 and I got a rugby injury because I was at a school which was very traditional, rugby and academic," said Adam, speaking on Lorraine.
"If I'm honest looking back now, the problem started much younger because I never felt like I fitted into that environment."
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Adam Rickitt revealed that he used to wake up at six in the morning to binge eat
The 36-year-old went on to say that he felt his life was predestined. "I was going to go to public school, go to university, become a lawyer, have 2.4 children and retire and play golf at 50 and that just isn't what I wanted to do, I wanted to go and be an actor," said Adam.
The only way to "fit in" was to be a rugby boy, because they were the "gods of the school", he added. But when Adam dislocated both shoulders and stopped playing the sport, he started bingeing as a way to distract himself.
"I was eating to try and keep my weight up so I could get back training and literally, I'd just without realising, been eating and eating and eating for two hours stood up and was just sick on the spot," said Adam.
"Now whereas most people would be 'Oh my God I've been sick it's terrible' I looked at my watch and went 'I've just not had to think for two hours' so I did it straight again and it started out as a way of distracting my brain."
The former Coronation Street star said he finally recovered at the age of 30
"Once you get on that destructive road, it just snowballs and snowballs and snowballs and by the end of it, 18 months later, I was setting my alarm for six o'clock in the morning so I could start eating and bingeing and I was throwing up, up to 30 times a day," he said.
The actor, who married Good Morning Britain correspondent Katy Fawcett last year, recovered at the age of 30.
He said: "I knew I was cured because my mum rang me when I was working in New Zealand and said 'What are you doing for your birthday?' and I said 'I'm just reading a book' and I burst into tears because it was the first time since I was 12 that I'd been able to be in my own company because up to that point I had to distract myself all the time."
"Even if I was doing something like Coronation Street I wasn't happy," he revealed. "Literally for 12 years of acting I never actually enjoyed one part of it because I was so worried about what the next step was."
Adam gave the candid interview to explain that he is an "everyday guy" – but that mental health problems can "literally happen to anyone". Reiterating his message on Twitter, he posted: "Everybody is at risk of having issues with #mentalhealth. How u steer your path that matters."