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Martine McCutcheon shares very rare photo of brother – and reveals personal struggles

The star celebrated her sibling's birthday

Gemma Strong

Martine McCutcheon has shared a moving message for her younger brother in celebration of his birthday. The actress took to Instagram on Wednesday with a very rare snapshot of LJ and expressed her pride at his strength in the face of adversity.

The sweet family photo shows Martine posing with her arm lovingly wrapped around LJ as the pair sat together in the garden, surrounded by balloons.

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She wrote: "Happy 30th Birthday to my little (big) brother LJ! I'm so proud of all you have achieved and who you have become - Against the odds. You arrived into my world when I was 15 and I adored you from the moment I first held you.

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"You've battled at times with your special needs and have had your struggles but you were always determined to live a normal life, have a good job, fall in love and get married.... The things so many take for granted were your biggest dreams and now it's all coming true for you! I'm so thrilled for you!

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Martine shared a sweet snapshot of her brother in celebration of his birthday

"Enjoy your day with Jay and Happy Birthday Darling, here's to your best year yet!"

Martine's fans were quick to share their own birthday messages for LJ and praise the siblings' sweet bond.

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"Beautiful words. Beautiful picture of you both x," one wrote, while a second echoed: "What a lovely post, full of love and joy. Happy birthday!" A third added: "This is just lovely. Have a happy day."

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The star with her husband and son

LJ's celebrations comes less than a month after Martine marked her own birthday. The star turned 45 on 14 May and likely spent the day celebrating with her husband Jack McManus, who she married in 2012, and their son, six-year-old Rafferty.

In a touching Instagram post shared last year in honour of their eighth wedding anniversary, Martine said of her husband: "I'm so lucky to have met and married my best friend, my partner in crime and the man who makes me laugh everyday... Thanks for always dreaming big with me and for giving me the most amazing baby boy that I could have ever wished for!

"We are both high maintenance but we're worth it right?! I love you. #weddinganniversary #8years #weredoingok #loveyou."

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