Vicky Pattison sobs as she talks about ‘internal agony of faking mask of smiles’ in bid to highlight mental health

Vicky Pattison sobbed as she opened up about her internal struggles to mark the start of Mental Health Awareness Week.

The 33 year old, who recently revealed she owns her and Ercan's home after her heartbreaking split from John Noble, took to her Instagram feed to share a series of photos depicting some of her lowest moments.

Two photos see her breaking down into tears, two see her smiling as she wears a stylish blue dress, another shows her weight loss transformation as a final snap sees her looking distraught as she hides her face in a black hoodie.

In the caption, the former Geordie Shore star explained that while in some of the pictures it's clear she's distressed and struggling mentally, others are not so easy to spot.

The star said alongside many women, she felt compelled to put on a "brave face" and try to be normal while on the inside she was in "agony".

"What mental health needs is more sunlight, more candour & more unashamed conversation," she began her lengthy statement. "Today marks the start of National #MentalHealthAwareness week & in the spirit of encouraging important & necessary dialogues I thought I’d share with you some moments of my life where my mental health was at an all time low."

The reality star continued: "It’s heartbreakingly obvious to see in some of these pictures that I’m struggling, the internal agony is literally etched all over my face. But in others, the pain is harder to spot. Why? Because as women, as human beings we are so scared of showing our vulnerabilities, so terrified of appearing weak that we hide how we are really feeling behind a mask of fake smiles & bravado.

"We put on our ‘brave face’ & do our best to act ‘normal’, as if everything is fine & most of the time we do such a good job of it no one notices a thing. And that is the scary part.

"When these issues go unnoticed, undiscussed & ignored they thrive. They begin to grow, swelling inside of us, consuming our existence & debilitating our every move."

Vicky, who recently said she and Ercan are sleeping in separate bedrooms after she got her contraceptive transplant removed, went on to explain that mental health struggle can be seen in many forms and sizes, which can make it challenging to spot in a friend, family member or colleague.

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She said: "Poor mental health can come in many forms & can be exacerbated by a number of things- bad break ups, lost loved ones, stressful situations, unrelenting pressure..

"None of us are immune to this struggle & it can manifest itself differently in everyone- some people become withdrawn, some people self medicate with alcohol, some people lose weight, some people gain weight, some people hurt themselves.. & some people act like the loudest, most confident person in the room- it looks different on us all. Which is why sometimes it is so difficult to spot when someone you love is struggling".

The TV personality ended her note by encouraging all her 4.8million followers to take care of themselves, especially amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

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"This pandemic is going to have a scary & long tail for this country & the ramifications on our mental health are going to be something we have to deal with for a long while after the masks are gone, so now more than ever I urge you to look after yourself, be kind to yourself & always, ALWAYS check on your friends & family," she wrote.

Vicky added: "Whether it’s a text, a phone call, or dropping by to make sure they’re ok- & don’t be afraid to ask more than once. Be proud to be that friend. It shows you care & you do not want to see the people you love struggle alone," followed by a black heart emoji.

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