Phillip Schofield says he lost three stone and slept for just two hours a night as he wrestled with coming out as gay

PHILLIP Schofield lost a dramatic amount of weight and could not sleep from the stress of deciding whether to come out as gay.

The This Morning presenter, 58, came out on live television in February this year.

Phillip opened up about how he grappled with the decision to tell the world about his sexuality in his new autobiography, Life's What You Make It.

The stress of the decision took a physical toll on him and he dropped a lot of weight, to the point where even This Morning viewers began to worry about him.

He "sobbed quietly in the dark" over Christmas and New Year's and refused to eat, no matter how much his wife Steph tried to get him to take some food.

Phillip wrote: "My weight dropped, and as it hit 9st 12lbs the This Morning viewers started to notice.

"I was getting tweets from people asking if I was ill."

The dad-of-two described the months leading up to his coming out as being some of the darkest in his life.

"It's like being inside the blackest cloud and being consumed by crushing, desperate sadness," Phil remembered.

"Nothing and no one can make it better."

He also felt racked with guilt about confessing to his wife of 27 years that he was attracted to men.

"I didn't know I was gay when I married Steph," Phil adds. "If I had, I wouldn't have gotten married."

His huge secret left him ill and forced him off work from the ITV show.

The pressure of his gay secret once forced him off This Morning — leaving pal Holly Willoughby to host the show alone.

The star had a meltdown on the way to ITV studios and got his driver to take him home. Another time he ran off screen to be sick.

The incidents made him realise he had to tell the world who he really was.

In a new book out today Phil, 58, writes: “I had to come out. If I didn’t, the secret was going to give me a total breakdown . . . at best.”

Phillip Schofield was heading to This Morning when a voice in his head told him: “You’re f***ing up everything and everyone and there’s no way to stop it.”

The TV presenter also credited "sensitive" Holly's support when he came out as gay saying it was "absolutely vital".

Phillip was interviewed by his co-presenter Holly – and credits her for helping him throughout the whole process.

He told The One Show: "She is such a wise person. She's got such a calm and sensitive aura to her. At home, everyone was saying, 'it'll be okay, it'll be okay'. At work, she was saying, 'it'll be fine', she was the only one who knew at that time at work."

Phillip – who was married with wife Stephanie Lowe for 27 years and shared two daughters together – came out via an Instagram statement, before his interview with Holly.

The Sun then sat down exclusively with Phillip just moments after he came off air.

Still visibly reeling from the landmark moment, he admitted that the courage of This Morning viewers in confronting their own sexuality has inspired him.

He said: “I remember we had a phone-in, quite a long time ago, with a lady who called in who was 94 years old and said she had wanted to come out her whole life. And eventually she did.

“She had waited all those years and it made me realise — life is short. I wanted to do it and in the right way.”

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