Entertainment

Helen Flanagan on developing ‘crazy' thoughts after having first child

The Coronation Street star said her anxiety worsened and she developed OCD when she welcomed daughter Matilda.

Helen Flanagan has told of how she started having “crazy” thoughts and developed new behaviours after having her first child.

The Coronation Street star, who has daughters Matilda, four, and Delilah, one, with fiance Scott Sinclair, also said she found social situations difficult when she first became a mother.

Flanagan, 29, told Giovanna Fletcher’s Happy Mum Happy Baby podcast: “With Matilda, (going) from always working, running around like mad, to then suddenly having Matilda… even though it was amazing just being this mum, I kind of became quite ‘in’ myself and like I got quite bad social anxiety and things like that because I wasn’t really going out as much.

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“I kind of lost my confidence… and even though I love her to bits, I found it quite hard in social situations.

“No-one would think that because you think, ‘Helen, shut up, you’re an actress, you can go talk to anyone.'”

Author and vlogger Fletcher, who has three children with McFly star Tom Fletcher, said that “you lose a part of who you are” when you become a mother, adding that “it becomes overwhelming”.

Flanagan said: “No, it does and I did get a little bit of OCD as well.

“I mean, I’ve always kind of like had like mental health things as well, but I think it’s great to talk about mental health. But like, I’d get strange little… it does sound funny. I’ll say it to my friends and they do just laugh.

“I had this habit where, in social situations, I had to like gulp all the time, excessively.”

The soap star added: “It was really weird, but you kind of get these OCD things and your anxiety and what have you.

“For me it was 100% was in overdrive after Matilda because you have this baby and you love them more than anything in the world and you start thinking crazy things like ‘God, what happens if I like die? This baby needs me.’

“And you start getting all this anxiety and you start thinking things in your head, and you’d never think that, you know?”

Flanagan, who has played Rosie Webster on Corrie on and off since 2000 and has also appeared in I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!, revealed that she loved how her body changed during her pregnancies.

She said: “I was just so excited to be quite honest with you, and I know this might sound a bit cringe but I would always stick my tummy out a little bit more so it looked like I had a big tummy.

“I just loved it. I loved having this big bump.”

Giovanna Fletcher’s Happy Mum Happy Baby podcast is available at Acast.com.

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