Celebrity chef Julie Goodwin has opened up about her mental health for the first time since leaving a mental health facility, revealing that she has hope for the future thanks to the support of her loving family.
Earlier this year, the former Masterchef Australia winner shared the heartbreaking news that her mental health had declined and she was receiving help as an in-patient. At the time, she had been forced to stand down from her position on her radio show Rabbit and Julie Goodwin and was stuck on a rollercoaster of emotions.
In an interview with The Project on Sunday night, the mother-of-three shared further details about her battle, revealing that at one stage she even struggled to feed herself. Reflecting on her private pain and the five weeks she spent in a mental health unit, Goodwin told host Lisa Wilkinson that she was “going well” and her health has progressed in leaps and bounds.
“It wasn’t just a feeling, it became physical,” she told Wilkinson. “My hands shook so much that I couldn’t put a fork full of food to my mouth. It was really quite frightening. I couldn’t sleep.”
“I was stuck in a situation of my own creation and I couldn’t get out; I couldn’t see a way out,” she said. “And it wasn’t that I didn’t want to be alive anymore, but I couldn’t figure out how to be alive. I just had voices that were despairing and dark and wrong. Telling me the wrong things. I couldn’t see a way out.”
The season one winner of Masterchef credited her husband Mick, who made the decision to take her to the emergency room where she was eventually admitted to a mental health unit, for putting her on the road to recovery.
“I’m very grateful to my husband Mick for making that decision,” she told Wilkinson. “He just said to me, ‘I’m not equipped to deal with what you’re going through right now, and I need some help with this’. If I hadn’t been taken there, I don’t know where I’d be now. What I know from the very centre of my soul is that he is looking out for me and that his motivation is my wellbeing.”
Reflecting on some of her darkest days, Goodwin said she “couldn’t see a way out”.
“It wasn’t that I didn’t want to be alive anymore, but I couldn’t figure out how to be alive,” she said. “I just had voices that were despairing and dark and wrong, telling me the wrong things.”
Touching on the coronavirus pandemic and the toll that self-isolation can have on mental health, Goodwin shared her hope for the public.
“It’s been a devastating time for everybody,” she said. “What I do hope is that having faced an adversity as one planet instead of little fractions of it facing off against each other, that maybe we can emerge from this better as a human race and more considerate and just more able to look out for each other.”