Grant Denyer opens up about his struggles with drinking and anxiety

Jan 06, 2021
Grant Denyer admitted that at times he was probably still drunk while presenting the weather on morning show 'Sunrise'. Source: Facebook/ I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here Australia

Television presenter Grant Denyer has opened up about his struggles with alcohol and realisation that he experiences anxiety in a very honest admission during an episode of reality TV show I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, which aired across the country on Tuesday night.

The 43-year-old, who spent time in the Australian “jungle” along with other celebrities and media personalities last year as part of the popular show, even went so far as to say that at times he was likely still drunk while presenting the weather on channel Seven’s breakfast program Sunrise, adding, “I don’t like my relationship with alcohol”.

The topic came up after comedian Mel Buttle, who also appears in the show, admitted that she stopped drinking after visiting a psychologist last year. “I realised through her holding the mirror up to me that I was so unhealthy and that it’s not necessary to have five beers while you cook dinner and then two bottles of red with dinner,” she told Grant.

To which the father-of-two said, “Hearing Mel share her problems with alcohol, it’s been pretty powerful … because I don’t think I get the best out of myself with drinking, and I think I need it gone from my life to be able to navigate life a lot better than I have been.”

Grant went on to say that he has only just figured out that his alcohol consumption is likely due to the anxiety that he experiences. “I think I’ve only just realised from coming in here, that I drink to lessen anxiety, which I didn’t really realise I had until I saw the pattern of fear coming into here [the reality TV show] and the anticipation of a new gig and [concerns of] will I fit in? Is it going to be fun? Am I going to be able to be successful in the challenges? Can I be funny for that long?” he told the other contestants.

“All of these things and … I was like, ohhh! I’m trying to calm all that down. I’ve never put two and two together and I’ve been asking myself this question for – far out… five years? Do I have a problem? And I think the answer is, I do. And it was coming in here, watching how I couldn’t control the pace at which I was drinking because I do everything fast but … I was trying to stem the fear of … what we were about to do, and I thought, I think I do that every week.”

Speaking away from the group, Mel then said that this realisation of his drinking habits could be the beginning of a major change for Grant. “I think he’s in a space where he could make some big changes in his life and – he doesn’t have to quit booze forever – but I think a few pennies might have dropped for him,” she said.

Before long, Grant’s brave revelation had spread across social media, with people from all walks of life getting behind the TV presenter and praising him for being so open about his struggles.

“Well done Grant! You can do it. The prospect seems worse before you take the plunge,” Katelyn Brice wrote on Facebook. “Speaking from experience, it gets easier and life still goes on. It is amazing how many people respect you for your decision to not drink … against what used to be the pressure of ‘you must have a drink’. Go for it, but in your own time and at your own pace.”

Gramps Elbourne commented, “This topic needs to be talked about more often. I applaud the celebs for chatting about it on TV. Might open a few eyes. Everyone whining about this and that … to me, this section was good to see … well done. Alcohol is too accepted in our way of life.”

Stories that matter
Emails delivered daily
Sign up