Dame Joanna Lumley would do ‘anything’ to keep her mind from going ‘crazy’ during the blackout

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Queen Elizabeth II died on Thursday September 8, 2022 at Balmoral Castle. As a vocal royalist, Joanna Lumley has openly paid tribute to the late monarch. The 76-year-old told the Press Association that the Queen represented ‘everything that was kind and just, brave and good-hearted, noble and utterly admirable’. Lumley also wrote a book about Her Majesty in 2021, A Queen for All Seasons: A Celebration of Our One and Only Queen Elizabeth II on Her Platinum Jubilee.

Stressing that “when someone dies and you cry…it’s human,” Lumley criticized how easily people jump on the “wagon bandwagon” of having mental illness.

In a candid conversation on GB News in January this year, Lumley said: “I have to say – it’s a horrible thing to say – but I think the issue of mental health is overrated at the moment.

“Anyone who is sad, even remotely, is saying they have mental issues. You say, ‘That’s called being human.

“When someone dies and you cry, that’s human. That’s what being a human is. You’re not mentally ill.”

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The Absolutely Fabulous star added that “everyone is claiming the mental illness bandwagon and I think that’s not true.”

She explained that this essentially takes away the severity of mental illness for those who are clinically depressed, for example.

Having had his own experience with mental illness, the way some people blame anything on their mental health clearly rubbed Lumley the wrong way.

“Just catch! Do you know what I mean?” Lumley said. “Anyone who just says ‘Oh burr’ – you just think, ‘Get over it. “”

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Looking back on that moment, Lumley said: “It was a complete nervous breakdown.

“I was out for six months. I was pretty shaken up. I had no more nerves. I didn’t dare go to the shops.

“I had a great time. I spent the whole day thinking, ‘How am I going to spend the day.’

“I had these panic attacks when you think, ‘Inhale, exhale, keep inhaling.

“‘Study the flowers. What color are the flowers?’ Anything to keep your mind from going crazy. And I was like, ‘I have to get out of this, how do I do that?'”

In the interview with The Times, Lumley admitted that she “often imagines the worst thing that could happen”.

If anyone has mental health issues, the Samaritans are available on 116 123.

Joanna Lumley stars in Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie, which airs Saturday, September 17 on BBC Two at 11:25 p.m.


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