Emmerdale actress Gemma Oaten opens up about her battle with Anorexia – ‘It strips away the person you once were’
Emmerdale’s Gemma Oaten (31) has opened up about her 13-year battle with Anorexia Nervosa, which she said “stripped away” the person she once was.
The actress, who plays Rachel Breckle in the UTV soap, developed the eating disorder at age 10 when she was bullied in school.
“I couldn’t control what people were doing or saying to me but I could control some form of my life in some small way and when that takes over I don’t think that people realise the magnitude and the demon that is inside,” said Gemma speaking on Lorraine on ITV.
‘It’s such a weird thing to go through at that age because I don’t think I really understood where I was at and what was happening.”
The actress said her battle with Anorexia placed a huge strain on her family and said she finds it upsetting to think of the impact the disorder had on her parents and siblings.
“One of my biggest heart breaks and why I get so upset speaking about it is because of what I put my parents and my siblings through,” she said.
Gemma revealed that it is still difficult to speak about her battle with the disorder, but urged sufferers to know that recovery is possible.
“It strips away the person they once was and it makes them a shell.
“I think what we want to try and say is that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and people will look at me and mum, and our family unit and see that we went to hell and back but we did it.
“Hopefully we can help other people by sharing,” she said.