Saturday 10 December 2016

Laurence Fox tells of sleep loss and panic attacks since split with ex-wife Billie Piper

Published 25/09/2016 | 11:03

Laurence Fox and Billie Piper
Laurence Fox and Billie Piper
Lawrence Fox Instagram
Laurence Fox and Billie Piper were married for eight years
Laurence Fox and Billie Piper attend the 'Submarine' premiere during the 54th BFI London Film Festival at the Vue West End on October 22, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Getty Images)
(L-R) Laurence Fox and Billie Piper attend the Evening Standard Theatre Awards at The Savoy Hotel on November 17, 2013 in London, England. (Photo by Ben A. Pruchnie/Getty Images)
British Actress Billie Piper, shortlisted for the best actress award and her husband Laurence Fox (R) pose on the red carpet as they attend the 60th London Evening Standard Theatre Awards 2014 in London
Vogue Williams with Billie Piper's estranged husband Laurence Fox

Lewis star Laurence Fox has admitted he barely sleeps and has suffered anxiety attacks since his split from his actress wife Billie Piper.

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Fox and Piper were married for eight years and have two sons together and Fox said he has been deeply traumatised by the divorce.

He told the Sunday Mirror: " The physical symptoms of trauma and suffering are profound panic attacks for an extended period of time, and I've never had a panic attack in my life before last year.

"It's like being plugged into an electric socket where you go mental.

Laurence Fox and Billie Piper attend the 'Submarine' premiere during the 54th BFI London Film Festival at the Vue West End on October 22, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Getty Images)
Laurence Fox and Billie Piper attend the 'Submarine' premiere during the 54th BFI London Film Festival at the Vue West End on October 22, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Getty Images)

"I've learnt to put on my running shoes and sprint as fast as I can until I can't move any more, then there's something else distracting me and the endorphins kick in and you start to feel better.

"Thankfully they're getting less all the time."

He added: "I haven't slept for six months, even with sleeping pills. I go to bed the same time, same bed as the kids and just lie awake, sleeping two or three hours. My mind's whirring round.

"I'm seeing an amazing therapist, I love her. You've got to seek help, from your family, a therapist, a fitness trainer, whatever it is.

Vogue Williams with Billie Piper's estranged husband Laurence Fox
Vogue Williams with Billie Piper's estranged husband Laurence Fox

"Family and friends might be the best people for this stuff but they've got their own lives. My brother, Robin, has saved me in this whole situation. He saw it all, what I didn't see, knew what was coming and tried to tell me about it.

"I shouted and got angry with him. But I am my brother's keeper and will never be able to thank him for how wonderful he's been to me. He sent me a personal trainer, Darren, three times a week, as a divorce present, and the other two days I train myself."

Fox, 38, the father of Winston, seven; and Eugene, four, is now filming The Family in Devon , about a dysfunctional family gathered round their dying mother's bed.

He told the paper the role is allowing him to work through some of his own issues.

(L-R) Laurence Fox and Billie Piper attend the Evening Standard Theatre Awards at The Savoy Hotel on November 17, 2013 in London, England. (Photo by Ben A. Pruchnie/Getty Images)
(L-R) Laurence Fox and Billie Piper attend the Evening Standard Theatre Awards at The Savoy Hotel on November 17, 2013 in London, England. (Photo by Ben A. Pruchnie/Getty Images)

Fox said: "In this new piece my character has been the mender of his family's problems all his life, having known his mother was having lovers, his childhood was destroyed by watching what his mother did.

"I have to do a lot of screaming, shouting, emoting and it will be good for me to get it all out, after everything I've been through this year.

"It's like my own family, highly emotional, lots of shouting, getting over it, lots of love. But absolutely no sulking ever. If you want to talk about class, that for me is a big one, people with no class sulk."

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