Following his divorce from his former husband last year, the presenter took five months off work during which he struggled with depression and, at his lowest point, attempted suicide.
In an extract from his forthcoming memoir Ten: The Decade That Changed My Future published in The Sun, Clark said that following his suicide attempt, he asked to be admitted to a private mental health hospital.
After spending a week in the facility, he returned to live at his mum’s house for three months, but went back into hospital following a “spell of bad thoughts”.
It was his mother Linda that reached out Holmes and Langsford, who Clark works with on This Morning, during his “hellish” time in hospital.
“During this time, Mum secretly arranged for Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford to come and see me. They are two of my closest friends in this industry – well, almost step-parents really.
“I remember how their faces looked when they saw me, seeing how badly ill I was, and then Eamonn became very upset. I’d never seen Eamonn get upset like that before, and that was like a wake-up call.”
Clark continued: “I remember thinking, ‘Do I look that ill? Am I that bad?’ It was just awful. They stayed with me all that day.”
During his An Evening With Rylan Clark event at the London Royal Festival Hall on Wednesday (21 September), Clark told the audience he’d suffered two heart failures amid the breakdown of his marriage.
“It was like my body had shut down,” he said. “Twice last year I ended up back in an ambulance because my heart had failed and it was really strange because I just remember for a couple of weeks going, ‘My heart hurts’.”
Clark told the audience that he had a resting heart rate of 248 beats per minute at the time, saying: “My heart had to be restarted. I just remember lying in re-sus[citation], because I had these pads on with all these wires, and not understanding what it was.”
If you are experiencing feelings of distress and isolation, or are struggling to cope, the Samaritans offers support; you can speak to someone for free over the phone, in confidence, on 116 123 (UK and ROI), email [email protected], or visit the Samaritans website to find details of your nearest branch.
If you are based in the USA, and you or someone you know needs mental health assistance right now, call National Suicide Prevention Helpline on 1-800-273-TALK (8255). The Helpline is a free, confidential crisis hotline that is available to everyone 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
If you are in another country, you can go to www.befrienders.org to find a helpline near you.