EXCLUSIVE ‘I was suicidal after spiralling into a dark depression’: MIC star Josh Patterson on how he turned his life around from the brink of ‘torturous’ mental illness to take on gruelling 76 marathon challenge
- For help, call Samaritans for free on 116 123 or visit samaritans.org
Joshua Patterson contemplated suicide after hitting rock bottom.
The 33-year-old rose to fame as ‘JP’ on Made In Chelsea – a show chronicling the lives of affluent young people living in south-west London.
But behind-the-scenes, Joshua was battling with terrible bouts of depression and crippling anxiety.
Now in an exclusive chat with MailOnline, the reality star tells us how he has changed his narrative and is embarking on his toughest challenge to date – running 76 marathons in 76 cities across the UK in just 76 days.
Joined by his hand-picked squad of experts at Until, a London-based hub of industry-leading practitioners, JP hopes to raise £1million for suicide prevention charity, Samaritans.
Brave: Joshua Patterson says he contemplated suicide after hitting rock bottom, but now he is running 76 marathons in 76 days to raise awareness for those struggling with mental health
Daunting task: Despite his own struggles, Josh has decided to take on his mammoth marathon challenge, to fund the Samaritans lifesaving phone calls to people in crisis
It is a cause close to Josh’s heart. Aged just 13, the reality star tried to take his own life after his parents divorced.
He hit another low in 2015. Then in 2018 his relationship to his Made In Chelsea co-star Binky Felstead broke down after the birth of their daughter India, now five.
‘For most of my life I have struggled with my mental health,’ he says. ‘I have had bad bouts of depression. I’ve been at the point of contemplating suicide.
‘I have pretty bad anxiety that I live with every day. When I was younger there was a real lack of understanding of what it was and the support in place for it.’
JP says he would often be ashamed of his mental health struggles as he grew up with loving parents in a comfortable home.
‘Mental illness is a terrible torturous disease where you’re a prisoner to your thoughts,’ he says.
‘For me this made struggling with my own mental health even harder – I would beat myself up thinking I had no right to feel the way I did when others out there have been and are going through so much worse.’
Josh says in his early twenties were his toughest after troubled years as a teenager where he would lash out as a way of coping.
‘Men struggle,’ he says. ‘I think ultimately from a young age we are told not to show emotion and “man up”. There’s too many men are taking their lives on a daily basis because they’re too proud to reach out.’
Despite his own struggles, Josh has decided to take on his mammoth marathon challenge, which will see him run a total of 1,991.2 miles over an estimated 465 hours, to fund the Samaritans lifesaving phone calls to people in crisis.
‘I’m trying to change the narrative. When you do live with things like this it doesn’t mean that life has to come to an end,’ he says.
Mental health: Josh rose to fame as ‘JP’ on Made In Chelsea. But behind-the-scenes, Joshua was battling with terrible bouts of depression
Dedicated: The challenge is an endurance feat of monumental proportions and Josh trained for months with a panel of experts at Until
Inspiring: ‘I’m trying to change the narrative. When you do live with things like this it doesn’t mean that life has to come to an end,’ he says (pictured on the road)
The challenge is an endurance feat of monumental proportions and Josh trained for months with a panel of experts at Until, a London-based holistic hub that offers access to state-of-the-art facilities and industry-leading health and wellness practitioners, to ensure he was in peak condition and are working with him on the road.
‘Mentally and physically I have never been stronger,’ he says.
‘The team are so incredibly valuable. I’ve always been someone who takes on challenges on their own. For the first time I went into this really needing a team because of the magnitude of it. We have the most empathetic and powerful group of specialists together. ‘
Josh is set to finish in London on May 13th and with the 76 marathons well under way, he admits there have been tough times and he has ‘dad guilt’ from being apart from his daughter.
‘There are days where I miss her terribly,’ he says. The campervan we’ve named it Elsa and Mary Poppins because that’s what she wanted.
‘I talk to her every other day. It was tough decision but ultimately I felt like her Daddy doing this is hopefully a huge amount of inspiration.’
Josh is doing just that as not only is he raising awareness, the father-of-one hopes to break the previous world record of 14 consecutive marathons.
‘This challenge as well as my daughter gives me a huge amount of purpose,’ he says.
And Josh has one powerful message for anyone, who like him, is battling with their mental health.
He says: ‘If anybody is ever struggling, just pick up the phone. Life is tough. Hopefully we can get you through this dark period.’
Until is a London-based holistic hub that has every health, wellness and performance need covered under one roof.
Home to over 230 specialists across 25 disciplines, Until offers access to state-of-the-art facilities and industry-leading practitioners at premium locations across London. Find out more at until.co.uk
For help, call Samaritans for free on 116 123 or visit samaritans.org
Exes: Josh pictured with ex Binky Felstead in 2017. Their on-off relationship was documented on Made In Chelsea
Sweet: Josh is set to finish in London on May 13th and admits there have been tough times and has ‘dad guilt’ for being apart from his daughter India, but hopes he’s an inspiration to her
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