Gemma Collins was severely abused throughout her television career – and was also bullied as a child for being ‘too popular’.
In the eye-opening show, Gemma discusses her struggles with self-harm and how it has affected the lives of her and those of her loved ones.
Gemma said: “I don’t know why I harmed myself, I don’t know where it comes from. I don’t understand it. This is why I made this documentary, I finally wanted to put it away. …it’s going to be really hard sometimes, but I’m ready to find out why I did it
“The public doesn’t know Gemma, they know ‘The GC’. Everyone sees me as this strong character. I’m actually a very soft, sensitive person, very few people see that side of me. “
Gemma has previously talked about the terrible ordeal she faced during her school years – where she was attacked by the villain who punched her in the face.
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Bullying became so severe at her girls’ school, her parents transferred her to a £7,800-a-year private school so she could stay away from her abusers.
“I was never bullied for my weight, I wasn’t really overweight at school,” the reality TV star explained on an episode of The Gemma Collins Podcast in August 2020.
“I used to be bullied because I was pretty popular and I was pretty out there.
“Basically, I ended up transferring schools because I was bullied pretty badly. One girl even punched me in the face and took my wallet.”
Things got so bad in a few short months that teenage Gemma felt depressed at the thought of going to school and tried to keep a normal look.
In her 2013 autobiography essentially… My Life As A Real Essex Girl, Gemma wrote, “Out of school hours, I passed by some groups of girls and I could feel seeing them staring at me, I can feel their hostility and hear them mumbling, I hate it.
The terrifying situation became even worse when Gemma was hanging out with a friend at a local underage nightclub and was eventually violently assaulted.
Publicity Picture / Ebury Press)
The sick and twisted bully then stole Gemma’s bag which contained cash and other personal belongings.
Recalling the attack, Gemma said: “I didn’t see the girl approaching, I just felt a blow. She walked up to me and delivered a stinging punch to the bridge of my nose…
“I saw the girl bending down and picking up the bag I was jumping around with, which contained my money and my door key.
“Dad gave me £30 for the evening and with it, the bag contained a new Next wallet that I also handled for myself.”
Gemma was so badly injured that her bruised eye began to close and turn blue and red.
Despite Joan’s mother’s objections, Gemma insists she doesn’t want to transfer schools.
But she began to suffer from crippling anxiety and began truancy and forging sick notes for her teachers.
Publicity Picture / Ebury Press)
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Her father Alan invited Gemma to take some self-defense classes to “make sure if it happens again I can take care of myself”.
Gemma credits mother Joan for rebuilding her confidence, which had taken a huge hit from school bullies.
She wrote: “My whole life, my mother has told me not to worry and to walk high.” When you walk into a room, walk in like you’re in it,” she says.
“But deep down, under my bravery, I was very shy, and now the bubble of safety I’m living in has burst. I’m scared…
“I’ve always been popular – it’s exhausting sometimes because I’m always invited to parties – but suddenly I realized my outspoken personality and passion for life was driving people off the beaten track and out of me. out to bully.”
Gemma’s parents then transferred her to a private school where she completed her GCSE and met classmate Amy Childs, who would also appear on TOWIE.
TOWIE fans immediately fell in love with Gemma and she became a key member of the cast for many years.
However, Gemma also faces the dark side of fame with the abuse she receives online from villains.
Speaking on Piers Morgan’s Life Stories last year, she said: “It’s hard; I’m not going to lie, it’s hard. There was a time when fans went online and said we hate you. I think one said, let’s go. get in the car and go and have a wreck. I wish you were dead, you know.
“You have to have really thick skin, and I think that’s where GC comes in. There’s no way, if you don’t have thick skin — and you’ll know this. [Piers]that you will survive in this industry.
“It’s not for everyone I can deal with it but there are a lot of people I know who haven’t and it can ruin your life.”
Now, Gemma is bravely speaking about her struggles with self-harm in honest and candid discussions in her new Channel 4 documentary.
One of the most heartbreaking moments was when Gemma explained how she hid what she was doing from fiance Rami Hawash during a group therapy session.
“I hid it for a long time but one night my boyfriend caught me, he’s my fiancé now, this is like 10 years ago. It hurts me more than anything. “, she told them.
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Moments later in the documentary, Rami recalls the moment he walked into the kitchen and found Gemma holding a bloody tea towel everywhere when they were together 10 years ago.
Opening up to her partner, Gemma said: “It’s never about you, it’s never about any of that. It concerns me, obviously I’m going through something. something and the only way I can relieve the pressure is to cut myself.”
She continued: “I never wanted to kill myself, that never crossed my mind.
“It’s kind of like a coping mechanism for me, so you know, when I’m just obvious, suddenly popular and then people come back to me every five minutes.
“In my mind because obviously we want to move on, you know, have kids and a lot of things. I feel so happy with you and very settled with you and I always think in my head, you think. so , ‘Oh, did it come back?’ “
Gemma and Rami first met 10 years ago when she joined TOWIE and broke up, but now they are happily engaged and planning to have children together.
For support on coping with self-harm, see mind.org.uk/selfharm or call Mind’s secret Infoline on 0300 123 3393.
For further help or advice, please visit: https://www.channel4.com/4viewers/help-support
Gemma Collins: Self-Harm and Me airs tonight on channel 4 at 9pm
https://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/gemma-collins-brutally-attacked-school-26242992 Gemma Collins brutally attacked at school by brutal bullies for being 'too popular'