Andrea McLean has admitted her decision to quit Loose Women came after the coronavirus pandemic made her reevaluate her life.
The telly favourite, 51, has been a regular on the ITV daytime show for 13 years, but she’ll be leaving the panel for good at Christmas.
Mum-of-two Andrea says she’s had a lot of time to think about what she really wants from life and has now told her fellow co-stars she is ready to step down from her role in the spotlight.
The telly star admitted she realised she wasn’t taking enough risks or doing what she wants to do in life.
She explained quitting her role on the panel will help her to focus on her website and brand This Girl is on Fire when she eventually leaves the show.
During a segment about how the pandemic has made everyone reflect on their lives, Andrea explained how it has had a profound impact on her.
Bravely opening up to her co-stars – Linda Robson, Brenda Edwards and Saira Khan – on live TV, she said: “Like so many people this has been a time to hugely reflect and think back.
“So many people have been talking about how they can’t wait for life to get back to normal.
“I, like many people, did that and thought, ‘Do I want my life to go back to the normal that it was before?'”
She added: “Obviously last year I had a nervous breakdown and what I felt is that this year collectively the world has had a breakdown.
“The experience that I had has meant that this year I have actually been mentally really strong to deal with everything that the pandemic threw at all of us but it made me stop and think, ‘What do I actually want?'”
“You get one life, are you living it the way that you want? And are you doing everything that you want to do? Are you being brave? Are you taking chances? And I realised, no.”
She couldn’t hold back her emotions and burst into tears on air, which was unexpected.
Andrea added: “I didn’t think I was going to cry. I’ve told you ladies just before we came on air. I’m going to be leaving Loose Women because I want to be brave… all the incredible feedback that I had from my book and the support I was able to give them, I want to bring it to life.
“It was a really, really big decision to jump and see if I fall or if I fly. And I just thought, I will never know unless I try, so I am saying goodbye to Loose Women.”
The TV star first joined the panel in 2007 and has been part of the ITV Daytime group for 23 years.
She added to her co-stars: “I’m not leaving today, this is just my day to tell you guys.
“ITV have been amazing. I’ve been anchoring Loose Women for 13 years now, I’ve been part of ITV Daytime for 23 years. The team have been so wonderful.”
*Loose Women airs weekdays from 12.30pm on ITV.
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