Kate Ritchie has shared an Instagram post confirming she has sought professional help for an “unhealthy reliance on alcohol”.
In the post, the former Home and Away star and radio host says she felt “forced” to issue the public statement after a “shocking invasion” of privacy that resulted in photos of her at a rehab centre published in the media.
“As announced previously I am taking a break until next year. The last year has been incredibly emotionally challenging, as well as a relentless schedule, stress, and a lack of sleep. I came to realise that this had led to an unhealthy reliance on alcohol,” Ritchie wrote.
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Ritchie said she decided to use the time to “do something positive” by getting “the help [she needs] from professionals who specialise in this area”, before thanking her supporters.
“As everyone would understand, this is a very big step for me to take,” she wrote.
Concluding the statement, she wrote, “It is a shocking invasion of my privacy that the Daily Mail, through their unrelenting stalking of me, has forced me to issue this public statement, in their blatant attempt to publicly shame me on a private health matter.”
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Earlier this year, the actress admitted she’d made a “poor decision” after she was arrested, then fined and had her license suspended, for low-range drink driving in Sydney.
In August, Ritchie was accused of failing a random breath test in Pagewood. She was taken to Maroubra police station for a second test where she allegedly returned a positive, low range reading.
Ritchie issued an apology on Instagram afterwards, writing, “Recently I undertook a random breath test. Although it was low level, the test came back positive.
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“I made a poor decision and there is no doubt I understand the seriousness of my actions. I am truly sorry.”
On October 20, the star announced she’d be taking a break from her radio show, saying the year had been hectic for her and her family.
She didn’t go into specifics at the time, but her statement today indicates she felt forced to confirm her situation publicly following a report in the Daily Mail.
Ritchie’s statement has been flooded with comments of support from fellow friends, family and fans.
It is unknown when the star will return to Nova.
If you or someone you know is in need of support contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or the National Drug and Alcohol Helpline on 1800 250 015.