Former model Meredith Phillips starred on “The Bachelorette” in 2004, but her suitors — and ABC audiences — didn’t know she was hiding a big secret.
Phillips was an alcoholic, who, at her worst was drinking more than 20 bottles of wine a week and blacking out daily.
“For years I’d wake up every day feeling like I was hit by a truck,” Phillips tells People magazine. “But I realised I was going to kill myself. There wasn’t another path for me other than to stop.”
After breaking up with her “Bachelorette” winner fiancé Ian McKee, Phillips says things started to take a turn for the worst.
“It began with a lot of ‘Sunday Fundays,” she told the magazine. “I would split a bottle of champagne with friends at brunch, then move on to wine.”
“My lowest point was when I realised my mother was in a hospital bed dying of cancer and I was at her house, drinking myself to death,” Phillips admitted. “I just didn’t care.”
Phillips told the mag that drinking became her “full-time” job and she had “little tricks” to fool friends and family — like switching to boxed wine because it was easier to throw away.
Eventually, Phillips’ brother intervened and offered to pay for treatment in rehab.
Today, she’s now more than 150 days sober and married to her high school sweetheart.
“I still have a lot of healing to do, but I’m feeling better every day,” she told People. “It’s not fun to start over again at 39 … but life is short. And I have a second chance.”