'I’m an alcoholic' Susannah Constantine reveals secret battle with addiction

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Perhaps best known for popular TV series, Trinny & Susannah Undress with fellow fashion guru Trinny Woodall, the 58-year-old presenter has now revealed she is an alcoholic.

Having kept her illness secret for seven years, Susannah has now been sober since 2013, when she stopped drinking alcohol (opens in new tab) after she had a “lightbulb moment”. 

The presenter spoke about her illness and her decision to give up alcohol (opens in new tab) on the My Mate Bought a Toast podcast with host Tom Price. The podcast involves going through the guest’s Amazon basket and chatting about their most interesting purchases. 

How did Susannah reveal her illness?

In the recent episode, Price revealed that Susannah had bought a rather telling book back in 2010. Titled Living with the Passive-Aggressive Man: Coping with the Personality Syndrome of Hidden Aggression, From the Bedroom to the Boardroom in 2010, the TV star went on to state that it was not her husband of 25 years Sten Bertelsten who was the passive-aggressive one in their relationship. 

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She said, “It’s not something I’ve spoken about before really, but it’s important. I am in recovery, so I’m an alcoholic. I’ve been in recovery for nearly seven years now.”

How did alcoholism affect her relationship?

The presenter went on to talk of how her addiction affected her relationship (opens in new tab), stating that: “As an addict, I would get all my own defects and find someone else to attach them to.”

As a result, she said, “I thought my husband was passive-aggressive, but actually I was the one.” Susannah further paid tribute to Bertelsen’s devotion, stating that she was the “angry passive-aggressive” and her “poor husband had to live with it”. 

The couple have now been married for 25 years and have three children together. 

How did it feel to realise the truth?

Susannah also opened up about the moment she first realised she was an alcoholic. 

“It was so liberating,” said the presenter. “I felt a lot of shame most of the time. But when I realised, the relief was immense.”

She added, “I wasn’t having to try and change someone else, it was down to me. I was responsible and accountable for becoming a better person and getting sober and well.” 

Trinny and Susannah

The former How to Look Good Naked host and ex-Strictly Come Dancing (opens in new tab) star described herself as “highly functioning”. She confirmed that her alcoholism never affected her work. 

Her co-host on Trinny & Susannah Undress,  Trinny Woodhall has also suffered with addiction in the past. She has been open about entering rehab at 16 and has been sober herself for almost 30 years.

Emma is a Senior Lifestyle Writer with six years of experience working in digital publishing, ranging from book publishing to magazines. She currently looks after all things Lifestyle for Woman&Home, Goodto.com, and My Imperfect Life.