SHE is one of the most sought-after women on TV and has a legion of fans thanks to her spirited personality, raw sense of humor and natural good looks – but Emily Atack has admitted she struggles with being single.
The unhappily in love actress and comedian has admitted she sometimes feels so lonely she cries to sleep and lacks self-esteem in relationships.
Emily, 33, said: “People think I stand for all single ladies but I’m not afraid to admit that most of the time being alone is actually unhappy. It’s pretty hard.
“There are times when I go out and feel alone and independent, confident and sexy.
“But there are times when I cry myself to sleep because it’s lonely and awful, and I think that’s okay.”
Emily has been single since splitting from former Big Brother contestant Liam McGough, 39, last year.
She has previously been linked to several high-profile men including Harry Styles, Jack Grealish, Strictly Pro Giovanni Pernice, comedian Seann Walsh, model Jude Taylor and social media executive Joe Caro.
She also had long-term relationships with film producer Rob Jowers and model Jack Vacher.
But Emily reveals that when she falls in love, she has a hard time not losing herself.
She said: “That’s where I’m at right now – I’m too romantic, it’s actually ruining my life.
“What I’m doing wrong in life is that I’m known for being confident, sexy and all those things, and that’s all great.
“And the second I’m in love, I’m absolutely pathetic.
“I go from confidence to ‘have it all,’ and that’s not on them, it’s on me.”
“It’s a lack of self-care and self-love. I have mountains and buckets of confidence but no self-esteem.
“It’s awful to admit, but it’s just true, and there’s something about romantic love that robs me of all my self-love, it just does.
“I put everything into this person and I’m just a shrinking little wreck surrendering my heart on a royal red fluffy pillow.”
Emily became an overnight sensation and a figurehead for teenagers across the country when she played Charlotte “Big Jugs” Hinchcliffe on The Inbetweeners from 2008 to 2010.
Then, five years ago, she became a household name with a successful performance on I’m A Celebrity.
Fans fell in love with her down-to-earth manner as she roamed the jungle happily and makeup-free.
She placed second behind soccer legend Harry Redknapp in what was a stellar year for the show.
But she’s since become what she calls a “serial date” in search of true romance.
She said: “I’m learning that in my thirties I’m a consumer of love. Obviously most people my age are sedentary.
“My little sister is married. Most of the people around me are doing all of that now, and I’m not yet.
“They find my dating life fascinating because I date different people.
“I’m a bit of a serial dating, then I fall in love and then I get my heart broken, or then I accidentally break someone’s heart.”
“So I have a colorful love life, I’d say, and I now know what kind of person I’m supposed to be with.”
Over the years, Emily has met people face to face and signed up for exclusive dating apps like Raya – popular with celebrities like David Walliams and tennis star Serena Williams.
But she has found that constantly “swiping” left or right to accept or reject a potential partner makes people feel disposable.
Emily said: “I’m dating now.
“I know both worlds before using dating apps and trying to navigate the new life of dating, which is really expendable.”
“You used to be much more sought after.
“Everyone is always looking for something better, and I’m guilty of that too.
“If something doesn’t work out, you have to tell your friends.
“All your friends who are in a relationship really want it for you since you’re the only one single.”
Even Emily’s actress mother, Kate Robbins, 64, can’t help but beg her for a debrief.
She added, “There are those dreaded words my mom says to me after every date, ‘Has he texted you yet?'”
“I say, ‘Don’t ask me that.’ And then he texts.”
Earlier this year, Emily made a bold appearance in a BBC2 documentary called Asking For It?. about being a victim of cyberflashing.
She revealed that she is bombarded with shady sex images and verbal abuse from strangers online every day, and is threatened with rape and death.
She has also met with government officials to try to educate youth about the threat of violence against women and girls.
“I know I have big mistakes”
Emily has previously revealed that therapy has helped her deal with her mental health issues, but she also relies on her wide social network.
On the Soap & Glory podcast Soaking Up Life With Emily Atack, she tells her author friend Florence Given, “I think it’s about finding that joy in loving yourself.
“It’s almost become this really tedious task.
“Loving yourself isn’t as much fun as loving a really healthy boy.
“I always try to say, ‘Look, I know I have major flaws and I have deep insecurities, but I prefer to open up and talk about it.'”
“The friendship and relationship thing is such an interesting thing in life for me because I don’t want to become one of those people who alienate me from my friends in a difficult romantic situation.
“Because I do that sometimes because I know they’re sick of hearing about it.
“And they probably aren’t, they’re my friends, they love me and they’re going to say, ‘No, come on and we’ll talk about it.'”
“But I just know deep down somewhere they’re going to be like, ‘Oh god, here we go again.’
“I think with the whole self-love thing, friends can help you rediscover self-love.
“So when you get out of a relationship you’re obviously at your worst and you don’t love yourself at all.
“And you look in the mirror and you’re like, ‘I have a big, shaky ass, that’s why he left me.'”
“And to find that self-love again, a lot of it comes from loving your friends.”