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Oprah: I had a nervous breakdown

  • Oprah Winfrey admits she broke down last year over her then-'struggling network,' OWN, and shooting a film
  • Winfrey: 'I had reached a point where I just couldn't take in any more stimulation'
Oprah: I had a nervous breakdown

Even Oprah Winfrey needs to take a break every now and then.

Winfrey confirms that she suffered a nervous breakdown last year over what she calls her then-"struggling network," OWN, and shooting the acclaimed film, "The Butler."

Winfrey admits in a new interview with Access Hollywood that media reports of a breakdown were "true," and that it stemmed from pressure she felt over trying to make her network succeed and a grueling filming schedule.

That realization came after she was interviewing Kony 2012 director, Jason Russell, who had his very own public meltdown last year.

"I was sitting and listening to Jason Russell describe his symptoms. ... Saying, 'Um, this sounds pretty familiar to me," Winfrey admitted. She says her schedule didn't allow her to take the time she needed to catch her breath: “In the beginning, it was just sort of speeding and a kind of numbness and going from one thing to the next thing to the next thing. I will tell you when I realized that I thought, ‘All right, if I don’t calm down I’m gonna be in serious trouble.’"

Winfrey says doing even the simplest things became overwhelming: "I was in the middle of doing voiceovers, you know? And I remember closing my eyes in between each page because looking at the page and the words at the same time was too much stimulation for my brain.”

It wasn't until sometime later, however, that Winfrey decided she needed to slow down. “I mean, I wasn’t ready to go run naked in the streets," Winfrey explained, referencing Russell's public meltdown in San Diego that went viral. "Let’s make that very clear. But I had reached a point where I just couldn’t take in anymore stimulation. OK? That’s what I meant by that.”

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