I've had therapy to save my marriage — I was under a lot of pressure, says Jacqueline Jossa

I’M A Celebrity winner Jacqueline Jossa last night revealed therapy had helped to save her marriage.

Six months after leaving husband Dan Osborne over cheating claims, the actress, 28, broke her silence to say: “I felt like there was a lot of pressure on me.

“I couldn’t be in the same house as Dan. Therapy is a really good thing.”

The Queen of the jungle ­­hit back at women who accused hubby Dan of cheating with them.

The former soap star’s I’m a Celebrity win last year was marred by unfounded rumours Dan had been unfaithful.

But Jacqueline said: “Listen, you can’t stop the bitches selling stories — that is fact, I know that.

“They can say what they want, Daniel and I know the truth.

“Seeing things taken out of context was really hard, because a lot of it was stuff from the past we had already dealt with. That’s why I’ve not said anything until now.”

A year on from her victory Jacqueline, who played Lauren Branning in EastEnders, has reflected on the pressures placed on her marriage.

Six months after briefly moving out of the couple’s £1million Essex home, she told The Sun: “It felt like everybody wanted to watch me fall apart.

“I kept it in for a while, but then over lockdown it was a really good time and place for Daniel and I to go through everything — an opportunity for us to talk through it all. For me, this meant turning to therapy.

“And because of that, I couldn’t be in the same house as Dan. There was no big argument or bust-up, and there were no other girls. Moving out was literally how I had to deal with it.

“It was like when you wake up after a bad dream about someone — you need some space. That’s what it was like with therapy.

“Some of the stuff I was dealing with wasn’t even all about him. There were other things too that I needed to address.

“It really, really helped, especially in terms of communication, teaching us how to talk to one another better.

“Therapy is a really good thing, whether for yourself or for a couple. I don’t understand why it’s still frowned upon. In America they use therapy like they go to the dentist.”

Jacqueline married former Towie and Celebrity Big Brother star Dan, 29, three years ago.

Professionally, she has had her most successful 12 months to date — and reckons that as a couple they have never been happier. But they have not had it easy.

After The Sun on Sunday revealed she was moving out, Jacqueline took to Instagram to write: “I need some time.

“There is no split. No divorce. We are working together, not against each other.”

Taking their “for better or for worse” vows seriously, she has staunchly supported her husband through thick and thin.

She has maintained a dignified silence, while girls previously linked to Dan tried to stir up trouble.

He recently admitted to cheating but is adamant he will never stray again. And Jacqueline is certainly no doormat.

She said: “He’s always having to apologise to me, for everything.”

Twitter trolls labelled her a push-over. But Jacqueline said: “I’m not weak. My version of events this year is very different to other people’s.”

The “bitches” she’s referring to are likely to be women who allege Dan approached them for a threesome during a drunken night out last year — claims he has ­furiously denied.

Jacqueline said: “I’m not really a talker of what happened, so seeing my whole life displayed on every magazine cover has been hard.

“It was a vulnerable stage for me anyway, and then reading people’s comments [on social media] was hard, but Daniel and I were always on the same page.

"Daniel got so attacked by so many people and in turn I was attacked as my name was being brought into it. I was seen as weak.

“It’s never, ever been a case of ‘poor Jacqueline’ — that really annoys me — and it’s never been Jacqueline versus Dan.

“You can’t fight a problem by fighting against it. You have to come together to fight the problem, rather than fighting each other. And that’s exactly what we’ve done.”

She said that through lockdown, she and Dan have never been tighter. They enjoyed romantic date nights in the summer, even putting up an outdoor cinema screen in the garden.

She said: “We’ve basically done Netflix. And that hour of TV to ourselves at 10pm became the highlight of our day. It was so nice.

“He’d have a beer, I’d have a bottle of prosecco, and we’d just sit and look up at the stars, eating strawberries dipped in melted chocolate.

“I felt we reconnected. I know lockdown was tough for so many people, but for us it was almost ­perfect timing.”

She went on: “The thought of it cringes me out slightly, but we might do something like renew our vows when the time is right.”

The couple have two daughters and Dan has a son from a previous relationship.

Jacqueline said: “We would like all five of us in the photos — we’d do it for the kids.

“It does feel like we have a new relationship though, so it might be quite nice to celebrate that.”

In the Aussie jungle, Jacqueline quickly became a viewer favourite and the most popular campmate with her gung-ho attitude and willingness to give anything a go.

She will be presenting this year’s winner with their crown in North Wales and is backing ex-EastEnders colleague Shane Richie as King of the Castle.

It will cap a strange year. She was bombarded with offers from both stage and screen before Covid hit.

But she recently landed a lead role in a new West End re-telling of A Christmas Carol, co-starring Brian Conley and Matt Willis from Busted.

The socially distanced production is one of the few live shows to have been given the green light.

She is also a shrewd businesswoman. As the face of online fashion retailer In The Style, her own ­clothing lines regularly sell out within hours.

And she was recently snapped up by cosmetics brand BPerfect, and has her own range of tan, eye lashes and make-up.

Jacqueline has several projects in the pipeline, including a TV drama — and hasn’t ruled out an eventual return to Albert Square.

She added: “I always say I absolutely loved my time on EastEnders, but the timing has to be right.

“And maybe one day I could have my own reality show.”

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