RHONY Leah McSweeney Gets Real About Mental Health Diagnosis

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In the history of the Real Housewives franchise, there’s never been a more explosive new cast member addition than that of Real Housewives of New York City’s Leah McSweeney. The season 12 newbie has quickly become a fan favorite with her outspokenness, unapologetic attitude and some wild nights out-partying her veteran co-stars with drunken nights throwing tiki torches in a pool and getting naked, not exactly in that order. 

While viewers have found her candor refreshing, co-star Ramona Singer has taken issue with some of McSweeney’s behavior and in the latest episode begins to gossip to Sonja Morgan about her mental health. “I found out she’s bipolar and she’s on medication and I know people who are bipolar and you cannot mix alcohol with meds. It makes you act not responsible. It’s actually very dangerous,” said Singer, who also admitted she heard this information second hand from a friend who may have found the information on the internet. 

Later in the episode, McSweeney revealed that she was hurt by the gossip and clarified her diagnosis with another castmate: “I was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder on my 30th birthday and really dedicated the last seven years of my life to getting it under control and getting myself in a good place,” she said. “I’m not even on medication, so for her to be talking about it in this way is despicable.” 

In a recent article with Nylon, the reality star revealed that her depression was recently triggered by the pandemic. “[COVID] is the most humbling f*@#ing thing,” she says. “We’re so used to having things our way and this way, and now it’s the COVID way. COVID is the one that’s calling all the shots… It’s been an adjustment. I was dealing with so much depression. I couldn’t get off my couch. I could not. It was the stages of grief. It’s denial, anger, sadness, acceptance. Literally, I went through all those. Because it’s kind of like your life is dead as you know it. You’re mourning your life that you had.”

While her first season on the show has brought many viewers joy and entertainment during this trying time, McSweeny says she herself is doing what she can to stay in a ‘good place.’ “This is no joke. I have friends who have died and who have killed themselves during this time. I know about four people my age who have died from suicide… I’m just trying to make the best of it. This is life now. What else can we do?”

If you or someone you know is in need of mental health help, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor.

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