(Image: eilish.o.carroll /Instagram / BBC)
The actress, who plays Winnie McGoogan in Mrs Brown’ Boys, says she had to battle with her inner homophobia when she fell in love with a woman and realised she was a lesbian
Mrs Brown’s Boys star Eilish O’Carroll has admitted that she struggled with her “inner homophobia” when she released she was a lesbian.
The actress, who pays Winnie McGoogan in the sitcom, was married with two sons when she fell in love with her now partner Marion O’Sullivan in 2003.
But she says coming to terms with her sexuality was difficult, as she struggled to accept who she truly is.
Opening up in an interview with Big Brother’s Simon Gross on his Get Gossy With Grossy show, the 68-year-old said: “I was married with two sons, then at the age of 40 fell I love with a woman.
“I had a Catholic upbringing but I was never religious, in fact I’m now liberal. I was my own worst enemy, I was dealing with my sexuality which was only brought on from meeting this woman who I happened to fall in love with.
“All my demons came back to haunt me telling me I was perverse and not well. My own inner homophobia came back, which I didn’t think existed. It was a very dramatic and emotional journey.”
Eilish, who is the sister of Mrs Brown’s Boys creator Brendan O’Carroll, says that after coming out, she struggled to know what she should wear and what would make her feel like she belonged.
Eilish and her partner Marion O’Sullivan (Image: eilish.o.carroll /Instagram)
She added: “I was desperate to belong so I joined support groups and dressed how I thought a lesbian would dress – denim jeans, check shirt, boots and a shaved head.
“I even rolled my own cigarettes, the only problem was I couldn’t lose the handbag. Then I realised it’s not about how you look, it’s how you feel, who you choose to fall in love and live your life with, without putting a label on yourself.”
Eilish says that despite her revelation ending her marriage, she remains close to her ex-husband, who she happily works alongside to raise their children and grandchildren.
She said: “I never stopped loving my husband but I fell in love with someone else and it undermined what my husband and I had. I just couldn’t carry on being with him 100 per cent because my heart was with someone else.
“We are still great friends and now my kids have grown we are not co -parents but co- grandparents.”
Eilish says she’s confident her late mother would have been her “biggest supporter”.