She’s known for her hilarious TV character on Modern Family, but Sarah Hyland’s real life was anything but funny. For years, she struggled with health issues such as kidney dysplasia and endometriosis. On the Jan. 11 episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, the sitcom star, 28, explained that she was in dark place following a series of surgeries, and even experienced suicidal thoughts.

“I was very, very, very close, yeah,” the actress confessed to the talk show host about taking her own life. “At the time I was 26, but after 26, 27 years of just always being sick and being in chronic pain every single day and you don’t know when you’re going to have the next good day, it’s really, really hard. I would write letters in my head to loved ones of why I did it and my reasoning behind it, how it was nobody’s fault. I didn’t want to write it down on paper because I didn’t want anybody to find it. That’s how serious I was.”

Luckily, the brunette beauty was able to save herself when she spoke with a friend. “I finally said it out loud to someone and that someone — I had been saying, ‘I think I need to go see a therapist again.’ They were like, ‘No, why would you see one? You can just talk to me,’” she admitted. “Then, when I said it out loud, they were like, ‘Oh, you need to see a therapist.’ That was when I was like, ‘I don’t think you’re going to help me. I think I need to really do this on my own and really do more digging and soul-searching.’” Sarah went on to explain that she felt the need to hide her dire situation because she was scared people would “try to persuade” her out of actually going through with it.

The actress revealed in December 2018 that she received a second kidney from her brother, but was anything but overjoyed. “I was very depressed. When a family member gives you a second chance at life, and it fails, it almost feels like it’s your fault. It’s not. But it does,” she told Self magazine.

The New York City native is happy that she shared her story with her world, but noted that “every individual is different.” Her best advice for someone dealing with what she went through is to “talk to someone and say it out loud because it puts everything into perspective.”

Sarah’s beau, Wells Adams, 34, is a great support system, too. They first started chatting around the time of her second transplant, where he then hopped on a plane to meet her right away. “I was like, ‘I am supposed to get a kidney transplant in nine days and I am on dialysis, what do I do?'” she said. “So, I texted him being like, ‘You need to come out to LA by the end of the week or this is never going to happen.’ He’s the best man I have ever met.”

It’s not always easy sharing your struggles with the world, but you’re such an inspiration, girl.

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

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