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Grace Tame has revealed how she was rushed to the emergency room just days ago after the pressure of her public profile contributed to a suicidal breakdown.  

The 2021 Australian of the Year made the startling admission speaking at an event titled Protecting the Outspoken at the Sydney Opera House on Sunday. 

Ms Tame was thrust into the spotlight at just 26 when she was awarded the national accolade for her advocacy work for sexual assault survivors – having been abused herself by her high school teacher.

‘I was actually in the ER the other day because I actually lost control and I was really scared,’ Ms Tame told the event held as part of the All About Women festival. 

‘I called up the clinic and I said, ‘I can’t, I can’t, I’ve stepped too deep into the shame spiral and I’m thinking about killing myself.’ That’s real and that’s the toll it takes. That’s the price of shame,’ she said. 

Grace Tame (pictured) revealed she ‘lost control’ and was admitted to the ER just days ago after pressure from her public profile made her suicidal

Ms Tame was thrust into the spotlight at just 26 when she was awarded the national accolade for her advocacy work for sexual assault survivors

Ms Tame was thrust into the spotlight at just 26 when she was awarded the national accolade for her advocacy work for sexual assault survivors

Ms Tame was thrust into the spotlight at just 26 when she was awarded the national accolade for her advocacy work for sexual assault survivors

Ms Tame, who co-founded the #LetHerSpeak movement, has endured a steady stream of public scrutiny since accepting the award.  

The latest controversy revolved around her frosty demeanor to the Prime Minister in January. 

At a morning tea hosted by Scott Morrison and and his wife Jenny at The Lodge in Canberra, she seemed unable to her displeasure with the PM. 

After giving Mr Morrison a scowl and a less-than-friendly handshake she threw him an icy sideways glance as he was welcoming other guests.

Several weeks later in a speech at the National Press Club, she alleged the reason for her sour mood was a senior member of a government-funded organisation had warned her to not make any ‘damning’ comments about the Prime Minister. 

But controversy and a challenging relationship with the Federal Government has been a feature Ms Tame’s tenure in the role – a stark contrast to previous recipients.  

Just weeks ago at an event in Adelaide she claimed the government ‘are more concerned with maintaining power and control than running the country.’ 

On Sunday, Ms Tame credited her ‘wicked sense of humour’ as helping to allow her to be herself in such situations but that it also ‘gets her into trouble’.

Grace Tame during her tense exchange with Scott Morrison in January (centre)has fired a series of brutal swipes at the Prime Minister in recent weeks (also pictured Jenny Morrison on left and Ms Tame's partner Max Heerey on right)

Grace Tame during her tense exchange with Scott Morrison in January (centre)has fired a series of brutal swipes at the Prime Minister in recent weeks (also pictured Jenny Morrison on left and Ms Tame's partner Max Heerey on right)

Grace Tame during her tense exchange with Scott Morrison in January (centre)has fired a series of brutal swipes at the Prime Minister in recent weeks (also pictured Jenny Morrison on left and Ms Tame’s partner Max Heerey on right) 

Speaking alongside anti-domestic violence campaigner Rosie Batty, also a former Australian of the Year, Ms Tame said she was probably ‘rougher around the edges’ than Ms Batty – who previously said Ms Tame’s attitude toward the government had made her ‘uncomfortable’. 

‘I didn’t ask for this… I was living in a housing commission area. I was an unemployed person when I was named Australian of the Year,’ Ms Tame said. 

But while the stress weighs on her, Ms Tame said she was still ‘grateful’ for the honour and admitted some of criticism of her was ‘justified’. 

She said she had learned that certain factions groups such as the #MeToo movement had become bogged down in bitterness and semantics.

Grace Tame (pictured at an International Women's Day breakfast in Sydney last week) said her 'wicked sense of humour got her in trouble'

Grace Tame (pictured at an International Women's Day breakfast in Sydney last week) said her 'wicked sense of humour got her in trouble'

Grace Tame (pictured at an International Women’s Day breakfast in Sydney last week) said her ‘wicked sense of humour got her in trouble’ 

‘If we’re focusing too much on the negative I don’t think we’re going to get very far and I do worry about that divide and conquer,’ she said.

‘There’s all this inaccessible language in this sector we have to ask ourselves about what really is inclusive’. 

‘I didn’t go to university, I didn’t do gender studies.’ 

Ms Tame intends to continue her advocacy work despite the public pressure, founding the Grace Tame Foundation in December 2021. 

If you or someone you know is affected by sexual assault or violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732, Bravehearts on 1800 272 831 or Lifeline on 131 114.

Source: DailyMail

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