Melanie Griffith has opened up about being diagnosed with epilepsy, admitting she hasn’t had a seizure since splitting from ex-husband Antonio Banderas.
The 60-year-old actress was speaking to an audience as part of a Women’s Health Initiative panel in Beverly Hills on Wednesday (18Oct17) when she revealed the challenges of living with the disorder, which can cause seizures.
Melanie admitted she has suffered several seizures in the past, including a grand mal seizure – also known as a generalized tonic-clonic seizure – which leads to a loss of consciousness and violent muscle contractions.
“I had two seizures, one they took me off the boat (a yacht in Cannes, France),” she recalled. “I had this major grand mal seizure and they took me to the hospital in Cannes and then brought me back to the boat. And then I had another seizure and I went back. They did the EEG and started to look at it seriously. When I came back (to the United States), I was diagnosed with epilepsy.”
Telling the crowd that she hasn’t had a seizure for the past three years, Melanie added that her seizures had a direct correlation with the amount of stress in her life.
“I was extremely stressed out. Every seizure that I had was at a point when I was extremely stressed,” she explained.
But the Working Girl star added that since she split from Antonio in 2014 after 18 years of marriage, things have been much better.
“I got divorced, which is the real healer for me,” she joked, before adding: “I’m not stressed anymore. It’s been three years. As women, we take on family, we get the husband, we have the life, we have the children, we take care of the house, we also go to work, we can’t sleep at night because we are up with the kids. I don’t think I’ve slept for 35 years. I still don’t sleep; it’s totally f**ked up my sleep cycle.”
Melanie added that she’s immensely grateful that she had access to the best medical care possible when she first started having the seizures.
“If I was living in poverty with four kids and I couldn’t make ends meet and I had a f**king seizure, what do you do? How does the average person, man or woman, get the help?” she mused.