LeAnn Rimes experienced a feeling of true freedom after her extramarital affair with Eddie Cibrian was exposed in the tabloids, because she was no longer put on a pedestal.
The Can't Fight the Moonlight star infamously fell in love with the actor as they filmed 2009 romantic drama Northern Lights, and the scandal led to the end of Eddie's marriage with Brandi Glanville, the mother of his two sons, while LeAnn also divorced dancer-turned-chef Dean Sheremet, so the pair could openly pursue its relationship.
They went on to wed in 2011, and LeAnn admits it was only after her perfect image was shattered that she was able to show people that she was human, too.
"My husband and I, our relationship was very public and going through an affair publicly I think was probably the moment where the rug just got ripped up from under me, and really the mask fell away," she shared.
"I felt like, 'Oh, I'm human' and I don't have to hold up being 'LeAnn Rimes' anymore. I can learn my lessons and have my humanity, and I think that was the biggest piece for me."
"People really held me up on a pedestal as this little girl with this big voice, and it was other-worldly, and my humanity got kind of stripped from me, in a way, and it's really been about coming home to that humanity," she added.
LeAnn also credits her stay in a rehab facility in 2012 with helping her realise the importance of putting herself and her own needs before her career and public image.
"I think that first moment in my very early 30s - and I checked myself into a treatment centre the day after my 30th birthday for anxiety and depression - that was the moment, I thought, 'No more... I'm taking this back for myself. I'm taking me back,'" she said.