Ruth Davidson: PM job would risk my mental health

Ruth Davidson rules out becoming next Conservative leader for sake of relationship

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson has said that she has no intention of ever running for the Tory leadership because she cares too much about protecting her mental health. During the interview she also pulled up her sleeves to reveal the scars from her self-harm.

But the 39-year-old today told The Sunday Times: 'You have to want it and I don't want to be prime minister.

Davidson published her own account of her experience of depression on Twitter after her interview with The Sunday Times was released.

"I started hurting myself: punching walls, cutting my stomach and arms with blades or broken glass, drinking far, far too much and becoming belligerent and angry, pushing people away".

Ms Davidson also expressed childcare concerns if she became Prime Minster.

In her new book about inspirational women Yes She Can, Ms Davidson reveals she was diagnosed with clinical depression when she was an 18-year-old student.

She added: 'I will not be a candidate'.

Davidson, who is pregnant with her first child, talked about going into "a total tailspin" after a boy she knew committed suicide.

The Scottish MP said: "On a human level, the idea that I would have a child in Edinburgh and then immediately go down to London four days a week and leave it up here is offensive, actually offensive to me".

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She recounts how, when she was 17 and at university, a boy from her home village killed himself.

A year later she was diagnosed with clinical depression but the medication gave her "desperate, dark, bad dreams".

Her comments came ahead of the publication of her memoirs.

"I would sometimes find myself nearly outside my own body, mocking myself for saying stupid things in a conversation or situation".

Alastair Campbell, the former spin doctor who is now an ambassador for Time To Change, Mind and Rethink, said that Davidson's decision to speak about her mental health could only be a positive thing. "It took away hope and energy and life".

At 18 she was diagnosed with clinical depression, but her medication gave her "desperate, dark, awful dreams" where she "couldn't tell what was real".

She said her depression "was like a smothering black blanket over my head, cutting out the sky".

The politician added that she turns to "structure, exercise, forward momentum, measurable outcomes" when she is feeling anxious. "Sometimes that's hard in a job that's 100 miles per hour", she wrote.

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