Lisa Riley is best known for starring as Mandy Dingle on Emmerdale.
Lisa Riley has shared how dealing with difficult storylines on Emmerdale has been made easier by the loss of a loved one. The 46-year-old actress lost her mother-in-law recently, and she also lost her mother, Cathy, to cancer ten years ago.
The actress claimed that even though her mother passed away more than ten years ago, the pain is still very much with her.
When asked about how she handled losing a loved one, Lisa said that she found comfort in her family’s support and in talking to others who were going through a similar experience.
Especially with my family, we now know each other inside out and back to front, and with that in mind, it’s taken ownership of how individual we are, she said in an interview with Express.co.uk.
It’s wonderful to portray grief on screen because we truly understand what is being discussed. Of course, we’re doing the grief storyline with Vinny on Emmerdale. You know what he is going through after the storm of the storyline.
Lisa went on to say dressing up as Mandy has sometimes helped her through days where she has pretended to be OK.
The actress continued: “Some days I can put Mandy’s wig on and put the lashes on, the full make-up and the fabulous clothes, and I can kind of live vicariously through Mandy and that helps me get though the days when, you know, I’m really struggling.
“So, I’m really lucky that I can have that, I say, ‘Oh I’m going to pretend today,’ and pretending is what I’m doing by playing Mandy, but it’s pretending I’m OK when sometimes I’m not.”
Back in October, Lisa’s character was a shoulder to cry on for her adopted son Vinny (played by Bradley Johnson), following the death of his wife Liv Flaherty (Isobel Steele).
At first, he pushed Mandy and Paddy (Dominic Brunt) away as he struggled to come to terms with her death.
She started packing some of his belongings so he could stay with her, thinking she was doing the right thing, but this made him angry instead.
Vinny yelled at his “mum” for making changes to Liv’s final departure from the house.
Since he started gambling to get through his difficult time, he has raised concerns.
She finds him severely beaten in scenes that will air this week as she worries that his behavior is getting out of control.
Can she get him out of this situation?
Off-screen, Lisa is a part of the Sue Ryder’s Empty Chair campaign.
New research has found that three quarters of people who have experienced bereavement skip meals because they don’t like eating alone.
Three fifths of grieving people have also said that being invited over for dinner has helped with their grief.
Remembering her late mum Cathy, she said: “I always say that mum was the oxygen in the room. Mum made me look timid and that’s not an exaggeration.
“My mother adored the color yellow, and whenever I see it, I feel her presence.
Everyone who knew Mum, not just me, felt the empty chair.
“Because she was the center of attention at every party, she is always missed on special occasions and holidays.
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