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Angelina Jolie reveals the stress of split from Brad Pitt led to facial paralysis

She was left physically ill following their shock break-up

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Angelina Jolie has opened up about her split from Brad Pitt, describing it as the “hardest time” in her life.

The Hollywood golden couple were together from 2004 and together had a family of six children. But Angelina shocked everyone when she suddenly filed for divorce last year.

And now, in an interview with Vanity Fair magazine, the actress has revealed how she suffered from hypertension and Bell’s Palsy from the fall-out.

She is now taking better care of herself and told the glossy:

“I actually feel more of a woman because I feel like I’m being smart about my choices, and I’m putting my family first, and I’m in charge of my life and health.”

“I think that’s what makes a woman complete… Sometimes women in families put themselves last until it manifests itself in their own health.”

She and the kids are now on the road to getting their lives back together again.

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Speaking from her new $25m mansion in Hollywood, the Maleficent star said: “It’s just been the hardest time, and we’re just kind of coming up for air. [This house] is a big jump forward for us, and we’re all trying to do our best to heal our family.”

When Angelina filed for divorce in September she also requested sole custody of their six children – Maddox, Zahara, Pax, Shiloh, Knox and Vivienne – for “the health of the family”.

Brad dedicated his award tpo the six children he shares with Angelina

And she admitted that last summer, things in the Pitt-Jolie household were not good. “Things got bad,” says Jolie. “I didn’t want to use that word… Things became ‘difficult’.

“We’re all just healing from the events that led to the filing… They’re not healing from divorce. They’re healing from some… from life, from things in life.”

Answering the rumours that Brad was no longer happy travelling the world with their family and wanted a more stable life at home, Angelina said: “[Our lifestyle] was not in any way a negative. That was not the problem.

“That is and will remain one of the wonderful opportunities we are able to give our children. They’re six very strong-minded, thoughtful, worldly individuals. I’m very proud of them.

“They’ve been very brave. They were very brave.”

The humanitarian also revealed how she has chosen to deal with her heartbreak in front of the kids, ensuring they wouldn’t realise how upset she was.

“I was very worried about my mother, growing up—a lot,” she explained.

“I do not want my children to be worried about me. I think it’s very important to cry in the shower and not in front of them. They need to know that everything’s going to be all right even when you’re not sure it is.”

As for her ongoing relationship with leading man Brad, Angelina replied: “We care for each other and care about our family, and we are both working towards the same goal.”

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The new issue of Vanity Fair is out on August 4th.