Hayden Panettiere opens up about giving up custody of her daughter

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Hayden Panettiere didn’t know she was losing custody of her daughter.

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The 33-year-old actress – who has been candid about her struggles with addiction and depression – has opened up about losing custody of Kaya, now seven, after her daughter moved to Ukraine with the ex of Hayden, Vladimir Klitschko.

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In a Red Table Talk clip revealed by Entertainment Tonight, she said: « She was almost three years old, and it wasn’t entirely my decision. In fact, I didn’t even know it was happening until she’s already there.

The Heroes star explained that she realized she had to focus on herself and that the « selfless thing » would be to focus on herself.

She added: « I was trying to tell myself that if I’m not well, if I’m not well, then I can’t be the best mum for you.

« I was going through such a tough time that I knew the most selfless thing I could do was make this tough decision and try to work on myself. »

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Hayden – who will later spend eight months in rehab – has already addressed his battle with alcoholism after hitting rock bottom before Kaya moved to live with his father.

She said: ‘I would have the twitches when I woke up and could only function while sipping alcohol.

« It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. But I wanted to be a good mother to her – and sometimes that means letting them go.

While suffering from depression, Hayden made it clear that she « never felt like I wanted to hurt my child », that she « didn’t want to spend time with her ».

Reflecting on her relationship with ex Klitschko – which ended for good in 2018 – she added: « He didn’t want to be with me. I didn’t want to be near me. But with opioids and alcohol, I did anything to feel happy for a moment. Then I would feel worse than before. I was in a cycle of self-destruction.

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