Zeta-Jones, a negligee and fluffy mules

Catherine Zeta-Jones has never been one to use the media as a therapy session and, as so many celebs do, air her deepest, darkest secrets, desires and afflictions for all to see.

After all, she’s a proper Welsh country girl – she deals with things privately. But as everyone knows, in Tinseltown, the private never stays private and last year, news broke that the Rock of Ages star had checked into a clinic for treatment of bipolar disorder.

So Jones, 43, began speaking about the condition, which was once known as manic depression and which mood disorder expert Kay Redfield Jamison posited in her acclaimed book, Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament, has afflicted – and perhaps inspired – many a creative soul including Vincent van Gogh and Kurt Cobain, both of whom committed suicide.

(Does bipolar disorder make one more creative? It’s an open question.)

Jones, 43, speaks about her struggles in a new chat with InSyle mag’s December issue, available on newsstands on Friday.

“It’s not easy” to talk about the topic, Zeta-Jones says in excerpts provided by InStyle.

“I’m not the kind of person who likes to shout out my personal issues from the rooftops, but with my bipolar becoming public, I hope fellow sufferers will know it’s completely controllable. I hope I can help remove any stigma attached to it, and that those who don’t have it under control will seek help with all that is available to treat it.”

Zeta-Jones says facing her condition helped her discover herself – and intensified her link with her husband of 12 years, Michael Douglas.

“You find out who you really are and who you are married to. You find things inside yourself you never imagined were there,” Zeta-Jones tells InStyle in excerpts posted by London’s Daily Mail.

“I've gained an appreciation for little things, like tea outside on a terrace and a beautiful afternoon like this.”

Zeta-Jones, who has two kids with Douglas, son Dylan and daughter Carys, doesn’t spend the entire interview on things mental health. She also speaks up about her intimate relationship with fashion.

“I love fashion, love it, but I know exactly what looks good on my body. I’ve never been a victim of trends,” she says. Yet, she adds, she’s not a slave to fashion.

“I love clothes, and yes, we go out, but it’s not like I’m walking around all day in a negligee with fluffy mules. We’re country people, really. I garden and knit. I golf. We ride horses. I grew up in the country in Wales. It’s true, I don’t like the whole cutoff-shorts-and-T-shirt look, but I think you can look fantastic in casual clothes. I even find a way to make golf clothes look good; I put my collar up, get a sporty hat, and throw on an Hermes scarf.”

Zeta-Jones is featured in two upcoming movies, Playing for Keeps (due Dec. 7th) and Broken City (out Jan. 18th)