Spice Girl Mel C shares how the tabloids forced her dad to reveal half-sister

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JUNE 30: Former Spice Girl Melanie C performs during the Closing Ceremony of WorldPride NYC 2019 at Times Square on June 30, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)
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Spice Girl Melanie Chisholm has revealed how she learned she had a half-sister after her father was blackmailed by the tabloids. 

Appearing on radio programme Desert Island Discs, the '90s pop star recalled how she came to meet her sibling who had remained a secret until certain media agencies got hold of the story. 

"My dad had fathered a girl years before, but the relationship hadn't worked out and he hadn't kept in touch," Chisholm said. 

"It's a crazy story: a tabloid paper got hold of the story and basically said to my dad 'either you tell her or we will'. So he told me." 

Chisholm, also known as Sporty Spice and Mel C, went to go and meet her 15-year-old half-sister when she was in her 20s. 

The 46-year-old said she agreed to have a journalist and photographer present for the meeting, a decision she now can't understand making. 

"Why did anybody allow me to do that?" she said. 

"It's insane. I'm so private now. And oh, God it just makes me cringe and shudder to think about it."

Chisholm also talked about the effect that media scrutiny had on her physical appearance and mental health. 

"I tried to make myself perfect, whatever I deemed perfect to be, and I ended up making myself really ill," she said. 

"I was anorexic for a few years, I was exercising obsessively and I ended up being incredibly depressed."