Jenny McCarthy feared a "very, very dark and abusive" relationship would "kill" her.
The blonde beauty has opened up about a four-year relationship with an unnamed former partner and admitted she never thought she would be the sort of person to fall victim to abuse because she is so "strong-willed and confident".
She said: "What I thought was gonna be a typical relationship, turned into a relationship that you would never think you would get yourself into. Especially me. I mean, I really consider myself to be pretty strong-willed and confident, even back then.
"But I did find myself being slowly manipulated in to a very, very dark, abusive--verbally abusive--relationship that could have easily killed me."
Jenny - who is now happily married to Donnie Wahlberg - said the relationship left her mind "turned completely inside out" and stripped her of her self-worth.
Speaking at a launch for Schwarzkopf Gliss' 'Beautiful by Choice' campaign, she said: "I no longer had my own thoughts. They were replaced with his thoughts about me.
"That I was worthless, disgusting, talent-less, ugly, fat, smelled so badly. I was no longer worthy of being kissed."
And she later realised that, after four years of "excruciating, verbal abuse", she had to learn to love herself and decided to "get the hell out" of the relationship.
She added: "In that moment, I found my accountability in the hell I was living in.
"The path to loving yourself requires you to stop putting the blame on others and observe the choices you make that got you there. It wasn't his job to love me. It was mine.
"So I chose to finally get the hell out of that relationship. I chose to be powerful not powerless."
Jenny - who has a 14-year-old son, Evan, with ex-husband John Mallory Asher - ended her speech with a tribute to Donnie, who she described as the love of her life.
She added: "I love you baby."