10:57 18 January 2011
Patsy Palmer is set to leave Eastenders after the controversial cot death storyline.
The 38-year-old actress, who is currently on maternity leave after giving birth to her son Bertie, said that the high-profile story was particularly upsetting for her nine-year-old daughter, Emilia.
Speaking to Hello magazine, Palmer said:
"Emilia adores her new baby brother Bertie and she couldnt believe something like that could happen. She was sobbing and kept saying Please dont go back there, mummy.
"I had to calm her down and explain that it wasnt for real that it was all pretend. But being only nine it was difficult for her to understand.
"It affected me too, especially after having Bertie, so I can imagine how other mums must have felt.
The storyline saw Ronnie Mitchell lose her baby to cot death. The character was then seen to swap her baby with that of Kat and Alfie Moon's healthy child.
She also told the magazine that she would not be returning to the BBC soap, which she has been a star of since 1993:
"I've just finished my contract with EastEnders and I've decided I dont want to be tied to anything.
"I just want to spend as much time as I can with Bertie and enjoy every minute with him. Right now my family is the most important part of my life."
The actress has three children with husband Richard Merkell, Emilia, Bertie and ten-year-old Fenton.
The controversial storyline attracted more than 10,000 complaints when it was aired, forcing the BBC to cut it short.
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