Former X-Factor judge Tulisa Contostavlos said she became "a paranoid wreck" and felt her life was over after being caught up in a cocaine sting, which led to a trial that collapsed in dramatic fashion last week.
The 26-year-old singer said the drugs allegations that emerged in a Sun on Sunday expose were devastating.
"It just all got too much for me. I'm not going to sit here and want a pity party," she told Good Morning Britain.
"It was a dark time, a very dark moment but I've got through it and I am here today."
"Its been a really really hard year - the most difficult year of my life but at the same time I always try to take a positive from a negative and its given me the kind of life experience that you can't buy - that it takes some people 10 years to gain. Its also made me a wiser person, stronger."
The former N-Dubz singer had been accused of boasting that she could ''sort out'' cocaine for the paper's investigative reporter Mazher Mahmood and put him in touch with her rapper friend Mike GLC, who supplied the Class A drug.
She always denied the allegations and last week the trial collapsed after the judge said there were "strong grounds" to believe Mr Mahmood, known as the Fake Sheikh, had lied on the witness stand and "had been manipulating the evidence".
He has since been suspended from the paper.
After the case Tulisa said it had been "a horrific and disgusting entrapment" and now she has spoken of the devastating effect it had on her life.
When she realised she had been manipulated, believing she was auditioning for a major film role, the star said she could not believe it.
"I felt a million emotions. How could I have not seen it? I felt like my life was over," she said.
"Like someone had taken my life away. They took it out of my hands and took it away in a second."
Tulisa, who was convicted on Friday of assaulting a celebrity blogger at a music festival in a separate case, said she "lost the faith" when she was charged and faced a trial over the drugs sting.
"There are different levels of depression - when I got low, I got really really low," she said.
"But I picked myself up quicker than most and got on with things the best I could. My lowest point was when I found out I was going to be officially charged. It had already been dragging on for so long.
"When I found out I was being charged I lost the faith.
"Its made me a paranoid wreck when it comes to people. You are always looking over your shoulder - who is out to get me next?"