Money Saving Expert founder Martin Lewis 's fans called him a "god" and one threatened to kill herself if he didn't help her.
The finance guru, 48, said he underwent therapy after the pressure saw him go through a "bleak period".
He became emotional as he revealed his struggles with fame that followed his campaign against bank charges in 2005.
He told Telegraph's Stella Magazine that "they would come up to me… one woman grabbed me on the Tube and told me she’d kill herself if I wouldn’t help.
“People would tell me, ‘You’re like a god, I just do whatever you say.’ And I hated it. The ‘god’ word was very, very, very uncomfortable.
"It sends a shiver of panic through me.
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“It was a very, very tough time and I struggled to cope with life.”
Mr Lewis, worth an estimated £128m, also revealed he has been crying at his desk as he struggled to help people during lockdown.
Insisting wealth hadn't changed him as his job keeps him too “plugged in” to the misery of debt and poverty, he said: “And that’s what’s happened in Covid. I found myself in tears too often at my computer, because I just don’t know how to help all these people.”
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He said overcome his struggles with fame with "a bit of therapy. The realisation that I wasn’t superhuman" and smiled: "A wonderful woman.”
The journalist married his long-term partner and former weather presenter Lara Lewington in 2009.
They live in north London with their seven-year-old daughter, Sapphire.
Mr Lewis reckons he was born with his money saving skills.
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He said: "Some people can play the piano. I can look at the terms and conditions on a credit card and see immediately where something might be wrong.”
But he added that he was a "very different person" to what he was when he set up his site in 2003 and no longer judges people for causing their own financial problems.
He said: “If you were interviewing the man who set Money Saving Expert up in 2003, that’s exactly what he would have said. But I’m a very different person after I became fallible and couldn’t cope with what was going on — and suddenly I thought, actually, I get people’s failures.”
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