The Lipstick Jungle star, who has daughters Rowan, 6, and 3-year-old Grier with husband Chris Henchy, said that her post-natal depression was so severe that she didn't think her life was worth living.
Shields told People magazine: "I finally had a healthy beautiful baby girl and I couldn't look at her. I couldn't hold her and I couldn't sing to her and I couldn't smile at her... All I wanted to do was disappear and die."
She continued: "I should not exist. The baby would be better off without me. Life was never going to get better - so I better just go. That was the week I almost did not resist driving my car straight into a wall on the side of the freeway."
The 44-year-old star was eventually diagnosed with a chemical imbalance.