What Happened To Joey Essex's Mum? Everything He's Said About The Tragedy

7 June 2024, 14:45 | Updated: 11 June 2024, 10:37

Joey has opened up about him mum passing
Joey has opened up about him mum passing. Picture: Getty/Instagram

By Abbie Reynolds

Joey Essex has been extremely vulnerable in recent years and has spoken about the death of his mum. Here's everything he's said while opening up about the topic.

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33-year-old reality TV star Joey Essex has been a household name since his time on The Only Way Is Essex in 2011 all the way through to his appearance on Love Island in 2024.

During his 13 years in the public eye, and staring in multiple reality TV shows, he's shared a lot of his life with the world but it wasn't until he reached his thirties that he decided that he wanted to open up about the most traumatic event of his life.

While in the Love Island villa he opened up to fellow islander Jess White, saying: "My mum passed away when I was 10. It's not nice growing up. I found it hard for years; I never really spoke about it but when you do actually speak about things, it's better."

Since Joey found the strength to speak about his mum's death he's inspired people by showing his vulnerabilities in his documentary Joey Essex: Grief and Me as well as the gruelling show, Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins.

Here's what happened to his mother and what he's said about it.

*we'd like to offer a trigger warning for readers as this content discusses suicide and death*

Frankie Essex shared this picture of her with her brother and parents outside their old house
Frankie Essex shared this picture of her with her brother and parents outside their old house. Picture: Instagram @Frankieessex87

What happened to Joey's mum?

When Joey was just ten years old his mum, Tina, took her own life after suffering with depression. At the time, Joey and his sister, who is just three years older than him, were told that their mother had passed due to a fall.

Before she died, Tina had developed a an infection called candida, which is believed to have led to her depression. Frankie said that she had stopped eating certain foods and didn't seek help for her condition.

Speaking to the Mirror in 2013, Frankie said: "Mum hid it. It’s the silent ones, the ones who don’t speak, that you need to be worried about.

“She had to be strong for us and strong for my dad. She had everything she ever ­wanted but she didn’t know where to go in the end. If I wasn’t so young maybe I could have helped her.

“I wish there was more support for my mum. She hit rock bottom.”

Joey Essex opens up about his mum's death

Frankie and Joey were raised by their father Donny Essex, and Joey has spoken extremely highly about his dad who had to raise him in such unfortunate circumstances.

Joey first publicly addressed his mother's suicide in 2021 when he released a one-off documentary titled Joey Essex: Grief and Me. In his 2017 book 'Being Reem' he did talk about her death and how it impacted him.

In the book he spoke about how the tragedy effected him in school, “Some people reckoned I stopped learning because of what happened to my mum,” he wrote. “Almost like I froze in time. I don't know about that but I remember it hitting me really hard.”

Speaking in his documentary, the TOWIE star said his mother's death altered the way he viewed relationships and trust, saying: "My mum loved me, but she left me. I just think to myself, 'If she loved me that much, why would she leave me?'

“Imagine if I was with someone and I had kids with them and I really did love that person and then she left me. I wouldn’t know what to do. I’m already thinking we’re gonna break up before we’re together. I’m pushing it away."

Joey has worked on these issues in therapy and now seems ready to allow a relationship in his life as she finds himself on Love Island looking for love.

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