Nikki Grahame determined to 'get her life back’ as she enters treatment to beat anorexia

Kerry Martin
·4-min read
Nikki Grahame attends the SpiceUp London VIP launch 2018 (Getty/Mike Marsland/Mike Marsland/WireImage)
Nikki Grahame attends the SpiceUp London VIP launch 2018 (Getty/Mike Marsland/Mike Marsland/WireImage)

Former Big Brother star Nikki Grahame has vowed to beat anorexia as she enters treatment for the eating disorder. Her mother Susan Grahame spoke on This Morning today to discuss her daughter’s battle with the condition.

Susan told hosts Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby: "I spoke to Nikki this morning and she said, 'Mum, please stress how overwhelmed I am at people's kindness towards me'.

"'I just don't get it, but I am so grateful,' and she said, 'Also tell everybody that I'm going to try my level best this time to beat this. I want to get my life back'."

Her interview comes after Nikki's friends set up a GoFundMe page, (Trigger warning: Contains graphic images of anorexia) to raise money needed for Nikki's treatment. It has now surpassed its £50,000 target ensuring Grahame receives treatment.

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The 38-year-old, who competed in the seventh series of Big Brother UK in 2006, has had eating disorders since she was just eight years old, but is currently 'the worst' her friends and family have seen her.

Speaking to The Telegraph last week, her mother said: "We've been on this road a long time – 30 years on and off, and I've never seen her this bad.

BOREHAMWOOD, ENGLAND - AUGUST 24:  Nikki Grahame enters the final Ultimate Big Brother 2010 House at Elstree Studios on August 24, 2010 in Borehamwood, England.  (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Nikki Grahame enters the final Ultimate Big Brother 2010 House at Elstree Studios on August 24, 2010. (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

"I'm frightened that I'll die and she'll have no one to support her. I don't want her to go through any of this alone.

"While there's breath in my body, and while Nikki is struggling, I don't know how to do anything else other than help her."

Read more: Nikki Grahame on Anorexia battle: "I was used to walking around emaciated"

Opening up about these long-term struggles on This Morning, Susan said: “I think she suffered so badly, because back in the day... we’re going back 31 years… I guess at that time people found it hard to believe that an eight year old could be a victim of this. There wasn’t the kind of treatment and the units that there are now, so we did struggle with this.”

BOREHAMWOOD, ENGLAND- JULY 21: Ex Big Brother contestant Nikki Grahame visits the Big Brother studio after Jayne Kitt became the ninth contestant to be evicted from the Big Brother Seven House on July 21, 2006 in Borehamwood, England. (Photo by Stuart Wilson/Getty Images)
Ex Big Brother contestant Nikki Grahame visits the Big Brother studio, 2006 (Stuart Wilson/Getty Images)

“Nikki was ditching her lunch every day and I had no idea.”

Friends set up the GoFundMe page in the hope of raising over £50,000 to get the Big Brother star treatment to help her beat the condition. Due to the public’s generosity, Nikki has entered a treatment facility and the total currently stands at just under £65,000.

Watch: Reality TV star Nikki Grahame Attends London event

Read more: Nikki Grahame suffers biggest meltdown ever on Canadian Big Brother

Commenting on the phenomenal response and generosity her friends said: “Due to the incredible amount of donations received, we’re so happy to say that we have found a facility that is able to take Nikki privately and her road to recovery will begin from Monday.

"Nikki is feeling very hopeful that they can help her smash this horrible illness, once and for all.

Pete Bennett and Nikki Grahame at the Royal Albert Hall in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Richard Lewis/WireImage)
Nikki Grahame dated her former Big Brother housemate Pete Bennett after the show ended (Richard Lewis/WireImage)

"When the time is right either we, or Nikki herself, will be able to share the finer details of the process, her progress and where the incredible donations are going."

Nikki’s mum also spoke to Schofield and Willoughby about the impact that the first UK lockdown had on her daughter, revealing that Nikki struggled with “terminal loneliness.”

Susan said: “With Covid, it sounds crazy but stuff like gyms closing impacted her.

"In order for her to eat she needs to know she can exercise, so when they closed it was quite a worry, the isolation as well."

"I asked her if she would come and stay with me but she said she needs to be in her home."

"She was (suffering terminal loneliness) she felt very cut off and spending too much time on her own with not enough to think about other than food.

"It all came to a grinding halt. Also for Nikki, she would muddle herself through the year knowing she's got friends abroad and she would visit them.

"She spent a lot of time last year cancelling holidays."

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