Christine McGuinness says mum’s cancer ‘tore family apart’

Christine McGuinness, 33, has opened up on the personal reasons she took part in Strictly the Real Full Monty this series, as she shared the heartbreaking memories of cancer in her family and the toll it took on her mum.

Model Christine, who is TV presenter Paddy McGuinness's wife and also known for her part on The Real Housewives of Cheshire, appeared on This Morning Monday (December 13) to explain how passionately she feels about raising money for cancer research.

"You did this for one reason and one reason only. Tell us why you decided to strip off," Vernon Kay prompted the mum-of-three, who said it was "ultimately to try and save lives, to encourage people to check themselves and not be embarrassed about it".

Going on to share how much the subject felt close to home, Christine, who has also spoken out about making friends on the show after being a "recluse" for years, said: "I’ve had four aunties that have had cancer, one sadly passed away, three of them are doing brilliant.

"And then my mum last year, found a lump during the pandemic. She was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer.

"She had to have the most intense treatment that you can get and she had to have it on her own during lockdown, so that’s why I’ve done it, for my mum.”

Josie Gibson mentioned that she knew Christine’s mum helps her “a lot” with her three children, so it must have been a “really stressful” time for her.

“Yeah she’s the best nan ever,” the blonde beauty replied. “Honestly this cancer tore our family apart.

“You know, cancer’s cruel. It was just an awful time.

“And to not be able to be there for her, give my mum a cuddle when she was going through the worst time of her life, that was just awful,” the star recalled, going on to say that as result she said yes to the reality show “straight away”.

Unfortunately, due to Christine’s autism diagnosis, she really struggled with the realities of living and working alongside a bunch of strangers.

She admitted that she “froze and panicked so much” when she arrived to take part in the series, but is “kicking” herself now wishing she’d been able to enjoy the experience more from the beginning.

Instead, there are a lot of moments when the star takes herself out of the room for a breather, in tense scenes that will be shown on the two-part series.

Despite the difficulties, Christine insisted she managed to cope eventually.

“Towards the end I settled down and I did enjoy it, and I miss everyone,” she added with a smile.

Strictly the Real Full Monty starts Monday at 9pm on ITV.

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