BBC One aired the heart-wrenching documentary Being Mum and Dad recently, following the aftermath of Rio Ferdinand’s wife’s death and his grieving process.
The ex-Manchester United defender lost his wife to cancer two years ago, survived by Ferdinand and their three kids who have been enveloped in darkness because of their loss.
They have three beautiful kids together, Lorenz, eleven, Tate, eight and Tia, six.
The thirty-eight-year-old football player shared his experience at trying to overcome the grief that took their family hostage.
“Me and Rebecca, we had an unbelievable relationship,” says Rio, of his late wife.
“The last time she was at home she tried to kinda talk about it but…. I just blocked it out. I wouldn’t talk,” said Rio trying to hold back his tears.
It’s been two years already, and he is trying his best as a single parent. His biggest worry is how to reach out to his kids in order to help them deal with the trauma of having lost their mother.
Rebecca was only thirty-four when breast cancer claimed her life.
“This is one of the only things in life that we’re gonna go through together, where I haven’t got the answers for them and that’s quite a worrying, daunting thing,” explained Rio.
During the documentary, he even admitted to having had suicidal thoughts taking over his mind when things would get pretty rough.
“I would read papers, and see people who commit suicide and wonder how.”
“But there were times at the beginning, you kinda know how they feel. But when I look at my three kids, I couldn’t do that to them,” disclosed the football player.
“I’m not saying I’ve thought about it, but you sink into this place, and I’m lucky with the people I have around me; family and friends.”
He also learned some useful coping strategies after seeking help at an all-male bereavement group.
Many of his colleagues, other athletes, and ordinary folk took to Twitter to express support and respect for Rio’s decision to go all out with his grief and share his private life with the larger audiences.
Gary Lineker wrote: “Saw a screening of @rioferdy5 doc and cried about 4 times. It’s thought-provoking, important and hugely emotive.”
“#BeingMumAndDad so sad, touching and inspiring to watch. Puts everything into perspective massively. Heartbreaking @rioferdy5,” tweeted Joe Bennett.
Whatever happens, I am pretty sure those kids are in good hands. I wish that the veil of grief gets lifted as soon as possible from this family and that they are left with the good memories only!