Cheryl's nightmare past: ‘Tre has lifted the dark cloud – I feel free!’
Tuesday 16 October 2012
Cheryl cole has sensationally revealed how the traumatic fallout from her collapsed marriage saw her turn to sleeping pills and alcohol – and admitted she was “cracking up” and “totally numb” following her 2010 malaria struggle and her doomed move to US X Factor last year.
Now, after laying bare the explosive details in her new autobiography, Cheryl is telling pals she’s moving on with new love Tre Holloway, gushing: “He’s lifted the dark cloud – I feel free.”
A source says: “Doing the book has been a healing process and she has no regrets. She’s finally opened up and is so thankful Tre has been there to talk to. She’s been describing him as ‘her saviour.’”
Tre, 27, is currently dancing on her solo tour and, in an interview last week, Cheryl admitted to “doing a bit of chasing” before they went public as a couple in August.
The Girls Aloud star Tweeted she was “emotional” ahead of last week’s release of the autobiography – which is said to have netted her a £350,000 advance. In the book, she describes the “agony” of her divorce from love-rat ex Ashley and her subsequent “nervous breakdown.”
Cheryl – who suffered clinical depression as a teenager – also reveals how she yearned to start a family after marrying Ashley in 2006, but was encouraged to put her career first.
The pair’s relationship was rocked in 2008 when hairdresser Aimee Walton said she’d slept with the footballer.
Cheryl, 29, reveals she was “trembling uncontrollably” and “convulsing” when told, saying: “I totally lost it then. Before I knew it, I was lashing out at Ashley in every way I possibly could.”
At the time, she stated she didn’t believe the rumours, but now admits in the book: “Privately, I was full of doubt and indecision.”
The singer jetted to Thailand with Girls Aloud bandmates Kimberley Walsh and Nicola Roberts after the reports, but revealed: “I could have fallen out of the sky from the plane and I was certain nothing would have been as painful as what I was feeling inside.”
She gave their marriage another go, but in February 2010, model Sonia Wild claimed she’d exchanged naked photos and sex texts with Ashley the previous summer, and several more girls then came forward.
Describing the end of her marriage as “the worst feeling in the world,” fragile Cheryl soldiered through a performance at the Brits, before drowning her sorrows with a blow-out in LA. Drinking and clubbing nightly, she revealed: “I was sobbing uncontrollably one minute, laughing hysterically the next.”
She added she was physically sick after reading the details of the alleged trysts, adding: “I felt numb inside. I was freezing up.”
Speaking about the days after her return to the UK, she admits turning to medication and alcohol, saying: “I was ranting and raving and talking to myself. When my head hit the pillow I started screaming and crying into it.
“I’d got some sleeping pills off the doctor and they were a lifesaver. I actually felt good just for 10 minutes before I fell asleep […] I started smoking 20 cigarettes a day when I normally only have one or two, and I was drinking too, just to try and relax and knock the sharp corners off my feelings.”
Months after the split, in June 2010, the star also had to contend with a life-threatening bout of malaria following a trip to Africa with dancer friend Derek Hough. And recalling the trip she says: “Every night I cried myself to sleep.”
By November 2010, during her stint on UK X Factor, the star admits she was struggling to cope with life, saying: “I cried every night when I got home. I didn’t realise it, but I think I was actually going through a nervous breakdown. Throughout the live shows I was cracking up, in fact.”
Revealing she “broke down” on Christmas Day when Ashley’s mum texted her, she says: “I collapsed on the stairs and was sobbing so hysterically and was so out of control I couldn’t breathe.”
Talking about a trip to South Africa with Derek for that New Year, she adds: “I was losing my head all the time and I’m sure I’d been having a nervous breakdown for months. [… I was] sad and paranoid and a shell of my normal self.”
By then, Cheryl knew she had the US X Factor gig, but was too miserable to get excited, saying: “On the face of it, I was coping. I was preparing for my new life and making some good decisions, but I was still close to tears all the time.
“It felt like my nerves were always close to snapping and I felt permanently on edge.”
Cheryl was later kicked off the US panel after Simon Cowell felt she was “uncomfortable” on the show, and she admits of the stint: “I should have been on cloud nine, but I felt dead inside.”
In the book, Cheryl also reveals her shock over her marriage split led to her threatening to quit Girls Aloud twice, saying: “I just didn’t want to be famous any more.”
And she revealed her real reason for backing the idea of the band’s break in 2009 was to work on her marriage and start a family, telling Nicola: “I just want to be a wife. Above all else, I want to spend more time with Ashley, and think about starting a family.”
She added that: “I was more broody and impatient than ever.”
But, as Closer revealed last month, pals say Cheryl is now so loved-up with new man Tre that she’s once again discussing having babies. And the star admits in the book that it’s been her lifelong dream to start a family.
And sources say she’s ecstatic to have shaken off her “darkest days” with Tre by her side.
A pal adds: “Cheryl’s mum Joan and Tre’s mum Shirley met when they were in Ireland to start off the tour earlier this month, and it was great.
“Cheryl feels like a weight has been lifted and that Tre is her soulmate. She says he is the thing she’s been missing.”