Lorraine: Helen Skelton 'taking one week at a time'
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The Countryfile presenter, 39, has been dazzling on Strictly Come Dancing while in the midst of struggles in her personal life. Despite first thinking that joining the show would be a mistake, her last emotional appearance revealed just how much Strictly has been a helping hand in her time of need.
Helen and her now former partner Richie Myler got married in 2013 and separated in April, just four months after having their third child together.
While she noted some people insisted Strictly would be an opportunity to find “someone wonderful”, she was more than content with her three wonderful children.
An insider reportedly told The Sun that Helen was “dumbstruck” when her marriage ended, but had known something was off in their relationship “for a while”.
In light of her personal troubles, Helen was seriously considering not doing Strictly this year, explaining to The Telegraph that it was a close friend who convinced her to join.
She said: “I was talking to my best friend about it and I was like, ‘I’m not sure, there’s the kids and the press and it will be full-on.’
“And she just went, ‘What a t*t! You’re going to get paid to dance around with a fit guy, people are going to put make-up on you, and you’ve got to work. It’s not real life, is it? Why wouldn’t you do it?’.”
In the end, Helen agreed, saying it would almost be “disrespectful” for her not to appear on the show, noting her family needed “to see me having a good time”.
Helen has become a fierce competitor on the ballroom floor, even making it past Blackpool Week.
That week was particularly special for the Cumbrian native as it meant her family could watch the show live.
Speaking on the BBC show last week, Helen had an emotional moment in the studio with her dance partner Gorka Marquez as she reflected on that special moment.
She said: “The best reaction was from my dad. He was so happy and so proud.
“He just looked at me and went ‘Oh, you seem like you again’.
Choked with emotion, the Blue Peter star tried to continue: “I definitely am a different person from when we started and for me what has been…um…sorry.
“I think even you would say I’m a different person from day one.
“I thought it was just dancing, it is so much more than that.”
Even though the judges weren’t particularly fond of the couple’s Samba, Anton Du Beke noted that for the first time in the competition “I got you, I got Helen Skelton coming out to play.”
The pair received a total of 29 points, coming in at the bottom of the leaderboard just above comedian Ellie Taylor who scored 25.
Ultimately Ellie bid an emotional farewell after competing in the dance-off against Fleur East.
Helen and Gorka are now through to the quarter-finals of Strictly Come Dancing, meaning they will be competing in the iconic Musicals Week.
Strictly Come Dancing continues on Friday at 8pm on BBC One.
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