Zoe Ball. Picture: Instagram
Zoe Ball. Picture: Instagram

Zoe Ball: Menopause makes me think I must be going mad

By EMMA POWELL SHOWBUSINESS CORRESPONDENT Time of article published Jan 28, 2020

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She is already fought a long battle with the bottle, but at 49 reformed ladette Zoe Ball has a new struggle on her hands – with the menopause.

The "Radio 2" DJ said she had finally forgiven herself for decades of hard drinking that left her unable to remember huge chunks of her life.

However, now the mother of two is contending with the menopause, which has caused ‘terrible anxiety’ and the fear that she is going mad.

‘It really is awful,’ she told Red magazine. ‘I’ve had young friends go, “Oh, will you shut up moaning about the menopause,” and I said to them, “You wait, you’ll be knocking on my door in ten years!”

‘You feel you’re going slightly mad, you get this terrible anxiety, which in any job is a nightmare, but especially in live radio.’ Miss Ball was part of the ‘ladette’ culture of the Nineties, along with fellow broadcasters Sara Cox and Jo Whiley. But she said she’d put those days behind her, adding: ‘I’ve done a lot of work on my issues with booze.

‘I’ve been able to forgive myself. It’s taken me a long time to grow up.

‘There is help with Alcoholics Anonymous and other support networks.’

Miss Ball, who hosts the flagship breakfast show, has told how her ten-year-old daughter, Nelly, was a ‘gift of sobriety’ after claiming she struggled to conceive for a second time until she ditched the alcohol.

She quit two years after breaking a five-year dry spell kick-started when a party left her fearing she would end up needing psychiatric help. Her ex-husband Norman Cook – the musician Fatboy Slim, with whom she also has a son, Woody, 19 – sought help to stop drinking in March 2009.

Ball celebrated having been sober for two years in June 2018, a year after her boyfriend, cameraman, Billy Yates committed suicide at 40 following a battle with depression. They had dated since September 2016.

She told the March edition of Red, which goes on sale this Thursday: ‘Since losing Billy I’ve met lots of people who’ve helped me have a better understanding of the complexities of mental health.

‘But it’s key to remember there is help available for people living with mental health issues and there is hope.’

Daily Mail

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