Gemma Collins says she ‘saved James Argent from death three times’ during addiction struggles

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Gemma Collins says she ‘saved James Argent from death three times’ during addiction struggles
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Gemma Collins has said she chose to walk away from her on-off relationship with James Argent after his addiction struggles became “too much”.

The Only Way is Essex star, 40, gave an interview to The Sunday Times, in which she discussed the impact the relationship had on her.

“I saved him from death three times, never got a thank you,” she said.

Asked by journalist Polly Vernon if she meant she had saved Argent – who revealed in 2020 he suffered from cocaine addiction – from overdosing, Collins said she had intervened “loads of times”.

“I was filming Dancing on Ice and I’d had a phone call, and they said no one had been able to get hold of him,” she said.

“I just knew instinctively to ring an ambulance. I’d had a lovely day, all of a sudden the stomach’s churning… I arrive at Whipps Cross Hospital, see him in a state. In that room, looking at him, thinking, I’ve got to go and film again tomorrow, this is too much! The next day he’d discharged himself. Thought he doesn’t want the help. You can’t go out with an addict.”

The Independent has contacted Argent’s representative for comment.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

In an interview with The Sun last year, Argent said he had suffered two near-fatal overdoses and at one point was spending up to £500 a week on cocaine.

“My addiction was so bad I couldn’t stop myself,” he said.

He recalled how the emergency services had to knock down a door after he overdosed back in October 2019, when Collins called an ambulance.

The singer then explained how he put his life in more danger once more after overdosing for a second time just two months later, on the night before his birthday on 5 December.

Argent recently revealed the physical transformation he has undergone after receiving a gastric sleeve operation in April to help him lose weight, following the overdoses.

Collins is currently dating car repairs company owner Rami Hawash.

Elsewhere in The Times interview, she spoke about how she had begun self-harming as a teenager and was cutting herself while working on The Only Way is Essex, referring to it as a “coping mechanism”. She has since stopped.

“One of the [Towie] producers, once … I said, ‘Why did you all pick us?’ And he said, ‘Because you’re all flawed in some way or another.’ It’s a deal with the devil, million per cent,” Collins said of reality TV. “But the devil ain’t gonna beat me, honey.”

If you have been affected by this article, you can contact the following organisations for support: actiononaddiction.org.uk, mind.org.uk, nhs.uk/livewell/mentalhealth, mentalhealth.org.uk.

If you are experiencing feelings of distress and isolation, or are struggling to cope, the Samaritans offers support; you can speak to someone for free over the phone, in confidence, on 116 123 (UK and ROI), email jo@samaritans.org, or visit the Samaritans website to find details of your nearest branch.

If you are based in the USA, and you or someone you know needs mental health assistance right now, call National Suicide Prevention Helpline on 1-800-273-TALK (8255). The Helpline is a free, confidential crisis hotline that is available to everyone 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If you are in another country, you can go to www.befrienders.org to find a helpline near you.

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