John Lydon says he’s now a full-time carer for his wife, who has Alzheimer’s

Roisin O'Connor
·2-min read
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

John Lydon, the Sex Pistols frontman also known as Johnny Rotten, has revealed how he has become a full-time carer for his wife as she struggles with Alzheimer’s. 

In an interview with The Times, the musician detailed how he spends his days feeding, dressing and caring for his longtime partner Nora Forster, 78, at their home in California.

“Alzheimer’s is a wicked, debilitating, slow, deliberate process, but we’re going through that together,” Lydon said. “She doesn’t forget me. She forgets everything else but not me.”

The interview notes that it is unclear if Lydon and Forster are actually married. They moved to the US together in the 1980s. 

Lydon said he had accepted Forster’s condition was incurable, and suggested the way he had achieved that was “to get to grips with it and lay off the self-pity”.

“That’s one thing I can proudly say my mum and dad instilled in me from an early age: don’t feel sorry for yourself, get on with it,” he said.

“These are the cards you’re handed and you play the game to the end to the best of your ability. God, you know, if Johnny bloody Rotten can do it, f***ing hell, what’s your excuse?”

Watch: John Lydon on why his marriage has persevered

In the same interview, Lydon condemned Danny Boyle’s new six-part series, Pistol, about the formation of his band, following the release of publicity photos for the project. 

The musician was chosen to front the Sex Pistols in 1975 by manager Malcolm McLaren, in part due to his outspoken manner and outlandish sense of style.

The band rose to fame with their controversial track “God Save the Queen”, released during the week of Queen Elizabeth II’s Silver Jubilee in 1977.

Lydon branded the series, which stars Anson Boon and Thomas Brodie-Sangster, as “a disgrace”, claiming he was not consulted about it. 

“Sorry, you think you can do this, like walk all over me — it isn’t going to happen. Not without a huge, enormous f***ing fight,” he said. 

A spokesman for the Pistol production said the intention was always to communicate with Lydon before filming began, and that Boyle wrote to him via his management company. 

Boyle “wished to speak with Mr Lydon personally about the production of Pistol. Ultimately, however, direct contact was declined,” the spokesman told The Times.

If you or someone you know needs support for Alzheimer’s, you can call the Dementia Connect support line on 0333 150 3456 or visit alzheimers.org.uk.

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