WATCH: Widower Rio Ferdinand opens up about grief ahead of BBC documentary

Rio Ferdinand’s BBC documentary ‘Being Mum and Dad’ is set to air tonight and will give viewers an insight into the life of a widower, who is dealing with crippling grief and parenthood.

The heart-wrenching docu-film will show the ex-England footballer open up about losing his beautiful wife Rebecca to breast cancer in 2015 and having to take care of their young children, 10-year-old Lorenz, eight-year-old Tate and five-year-old Tia, alone.

Earlier today, Rio went on ‘This Morning’ and spoke to presenters Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby about how he has dealt with the tragic events of the last two years but also said he had gained a renewed perspective on the massive role that mums play in the family; a role which he has now taken on.

Rebecca and Rio (Instagram)

“The school run, I thought before that I was taking a big part just doing that. But there’s so much more that mothers do, preparation the night before, making sure school uniforms are out, bags are packed, breakfast is ready. The first few times I had to do it (after Rebecca died) they’d always be late.”

The 38-year-old star added that he was brought up to believe that showing emotion was a sign of weakness but he has now learnt to express his grief. However, he admitted that telling his children they would never see Rebecca again was the hardest thing he’s ever had to do.


“That’s probably the hardest point before she passed away that you have to tell your children you’re going home from the hospital today and never seeing your mum again.”

And the star wishes he had communicated more with his wife when she was first diagnosed with cancer in 2013 but said he felt like “defeat was never really an option”.

“I wish I could have said more, I wish I could have done more, you hurt yourself. I would just shut her down and close the conversation, I didn’t want to get emotional.

Rio breaks down in the BBC documentary.

“Without talking, you miss that opportunity to have that idea about what your partner would have wanted, and that’s a tormenting thing.”

The documentary – which airs on BBC1 at 9pm – will include footage of Rio trying to help his grieving children understand what happened to their beloved mother.

Rio Ferdinand: Being Mum and Dad airs Tuesday 28 March at 9pm on BBC1.