Joey Essex
(Image credit: Getty)

Joey Essex has issued a heartbreaking tribute to his late mum who committed suicide.

Former TOWIE star Joey Essex has paid an emotional tribute to his late mum who committed suicide when he was 10 years old.

Grief is different for everyone (opens in new tab), and the reality TV star, who is known for his fun-loving personality, opened his heart on Instagram telling fans how much he was missing his mum not being around.

He uploaded a sweet throwback snap of his mum Tina and sister Frankie together and captioned it, 'Another day to wish you happy birthday in heaven ... my heart secretly aches every day and I try my best to keep putting on this front to the world but I’m not scared or afraid anymore to say I’m heartbroken and I always will be... I’ll miss you forever.'

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He continued, 'Hurts to know deep down you was sad inside and you was smiling for us always... One day I’ll be with you again and then we can smile together. No more secrets for us both. I love you mum.'

Joey, who has been an ambassador for Child Bereavement UK since 2014, has opened up on his heartbreak on Instagram at special times throughout the year such as birthdays and Mother's Day.

READ MORE: Former TOWIE star and Sugar Hut owner Mick Norcross dies aged 57 (opens in new tab)

What led to Joey's mum's suicide?

Previously reported, Tina, developed an infection called candida which is a yeast infection (opens in new tab) and can cause symptoms like stomach problems, fatigue, joint pain, and depression.

His sister Frankie once revealed to The Mirror how their mum hit "rock bottom" because of the infection and how it affected her. She couldn’t eat certain foods and kept going back to the doctors for more tests but she failed to seek help for her depression.

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Heartbreakingly, Frankie recalled in 2013, “Mum hid it. It’s the silent ones, the ones who don’t speak, that you need to be worried about. She had to be strong for us and strong for my dad. She had everything she ever wanted but she didn’t know where to go in the end. If I wasn’t so young maybe I could have helped her.

“I wish there was more support for my mum. She hit rock bottom.”

The last time Joey and Frankie saw their mum was when she dropped them off at school. Later Frankie and Joey were told by their dad that their mum had died. They heard the terrible news at their nan’s house, with Chloe Sims and her mum present too. At the time they weren't told it was suicide as they were too young to understand - this is something Frankie later discovered upon finding her late mother's death certificate.

Not everyone knows what to say when someone dies (opens in new tab). If you have been affected by suicide, you can contact the Samaritans 24 hours a day on 116 123 or visit Samaritans (opens in new tab) online for more help and advice.

Selina is a Senior Entertainment Writer with more than 14 years of experience in newspapers and magazines. She currently looks after all things Entertainment for Goodto.com, Woman&Home, and My Imperfect Life. Before joining Future Publishing, Selina graduated from the University of Sheffield in 2006 with a degree in Journalism. She is fully NCTJ and NCE qualified and has 100wpm shorthand. When she's not interviewing celebrities you can find her exploring new countryside walking routes, catching up with friends over good food, or making memories.