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‘We love you’: Kate Ferdinand gushes over husband Rio’s dad Julian


Kate Ferdinand branded her husband Rio’s dad Julian ‘the best father-in-law’ to mark his birthday on Tuesday following an ‘uncomfortable’ start to their relationship. 

The former TOWIE star, 30, took to Instagram to share a sweet throwback snap showing her at a party with Julian and added a caption reading: ‘Happy birthday to the best father-in-law. We all love you so much’. 

Her post comes after her 2020 documentary Rio and Kate: Becoming a Step Family, in which footballer Rio, 42, shed light on the rocky start to Julian and Kate’s relationship, which saw the former ‘unsure’ of the latter. 

All is forgiven: Kate Ferdinand branded her husband Rio’s dad Julian ‘the best father-in-law’ to mark his birthday on Tuesday following an ‘uncomfortable’ start to their relationship

Kate beamed as she posed next to Julian in the snap as they both cradled drinks, while she placed the sweet caption over the top of the shot. 

The gushing profession comes after Kate and Rio released their documentary in February last year, in which they followed Kate’s journey to becoming stepmother to Rio’s kids Lorenz, 15, Tate, 13, and Tia, 10. 

Rio’s late wife and the mother to his kids Rebecca Ellison died of cancer in 2015 aged just 34, while he married former TOWIE star Kate in 2019 and they welcomed their first child together – a son named Cree – last year.  

In the documentary, Rio admitted his dad had reservations about Kate, and he had to have ‘words’ with him as it was making them both feel uncomfortable. 

Open and honest: Her post comes after her 2020 documentary Rio and Kate: Becoming a Step Family, in which footballer Rio, 42, shed light on the rocky start to Julian and Kate's relationship, which saw the former 'unsure' of the latter

Open and honest: Her post comes after her 2020 documentary Rio and Kate: Becoming a Step Family, in which footballer Rio, 42, shed light on the rocky start to Julian and Kate’s relationship, which saw the former ‘unsure’ of the latter

Julian explained that his primary concern is always his grandchildren’s wellbeing, and he was worried Kate was ‘too young’. 

Rio said: ‘Certain members of the family made it hard for Kate at the beginning, but she wasn’t here trying to take anyone’s role. A lot of people found it hard seeing me with a new woman’.

Admitting she felt like a stranger in the home for the first year, Kate recalled: ‘People would say, “This is Rebecca’s house and that’s not how she would have done it.”‘

‘And I would just think, “But I’m not Rebecca.” I feel like I failed a lot and I couldn’t cook. It felt like I was being picked on by a lot of close people’, she added, getting emotional.

Hurt: Julian explained that his primary concern is always his grandchildren's wellbeing, and he was worried Kate was 'too young'

Hurt: Julian explained that his primary concern is always his grandchildren’s wellbeing, and he was worried Kate was ‘too young’

Julian said: ‘It was hard, not just for myself but for everyone. If she wasn’t strong-minded she would have just walked away.’ 

The documentary won widespread critical acclaim, with viewers left ‘in bits’ as they watched Rio’s children weep at their mother’s grave while laying down flowers and cards on Mother’s Day. 

In a heartbreaking scene, Tia broke down as she places flowers and balloons on her mother’s grave – and is comforted by her stepmother Kate.

Rio also lost his mother Janice to cancer, just two years after the death of his wife.  

Pained: The documentary won widespread critical acclaim, with viewers left 'in bits' as they watched Rio's children weep at their mother's grave while laying down flowers and cards on Mother's Day

Pained: The documentary won widespread critical acclaim, with viewers left ‘in bits’ as they watched Rio’s children weep at their mother’s grave while laying down flowers and cards on Mother’s Day 

He admitted: ‘You don’t expect to lose someone so important to you so soon after losing someone else. It’s not in the script. How do you tell the kids that? Their hearts are broken all over again. They’re grieving twice on Mother’s Day.’

In the emotional documentary, Kate revealed she writes letters to Rebecca and spoke candidly about her struggles with becoming a stepmother to his children as they come to terms with their mother’s death.

In a touching moment, Kate reveals how she joins the children in writing cards for Rebecca on Mother’s Day, breaking down into tears as she admits she feels as though she’s ‘grieving for someone she never knew’.

Hurt: In a touching moment, Kate reveals how she joins the children in writing cards for Rebecca on Mother's Day, breaking down into tears as she admits she feels as though she's 'grieving for someone she never knew'

Hurt: In a touching moment, Kate reveals how she joins the children in writing cards for Rebecca on Mother’s Day, breaking down into tears as she admits she feels as though she’s ‘grieving for someone she never knew’ 



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