Demi’s birth father was bipolar, schizophrenic and battling alcohol and drug addictions and her mother had an as yet unacknowledged eating disorder and was also suffering from depression.
Demi was barely old enough to understand what her parents were going through, but the impact of their illnesses meant that she became an anxious child who was old before her time.
Now in recovery, she tells Catherine O’Brien why she thinks she can be a ‘beacon of hope to the next generation’ Demi wears Sunglasses, Wildfox. Hers is, ‘You are beautifully and wonderfully made.’ It may sound faintly new-agey but having just spent two hours watching Demi channel her rock-chic vibe in skintight skirts and skyscraper heels for the YOU photo shoot, I am in no doubt that it works.
Rings, left hand, from top: Loren Rocks, Katie Rowland, Kasun London.
By the age of eight, she was compulsively overeating (‘I would bake cookies and then eat the whole pan’) and that led gradually but inexorably to a cycle of bingeing and starving and forcing herself to be sick until she vomited blood. With hindsight, she can see that the perpetrators must have envied her success.