Kate Garraway's friend suggested she LEAVE husband Derek

Kate Garraway reveals agony after friend suggested she LEAVE husband Derek because his illness is ‘not what she signed up for’ amid Covid battle

Kate Garraway has bravely documented her husband Derek Draper’s devastating year long battle with COVID-19 in a new ITV documentary, called Finding Derek. 

And during the show, the Good Morning Britain host, 53, revealed her agony after a friend suggested it would be OK if she left Derek, also 53, amid his health battle. 

She said: ‘You know somebody said to me the other day, unbelievably… “You know, you are allowed to say, this is not what I signed up for and get out”.

‘I was like, “Oh my God!”. I know they meant it, weirdly kindly, as almost giving me license, but I said, “I can’t think that. He’s in there,’ as she fought back tears.’   

Shock: Kate Garraway revealed during her ITV documentary on Tuesday, Finding Derek, that a friend suggested she leave her husband because his illness is ‘not what she signed up for’

Staying strong: Medics have also said that Derek might not be able to return to the family home until December as he continues to fight the consequences of the coronavirus

Doctors have told Kate to ‘manage her expectations’ regarding her husband’s recovery. 

They don’t know how much of him will return after the respiratory illness ravaged his body despite him making several breakthroughs with his speech. 

Derek has lost eight stone and is considered to be the longest surviving COVID-19 patient in the country and due to the lockdown Kate is only able to speak to him via FaceTime and not in person. 

On more than one occasion his heart stopped beating, he battled bacterial pneumonia and fought multiple infections which punctured holes in his lungs.

Medics have also said that Derek might not be able to return to the family home until December. 

But Kate has made him a promise that she will ‘find a way’ to bring him back home to his family’ and has said ‘love’ will help them through. 

Strength: Kate has made her husband a promise that she will ‘find a way’ to bring him back home to his family’ and has said ‘love’ will help them through

The broadcaster has also lovingly had their home adapted to suit his needs, creating a downstairs bedroom, wet room and ramps so that she is ready for his return. 

In heartbreaking footage filmed from November 2020, Kate was asked whether she would be okay if her husband is ‘not her Derek’ anymore once he is out of hospital.  

To which the presenter admitted: ‘Well, he is still Derek, he is still him… he is still that person that you love, but he will behave differently and will be physically different. 

‘Will I be okay? I wont be delighted because I wouldn’t wish that on him, very tough on us both, but he is for better or worse…’

Reflecting on their future, Kate continued: ‘It might be a rather beautiful thing, trying to look at it as a rather beautiful thing. I feel as though we might have to fall in love again – find out who each other are now a little bit.’

Kate then met with a clinical psychologist who works in intensive care units as they discussed what the future could look like for Derek and what he might go through as he adapts to life back home.

She said: ‘It might be a rather beautiful thing, trying to look at it as a rather beautiful thing. I feel as though we might have to fall in love again – find out who each other are now a little bit’

The medical professional noted that from a ‘psychological perspective’, a quarter of patients have trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), low moods and anxiety, as well as memory, attention and concentration difficulties. 

Kate admitted that she was trying to ‘piece together’ the life they had before but it was ‘quite complicated’ to which the psychologist noted there is no ‘straight answer’ during recovery.  

Reflecting on the challenging time, Kate said: ‘There’s been times where I’ve thought: “Am I actually grieving for the person I’m married to or am I fighting to hold onto that person?” 

‘Should I be trying to fight to hold onto that person or should I be trying to adjust?’ 

To which the psychologist noted that loved ones are in a ‘powerless position’ as they are looking for things they recognise in patients to ‘give them hope’.  

Later, in a heartbreaking moment filmed in November during the documentary, Kate spoke to husband Derek over FaceTime where he broke down in tears and said he wanted to ‘die’.  

Preparations: In November, Kate met with an occupational therapist as they discussed the layout of their home and prepared it for Derek’s return

Prior to this, Kate had shown footage of Derek following his return to consciousness in July, four months after his admission to intensive care, where he had mouthed the word ‘pain – his first verbal communication since being stricken with coronavirus. 

In a different part during the documentary, Kate also showed a video of Derek crying as he ‘responded’ to his wife to which she said of the milestone: ‘We’ve got him back!’ 

However, in emotional footage filmed in November, Kate admitted: ‘In many ways Derek is showing signs of improvement, but his mental state is worryingly unpredictable.’

During a FaceTime call from hospital, Derek broke down in tears as he said he wanted to ‘die’ as he doesn’t know ‘how to cope’ to which Kate insisted: ‘I promised you I will save you and I’m going to save you.’ 

The former lobbyist and political advisor said: ‘There’s no way out…’ to which Kate replied: ‘What do you mean, there’s no way out of what?’

Derek added: ‘I’m at the point, f**k it, just f**k it’ with Kate asking: ‘As in die? No, no,’ to which her husband emotionally admitted: ‘Yes.’ 

Milestones: Later in the documentary, it showed footage of Derek breaking down in tears and mouthing the word ‘pain’ after waking from his coma with Kate left crying over the milestones 

With Derek adding: ‘I don’t know how to cope, I don’t know how to cope.’ 

Comforting her husband, the presenter continued: ‘You don’t know how to cope with it? Okay… I know you feel like you’re trapped in your head and it must be terrifying.

‘But you’re coming home, you’re coming back to your life and you will be the person even better than you were before. You will be. 

‘I will find a way to make it better, okay? I promised you I will save you and I’m going to save you. I will find a way but you just have to hang in there, okay?’ 

Talking after the emotional moment, Kate said: ‘You’ll have a step forward, two steps back, you’ll have what seems like a huge breakthrough, and then the next minute, he sort of mouths: “Sorry, goodbye.”

‘I’m saying: “You’re not going to die, you’re not going to die, you’re not going to die.” We’ve just got to get through it.’

During the fly-on-the-wall documentary, Kate and Derek’s children Darcey, 15, and Billy, 11, also spoke about their father’s recovery as it showed emotional footage of them FaceTiming their dad in hospital.

Reflective: In one emotional scene, Kate looked towards an uncertain future with Derek as she admitted: ‘There’s been times where I’ve thought: “Am I actually grieving for the person I’m married to or am I fighting to hold onto that person?”‘ (pictured in 2005) 

In footage filmed over the summer, Darcey admitted that she has not ‘thought the worse’ during her father’s recovery while Billy noted that they don’t know whether their dad will ‘get better or not’.

Darcey said: ‘I’ve not really thought the worse, I’ve always said he’s going to get better, he’s going to get back – all of this stuff.

‘They say that we’ve heard rumours he will get back, hopefully, before the end of next year but we really don’t know at all.’

Billy then showed off his Lego collection from his birthday, he said: ‘Dad usually does Lego with me the most but since dad is not here… I’ve started to do it myself.’

Billy joked that Derek is a ‘big kid’, he added: ‘I really want him back but we don’t know if he’s going to get better or not. So…’

Darcey was then asked whether they expected their father to return home for Christmas. Later during the documentary, the family were able to visit Derek over the festive period, it was the first time they had all seen him since he was hospitalised.

Sad: Kate – who shares Darcey, 15, and William, 11, (pictured in 2019) with her husband of 15 years – admitted it is ‘shocking’ to see his current state, including his eight stone weight loss

The teenager said: ‘I hope so… it’s hard, he might still be hooked up to things he needs to help him survive.’

Darcey was also asked by the interviewer whether it was ‘scary’ seeing her father in hospital, to which she said: ‘I mean it’s not really scary, it looks scary. It’s just scary in the way of thinking we might lose him.’

While Kate added: ‘Derek is probably the cleverest person I’ve ever met with a kind of incredible ability of precise thinking, analysis, humour and everything. You just think… is that gone? 

‘Is he going to be able to come back or will he be alive but no longer the person he was?’ 

Reflecting on her decision to film the documentary, Kate admitted she wanted to use her platform as a presenter to help those who have been most affected by the virus, which has so far killed 126, 172 people across the United Kingdom.

She said: ‘First of all I do have a job that puts me on the TV and radio and there were many months where I was locked in that bubble that we all have been in because of COVID restrictions and that was a very private time.

‘When I got back to work I was moved by people’s reactions. I was contacted by people who said you’re talking about what I’m going through and it’s so great to hear.


March 30, 2020: Derek is admitted to a London hospital after testing positive for the novel coronavirus COVID-19, little more than a week after Britain enters its first national lockdown

April 3, 2020: Derek is admitted to intensive care four days after his hospitalisation. As his condition steadily worsens, he falls into a coma.  

May 28, 2020: Kate reveals that Derek remains in a coma and is continuing to be cared for by NHS professionals.  

June 5, 2020: The presenter tells Good Morning Britain viewers that Derek is “Covid free”, although the family are unsure if he will ever recover from the ravages of the illness. 

July 5, 2020: Kate reveals that Derek has finally woken from his coma and has opened his eyes – her first communication with her husband since March  

July 13, 2020: Kate resumes her presenting role on Good Morning Britain after taking time off amid Derek’s ongoing illness. 

July 14, 2020: Kate tells viewers she is preparing to visit Derek in hospital for the first time.  

July 21, 2020: Derek hears Kate’s voice after nurses play Good Morning Britain in his hospital room. During her appearance on the show Kate confirms she is preparing to visit him for a second time.     

August 19, 2020: After being absent for three days Kate tells viewers she has tried not to break down after being kept apart from Derek on his 53rd birthday.  

September 10, 2020: Kate and Derek remain apart during their milestone 15th Wedding Anniversary , with the presenter unable to visit her husband. 

September 11, 2020: Kate reveals Derek is still unable to speak but admits plans to visit him in hospital for a belated anniversary celebration.  

September 29, 2020: Derek’s six-month long battle against COVID-19 becomes one of the longest known cases in the United Kingdom.  

October 30, 2020: Derek is finally able to communicate verbally after 214 days in hospital. His first word – “pain.”  

January 7, 2021: Kate reveals her two children saw Derek for the first time since he fell ill during the Christmas period 





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