BBC’s Deborah James talks husband remarrying if she dies after cancer drugs stop working

Deborah James admits 'life must go on' in Lorraine interview

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Deborah James, 39, is battling stage 4 bowel cancer and spoke today on how she was nervous of being “triggered” when she met her friend Steve Bland’s new girlfriend Amy for the first time. He was married to Deborah’s late pal and fellow cancer sufferer Rachel Bland, 40, who sadly died back in 2018.

Life has to go on and must

Deborah James

However, the BBC star shared how meeting Amy for the first time gave her “comfort” as she could see how happy she had made Steve.

She also realised how one day her own husband Sebastien Bowen may be in a similar situation.

Deborah told Lorraine Kelly on her eponymous show: “He came down with his partner Amy, and they surprised me at the end of my first chemotherapy session on the steps of the Royal Marsden.

“I have to say, being really honest with you, Steve had a massive smile on his face and I didn’t know if I would be really triggered by seeing Amy.

“I know it sounds strange to say that because I’ve heard so much about her and I know how important she is, but I also know that I’m missing my friend Rachel as well.”

Thankfully their first meeting went well, as Deborah gushed over how amazing Amy was before reflecting on her own situation.

She continued: “A. She’s a wonderful person. B. It made me realise that life does go on, regardless of the challenges we face.

“Actually it gave me quite a lot of comfort to know that even when people have seen the darkest of things, and if that was my own husband… actually you want life to go on. It has to and it must.

“It bought me a lot of comfort although I was potentially facing that same situation,” she finished.

Deborah was diagnosed with incurable bowel cancer back in 2016 and has continued to undergo treatment.

During this time, she has described her husband and father of her two children, Hugo, 13, and Eloise, 11, as being her “rock”.

Before her diagnosis, she was an ambitious deputy headteacher who’d been brought in to turn around a failing comprehensive in Surrey. 

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It meant she and her banker spouse were usually stressed and barely saw each other.

“It was a classic case of our marriage coming last,” she said.

Sebastien moved out in 2015 and they embarked on an initially “acrimonious” divorce, both hiring lawyers and starting to see other people. 

They’d already had the decree nisi when they agreed to counselling, not with any hope of a reconciliation, but to be on more cordial terms for the children.

Then, to Deborah’s astonishment, the pair began having drinks, then dinner, after the sessions. 

In November 2016, they made “a big step” and got back together, only for Deborah to receive her shock diagnosis soon after.

“No one thought 35-year-old vegetarian runners got bowel cancer,” she told Daily Mail.

“Everyone assumed it was something that old, meat-eating men got.”

Deborah is currently undergoing chemotherapy once again, after having a stent fitted to ensure she is able to have the treatment.

On Instagram she explained how her drugs had stopped working and now her liver had begun to fail.

She typed: “To cut a long story short, my drugs have stopped working and my liver is failing. But I’ve been given hope. Today I had a stent fitted to my bile duct, in order to hope that my liver can function again And that I can then have more chemo. 

I was transferred via ambulance from the @royalmarsden to St Helier Hopsital to have the procedure by a team of awesome doctors, who managed to get it in how they wanted, and now we just need my liver to play ball!”

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