Phil Collins’ ex says their marriage felt like being 'trapped in a gold cage’ as he fell into booze-fuelled depression04/04/2021
THE former wife of Phil Collins has told how she felt “trapped in a golden cage” living with the rocker as he slipped into alcohol-fuelled depression.
Orianne Bates, 47, said she eloped to Las Vegas to secretly wed lover Thomas Bates, 31, after becoming lonely in their £30million Miami mansion.
She claimed Collins, 70, drank booze and watched news all day — refusing to go out or see friends.
Orianne claimed that she slept in a separate bedroom from the Another Day In Paradise star and eventually began seeing other men.
She also told The Sun how she felt Collins had unfairly made her out to be a “fing bitch” as their break-up became public.
She said: “I felt like I was trapped in a golden cage. When someone’s depressed, it’s hard to help them out. As much as you love them, why would you keep it up? After years, you get fed up. “Phil didn’t take care of himself.
"If he wasn’t taking care of himself, you can imagine he wasn’t taking care of me. It is hard. You feel lonely and you feel like you don’t have anybody you can talk to. I was super-sad and super-unhappy.”
Of their stunning Miami Beach home, she added: “You have a beautiful view, but that is all you have. You have no love, nothing.”
Swiss-born Orianne was Collins’s translator before they married in 1999, inset. But they divorced nine years later after the birth of their sons Nicholas and Matthew.
Orianne got £25million in the split before they rekindled their romance in 2014 after she broke up with her second husband, investment banker Charles Mejjati. They moved into their new Miami home and she said: “It was perfect.
"We started having a proper romance and a family reunion. The kids were so happy to have Mum and Dad back.”
But she says Collins began to wear the same clothes each day and watch CNN constantly. Orianne said: “Every day he was sitting down in the same place doing nothing all day and being very dark.
"He didn’t want to see anybody. He was hating everybody. “I have a very social life but I was always on my own. I’d ask him if he wanted to go for dinner, just the two of us. He’d say, ‘OK, next week’. When next week arrived, he’d say, ‘Can’t you go with another friend?’."
In court papers last year, her lawyers likened Collins to scruffy Frank Gallagher from TV series Shameless. They said: “He was incapable of having sex. He stopped showering, brushing his teeth and dressing properly.”
But a judge ordered Orianne to strike her “scandalous” claims from her court action, branding them “immaterial” to the case. Collins’ legal team dismissed “a litany of demonstrably false, immaterial, impertinent, scandalous and scurrilous allegations”.
Court papers also claimed the Grammy-winning music legend binged on booze. Orianne said yesterday: “I tried my best to help him out — to talk to him, motivate him. But it’s a very hard sickness.
“Things turned pretty quick. It’s a heavy period for me. It makes me sad thinking about it because he had everything to be happy. “Why be depressed when you have all that? It was beyond my comprehension. But depression, alcoholism is . . . something super-heavy and not nice to live with.”
Collins has previously opened up about his mental health struggles. Surgery to repair dislocated vertebrae in his neck in 2009 left him with a loss of feeling in his fingers and unable to grip drum sticks unless they were taped to him.
And he revealed in 2010 that he had contemplated suicide. The Genesis star, who had major back surgery in 2015 that left him needing a stick to walk, has also admitted “drinking vodka from the fridge in the morning and falling over in front of the kids”.
But he insisted in 2017 that he could control his boozing and enjoy “a couple of glasses of wine”.
Orianne claims they had been sleeping in separate beds since 2016. She said: “He doesn’t want to see people. So, you can’t have friends at home. At night, by 8pm, bye bye — he was in bed. “I remember one day, it was a Saturday, and I made a super-nice dinner and everything.
“I said to myself, ‘Oh it’s pretty cool, we’re going to watch a film together’.
But we finished the dinner and he said goodbye. I’m in the middle of the kitchen thinking to myself, ‘Oh my God, it’s Saturday night, I’m on my own in the kitchen doing the dishes’. This is not life. It was terrible.
“You were always on your fing own. You’re a nurse — you are everything. It is a heavy weight. I felt very lonely. So I lived my life.”
Orianne says she had a brief relationship with stripper Preston Thompson in 2019. The following April, she met amateur guitarist Thomas Bates — 16 years her junior.
She insists she wasn’t cheating as it was clear her relationship with Collins was over. And she says he texted her at the start of 2020, indicating he knew it was over.
But Collins then allegedly refused to discuss it further. Orianne added: “He sent me a message saying, ‘I think we’ve arrived at an end. We should talk about how to separate’.
I tried to talk to him about it but he denied sending it. In my mind, I was single and I needed to move on and have my own life. A couple of months later, I met Tom.”
They fell in love and wed last August. Orianne maintains she texted Collins weeks before to tell him she had “found someone”. The couple flew to Las Vegas and were married by an Elvis impersonator in front of two pals and dog Billy.
Orianne said that Collins reacted angrily and left for Switzerland.
Through lawyers, he then insisted Orianne and Thomas were refusing to leave his Miami home.
The singer claimed she took it “through force” with armed guards. Orianne said: “My mistake maybe was, I should have moved out. But it was my only house, so where do I go?
“Whereas he has an apartment in New York and a house in Switzerland. I didn’t take the house by force — it was all bulls. They try to evacuate me. I mean, what the f? You know, it’s my house!
“I had lots of trouble after that because people were against me. I had death threats on social media.
“It was dangerous and I had my bodyguard following us everywhere. He painted me like a f***ing bitch. He launched a bomb. It’s like cleaning up your dirty laundry in public.”
Collins took legal action to evict her last year with an eventual agreement she would leave in January. Orianne wants half the proceeds from the £30million home, which has been sold.
Orianne, now in a £4million waterside pad in Fort Lauderdale, said:
“Throwing your ex-wife out on the street? That’s very low. I thought that was very brutal.”
Her new home is filled with her 4,000 pairs of shoes and 375 handbags. She auctioned hundreds of possessions, including several of Collins’s gold discs. But she insisted: “I will always love him — he is the father of my kids.”
Couple’s love life and times
1975: Phil weds first wife Andrea Bertorelli.
1980: They divorce after five years of marriage.
1984: Phil marries second wife Jill Tavelman.
1996: They divorce after 12 years,
1994: Phil meets Swiss-born Orianne Cevey, who works as his translator.
1997: They get engaged.
1999: Phil and Orianne get married.
2001: They have their first son, Nicholas, who is now 19.
2004: Second son, Matthew, is born.
2006: It is announced Phil and Orianne have filed for divorce.
2008: The divorce is confirmed. Before the divorce, Orianne starts to date investment banker Charles Fouad Mejjati. She marries him after her split from Phil becomes official.
2011: Charles and Orianne have a child, Andrea Ryan Kylian. But they later split up.
2016: Orianne and Phil get back together.
2017: Her divorce from Charles is confirmed.
2020: Orianne marries musician Thomas Bates. Phil takes legal action to evict her from his Miami home.
2021: Orianne and Thomas are now living in a new home.
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