She’s cemented her status as the queen of daytime TV hosting ITV’s This Morning.
But this year presenter Holly Willoughby has also added to her already hectic work schedule, returning to front prime-time show Dancing on Ice, alongside ‘TV husband’ Phillip Schofield.
However, while her career is soaring, friends close to Holly, 36, tell Woman she’s fretting that her career is taking her away from her husband, TV producer Dan Baldwin, as well as their three children, Harry, eight, Belle, six, and Chester, three.
And spending an increased amount of time apart is weighing so heavily on Holly’s mind, she’s vowed to make big changes so that she can ensure her relationship goes the distance.
Our insider tells us, “Holly recently celebrated 10 years of wedded bliss but she’s finding it impossible to keep everyone happy all of the time. Not only does she have to juggle looking after three kids and working more than one full-time job, but she also needs to find time to spend with Dan.”
Working five days a week on two TV shows, as well as working on other projects, is pulling her in so many directions – and proving a problem at home. Holly is an ambassador for brands including Garnier and Coca-Cola, and a panellist on her pal Leigh Francis’ ITV2 panel show, Celebrity Juice. She’s also writing her 11th book.
Holly and Dan are in this crisis together. Dan is incredibly supportive of his wife and wants to help her through this tricky time, as she juggles her career and home life. “Holly and Dan are under pressure, with less and less time for one another. He’s even jokingly said her on-screen hubby gets more air time than him, so the strain is beginning to show,” our source explains.
“Dan feels that Holly needs to take a load off and learn to delegate. They have help but, as a mum, Holly understandably likes to be in control.”
But friends say Holly is only too aware that she can’t do it all and that something will have to give.
“Holly often says she wishes she could cut herself in two – one part for work and the other to stay at home being a mummy and wife,” our insider adds.
Indeed, this isn’t the first time Holly has opened up about the challenges of balancing family life.
The star has previously said, “If I work in the afternoons then I make sure I’m home in time for bedtime. I have to do that, otherwise I go a bit grey inside.”
“I love work but the most important thing is my family and making that right. If that doesn’t feel right, I really put the brake on and pull back.”
She even famously quit her presenting role on The Voice UK in 2013 after three series when she felt her career was affecting her home life.
Opening up about the tough decision, Holly said, “Something that’s very important to me is keeping my work/life balance right. I love my job but I love my family too, and while I enjoy doing The Voice and it’s been a brilliant show, time is precious.”
Looking to friends
And Holly has become even more aware of this recently after seeing friends – including fellow presenter Davina McCall – go through painful marriage splits.
Davina and her husband of 17 years, Matthew Robertson, split last November after years of trying to make it work. Now Holly’s nearest and dearest have warned her that she needs to take stock of her relationship to keep it on track.
Our insider says, “It’s no secret that it’s so easy for a couple that live under the same roof to grow apart, even after 10 years. You only have to look at Davina and Matthew, who were thought to have one of the strongest marriages in showbiz.
“Now Holly’s closest friends are concerned that her work engulfs her, and they’ve had conversations warning her that if she doesn’t start putting more time into her marriage, she could be facing the same fate as Davina,” our source continues.
It’s this fear that is spurring Holly on to make changes in her personal life. She’s confided in pals that this year will mark the beginning of a new chapter for the couple. And true to her word, she and her family have been spending quality time in Barbados before her work commitments start once more.
“It’s only natural that Holly and Dan have their ups and down – every marriage does, and this time of year is especially busy and stressful,” our insider continues.
“But Holly says she is going to work more time for them into their hectic schedules – even if it’s just something simple, like a walk in the park. She’s knows it’s invaluable to let Dan know she is not taking him for granted in any way.”