From shy, anx­ious teen to top vlog­ger and now au­thor, JIM CHAP­MAN at­tributes his suc­cess to the fab­u­lous women in his life – from his mum to his wife, beauty vlog­ger Tanya Burr, and sis­ters, Pixi­woo’s Sam and Nic

The Mail on Sunday - You - - Editor’s Letter -

In the past month, I have pub­lished my first book, tried my hand at de­sign­ing clothes, trav­elled the length and breadth of Eng­land, nipped to New York and been an­nounced as the new face of Hugo Boss’s watches. I’m to­tally aware of how bonkers that sounds and I’m not say­ing it to blow my own trum­pet. In fact, I truly be­lieve that a lot of the credit should be at­trib­uted to the women in my life who are, quite frankly, to­tal badasses.

Eight years ago, when I grad­u­ated from the Univer­sity of East Anglia with a de­gree in psy­chol­ogy, I was shy, had no idea what I wanted to do and was wor­ried about the fu­ture. It was my mum, Judy, my big sis­ters, Sam and Nic, and my now wife, Tanya, who led by ex­am­ple and who re­ally showed me what was pos­si­ble.

I grew up in Nor­folk. Un­til I was eight years old, I lived in a tiny ham­let called Wilby that con­sisted of about four houses and a horse on a green. From there I moved to At­tle­bor­ough, which suf­fers from ‘small-town syn­drome’ (once you leave, you are not wel­come back). As it hap­pens, I don’t think I’ve been back since I moved to Nor­wich when I was 15, af­ter my mum met my step­dad and they pooled their re­sources to buy a house. My sis­ters Nic and Sam, be­ing seven and ten years older than me, were out of the fam­ily home by then, but they never went far. (Tanya and I live in Lon­don now, but the rest of my fam­ily – I also have a twin brother, John – are within a two-mile ra­dius of each other in Nor­wich.) Sam re­calls chang­ing my nap­pies and do­ing all the baby stuff – it’s hardly sur­pris­ing that she is su­per pro­tec­tive of me.

The per­son who has un­doubt­edly had the big­gest im­pact on me is my mum. She is my hero and de­serves an MBE, a No­bel Peace Prize or an evening with Marti Pel­low from Wet Wet Wet (she’s had a crush on him for as long as I can re­mem­ber). She raised me and my sib­lings sin­gle-hand­edly while be­ing phys­i­cally abused by my late father. Grow­ing up, there were con­stant ar­gu­ments and times when my dad would threaten to crash the car with us all in­side but I didn’t know then that wasn’t nor­mal and mum was very good at hid­ing what hap­pened when we weren’t present.

When I was lit­tle I was a real daddy’s boy and re­mem­ber rel­ish­ing the time I spent with him when he was in a good mood. We’d play foot­ball and read mag­a­zines that came with a glow-in-the- dark T rex. De­spite all the things he in­flicted on her, Mum never spoke badly of Dad to me. She gave me enough credit to come to my own de­ci­sion about him, in my own time.

At that age, the re­al­i­sa­tion that your home life is less than ideal doesn’t come easy. If it’s all you have ever ex­pe­ri­enced, how do you know it’s wrong? It’s easy to say, ‘Why didn’t she

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