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Katona had a tough upbringing. She and her mother fled their home for a refuge when she was nine. Money was short, and she says she used to shoplift “all the time”.
“I remember going to Warrington market with my mum and stealing, just because we used to be starving,” she told the Mirror.
Her mother Sue had bipolar disorder, and offered Katona speed when she was just 14, telling her it was sherbet. Throughout her teens, Katona had stints living with foster parents. At 17, when she was back with her mother and getting a bit of work as a dancer in a nightclub, money was still short.
“We sold my parrot, Alfie, for £20 ($37) so I could buy some Tampax,” she recently recalled in The Times.