June 1st, 2010
12:50 PM ET

Sarah Ferguson gives convoluted story on 'Oprah'

A week has passed since news hit of a video that appears to show Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, sell access to her ex-husband Prince Andrew, but Ferguson still hadn’t watched the tape in its entirety, she told Oprah Winfrey in an interview that airs Tuesday.

“I haven’t faced the devil in the face,” Ferguson said. “I was in the gutter at that moment…I’m aware of the fact that I’d been drinking; I was not in my right place. I don’t know if I’m ready to see it.”

Ready or not, Winfrey played the tape for Ferguson, who made remarks like “I feel really sorry for her” (yes, that remark was made in the third person) as she watched the footage.

“I feel terrible,” she said after viewing the video. “There aren’t very many words to describe [such] an act…I’m stripped bare….It’s like when you get to the middle of the onion after you’ve pulled away everything.” Although Ferguson said she knew she’d been drinking, she can’t remember how much or what she’d consumed.

The story as to how Ferguson ended up in that room in the first place is a convoluted one. The mother of two explained to Winfrey that she’d been introduced to the journalist - who had, according to Ferguson, assumed the identity of a married businessman in India - through a friend. "He had come from a friend of mine, and he’d come very highly recommended from four different people...A friend of mine needed $38,000 urgently, and he said he’d give the money for my friend."

However, three weeks prior, Ferguson added, "this friend of mine rang me up and said, I have a really good friend who really likes you and really wants to help. He’s going through a divorce and he needs your advice."

Winfrey point-blank told Ferguson: “This doesn’t make any sense. Why would you meet with a stranger to talk about his problems?” Ferguson then responded that she “met with him because a friend introduced me to him saying that he would invest in your children’s books, animations…and he wants to help you.”

Eventually, after Ferguson describes meeting with the journalist for the first time and having the sneaking suspicion he wasn’t who he said he was, the story winds its way to the meeting seen on tape. Although Winfrey was doubtful that Ferguson, with her familial connections, couldn't procure the money her friend needed, Ferguson explained that she's "divorced from the Royal family," and although she said she “did Weight Watchers work for 12 years, and then I went into business,” Ferguson “didn’t build a strong financial house. I went into debt again. I’m substantially in debt…I think I’ve got a huge uphill battle.”

As a result, she found herself asking for half a million pounds – an amount she said she had no immediate plans for, since she “plucked” that number “out of the sky” as she sat in the meeting.

"I was so out of my mind. I have to say to you that this has been building up to a crescendo of such spiraling, that I’ve tried so hard to keep up the treadmill of life," she told Winfrey. “I’ve been living, trying to be the Duchess of York. [Living] beyond my means? Yes,” she told Winfrey.

At one point, Ferguson admits that she was "looking for the quick fix in places that I wouldn’t normally look." Ferguson said her debt had escalated to the point that she couldn’t afford rent on her home and had to live with Andrew, who’d given her a room in his home.

“We are divorced and I don’t want to keep being this burden on him,” Ferguson said. “I feel I can come back from this. It may take a long time, but I’m going to give it a shot.”


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soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. Lily Daisy

    Fergie obviously has a drinking problem and a spending problem (addiction). If the Royal Family (or her former husband) care for her at all, they will do an intervention on her and get her help. Otherwise, she'll probably continue to blow in the breeze until the next incident. Since she is connected FOREVER to the royal family through her daughters, and they have the financial means to help, it seems to me they have a duty to get her the best treatment. Then the rest is up to Fergie, I'm afraid.

    October 25, 2010 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
  2. Sweet48

    @Patricia Hunter
    How much did you give her, because you are taking this extrememly personal????

    June 2, 2010 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Patty109

    Sarah feels so sorry for the woman on the tape. She doesn't remember doing anything like that before. She is unethical and disgraceful. Her character is poor. Spoiled and rotten...someone is spoiled and rotten among the Brits. Guess who?

    June 2, 2010 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • jaelin

      I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say....................ALL OF THEM!

      October 19, 2010 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
  4. gigi

    Did you really watch her face during the interview? That space cadet has not an ethical bone in her body and the only thing she really regrets is the lack of confidentiality agreement. Bravo, the British Journalist-- the crap the psychiatrists shovel to self indulgent psychopaths is another tragedy –I would tell her to be a humble low paid gardener at an estate; one who never can cash in on her fame again.

    June 2, 2010 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  5. gigi

    Let her clean a gas station bathroom and shut up about the charities. Live like the low life she is–if she were a figure head at a charity, I might want to get close enough to spit on her shoes because she still thinks herself a cut above others. Man, that popcorn psychology sucks too

    June 2, 2010 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jodi

    I am English and have always had respect for the Royal Family. I was appalled at Sarah Ferguson's behaviour when she was married to Andrew. She knew what she was getting in to when she married into the family but yet complained and behaved very badly. The interview with Oprah was inconsistent and I feel Oprah gave her a pass when she talked about "spiraling" downward. Sarah stated she chose to have a friendly relationship with the Royal Family over getting more money from them but didn't think about how she would support her lavish lifestyle. She needs to grow up and at least admit the truth to herself.

    June 2, 2010 at 11:39 am | Report abuse |
  7. Cindy

    I used to like Sarah. I really did. I am one of those Americans who follow the Royal Family and enjoy it. But this is too much even for her. I don't believe the "hey, I was drunk so you can't blame me what I did" story and I do not believe that the Royal Family should continue to take care of her. She is the EX-wife of a Prince...they need to write off her and all of her stupid excuses. She was the first one to complain about all the good stuff that Diana received after her divorce over what she received after her divorce from Andrew. She's always been greedy, always overspent, and is always looking for the easy way out. So sad.

    June 2, 2010 at 10:04 am | Report abuse |
  8. Molly

    And like the onion she refers to, she's round and she stinks. She always was a fame wh*re, but pimping your ex-husband is just wrong on so many levels. Now I assume she'll make the rounds of some other talk shows, all the better to line her supposedly empty pockets. She's trash.

    June 2, 2010 at 8:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Patricia Hunter

      Right on...I'm with you. And nobody buys that ridiculous story of her getting the money for "a friend".
      That 40 grand was going to pay for another jet-set trip, booze bash, or someother self-indulgent money waster.
      This woman needs a reality check, she is not so-called "royalty" she is just white trash.

      June 2, 2010 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
    • jaelin67

      Well if the talk shows 'want' her on their shows then yes, they will pay her.....HELLO....how do you think they stay on the air? It takes money to make money. The trashier the better 'cause that's how we Americans like it......apparently....

      October 19, 2010 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
  9. laura

    Wow, I do not really know what to make of this. The saying goes "The truth shall set you free"–only she knows her own truth. I can not understand why she had to go on Oprah. I always liked Fergie too & was so surprised when this news broke= she should keep her mouh shut & do the best she can to fix it without media & fanfare. It is between her & Andrew. Hope it all works out & do not drink anymore,Fergie "LOOSE LIPS SINK SHIPS !!" Peace

    June 2, 2010 at 6:33 am | Report abuse |
  10. mrgmhale

    She is as much a fool as she is a vulture. Such a lack of imagination re: her claim, "I had been drinking", and thinking anyone would actually believe she thought such an excuse would be accepted by anyone who heard that, really shows how shallow she is. I have no sympathy for her at all.

    June 2, 2010 at 3:43 am | Report abuse |
  11. Sency

    this is a very odd story, and Oprah tried hard to get to the bottom of it

    http://sency.com/oprah.htm

    June 2, 2010 at 12:43 am | Report abuse |
  12. Renee

    Next thing we know... she's gona make us believe that she set the press up... that it was an act... wana bet?

    June 1, 2010 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Saucy

    Rarely does one have more questions after seeing an interview than before. Who was this "friend" SF supposedly needed $ for, and why did s/he need exactly $38K? It sounds totally made up. And her comments on her drinking were all over the place: "I'd been drinking; I don't know what or how much I drank; I sound drunk (on the video); I was definitely NOT drunk", etc. I suspect she has a drinking problem, which would explain this whole ordeal. It's only been a week since the incident– it's probably going to take her a while to be honest with herself; but if she can, she could do a huge public service in the process.

    June 1, 2010 at 9:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • patricia hunter

      I totally agree...she couldn't remember if she was drinking wine or orange juice?? How stupid is that? And when Oprah asked if she was drunk she replyed, " no, not drunk, I was standing up", insinuating Oprah was stupid for even asking the question when she was clearly, standing up!! OMG, she is totally in denial of her drinking problem. Her next TV appearance should be on either Intervention or Dr. Drew Celebrity rehab! She needs help!!!

      June 2, 2010 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
    • jaelin67

      Hasn't ANYONE listened to the way they all talk???????? You could probably understand the 'Royal" family better if they were drunk...........who CARES anyway? Seriously......who? Oprah or Fergie or Andrew aren't helping pay my bills,raise my kids,cooking my food or cleaning my house so I REALLLLLY don't care....people come on! Seriously I care more about what happens on the next episode of Desperate Housewives than I do about this.

      October 19, 2010 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
  14. leona

    what I don't understand is why Prince Andrew was able to sell their first home Sunninghill Park for 15 million pouds in 2004 to a foreign businessman (who never bothered to show up to live in it, the house is in derelict state today), and he could have split this money with his wife. After all, it was their home after their wedding. Well the whole thing is strange. And the person in the royal household who tipped off the journalist should be fired, and the name should be revealed.

    June 1, 2010 at 6:46 pm | Report abuse |
  15. OopsyDaisy

    I really don't care about the so-called royalty. They are just a bunch of uptight self-righteous fools. But, I do feel sympathy for Fergie. She is so much real than any of the royal members. She is resilient and relatable. I hope she will change her lifestyle and start climbing out of that black hole of debt. I think America will forgive her. After all, we are a country of second chances, or third, or 4th......

    June 1, 2010 at 6:45 pm | Report abuse |
  16. KC

    I feel sorry for her as it must be difficult to navigate being divorced from the royal family. She must ultimately be accountable to herself and her family and less so to the public.

    June 1, 2010 at 6:43 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Anne C.

    "Convoluted" story is right!!! Just finished watching interview with Oprah and didn't believe Sarah's pitiful disingenuous account. She evaded most of Oprah's direct questions such as how she (Sarah) found out about the Sting, why was the Sting done, Who was responsible for it, what her actual indebtedness is, what did Prince Andrew SAY (she didn't ask for a list of his qualities). When Sarah was doing WW, and the girls were young, she spoke of the healthy relationship between her and Andrew – so much so that they shared the same "chateau" (or whatever one calls their home) with her and the girls living on one floor and he on another. Apparently, from what she said on Oprah today, that arrangement must have ended and they each had separate domiciles. With her no longer able to pay the "rent" for hers, he offered her a "room" in his "chateau"??? I got the feeling Oprah wasn't buying what Sarah was selling but was too gracious to blatantly tell her so. She conducted the interview in such a way that the viewer could discern that Sarah is not a credible person.

    June 1, 2010 at 6:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Patricia Hunter

      Exactly, right on!! And Sarah had the gall to say in the beginning of the interview..."I never lie, I always tell the truth". Truthfully, it was such BS, hard to follow and evasive. I hope Oprah didn't give her a penny for any of that drivel cuz we're not buying it!!

      June 2, 2010 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
    • Sue

      Absolutely spot on – anyone watching that interview must realize she is totally stupid. I suppose she is hoping for the next freebie!

      June 2, 2010 at 5:35 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Mel B

    Typical! Everytime a celebrity gets caught being naughty they always ALWAYS blame it on a bender of sorts.

    June 1, 2010 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Carol

    As far as i am concerned the Royal family should get rid of her. She has been living like the Queen for years and expects Prince Andew and the Royal family to pay for it. She is a disgrace. Why does she not use some of the millions that she has wasted and go and get a education so that she can get a job and support herself instead of living off of the tax payers of Britain. The tax payers are sure not living like she is.

    June 1, 2010 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Barbs

    her kids over 18 and they are looked after by their father. Thank you very much. If she put herself in this mess she can take herself out of it. Remember she had an affair that is why she is divorced. Remember the toe sucking episode if I can remind you all.

    June 1, 2010 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Molly

      Yes, I remember the toe sucking episode. Thanks, that memory will keep me on my diet today! :) LOL

      June 2, 2010 at 8:15 am | Report abuse |
  21. Lisa

    I love Fergie, but this is downright shameful. The Royal family needs to take her in and put a complete stop to all this nonsense. She may be divorced from the Royal family, but her daughters are not. There is absolutely no reason for this to continue. I find this situation just appalling.

    June 1, 2010 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Char

    Shame on the queen for not taking care of her own especially a woman raising her grand children ... they deserve for SF to spill the beans ...

    June 1, 2010 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Patricia Hunter

      It's the taxpayers who pay the Queen and the whole Royal Family...would you like to support Fergie and her out-of-control lifestlye, or any of them for that matter? It's time for England to say Ta Ta to those "Royals"...they are just everyday humans with problems and why they go on paying taxes to support them is way beyond me!

      June 2, 2010 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
    • Lindy

      I think what you meant to write was, "Shame on SF. After having blown her marriage with her outrageous, adulterous, disgusting behavior, she should stop trying to live an A-list lifestyle on D-list looks, talent and ability and live within her means, if not for her own sake, then to avoid embarrassing her ex-husband and children in just this type of way.

      June 22, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
  23. L. Lane

    She obviously lives above her means. She needs to get back to reality and get a job!!

    June 1, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sweet48

      Did you miss something in translation....

      Fergie said" I’ve been living, trying to be the Duchess of York. [Living] beyond my means? Yes"

      June 2, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
  24. LBW

    She has lived a charmed, privileged life. She made a lot of money and she lost it all. It's hard to feel sympathy for her.

    June 1, 2010 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Angela chimaliro

    She is a thief. Period. No nid 4her to justfy hersel.. Wat on eart wud a person frm the royal family do that?

    June 1, 2010 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • let's be real

      I totally agree with you on your point, but...

      ... is it really that hard to type out the full words in your comment? Or, is that just how you prefer to communicate yourself to others? I'm just making sure I get to you before the grammar police do.

      June 1, 2010 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Amy

      Did you type your words like that on purpose? Please don't.

      June 1, 2010 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sweet48

      What did you say????

      June 2, 2010 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |

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