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Zara Tindall reveals her children were left 'bereft' during husband Mike's extended absence

The royal couple share children Mia, Lena and Lucas together

Mike and Zara Tindall smiling at Cheltenham Festival
Georgia Brown
Georgia BrownSenior Lifestyle & Fashion Writer
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Zara Tindall has opened up about how her husband Mike's absence during his stint on I'm A Celebrity left their children "bereft" in a candid interview with Australian Woman’s Weekly.

The royal mother-of-three, who shares children Mia, nine, Lena, five, and Lucas, two, with the former England rugby player, gave a heartfelt recollection of her husband's time on the ITV show back in 2022 - which saw him leave the family for a month without any contact. 

"It was emotional," Zara admitted, before Mike confirmed it was the longest the couple had ever been apart from each other since falling in love over 20 years ago

WATCH: Zara wraps her arms around Mike as he exits the I'm A Celebrity jungle

Zara confirmed the lack of communication was particularly tough for their children, who were "bereft" without hearing their daddy on the other end of the phone, or when they were unable to FaceTime during his time in the jungle. 

Mia Tindall, Mike Tindall, Zara Tindall and Lena Tindall attend the traditional Easter Sunday Mattins Service at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on April 9, 2023 in Windsor, England© Max Mumby/Indigo
Mike and Zara Tindall share three children together

“They could watch him on the TV of course, but the way they edit it depends how much you actually do see of him. Some episodes you might not see that much and the kids would be saying,'‘Why can’t we see him?'. It’s hard for them to understand, so yes, they really missed him," added Zara. 

"I remember Mia shouting at the TV," Zara said. "All she wanted was for Mike to win the trials." 

Mike Tindall walking across bridge© James Gourley/ITV/Shutterstock
Mike took part in the series in 2022

While Zara and Mike are not officially working royals, their respective sporting careers and work commitments have meant their children have had to adjust to them being around less than they would like to. 

LISTEN: In this week's episode of HELLO!'s A Right Royal podcast, we look at exactly what it takes to marry into the royal family...

Admitting that "mum-guilt" is at the core of her worries for her children, former Olympic equestrian Zara admitted that she finds it hard leaving her children, and is "always guilty" that she isn't doing enough. 

Zara Tindall in a floral dress with husband Mike Tindall against a pink backdrop© Chris Hyde
Mike and Zara Tindall attend the Magic Millions Raceday in 2019

"I think that’s always going to be there," she added, before saying that despite not noticing her own mother Princess Anne's absence during her childhood, "as mothers you feel like you should be doing more," she said. 

Mike and Zara at Royal Ascot 2022© Mark Cuthbert
Mike and Zara are incredibly invested in the equastrian world

Early next year, Mike and Zara will once again embark on a trip to Australia without their children as they swap their family home on Princess Anne's Gatcombe Estate for the sun-soaked Gold Coast and The Star Gold Coast Magic Millions Carnival.

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