Katie Price says her son Harvey was devastated after her split from first husband Peter Andre, because they no longer had a relationship despite Harvey calling him ‘daddy’
Harvey, now 19, was just two when Katie met the Mysterious Girl singer on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! and they fell in love.
The pair became inseparable and Peter cared for Harvey like he was his own child – so much so that the youngster called him ‘daddy’.
Katie and Peter went on to welcome Junior, 16, and Princess, 14, before their split and divorce in 2009.
And after their split, Katie says her eldest son, who has a number of disabilities including autism, Prader-Willi Syndrome and partial blindness, struggled to come to terms with it.
The mum-of-five, 43, said Harvey struggled to understand why the visits to Peter “slowly stopped” he’d been dropped while the singer still saw Junior and Princess regularly.
Katie opens up about the tough period in her new book Katie Price: Harvey and Me, published by Mirror Books.
She pens: “Sadly, neither Pete nor Kieran had any meaningful involvement with Harvey once our marriage ended. The split from Pete really did upset Harvey.
“It must have been frustrating for him at the time because he couldn’t express how he felt. But now he can and he remembers a lot more than you’d think. It’s really sad, actually.
“It’s the same with Kieran. It’s a shame as they were both brilliant with Harvey when I was with them. I can’t knock them for that. Harvey might have complex needs, but I know it has really affected him because he does understand. He used to call them both ‘Daddy’, so of course it affects him.
“Even to this day, I think it reflects in his behaviour. Just because Harvey isn’t as verbal as us, it doesn’t mean he doesn’t have feelings and isn’t aware of a situation.
“This is why I’m very cautious about introducing men to Harvey. I don’t want Harvey to form a bond with someone for them to then just walk out of his life.”
She went on: “I don’t think people realise that I’ve never stopped either of them from seeing him. When I split from Pete, he would still see Harvey in the very beginning.
“In 2009, Harvey ended up in hospital because he had a high temperature and breathing difficulties. Thankfully, he was fine, but he just needed to be monitored.
“I contacted Pete because even though we weren’t together, I knew he would have wanted to see him. Harvey kept calling us ‘Mummy and Daddy’ because he obviously didn’t know what was going on between us at the time.
“Our marriage might have been over, but Pete was his daddy. Harvey used to visit Pete most weekends, but because of his medical needs, he had to be accompanied by a trained nanny on any visits. For whatever reason, that didn’t work for Pete and it started to slowly stop.
“I began to notice a change in Harvey. I’d say things like, ‘Do you want to go see Daddy Peter today?’ And he’d shout, ‘No!’ So then I’d be like, ‘But he has a cake waiting for you.’ But he wasn’t interested and he’d start kicking off.
“It’s probably because the visits were starting to fizzle out and Harvey could sense that. When Harvey is refusing cake, that’s when you know he’s upset. I wasn’t going to force my son to do something he didn’t want to do.
“Even mentioning Pete’s name to Harvey stresses him out. At one point, Pete didn’t believe me that Harvey didn’t want to see him. He thought I was just being spiteful and an arsehole about it. But Harvey genuinely wouldn’t see him and there wasn’t much I could do about it.
Katie insisted that she would never have wanted to stop Harvey spending time with Peter.
She explained: “Pete was good for Harvey, so I had no reason to stop him from seeing him. I’d do anything to make my son happy.
“I went to the doctors at Maudsley Hospital to explain the situation and they did some tests with Harvey. They put a special watch on him to measure his heart rate and then they were asking him questions about Pete. Just like I’d told them, he got agitated and his heart rate was sky- high.
“They saw for themselves that he became distressed when his name was mentioned. I just wanted to prove that it wasn’t me being awkward, all I was doing was protecting Harvey. I still have the paperwork now to prove how he reacted.”
Peter has previously denied accusations he ‘abandoned’ Harvey after splitting from Katie, and insisted he does see the teenager.
Speaking out in his column for new magazine in 2016, Pete said: “I don’t see him all the time, but I see him at events like the kids’ sports days.
“Also, there have been a few times recently where he’s been to my house and I’ve been to his,” he said, “Harvey will always be special to me and I just want him to be happy. He’s a great kid!”
When Harvey turned 18 in May last year, Peter was also acknowledged the occasion on Instagram.
He left a string of love hearts on a message shared by his son Junior.
Katie Price: Harvey & Me, published by Mirror Books, is on sale October 26. Get £5 off (RRP £20) with offer code FA9 from mirrorbooks.co.uk.