Will Young reveals bowing out of Strictly Come Dancing in 2016 was the “hardest point” of his career as he battled PTSD and panic attacks “around the clock”.

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Will Young reveals bowing out of Strictly Come Dancing in 2016 was the “hardest point” of his career as he battled PTSD and panic attacks “around the clock”.

Will Young has described having to step away from Strictly in 2016 as “the hardest point” of his entire career.

The 45-year-old singer and songwriter, who has been diagnosed with complex PTSD and suffers from extreme panic attacks, said he went against the advice of medical professionals and took part in the BBC show at a time when he wasn’t good enough.

He heartbreakingly recounted how he “suffered panic attacks 24 hours a day” and couldn’t even leave the house to go shopping because of his anxiety.

The star, who is now back with new single Falling Deep, said on the How To Fail with Elizabeth Day podcast on Wednesday: “I wish I had experienced that when I wasn’t sick because I would have loved it! “

“I love dance, I trained in ballet and contemporary. I was actually really excited to do the show, but it was hard to leave the house and walk 20 yards to the corner store.

Will Young has described having to step away from Strictly in 2016 as “the hardest point” of his entire career.

The 45-year-old singer and songwriter, who has been diagnosed with complex PTSD and suffers from extreme panic attacks, said he went against the advice of medical professionals and took part in the BBC show at the time he wasn't well enough to do it.

The 45-year-old singer and songwriter, who has been diagnosed with complex PTSD and suffers from extreme panic attacks, said he went against the advice of medical professionals and took part in the BBC show at the time he wasn’t well enough to do it.

“I was in the middle of prolonged depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, and I learned very quickly that I wasn’t capable of doing this. It was exacerbated agoraphobia. Imagine having panic attacks 24 hours a day. I don’t know how I managed it, to be honest.

“I don’t see it as a failure but I probably see it as the most difficult point of my career.”

Will – who was partnered with professional Karen Hauer – added that he would choose a male partner if he were to compete on Strictly now – an option which was not presented to him at the time.

He explained: “If I did it now, I would dance with a male partner. I don’t think that was an option [back then]. I don’t think it’s a conversation, no.

The singer, who won the first series of Pop Idol in 2002, also said the backlash from the show had left him feeling unwelcome in the music industry.

He explained: “I think for a long time there was backlash against Pop Idol. There was a lot of negative reaction and I found it very difficult.

“So I would go to things and hear people criticizing me. People who were my heroes. So I didn’t feel welcome in music. I think it took me a long time to shake it – maybe I never really shook it.

“It broke my heart. I was 22 and I heard people [talking about me]and since they didn’t like the show, they didn’t like me!’

Will - who was partnered with professional Karen Hauer - added that he would choose a male partner if he were to compete on Strictly now - an option which was not presented to him at the time.

Will – who was partnered with professional Karen Hauer – added that he would choose a male partner if he were to compete on Strictly now – an option which was not presented to him at the time.

He heartbreakingly recounted how he

He heartbreakingly recounted how he “suffered panic attacks 24 hours a day” and couldn’t even leave the house to go shopping because of his anxiety.

However, Will adds, with over 20 years of experience in music, he feels more comfortable and proud of his longevity.

“There’s a great moment where you’ve been doing it for a while and you suddenly think, ‘Oh, I’ve been doing this for a while now and I STILL do it.’

“It was after 8 or 10 years [into my career] and I came across Florence + the Machine, and I think she was happy to see me. And I thought, “I’ve been doing this for a while.” And then we settle in a bit and now I’m at the stage where, in part, I feel like I’m just getting started, actually!’

This comes after Will in 2021 opened up about how he ended up with PTSD after attending a boarding school with abusive teachers.

The star spoke candidly with The Guardian about his experience at prep school in the 80s and admitted some of the things he saw and experienced were “appalling”.

Looking back, he told the publication that some staff threw children “against the radiators” and snatched the only phone they had to contact their parents or ChildLine, and also leered at them while changing.

He reflected: “We weren’t allowed to wear pants under our football shorts, so my dick would fall out of my football shorts when I was tackled. Less washing.

“I saw children forced to change on the football field because they were wearing pants. The teachers look at our penises in the shower, in the bath.

The singer, who won the first series of Pop Idol in 2002, also said the show's backlash had left him feeling unwelcome in the music industry.

The singer, who won the first series of Pop Idol in 2002, also said the show’s backlash had left him feeling unwelcome in the music industry.

“It was dreadful. This is why I have PTSD. There was such a feeling of injustice because of the things I experienced and witnessed. I think I escaped – although it didn’t hurt me.

He also claimed there were some things he couldn’t “talk about” during the interview, but said there was one teacher the students knew not to get into a fight with. car, and other staff members getting drunk and “rolling” in it. the children’s dormitories.

Will attended the school alongside his brother Rupert, who tragically took his own life in August 2020 after years of struggling with mental health and addiction.

Will Young’s single Falling Deep is out now. Tickets for his Light It Up UK tour go on sale on Friday and his new album Light It Up is released on August 9.

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