Jesy Nelson has revealed she left Little Mix after feeling 'trapped' and 'unhappy' for 10 years.
The singer, who quit the band last year to focus on her mental health, has spoken in detail about the reasons behind her shock departure.
Speaking on the Reign with Josh Smith podcast, Jesy admitted: "I really didn't want to upset people and I didn't want people to think that about me, but I don't care anymore – because it was ten years of my life that I was very unhappy with and I needed to take myself out of that."
In the interview Jesy claims she was hardly allowed to make her own decisions and compared the group to a ‘machine’.
She said: “I wanted so badly to be accepted and didn’t want to be compared all the time.
“Even the last interview I did with you I was like yeah this is the most confident I’ve been, I was f*****g lying that wasn’t the truth. For once in my life, hand on my heart this is the happiest I’ve been."
Jesy recalled feeling pressured into wearing bikinis when she wasn’t feeling confident, explaining: “People don’t realise how hard it is to be in a girl band.
“I mean I feel like some people won’t understand it and will think this is a bit dramatic, but just little things like being able to wear what I want to wear… when it came to little things, like if we had to do a video and everyone had to wear bikinis and I didn’t want to wear a bikini because I felt like s**t, I couldn’t not,” she said.
The 30-year-old continued: “Because then if I was to wear, I don’t know, trousers and a top, people would be like, 'Why is Jesy wearing trousers and a top?' And then I would get loads of s**t for it."
The X Factor winner recalled: "It’s just the little things like that, that would make me feel trapped. And I know that can sound quite dramatic, but I feel like unless you’re in it, you won’t ever understand it.
“And it was just the constant comparison every single day that was hard and that eventually, after 10 years, takes a massive toll on your mental health. I think that’s what people don’t understand,” she reflected.
Jesy previously described how she suffered panic attacks and winded up back in hospital before she quit the band in December 2020.
Jesy went on: “I feel like now I’ve obviously got a lot more freedom. Being in Little Mix is literally like a machine. You don’t have any time off. You can’t switch off.
“Even when you go home, your phone is constantly going off about work and your life is planned out.”
However, the now solo artist insisted that she, Perrie, Jade and Leigh-Anne are still really close.
“We laughed so much, they are, they’re like my sisters. Obviously, them getting the number one with Sweet Melody and the Brit Award is everything they deserve.
“I was so happy for them when they won that Brit Award because they f*****g deserve it.”
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