Little Mix singer Jesy Nelson, 29, bravely opened up to fans about her mental health struggles in the 2019 documentary Odd One Out. The artist — who performed alongside bandmates Perrie Edwards, Leigh-Anne Pinnock, and Jade Thirlwall — revealed that online bullying nearly drove her to quit the all-girl band. She initially made the decision to stay with the band but announced in December 2020 that it's time for her to leave.
Is Jesy Nelson leaving Little Mix?
On Dec. 14, 2020, Jesy shared via Instagram that she has decided to leave Little Mix. "The truth is, recently, being in the band has really taken a toll on my mental health. I find the constant pressure of being in a girl group and living up to expectations very hard," she wrote.
"There comes a time in life when we need to reinvest in taking care of ourselves rather than focusing on making other people happy, and I feel like now is the time to begin that process. So after much consideration and with a heavy heart, I’m announcing I’m leaving Little Mix."
Jesy's post was flooded with messages, both of sadness to see her leave the band and support for making the tough decision and putting her mental health first. "We will miss you Jesy, but most [important] of all is that we want you to be happy, and if this makes you happier, then I fully support that," one fan wrote.
"My heart cries. My favorite of the group is leaving the band. Anyway, I accept what is the best for you. Much love for you my girl!" said another.
Jesy revealed that she had considered leaving the band before.
Throughout Jesy's tenure with Little Mix, she was often the target of cruel tweets and cyberbullying, which caused her to consider leaving the band. ”Yeah [I nearly left the band]. For them [her bandmates], it was hard as well. They're living their dream,” she said in an interview with Capital Breakfast.
She added: "To have someone constantly down and depressed all the time, you don't want that when you're living your best life. It was hard to be happy and console me at times."
Jesy Nelson opened up about her suicide attempt in the 'Odd One Out' documentary.
In a 2019 documentary entitled Odd One Out, the X Factor star talked about the impact cyberbullying had on her mental health, and how it pushed her to attempt to take her own life in 2013.
Jade confessed to cameras in the BBC documentary that her bandmates “didn’t know what to do” while watching their friend’s struggle. "We just had to watch this amazing, funny girl become a bit like a broken doll. It was horrible,” she said.
She added, "I remember feeling really angry. I wanted to just find every single person that had ever said anything horrible to her, look them in the eye and say, 'Look what you've done to this girl.'"
Jesy told Capital FM that at the height of her depression, she did not want to go out with friends or work. “I didn't want to perform, if I'd see people in the crowds pointing and whispering. I'd have panic attacks,” she said.
The singer explained to The Guardian that she used to seek out negative comments about herself in an obsessive manner, saying she was “addicted” to it.
“I had a routine of waking up, going on Twitter, searching for the worst things I could about myself,” she revealed to the outlet. “I’d type in the search bar, ‘Jesy fat,’ or ‘Jesy ugly,’ and see what would come up. Sometimes I didn’t even need to do that, I’d just write ‘Jesy’ and then I’d see all the horrible things.”
A major breakthrough in Jesy’s mental health came when she was advised to delete her Twitter by one of Demi Lovato’s dancers. “Everything changed for me and I slowly started to feel normal again,” she told The Guardian. Since her documentary Odd One Out premiered, fans have been praising the singer for speaking out about struggling with anxiety and depression.
“This Jesy Nelson documentary needs to be shown in every single school and college up and down the country to show that words can break even the most strongest looking people and ruin so many lives. Just be kind,” wrote one fan.
Another tweeted, “#JesyNelson 's #OddOneOut is such an important programme. There are people on the other side of your tweets and comments online, they will see it. Be better, do better, never say anything to anyone you wouldn’t say to their face and you wouldn't want said to you or people you know.”
Jesy, we applaud your courage for speaking out about such a sensitive subject. You go, girl!
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.