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Jesy Nelson leaves Little Mix and says being in band 'really took a toll' on her mental health

Little Mix rose to fame after winning the eighth season of The X Factor in 2011.

Jesy Nelson at the Brit Awards 2019
Jesy Nelson at the Brit Awards 2019
Image: Ian West via PA Images

JESY NELSON HAS announced she is leaving Little Mix after nine years in the band. 

In a statement on social media this evening, the 29-year-old said she is leaving the band for mental health reasons. 

“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,” Nelson said. 

“There comes a time in life when we need to reinvest in taking care of ourselves rather than focussing on making other people happy, and I feel like now is the time to begin that process,” she said. 

Nelson said she is leaving the band “with a heavy heart”, adding that she needs to “spend time with the people I love, doing things that make me happy”. 

“I’m ready to embark on a new chapter in my life – I’m not sure what it’s going to look like right now, but I hope you’ll still be there to support me,” she said. 

Nelson thanked her three fellow band members – Jade Thirlwall, Perrie Edwards and Leigh-Anne Pinnock – for “creating some of the most amazing memories I’ll never forget”. 

“I hope that you’ll continue to fulfil all of your dreams and keep on making music that people love,” she said. 

the-global-awards-2019-with-very-co-uk-press-room-london Jesy Nelson, Perrie Edwards, Leigh-Anne Pinnock, and Jade Thirlwall of Little Mix Source: Scott Garfitt via PA Images

In a separate post on social media, the band wished Nelson well, writing: “After an amazing nine years together Jesy has made the decision to leave Little Mix. This is an incredibly sad time for all of us but we are fully supportive of Jesy. 

“We love her very much and agree that it is so important that she does what is right for her mental health and wellbeing.”

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The post, signed by Thirlwall, Edwards and Pinnock, added: “We are still very much enjoying our Little Mix journey and the three of us are not ready for it to be over.” 

Nelson has spoken publicly about her mental health in the past. In a BBC documentary Odd One Out, she spoke about her struggles with body image and revealed that she had attempted to take her own life in 2013. 

Little Mix rose to fame after winning the eighth season of The X Factor in 2011. The band has since gone on to release six studio albums. 

Need help? Support is available:

  • Aware – 1800 80 48 48 (depression, anxiety)
  • Samaritans – 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.ie
  • Pieta House – 1800 247 247 or email mary@pieta.ie (suicide, self-harm)
  • Teen-Line Ireland – 1800 833 634 (for ages 13 to 18)
  • Childline – 1800 66 66 66 (for under 18s)

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