I was a posh, cheating idiot – but Strictly revealed the real me, says Jamie Laing


REALITY TV star Jamie Laing is aware of precisely what the public have thought-about him for years.

Born to millionaire mother and father, he discovered fame on E4’s Made In Chelsea, the place his escapades — wild events and boozing at a string of distinctive venues — made him a real love or hate resolve.

Jamie Laing discovered fame on E4’s Made in Chelsea
Jamie with girlfriend Sophie Haboo at last year's Brit awards
Jamie with girlfriend Sophie Haboo in the finish 12 months’s Brit awards

“I was such a plonker in my younger years,” he admits. “If I seen myself as soon as extra then, I’d say, ‘That guy’s an absolute w***er’.

“So I understand it. Made In Chelsea fans liked me, I think — but when I did Strictly Come Dancing with a much bigger audience, I realised that being white, privileged and posh was not very sexy.”

He recollects that no person ever assumed he was having an affair alongside collectively along with his Strictly dance accomplice Karen Hauer — as a outcomes of she was out of his league.

He says: “Every single time we did interviews, the journalists would ask all the completely totally different {{{couples}}}, ‘So, are you guys hooking up?’, they usually additionally not at all requested me.

“I said once, ‘Why do you never ask me that?’, and they were like, ‘Well, look at her, she’s a goddess’.”

Not that he hasn’t had his share of romance. Jamie, who’s alleged to the man who invented the well-known McVitie’s digestive ­biscuit in 1892, turned notorious on Made In Chelsea for his unhealthy behaviour, courting and dumping a string of women.

Now he has written an autobiography, I Can Explain, all through which he holds his fingers as a lot as a few of his further reckless antics.

Jamie furthermore reveals how his laborious partying took its toll on his correctly being and led him to a number of brushes with demise.

The e information begins alongside collectively along with his early years in Oxfordshire, which have been so blissful he had no thought his life with mother and father Penny and Nicholas was not the norm.

Jamie says: “As a child we had a swimming pool, a tennis court docket docket docket, grounds, bicycles, all these things, and I thought that’s how everybody lived, as a outcomes of I knew nothing else.

“I remember going to my friend Tom’s house, which was on an estate, and I couldn’t understand why there wasn’t a swimming pool there.”

After leaving faculty at 18, the pleasurable and video video video games continued. Jamie determined to go travelling in South America with associates, obsessed with the lack of obligation.

He says: “I remember thinking, ‘I don’t have any homework, I don’t have any exams, I don’t have to speak to Mum, because I didn’t have a mobile phone. The only thing I have to worry about is not dying.”

There have been some shut calls, although.

In Bolivia, Jamie and his associates have been ­persuaded at hand over 50 {{{dollars}}} and journey to the deep jungle with a man calling himself Johnny Cash to strive ayahuasca, a hallucinogenic drug constituted of cacti.

He says: “The whole thing was miserable, but to cut a long story short I ended up spending eight hours on my hands and knees with my nose to the ground, thinking I was a truffle pig.”

Another time, on Brazil’s Copacabana Beach, Jamie was robbed by a gang holding a machete to his throat. They took all his belongings collectively collectively along with his garments, leaving him standing in merely his boxers.

“That was really scary,” he says. “I thought I was going to die. I had total PTSD afterwards and freaked out if anybody came near me.”

After a few further scrapes — together with just about being gored at the bull run in Pamplona, Spain — Jamie determined it was time to cool down.

Aged 22, he went for a job interview with a wealth ­administration firm, but he felt deflated as a substitute of excited, and it was then that he was supplied a half in the ­second assortment of the new E4 hit Made In Chelsea.

He says: “I liked the idea of not knowing where it will end. That felt better than putting on a suit and getting up at six every morning.”

Jamie shortly turned undoubtedly one among the greatest names on the present, attributable to his lovable rogue ­character.

He and greatest buddy Spencer Matthews would typically fall out over ladies, and Jamie had a ­fame for loving and leaving them.

Now he admits that monogamy has not at all been his sturdy swimsuit — he first cheated on a girlfriend aged merely six with Eliza Winwood, the daughter of singer Steve Winwood.

But he says being on the present made him exaggerate his tendencies till he didn’t know who he was any further. He says: “I don’t need it to sound like I’m blaming ­anybody else for the means I behaved, but with actuality TV you will’t go into a scene speaking about the native climate.

“Viewers should know who you’re kissing, they need the arguments and the scandals. So, to get to the prime of the meals chain, you need to be that particular person specific particular person, and also you need to break up and kiss others, and create scandals, combat and argue.

“It’s not that you just simply merely consciously go, ‘I’m going to interrupt up with this woman’. It’s merely that you just simply merely change into a heightened model of your self to get further ­airtime and additional likes on Instagram.

“And the version of myself that I became over ten years on TV is not a version I admire.”

A extremely unhealthy second obtained proper right here when he cheated on girlfriend Tara Keeney whereas filming the present, leaving her to hunt out out for herself as she watched the present exit keep two months later.

“That was a low,” he admits. “It was easier than telling her to her face. I just didn’t have the balls.”

More not too means again, Made In Chelsea has misplaced out in standing to the new actuality child on the block, Love Island, which has been engulfed in scandal and matter to 33,500 Ofcom complaints this 12 months.

Jamie says he’s glad he did a actuality present when he did, ahead of social media had hit present heights of recognition and ahead of the new wave of “cancel culture”.

“We were hugely fortunate because we weren’t particularly aware of what people thought about us, although Twitter was just starting at the time,” he says.

“Now, if you make one bad move, it can be brought up. I’m sure how we acted, if it was in the ­current climate, would have been a disaster for us. We’ve all made silly comments and done ­stupid things.”

The present, together with an excessive amount of partying, was at the centre of Jamie’s struggles alongside collectively along with his psychological correctly being.


He’d all the time been an anxious child, but his first essential panic assault occurred not extended after turning into a member of Made In Chelsea.

“I was just watching The Voice and this feeling came over me,” he says. “I couldn’t breathe ­precisely and I thought I was dying. I went to the hospital, the place they instructed me it was a panic assault and despatched me dwelling.

“I went to bed thinking, ‘If I feel like this tomorrow, I just don’t want to wake up’.”

That was the starting of six months of ­common anxiousness dysfunction, which Jamie hid from household and associates ahead of confiding in his mum and getting assist.

He says: “When I watch these early episodes of Made In Chelsea I can see it in my eyes. I can see how hole they supply the impression of being.

“I think it was burnout, but also being on a TV show, realising that I’d chosen a career with no promise of a future. I thought my insecurities would disappear because I was on a TV show, but it made them worse.”

Now, attributable to remedy and the love of his household and associates, Jamie is in a elevated place. He reached the finals of Strictly remaining 12 months — though he virtually didn’t seem on the present.

His insecurity about being 5ft 9in led to him sporting “lifts” in his sneakers when he was first sturdy in 2019, but they gave him a state of affairs which launched on horrible ache in his ft and he wished to pull out.

Luckily, he was given a second shot remaining 12 months and bought by to the last.

He says he shall be watching Strictly this 12 months and rooting for Karen, alongside along with his buddy Ugo Monye, the former England rugby union participant.

Jamie says: “Strictly was an unbelievable turning stage for me. Suddenly folks didn’t merely see me as that posh idiot from Made In ­Chelsea.

“It was actually laborious work, but a lot pleasurable. The viewers had an assumption about me, but then they seen I was resilient and type.

“I’m so grateful as it has led to so much more and I feel balanced for the first time in my life.”

But he reckons a new snogging ban on Strictly, launched in to curb Covid, obtained’t work. “They won’t stick to that,” he says with a snort. “There’s always going to be a snog.”

Not that he ever had the hots for Karen, in any case — he’s fortunately beloved up with girlfriend Sophie Habboo.

“Sophie’s better than me in every single way,” he gushes. “I’ve not at all been as calm as I am now. I was all the time every terribly ecstatic or terribly anxious.

“She makes me balanced. She’s a real hero and has stuck by my side through lockdown and various burnouts and I will be forever grateful.”

Jamie, now an envoy for psychological correctly being charity Calm, hopes his completely glad ending shall be inspiring to anyone with comparable factors. “It is so important for people to realise that they’re not alone,” he says.

“Two thirds of ­suicides are male, and 175 folks a week take their life attributable to suicide. And it’s as a outcomes of males merely don’t focus on factors.

“So I want to encourage every man to speak out, because it’s OK to talk about it. I think once you realise we’re all in this together, then you start to feel much better about things.”

  • I Can Explain, by Jamie Laing, is revealed at the second by Seven Dials, priced £18.99 in hardback. Also on the market in information and audiobook.
Jamie reached the final of Strictly last year with partner Karen Hauer
Jamie reached the last of Strictly remaining 12 months with accomplice Karen HauerCredit: WARNING: Use of this picture is matter to the phrases of use of BBC Pictures’ Digital Picture
Jamie with girlfriend Sophie Haboo - Jamie has changed a lot since his early days of partying and cheating on girls on Made in Chelsea
Jamie with girlfriend Sophie Haboo – Jamie has modified a lot since his early days of partying and cheating on ladies on Made in ChelseaCredit: SOPHIE HABBOO INSTAGRAM
Jamie gushes about his girlfriend Sophie and says she makes him 'balanced'
Jamie gushes about his girlfriend Sophie and says she makes him ‘balanced’Credit: Instagram
Jamie says he was a 'posh, cheating idiot' when he was younger and first cast in MIC
Jamie says he was a ‘posh, cheating idiot’ when he was youthful and first sturdy in MICCredit: Andy jordan/Instagram
Jamie and his MIC co-star Spencer Matthews share a cheeky snog
Jamie and his MIC co-star Spencer Matthews share a cheeky snogCredit: GC Images – Getty

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