LOVE Island star Jacques O’Neill told last night how he was left broken by the ITV show — but producers pressed him to carry on.
He confessed he “couldn’t cope” in the TV villa, 加: “Doing Love Island was the worst decision of my life.”
Jacques — who walked out of the ITV show last week 还有杰伊——在支持丽贝卡巡演后与她关系密切: “I was ready to break down.
“I was feeling so mentally drained, I just wanted to go home and get myself right.
“It broke me and I was already broken. I was crying my eyes out. I couldn’t cope.
“I was literally feeling awful. It was the worst I’d ever felt in my life.”
He admitted telling bosses he had ADHD before the series began.
His explosive exit came after a bust-up with Adam Collard over Paige Thorne.
Fearing he was about to attack Adam, Jacques said: “I thought if I don’t get myself out things could go horribly wrong and I could get physical.
“At home you can remove yourself from situations, but in there you had to deal with every situation, and in that moment I took my microphone off, and walked straight through the front doors because I just wanted to get out of that place.
“Producers tried coming to me, they were like, ‘Jacques, are you OK? I was saying, ‘I don’t want to speak to you or anyone. I want to be left to myself.’ It was too much.
“I was saying to them, ‘This is more than a TV show to me’, it was genuine feelings involved and my headspace wasn’t right to be in a TV show.
“I dealt with stuff in there that I’ve never dealt with in my life.”
He revealed he left the villa last Sunday night — although viewers only found out on Tuesday that he had gone.
Astonishingly, Jacques was coaxed back by ITV bosses the day after his exit.
It is thought they were keen to keep him as he was popular with the three million viewers.
他说: “That morning, I spoke to Mike, the big boss, and said I wanted to leave, ‘I’m ready to go, I want to get out of here.’
“He calmed me down a bit and was like, ‘Mate, we don’t want to see you go, you’re doing great in there, you’ll be fine.’”
Jacques said he had a “welfare chat” and was then “getting called to the Beach Hut where you speak to producers”.
他解释说: “In the end I couldn’t deal with it, I wanted to get out of the place.
“I was crying, saying to them, ‘I’m ready to go home’.”
Jacques — who previously dated ex-England footballer Michael Owen’s daughter Gemma — admitted bosses were concerned before the show by his ADHD, which was diagnosed when he was nine.
He didn’t expect it to be such an issue after he stopped taking Ritalin for it seven years ago.
During his clash with Adam, Jacques had an angry one-to-one chat with Paige, 告诉她: “If a boy’s gonna chat s**t behind my back, I won’t f***ing have it.
“Has Adam been slagging me off? Who the f*** is he? He’s just another geezer who’s already been on the show. He’s f***ing nothing.”
Jacques admitted: “Any little thing in the villa, 到底, started bothering me and I was just getting in so much of a rut.
“I know the way I spoke to 佩奇 was wrong. I tried to apologise and she kept asking why I did it. ADHD isn’t just about not being able to concentrate. It’s also about feeling anxious quite a lot, being on edge a lot.”
After leaving the main villa, Jacques was kept in a separate apartment with a security guard and two producers.
He said it was two days before they returned his phone and allowed him to speak to his mum Janet Wright.
During that time he managed to get on to the internet using the TV and search his name — sending him into deep despair.
He said he was horrified to see “everyone hating me” and wanted to go into hiding because he was scared of people seeing him.
雅克, of Leeds, flew back to the UK on Tuesday night and was met by mum Janet at the airport.
He went to rugby training with his old team Castleford Tigers the next morning and found solace in the club’s own welfare officer.
Janet, 60, tearfully said of her son on the show: “At first he was his funny self, but when it started to change I got horrible messages on Facebook, people saying they wished my son and I were dead. It was awful.
“I was seeing him change on TV. I could tell he wasn’t himself.”
While she even received death threats, Jacques has been buoyed by messages of support from the ADHD community.
他说: “The amount of grown men who have messaged me saying I’m their inspiration is overwhelming.”
Jacques was left heartbroken as Paige, 24, got close to Adam, 26.
他说: “I watched the Casa Amor episodes to torture myself and look at my actions. I was disgusted in myself, I understand the hate. I’m feeling quite numb.
“I will wait for Paige on the outside, but I’m not watching the show again, I can’t do it.”
Yesterday Ian Hamilton, a senior lecturer at the University of York on addiction and mental health, 说: “It’s odd that producers would show concern of Jacques’ ADHD and then let him on the show.”
Before the current series, ITV released a plan to further improve mental health support to help contestants cope with fame following the tragic deaths of ex-Islanders Sophie Gradon 和 Mike Thalassitis, and former host Caroline Flack.
A Love Island spokesman said: “We cannot comment on any individual’s medical records.
“然而, we have rigorous and extensive checks in place to assess Islanders’ physical and mental health in advance of being cleared to enter the Villa. This is something we take extremely seriously.
“Jacques made the decision to leave and we respected that decision. We would never put pressure on someone to stay in the Villa.”
ADHD UK charity spokesman Henry Shelford applauded Jacques’ decision to open up.
他说: “Talking about ADHD is a big deal to the 1.8million men and women and the 750,000 boys and girls with ADHD.
“Stigma and discrimination stops many talking about it.”
Ex Gem was cut above me, says ma
GEMMA Owen proved how down to Earth she was when she was dating Jacques O’Neill by mowing his mum’s lawn.
The 19-year-old daughter of ex-England and Liverpool footballer Michael, 42, dated rugby league player Jacques, 23, for eight months, but broke up last year.
And Jacques’ mum Janet, 50, said she was “gobsmacked” when she first met bikini designer Gemma.
“I’d asked him to mow the lawn and I arrived home and they were in the garden and he was getting her to cut the grass. She was laughing her head off doing it, she didn’t know what to do.
“She wouldn’t have done that before in her life and he had her outside gardening.
“But she was so down to Earth. She comes from a well-to-do background, miles away from me and Jacques, and we really got on.
“She would come and stay at weekends and Jacques would go to family barbecues.”
Jacques said: “We started dating after I slid into her DMs on Instagram and we had our first date in a park. We met for a picnic.
“We didn’t end on the best terms, but we were civil. I met Gemma’s dad Michael a few times, he was a decent guy.
“He was really good to me and took me in very well. After I’d had a game, I’d go straight to Gemma’s and we’d go for a drink together.”