Laura Whitmore confesses she “cried every day” during Strictly Come Dancing
Laura Whitmore has admitted she “cried every day” during Strictly Come Dancing after being placed with a professional dancer she was “extremely uncomfortable with”.
The Survival of the Fittest presenter appeared on the 2016 line-up for the BBC dancing competition, competing for the trophy alongside professional dancer Giovanni Pernice.
Laura faced a lot of media attention while filming for Strictly, as her dancing partner Giovanni had recently separated from Coronation Street‘s Georgia May Foote, and there was speculation as to whether the former MTV host could be his latest love interest.
Writing for the Huffington Post, Laura spoke about her time on the show. She wrote: “I didn’t think the media storm could get any worse than that incident – and then I signed up for a show that I had loved so much and grew up with, Strictly Come Dancing.
“I’m still not ready to talk in depth about my experience on the show. I love dancing – I topped the leaderboard twice – but before it even began, I was thrown into the lion’s den and into the middle of someone’s break-up that had nothing to do with me. Once again, I was a ‘rumoured love interest’.
“I was placed with a dance partner I was extremely uncomfortable with – and in the end I felt broken. I cried every day. And I really was broken, both mentally and physically, by the end.
“To the outside world I tried to suck it up and smile, and I did that to the best of my ability, but it affected me deeply. My friends and family knew that I was struggling. And they were there for me. The media, however, saw me as blonde bait in a sequinned dress.”
Laura also opened up about her past experiences of sexual assault in the post.
She recalled: “Last year I was in a club with my friends and I could feel a hand on the back of my leg. Initially I thought it was my boyfriend messing or a mate about to pinch my bottom – but the hand went under my skirt, between my legs, and firmly touched me. As I turned, I saw it was a guy who I did not know. He was laughing.”
The star talked about her experiences in relation to the #MeToo movement, which she referred to as just “the tip of the iceberg”.
Strictly Come Dancing will return later this year to BBC One.
Images: © WENN