Dannii Minogue has opened up about her struggles on The X Factor, revealing things got so difficult that she considered bowing out of entertainment altogether.
Speaking candidly and exclusively to RadioTimes.com, Minogue, who famously fell out with fellow judges Sharon Osbourne and Louis Walsh, said: “If people have opinions on you that you can’t change, you’ve got to try and let that go. If you’re a kid, maybe you can decide not to play with those kids, but as an adult in a work situation, it’s a lot harder. I had the opinion of the whole country, and I felt sometimes that that opinion was so skewed and not correct.
“There wasn’t anything I could do about it, and it really got to a point where I was just happy to bow out, and not be part of entertainment anymore, because it was really crushing me and I felt it was just too much.”
Danni Minogue with Simon Cowell and Cheryl (Getty)
She continued: “I had to try and get back to try and focus on who I really am, so I’m glad that it evolved and that it turned around and I was able to come back and still do my job, because it’s not in my personality to walk away and give up on something.
“But I do think there’s also a time where you put your hands up and say ‘this is too much’ – anxiety, depression, stress – everyone has to put their hands up when it really is too much for them.”
Minogue was the first ever female judge to win The X Factor, and achieved the feat during her first stint on the panel in 2007 with Leon Jackson. She took part in four series before calling it quits in 2010.
The lack of fun that she once had on The X Factor during its heyday is what made Minogue quit the series for good in 2010 – and despite having been rumoured to return for The X Factor: Celebrity, Minogue said she has never considered a comeback.
“I felt the show was going in one direction, and I was going in another,” she said. “I see articles come up every year saying there’s rumours that I’m returning and honestly, I’ve never received a call from any of the producers. I moved back to Australia so it’s not been in my line.
“Sometimes I’ll get a message from a fan saying, ‘Are you coming back? Is that good news, will we see you again?’ And I’ll be like, ‘I don’t know what you’re talking about, no-one’s contacted me!’ Honestly, it’s not been in my head since then.”
However, Minogue, who has also worked as a judge on Australia’s Got Talent and The Masked Singer, said she did have some good times on The X Factor, and credits the show for giving her a maternal instinct. She gave birth to son Ethan with her then partner, ex-professional rugby league player Kris Smith, in 2010.
“I did find some great people that I’m still best friends with and there was a lot of happiness,” she said. “Even when I look back on photos with me and Sharon absolutely laughing so hard with tears coming out of our eyes. There were some really good times, even though there were so many tough times.
“I loved the creativity in mentoring, The X Factor is definitely the most rewarding show for that.
“I started doing that mentoring before I had my son Ethan, and it just really opened up this side of me that I loved working with these teens and putting the time in and seeing how they evolve. I felt really maternal, and I’d never had that feeling before. And I think that opened me up to thinking, actually, I think I could be a mum, I want to do that.
“It snowballed into the greatest life experience ever.”
The X Factor: Celebrity is on ITV, Saturday at 8.20pm