Louise Redknapp regrets Strictly and ‘wouldn’t do it again’ to avoid divorce ‘heartache’

Louise Redknapp says she 'hated suspenders' in Cabaret

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The singer, 46, relaunched her music career after entering Strictly five years ago. She won the BBC dance contest alongside Kevin Clifton. In her new book, Louise Redknapp: You’ve Got This, she described how Strictly changed her life – and not necessarily for the better.

Louise and Jamie, her husband of 19 years, divorced soon after she won the TV show by a public vote.

She claimed the decision was influenced by Strictly, which gave her a “false sense of security” and made her “feel invincible”.

Louise admitted being “so scared about going back to normal life” that it began conversations that ended her marriage.

In her new book, she detailed her sorrow over the relationship ending and wished she could have spoken to Jamie about her concerns.

Louise said she felt “unimportant” in their marriage and “depressed” due to being unable to have a career alongside family life.

Prior to the couple having children, she was a singer, initially with the R&B group Eternal before she left in 1995 to become a solo performer. 

It followed her claims to have “lost myself” and became a “sort of Stepford Wife” – a derogatory term for a submissive and docile woman – during a 2017 Telegraph interview.

Louise admitted she struggled to watch Jamie’s media career take off after hers had stagnated.

JUST IN: Louise Redknapp ‘wouldn’t have divorced if she didn’t go on Strictly’

Earlier this year, she told the Daily Mirror: “I was proud of him, but there was part of me thinking, ‘That’s my world.’”

In a 2009 Daily Mail article, Louise had claimed she “didn’t mind” being a full-time parent and “things a bit old-fashioned”.

But after going on Strictly, her passion for the limelight was reignited and she feared “losing what I’d achieved on that show”.

In her new book, Louise wrote: “If I’d done the show four years earlier, this wouldn’t have happened. 

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“I wouldn’t have walked away from my marriage.”

She claimed she would have been “too scared” to leave Jamie had she gone on the show earlier.

While Louise was glad Strictly gave her “a new path” and showed her she “could find work again”, she regretted it.

She wrote: “I still wish I’d done things differently because I feel like I hurt a lot of people and I’ll always be sorry for that.”

Louise claimed she wasn’t in a “great place mentally” before she went on the show.

She felt “really vulnerable and low” but after winning-over the public and showcasing her dancing talent, felt reinvigorated. 

After Louise split from Jamie, she was hurt because she thought “certain people had my back” and only realised later that it “wasn’t really the case”.

The star did not reveal who she was referring to when she mentioned those who didn’t support her. 

Louise Redknapp: I had nothing to lose in returning to music

When Louise mused whether she would repeat her decisions and go on Strictly again, knowing it would lead to the end of her marriage, she concluded, “No”.

She felt it wasn’t “worth putting anyone I loved or love through the heartache” it caused. 

Louise concluded the “bad probably outweighs the good” and reiterated her regret over what happened. 

Since the marriage ended, Jamie has been pictured with his girlfriend Frida Andersson, a Swedish model, a number of times. 

Louise on the other hand has revealed her difficulties with finding love again on dating apps. 

In one extract from the book she claimed to have been ignored for months by some prospective suitors.

She felt she had a “good chat with a guy” only for him to stop replying to her online. 

Louise wrote: “That was the end of that. It’s been five months and no reply.”

Louise Redknapp’s new book You’ve Got This and Other Things I Wish I Had Known was published by Piatkus and is available here. 

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