Belfast Telegraph

Oritse: I was the man of the house

JLS star Oritse Williams has told how he was forced to become a responsible grown-up when he was just 12 years old.

The Love You More singer talked to Reveal magazine about his difficult childhood taking care of his disabled mother and his younger brothers and sisters.

Oritse said: "I was 12 when my mum was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Mum found getting around difficult and I took it upon myself to be the man of the house."

He added: "I supported the whole household and, as soon as I could, I started working. By the time I went to university, I was holding down three jobs and caring for my mum too. My whole 24 hours was occupied. I'd make a list of chores for my brothers, sister and me to do, and every Saturday and Sunday we'd sing along to Motown tunes as we got them done.

"You just kick into action, I never thought: 'this is the right thing to do.' I just did it. When you're backed up in a corner, you can either implode or try and make your situation better."

The former X Factor contestant now hopes he can raise enough money to buy his mother a home through the success of boyband JLS, which he calls "my brainchild".

Oritse said: "She says 'do it for yourself not for me'. But I am doing this for her. She's an amazing woman and sees the other boys as her own sons.

"My aim is to get enough money to buy her a bungalow, which will make it easier for her to get around."


From Belfast Telegraph