On the telly Years & YearsOlly Alexander presents new BBC documentary ‘Growing Up Gay’

Years & Years’ Olly Alexander presents new BBC documentary Growing Up Gay

The frontman examines mental health issues in the LGBT+ community, and discusses his own personal experiences as a gay man.

CW: eating disorders, self-harm, suicide

Besides fronting Years & Years, Olly Alexander is a prolific voice when it comes to vital issues such as discussing mental health, depression and LGBT+ identity, and his latest project sees him presenting the new BBC documentary Growing Up Gay.

His Years & Years bandmates Emre Türkmen and Mikey Goldsworthy also appear in on the programme, speaking with Olly Alexander about his experiences touring in a band while managing his mental health issues.

It’s an incredibly candid documentary which sees Olly openly speaking about his past struggles with eating disorders and self-harming. “It’s hard to talk about,” he admits, “but that’s why I’m talking about it”. He also visits his childhood home, and in the process ends up accidentally debuting a very very early musical effort - a cover of TLC’s ‘No Scrubs’ filmed when he was a kid.

Olly also examines the prevalence of mental health issues in the LGBT+ community as a whole. 40% of LGBT+ people will experience a significant mental health problem at some point in their lives, compared to a quarter of the whole population. LGBT+ people are also more than twice as likely to have attempted suicide.

Watch the full documentary here on iPlayer.

For more LGBT+ specific advice or information about mental health, MindOut provides support across the UK

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