Dr Alex George on his younger brother's suicide, being in an 'incredibly dark place' and thankful for antidepressants

Virgin Radio

17 May 2023, 12:33

Dr Alex George on his brother's suicide aged 19 and how the 'darkness' has changed him forever

Former Love Island star Dr Alex George has opened up about how his life has changed forever after losing his younger brother, Llŷr, 19, to suicide three years ago.

Marking the third anniversary of his passing, the medical star - who has been the UK's Youth Mental Health Ambassador since February 2021 - has admitted he was in his own 'incredibly dark place' after his sibling's death.

Alex, 32, was working on the frontline in a London A&E at the time of Llŷr's death during the pandemic, but took a break as he 'was at the verge of burnout.'

The health professional told The Telegraph: "The pandemic was very hard. After Llŷr died I was resolved to try and do something about the mental health crisis we're in. Plus I'm trying to work in hospital [at the same time]."

Llŷr George

Credit: Instagram

By 2021, he said: "I was in an incredibly dark place."

The author of mental health book Mind Manual openly admits he was prescribed antidepressants. He shared: "I don't know for sure that I'd be here if it wasn't for my medication that I took.

"I wouldn't have done it because of my brother and my family, but I was in a very, very dark place.

"If you've been through suffering, then you know what it means to suffer. I know that sounds silly, but I have empathy. I know what people feel like when they are there in darkness."

On his role as Youth Mental Health Ambassador, he has promised he will 'only step back from the role when the country no longer needs me or the role becomes untenable'.

Dr Alex George

Credit: Instagram

Speaking about his brother's influence, he said: "I will work with who is before me, with my brother always firmly in my mind. Llŷr is the fire in me to make change happen."

The doctor has been working on funding for Early Support Hubs with the main goal of helping 500,000 young people in need of help each year. 

He said: "What keeps me awake at night is the nearly six Wembley stadiums of children who are waiting for mental health support in this country. Some of those children will wait two years."

Read here about Matt Willis opening up about alcohol and cocaine abuse in Fighting Addiction and 'gaslighting' Emma Willis.