So you think you want to be 22?
You might have missed it yesterday (if you spent the day with your eyes closed and consumed absolutely no mainstream or social media whatsoever) but Zayn Malik, a member of popular boy band One Direction has left the band.
And it’s not to go solo.
Or because he had a punch up with his band mates.
Or even because he’s going to rehab (as far as we know).
It’s because he wants to be a real boy. Or rather, to live life as a “normal 22-year-old”.
Now, it’s obviously a black armband day for fans – so perhaps this is #toosoon.
But once we’ve moved through the trauma, it’s worth having a look at what Zayn has to say about his departure.
In his statement, Zayn paid tribute to his band mates but said he was leaving because there was something very important he had to do. Something that felt right in his heart:
“My life with One Direction has been more than I could ever have imagined.”
“But, after five years, I feel like it is now the right time for me to leave the band. I’d like to apologise to the fans if I’ve let anyone down, but I have to do what feels right in my heart.
“I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight. I know I have four friends for life in Louis, Liam, Harry and Niall. I know they will continue to be the best band in the world.”
Zayn feels in his heart that he wants to be a “normal” and who relaxes and has privacy.
But here’s the thing that Zayn needs to understand: There is nothing relaxing about being a normal 22-year-old. And there is definitely shit-all privacy in a dirty share house.