Will Young has shared the tragic news that his twin brother Rupert has died aged 41.
A spokesperson for the British singer confirmed the tragic loss of his sibling, requesting privacy for the family “during this very difficult and sad time”. A cause of death was not confirmed.
Rupert had over the years worked as a dog walker and in television as an assistant floor manager.
Though he lived life mostly away from the spotlight, he had talked candidly about his struggles with mental ill-health and in 2008 set up The Mood Foundation, a database of psychiatrists, clinical psychologists and alternate therapists who offered free one-on-one treatment to those with depression or anxiety.
Rupert founded the service (which is now closed) after battling alcoholism and dysthymia — a chronic form of depression often triggered by trauma that was only diagnosed after he sought treatment in America. He had by that point been in an out of hospital 10 times, and was spurred into action after realising that many would not have the means to access private help.
“They just told me I was an addict and that was why I was the way I was,” he said at the time. “It took huge expense to get me to a safe place.”
Will Young said his PTSD stemmed from being separated from his twin brother.
Will Young had also spoken about his twin brother’s struggles, telling the Daily Record that the family had been forced to “walk away” at the height of his addiction.
“It’s very tough having a family member who is an addict,” Will said.
“But when you’re dealing with that you eventually have to just stop and look after yourself. Me, my parents, my older sister, everyone. We all just had to walk away. We had to leave him.”
The musician has also spoken frankly about his own mental health issues. He revealed in 2015 that he had been diagnosed with PTSD, which he said was a result of hiding his sexuality, being bullied at school and being separated from Rupert at birth after they were born six weeks premature.
Readers who are affected by the issues raised in this story are encouraged to contact Samaritans on 116 123 (www.samaritans.org) or Mind on 0300 123 3393 (www.mind.org.uk). Readers in the US are encouraged to contact the National Suicide Prevention Line on 1-800-273-8255.
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