The singer gets candid about the hardships she endured while in Fifth Harmony.
Ally Brooke is getting candid about her "traumatizing" time in Fifth Harmony. The 27-year-old singer claims she was mentally and verbally abused while in the chart-topping girl group in the premiere episode of her brand-new weekly podcast, The Ally Brooke Show, released on Wednesday. ET has reached out to Brook'e rep for comment.
Brooke first touches on how she, along with former members Camila Cabello, Normani, Lauren Jauregui and Dinah Jane, "took the entertainment industry by storm," before digging into the allegations.
"Looking back at that, I sometimes don’t even realize how big we were. Because I guess if you’re part of something like that, you can’t even grasp because your life is moving 1,000 miles a minute. It was such a whirlwind,” Brooke said of Fifth Harmony's achievements. The group was created in 2012 after they all competed on The X Factor. Cabello departed 5H in 2016, and the group went on hiatus in March 2018.
"We will be in the history books. That’s pretty incredible. We had hits, such anthems and great songs. But just being honest, because I feel like having my own show calls for me to just be real and open with you guys…I hate saying this, my time in Fifth Harmony, I didn’t enjoy it. I didn’t love it," she confessed. "It was hard because there was so much going on. So much behind-the-scenes. So much toxicity. So much abuse. So much abuse of power. So much mental abuse. Verbal abuse. It’s horrible, and to me it’s a shame, because we were so big. I should have enjoyed myself more. I did so much for the group."
Brooke claimed that even Simon Cowell told her after they were formed that she was "the glue that holds this group together."
"It was hard for many, many reasons. It was tough because I didn’t trust anybody around me. A lot of people that were in our circle. It really damaged me for quite some time, and for quite a while. I don’t want to hang onto the negative, but I have to be honest," the singer shared, adding that above all else she is "so proud" and "thankful for Fifth Harmony. "It changed my life…I got to meet so many amazing friends…We did so much…but it’s kind of the weird balance. It’s a balance of being grateful, but also being OK with the fact that things were not OK for me.”
"I took a lot, me personally. It was traumatizing, and some things I’m comfortable sharing, but some things I’m still not yet ready," she added. "I’m getting more comfortable with learning how to open up with my experiences in this industry, and in Fifth Harmony."
Brooke previously spoke with ET about her serious struggles while in the group.
"I had to get through it. Take the good with the bad and try to be positive and be strong. And I wish I would've spoken up a little bit more back then for several different things," she told ET in October 2020. "But, you know what, everything happens for a reason and I'm so proud of our work. And we were able to create songs that are gonna last forever. And it did get better in the end. So, it's just a learning experience on many different levels."
"There was a lot happening behind the scenes and also, you know, I was faced with the pressure of being in the spotlight, and the crazy schedule," she shared. "Not being heard, and just people taking advantage of me. All that did get to a place where I was like, should I walk away? I definitely had moments of calling my parents and crying my eyes out and saying, 'Mom and Dad, I don't know if I can do one more day.' But I chose to stay, you know, and the group meant that much to me."
Brooke even admitted that she reached her lowest point one night in a hotel room when she drank a lot of wine to "numb [her] pain."
"I just felt so low," she recalled. "I felt like there was no hope left. I felt worthless. I felt isolated. I felt alone. I felt afraid. I just felt like, like nothing would get better -- that I would never be happy and one thing led to another. And, you know, it's OK to have wine to, you know, relax or celebrate or, you know, 'Hey, I need a glass of wine cause it's been a long day.' That's totally fine. I do that. I mean, everybody does that. But I turned to wine for a really dark reason."
Hear more of what she said in the video above.