Tom Parkers widow Kelsey develops a tic over anniversary of his death

Tom Parker, 33, a member of the famous boy band The Wanted, died in March 2022 following a battle with an aggressive brain tumour. 

In the months following his death, his widow, Kelsey Parker, has been open about her struggles with grief and mental health issues, and now she is shedding light on the impact that anxiety has had on her physical health.

The 33-year-old revealed to OK! that the anxiety she felt in the build-up to this milestone manifested itself in a tic.

Explaining that she first noticed the habit when she was out with a friend, she says: “I was just dreading this month. When I met my friend for coffee I kept clearing my throat and coughing, like a little tic.

“I think it’s just the anxiety of this month and the struggle. It’s like living in a s**t show.”


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Tics are sudden, repetitive movements or sounds that are difficult to control. 

They are often associated with conditions such as Tourette’s syndrome, but can also be a symptom of anxiety or stress. 

Mum-of-two Kelsey – who shares daughter Aurelia, three, and son Bodhi, two, with the late singer – admits she’s finding her current stage of grieving the hardest.

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“I don’t want to feel like it’s s**t. But obviously, it is, as it’s so difficult. Me and Tom were the ‘Positive Parkers’ and I try and see the positive in everything.

“But honestly, I don’t feel like there is a positive in my life at the moment. It’s just awful what’s happened to us as a family,” she added.

Kelsey’s honesty about her struggles with grief and anxiety highlights the fact that mental health can have a physical impact on our bodies. 

When we are anxious, our bodies release stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline, which can trigger various physiological responses.

Tom died from a brain tumour on 30 March 2022 at St Christopher’s Hospice in London, aged just 33.

His funeral was held in Petts Wood last April, as his friends, family, and his The Wanted bandmates said their heartbreaking farewells.

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