Dannii Minogue's life 'broke' after X Factor as she fled UK and 'affair' with Simon Cowell

During her glamorous stint as an X Factor judge in the 2000s, Dannii Minogue seemed to be living a life of glamour. However, the reality behind closed doors was brutally different.

Her four-year tenure on the show that almost destroyed her resulted in her fleeing back to Australia due to 'anxiety, depression, and stress'.

Dannii, now 52 years old, entered the judging panel in 2007 alongside Simon Cowell, Louis Walsh, and Sharon Osbourne, who were fixtures of the show from the start. Soon after, whispers about her supposed affair with the head judge started to spread, leading to questions being raised about her ability to do her job by plenty of stars from Graham Norton to Noel Gallagher.

Dannii Minogue
Dannii battled with poor mental health following her time on The X Factor -Credit:Jeff Spicer/Getty Images

She made light of situations where she was often seen being "up close and personal with Simon" on a daily basis, which added more fuel to speculations, particularly when they were seen holding hands in a car post-Children In Need, the Mirror reports.

Reacting to all this, Dannii dismissed any flirtatious behaviour saying: "That man could flirt with a book, a wall, anything. I don't fancy him and I don't have a type I go for but I like a man who makes me laugh, who's intelligent and speaks his mind."

However, according to an interview for the unauthorised biography, Sweet Revenge: The Intimate Life of Simon Cowell, the music mogul himself admitted to being enamoured by Minogue. He said: "I had a crush on her. It was genuine love. I was like a schoolboy. She was foxy. She was a real man's girl. Very feminine."

Dannii Simon and Cheryl
Simon Cowell admitted he had a 'crush' on Dannii -Credit:Getty Images

Sharon Osbourne openly expressed her disdain towards Dannii Minogue when rumours began to circulate, confessing in her autobiography: "She had an uppity attitude as she was f***ing the boss."

Osbourne, who left the ITV show a year after the pop star joined the judging panel, told Piers Morgan on Life Stories: "I didn't hate her because hatred is very close to love and takes a lot of emotion and I don't have that time for her. She was like an insect, a mosquito that wouldn't go away."

Minogue compared Osbourne to a 'school bully', writing in her own autobiography: "I had to put up with insults flying at me both on and off screen. Over the course of the next year, Sharon announced to anyone who would listen that I was impossible to work with (but never explained why), that I was only on The X Factor because of my looks, not any visible talent or contribution to the entertainment industry and Simon employed me only because he wanted to sleep with me."

Cheryl Tweedy replaced Osbourne, competing weekly with Minogue during The X Factor fashion showdowns. But by the time Minogue left the show in 2011, she felt 'broken'.

"There were a lot of people conspiring to make that happen and it brought a lot of people enjoyment to see me so under the pump," she disclosed to Australia's Herald Sun. "I get that it is a TV show... but you have to be fair and it just got to the point where I was so unhappy."

The pop sensation, who returned to Australia with her son Ethan following struggles with her mental health, has consistently sidestepped confirmation or denial of the whispers about her and Simon. Speaking to the Mirror, she remarked: "If he says it's the truth then that's what he's saying. But I don't have anything to do with that."

Years after the speculation began, the celebrity is now hosting BBC Three's gay dating show I Kissed a Girl, having previously presented its counterpart, I Kissed a Boy, last year. Discussing the new series in a recent interview, she publicly identified as queer.

"There hasn't been a show for the girls in the reality gay dating world," Dannii said regarding her latest venture.

"The best thing that can happen to this show is that everyone watches it and everyone has questions."

"I identify as queer in a weird way," the star confessed.

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