Kirk Norcross regrets starring on TOWIE

Kirk Norcross has admitted in his new book, 'Essex Boy, My Story', he wishes he never agreed to star in 'The Only Way Is Essex' because fame made him ill with anxiety and panic attacks

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Kirk Norcross

Kirk Norcross

Kirk Norcross says fame left him depressed and he wishes he never agreed to star in 'The Only Way Is Essex'.

The TV star regrets signing up to the ITV2 reality show and says the attention the programme garnered him gave him panic attacks and left him miserable.

He revealed: "If I could turn back time, I would never have done it. I would never be famous in a million years."

The nightclub promoter - the son of departed star Mick Norcross - got more and more paranoid as the popularity of the show grew.

Kirk admits he lashed out at people on the streets because he was convinced they all recognised him and were mocking him over his TV appearances.

Speaking about his struggles in his new book 'Essex Boy, My Story', he said: "My anxiety was getting worse and worse. I had never liked the idea of people talking about me or looking at me and now they really were ... If I was walking down the road and heard someone laughing, I would be sure it was at me, so I'd do one of two things.

"If I was feeling aggressive, I'd turn round, and say, 'What the f**k are you laughing at?' And most of the time that left the person looking shocked, because they'd just been laughing at something with their friends ... The fame made my insecurities a million times worse."

Kirk - who entered the 'Celebrity Big Brother' house in 2012 shortly after quitting 'TOWIE' for the first time following series three - had some of his worse panic attacks before he was due to make personal appearances at night clubs.

The Essex bad boy - who was raised on tough estate Seabrooke Rise with his brother Daniel by his mother Julie after his parents split - admits his fingers would "start to tingle and go numb" and he'd be left short of breath because of his anxiety about going on stage. On occasions he would even faint.

Kirk - whose dad got him off the estate when he was 17 by buying him a flat and getting him a job - had his worst ever attack following his split from Amy Childs.

He blacked out as he watched clips of 'TOWIE' on YouTube, but he has been able to overcome his issues with help of his cousin Scott who got him in the gym and focused on his life.

Kirk - whose book, which is being serialised in The Sun newspaper, is out on April 25 - said: "I owe him a lot for helping get me back on track."

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