Kelsey Parker reveals heartbreaking way people would avoid talking to her after Tom Parker's death

Virgin Radio

27 Sep 2023, 13:36

Credit: Rex / Instagram (@being_kelsey)

Kelsey Parker, the widow of The Wanted’s Tom Parker, has opened up about the heartbreaking public encounters she used to have in the months following the singer’s death. 

Singer Tom passed away aged 33 in March 2022, two years after being diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour. Since then, Kelsey has been bravely vocal about her grief, allowing fans to see both sides of losing a loved one. 

Kelsey, who is currently working with The Co-op and Cruse Bereavement Care to help Brits open up about grief and loss following the pandemic, spoke exclusively to about her experiences with talking about death, and revealed how people used to avoid her in the street because they were at a loss of what to say. 

On how some people reacted to her following Tom’s sad passing, Kelsey explained: “I've experienced it first hand, with losing Tom, people used to actually cross the street to not talk to me after he died, because they don't know what to say. 

“There is no right or wrong way to deal with grief and we all deal with grief so differently. I'm quite a positive person. I wanted to go out and I did take the children to school the day after Tom passed away, but that's me. I get the other people aren't like that. But quite a lot of people who have lost someone, they like talking about that person and remembering them.”

Describing herself as a “chatterbox”, Kelsey admitted seeing people actively avoid her “felt awkward” because she’s always been happy to talk, even in the darkest times. 

She added: “When people were crossing the street, I didn’t really understand why they were doing it. Then I understood, they don't actually know what to say to me. Everyone thinks there's a right or wrong way to talk to someone but there's not. I think you have to feed off that person. For me, I'm open and I wanted to talk about him all the time.”

Most recently, Kelsey decided to go public with her new relationship with boyfriend Sean Boggans in her upcoming autobiography, With and Without You. Speaking to, the star admitted she wanted to break the “taboo” of moving on following the loss of a partner, and described the fan reaction as “incredible.”

After choosing to go public with her new romance, Kelsey explained: “It's been really nice. Obviously I only said that at the weekend, and the reaction and the feedback from everyone has been incredible. Everyone just supported me, saying ‘we're just so happy for you, as long as you're happy, that's all we want.’

“It is that scary feeling to come out and speak about something that you don't know how people's reactions are going to be. I am in the spotlight now, so people are looking at what I'm doing, but then I've had a lot of other women come to me and say thank you so much for speaking out about this because that’s another taboo subject. When is the right time to move on? There’s no right or wrong way to grieve. There’s no handbook.”

For more information or help with bereavement, visit