JAKE HUMPHREY has revealed he quit BT Sport for his family – as he launched an attack on social media abuse and recalled childhood bullying he “would not wish on my worst enemy”.
The presenter says he “struggles with the modern world” and gets a stomach-wrenching feeling when he drops his kids off at school – due to the “nasty” treatment he received in the same setting.
GettyJake Humphrey is glad to have stepped back from TV presenting[/caption]
GettyThe broadcaster says his school dealt badly with his bullying[/caption]
And he explained how he was “not always that comfortable” as a TV frontman, partly as “the lads-y banter thing is not for me”.
The ex-BBC Formula One presenter admitted being ill at ease dealing with “firm opinions” on BT Sport, rather than more subtle debate.
Humphrey told The Telegraph: “I often felt I was doing High Performance all week, and empathy and understanding and leaning into people. Then, on Saturday, I was having conversations about sacking managers and dropping players, criticising decisions made by referees.
“I’d been dreaming for a long time, but not brave enough to take a leap.”
He is also aghast at how toxic life online can be, having spoken out against “chauvinistic and nasty bullying” received by presenter Karen Carney.
Humphrey said of trolling: “I think you would be a sociopath or something if it didn’t get through the armour sometimes.
“I’ve always thought that if you just let this stuff go you are as complicit as anybody.
“The only place that reaction happens is on Twitter. No one has ever stopped me in the street and said it… I just feel exactly like I felt when I got bullied at school.”
The former children’s game show presenter then relived some of the abuse he got at secondary school.
He said: “When we drop the kids off, I still get the feeling in the pit of my stomach when I see them walking off with the bag over their shoulder.
“It still triggers me to this day… God, the feeling of having to do that day after day after day, knowing what awaited.
“There were these two buses in the school car park and I’d go and sit in there on my own and just have my lunch.”
Humphrey also believes his school’s handling of the matter only made him feel worse.
He added: “At that age, particularly at that time, people didn’t really know how to deal with it.
“I was asked to stand up in assembly and the teacher said, ‘Can people stop bullying this guy?’ That just brings more heat.”