Singer Matt Goss has suggested a “politically correct world” could be contributing to feelings of loneliness because people are “terrified” of interaction.
The Bros star admitted he struggled to deal with grief following the deaths of his sister and mother, which left him lonely and isolated.
Goss said physical contact from another can provide a huge comfort but questioned if people today are more wary of offering a hug or shoulder to cry on.
He said: “I think everyone is terrified of each other at the moment. Should we hug each other? Should we not hug each other? But sometimes human beings do need a hug or an arm around the shoulder or someone to notice you are close to tears.
“We need interaction. But we are terrified of it in this politically correct world. We wonder why so many people are lonely but we are becoming detached from each other.”
Goss, 51, was speaking as he helped launch Good Morning Britain’s 1 Million Minutes campaign against loneliness.
The singer, who along with twin brother Luke was part of 1980s chart-topping group Bros, has recorded a cover of Are You Lonesome Tonight? and told how the loss of mother Carol and sister Carolyn affected him.
“Some of the things we experienced in the band, it was nothing short of a void,” he said.
“Sometimes you have to dust yourself off. I don’t regret those times but I’m happy I got through the other side.
“But the most impactful thing was, obviously, my sister passing, killed by a drunk driver, and the loss of my mother. Those two things. With my mother, I didn’t know a way out. ”
Goss’ mother died in 2014 following a battle with cancer.
He said: “When you come off stage, that phone call that you need to make is absolutely not there. It’s not only you want to tell someone, it’s that somebody wants to listen to those small details. The difference between someone who unconditionally loves you and wants to hear.
“My mum would ask those questions. Again, you didn’t feel like you were burdening somebody with that.”
Goss admitted he found it difficult to go on while dealing with his mother’s death.
He said: “My loneliness hit a point where I didn’t know if I could carry on with my life. I mean it was really that intense… But when mum passed, I didn’t quite know how to continue.
“Because I didn’t know how I would make do without that phone call… for the longest time I would send her texts and it was cathartic to me.”
Goss founded Bros with Luke in 1986 and they achieved chart success with hits such as When Will I Be Famous and I Owe You Nothing.
They broke up in 1992 before their 2017 reunion tour.
Good Morning Britain screens weekdays on ITV.
For more details on the campaign go to: www.itv.com/goodmorningbritain/get-involved/1-million-minutes-2019