LOVE Island’s Laura Anderson broke down in tears and said she’d lost jobs as a result of the backlash she’d received from travelling to Dubai.
Laura said she travelled to Dubai when the UK had a travel bridge and insisted she was back at home when the fallout began – sparked by a number of high profile reality stars flying out to the United Arab Emirates.
In the emotional interview, Laura, 31, sobbed as she spoke candidly about how her work as an influencer was affected and how she struggled to cope with the trolling.
Laura said: “This is the hardest thing I’ve ever had to deal with.
“It was so hard to stick up for myself. I understand the whole pandemic, I am not a silly little girl. It is really hard and it still going on now. It was a really hard decision to go over.
“I’ve lost followers, I’ve lost jobs.”
Laura, who appeared on Love Island in 2018, said that while she travelled legitimately she was trolled relentlessly by some of her 1.4m million Instagram followers.
Even Home Secretary Priti Patel, 48, launched a scathing critique of those influencers who chose to go abroad ahead of the third lockdown.
Laura, who was still posting pictures of her in Dubai when the UK went into its third lockdown, said the effect of the backlash led her to start to looking to other career options going forwards.
She explained: “It has made my reconsider my future in this industry.
“I travelled during the UK’s approval of an air bridge…I don’t think they should have had an air bridge.
“I am not very close with my mum, I just have my dad here. My sister is my whole life is in Dubai with my little niece, and I knew a lockdown was coming, and I needed that emotional support.
“I didn’t think I could be in the house again by myself for a third time.
“It was frustrating trying to explain why I was there. I was working. I am planning on moving back. I am planning on opening businesses there. But I didn’t want that out there at the time, I didn’t want to share that with the public.”
Laura also admitted that she had struggled with the double standards after hearing pals talk about breaking rules.
Speaking to the Talking Success podcast with Nicki Chapman, 54, out tomorrow, Laura added: “No one has stuck to every single rule change.
“I have friends who are nurses or police, and they’ve said they haven’t seen many people but they’ll nip to someone’s house for dinner because they also haven’t seen many people.
“And I’m like, ‘You can’t do that.’
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“These people who say things, have they adhered to every rule change?
“The whole thing is inhumane and crazy. It’s not normal.
“Trolling and pointing fingers doesn’t help.”