Sam Fender shares letter to his 10-year-old self: “Don’t feel ashamed for being sensitive and empathetic”

The musician encouraged his younger self to forget his bullies and pick up a guitar

Sam Fender has shared a letter he wrote to his 10-year-old self, in which he told himself to not “feel ashamed for being sensitive and empathetic”.

The musician read the message to his younger self during an appearance on Scott Mills’ show on BBC Radio 1.

“Hey Sam, I can picture you now – a chubby little thing, lightsaber in hand,” it began. “I wonder how many lampshades you’ve broke this year. Don’t worry about it though – your dad’s a jack-of-all-trades, he can fix anything. Even the car window you’re gonna smash in a couple of months time. Just throw an imaginary grenade next time.”

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Fender continued to talk about his life at that time, including changes in his familial set-up and being bullied at school. “Don’t pay attention to any of the kids that give you grief for your hair or your weight,” he said. You’re gonna lose all of that in three years anyway, it’s just puppy fat.

“The bullies who catch you on the stairs are gonna want your autograph 10 years later. Don’t give it to them. Don’t feel ashamed for being sensitive and empathetic – that trait is going to be the foundation of your future career. You’re not ugly, you’re not stupid, so stop telling yourself that.”

He also encouraged himself to pick up the guitar “gathering dust” in his room, noting it would “definitely help you get a girlfriend”. He concluded by telling his 10-year-old self to focus on and appreciate his family members and to “stop worrying kid – you’ve got this”. Watch Fender read the whole letter above now.

Earlier this month (December 3), Fender launched a petition to make phone helplines free for vulnerable people in the UK after learning local councils in his area charge 40p per minute.

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“We’ve all been on helplines before, you can be stuck on these things for God knows how long,” he said. “Half an hour will equate to 12 quid and if you’re skint and you’re homeless, or on the brink of being homeless 12 quid is a lot of money.”

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