Former One Direction member Liam Payne has admitted that he didn’t have the easiest time while he was in the band. The singer just got real about dealing with the immense amount of fame and pressure that came with being a part of one of the biggest groups in history. He also revealed that he had to take “mood stabilizer” drugs to help him cope.

“I just needed a little bit of help to keep me stable,” the 26-year-old told the Guardian in a recent interview. “But under certain lights on stage or during interviews, I wouldn’t be able to tell them my name.”

Liam explained that during his time in the band, he faced a bunch of “erratic highs and lows,” which made things a “bit dark.”

“It was very touch and go at times. It was a point where every day, you didn’t know whether it was going to be the end. It was so touch and go, at every single show. I was slowly losing the plot,” he shared. “I was like: ‘I don’t really know how to deal with this.’ Once you start, you can’t really press the stop button.”

But the “Strip That Down” crooner said that once the band announced their hiatus in 2015, things got a lot easier.

One Direction Hanging Out Since Hiatus
Getty Images

“It was a little bit dark and twisted towards the end of it, but the last few shows were really beautiful moments because the pressure cooker had been let off,” he continued. “It was almost like counting down to holiday — we were going to wake up that Monday morning with no schedule.”

Previously, Liam opened up about his his past struggles and mental health issues, telling GQ Magazine, “I went into therapy a couple years after [the band ended]. I kind of went off the rails a little bit and just couldn’t really figure out what was making me sad. So, you know, my team got somebody around to help me through a couple of different, difficult things that I was going through. I was just trying to figure myself out.”

“It was just such a strange course through life, and then when the switch turns off you’re left to your own devices. I was drinking too much and getting into really bad, bad situations for quite some time actually,” he said. “And I hit a peak moment where I knew the drinking was going to get me. I needed to do something about it. I spent a lot of time drinking to escape the crazy world that I had created for myself. I didn’t know what I was doing. That first therapy session and being like, ‘I don’t even know what I like or anything about myself,’ it was pretty scary stuff. I was afraid of how far my career was going and that it might go even further. You can say, ‘Who is afraid of success?’ But that’s what it entails sometimes. Success has got the better of me on more than one occasion. When I am losing I tend to concentrate more.”

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