Love Island’s Matthew McNabb didn’t have much luck in the villa when it came to romance after Kaz Kamwi decided to re-couple with Tyler Cruickshank before being dumped when Priya Gopaldas teamed up with Brett Staniland, but it seems that wasn’t the only problem Matthew faced.
Speaking about his time at the villa on Instagram, Matthew opened up about the death of his best friend Ryan Freeman just two weeks before he appeared on the show and revealed it had a major impact on his experience.
He said: “My life has been crazy for the past few months. From one of my best friends who died two weeks before Love Island, to stepping into the villa and experiencing all that came with it.
“I’m not going to lie, the first week in the villa I struggled a lot. I was thinking of my friend and wanted my loved ones around me. During this time, I wanted to be my usual, happy, positive self to show who I was.
Matthew also revealed that he met with a psychologist during his stay at the villa to help him deal with his grief.
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He explained: “I didn’t tell anyone, but I met the psychologist when I was in the villa and cried for a good hour. She helped me a lot and made me realize that this life is an adventure and that in any adventure there are ups and downs.
“However, this is the journey and as long as you realize it, you will be fine. So embrace it, be present, be grateful and you will begin to live your adventure to the best of your ability. This life is an amazing story and you are the main character. Live without fear, do what you want, because one day the story will end, so make it epic.
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Last month, Matthew shared a sweet tribute to Ryan on his Instagram, saying: “For those of you who were lucky enough to have met Ryan, you know what a special person he was. He always been the happiest person in the room. It’s so hard to believe when you consider the horrible things that have happened to him in this life. How could he be so kind, so happy, so full of life?
“I learned a lot from Ryan. I’m a kinder, more compassionate man because of him. Ultimately, I could write a book about Ryan Freeman and the lessons I learned from him, but the one thing I really learned was to be present in the moment.
“Ryan, I love you. You will forever be my family, my brother, and the angel by my side. I will remember you for the light you brought to me and to this world. This is not a goodbye, it’s a later date. Sincerely, your Irish brother.