Zayn Malik has quit One Direction. It’s official. The band confirmed that they will continue as a four-piece. Here’s how Zayn explained his decision:

"My life with One Direction has been more than I could ever have imagined," he shared with fans. "But, after five years, I feel like it is now the right time for me to leave the band. I'd like to apologize to the fans if I've let anyone down, but I have to do what feels right in my heart. I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight."

As I’ve always said, Zayn seemed to be the most fragile one. And his body is the manifestation of that fragility. He struggles, much more than the others, with fame, with that endless, relentless boy band schedule. Because when you’re in a boy band, man, you are fighting time. You are fighting the expiration date. There is no IF with a boy band. There is always, only, WHEN.

So they grind. They grind and grind and they grind until there’s nothing left. When you start that young, when there’s nothing left, there’s literally NOTHING left. Did you just think of Britney?

Some people are like, OMG, all this and it’s over a girl. I dunno. If it was *just* over a girl, I wouldn’t be getting the Sad Smut worries. But, as I come back to too often where Zayn is concerned, it’s that word: Fragile. The girl drama may have been a symptom. It’s definitely not the main problem. Or what could have been a bigger problem.
And just to drive that sad point home…

Here’s Harry crying on stage tonight in Jakarta; he’s lost a brother.

Ritchie sent me a note earlier today about Zayn’s news:

“The hysteria surrounding Zayn is still nowhere near when Robbie Williams left Take That in 1995. Or when Geri left the Spice Girls mid-world tour.”

I don’t know if I agree with that. I can tell you that backstage at The Social, when the news broke, I was screaming so much I nearly ruined my hair. And my hair is the great priority of my life. So I’m pretty sure there’s a lot of angst happening right now in teen bedrooms and chat rooms (do they do chat rooms anymore?) around the world. That said, these are two great examples to cite because there are a lot of people who don’t get it about One Direction. Like my friend Laura, who kept asking me what my problem was about Zayn. And this is what happens when you get OLD, Laura. You forget. You forget that Ginger leaving was a BIG F-CKING DEAL. It was such a big deal that the Mayor of Toronto, at the time, publicly begged Geri not to quit. We were despondently throwing ourselves down on the ground all over the place in grief.