EastEnders Hayley Slater

EastEnders star opens up about heartbreaking childhood bullying

Bravely honest

During his time on EastEnders, actor Danny-Boy Hatchard had viewers in tears as they watched his character Lee Carter cope with depression.

But in real life, Danny has faced tough life struggles himself.

In a new interview the laddy actor has revealed that he was not only bullied at school, but also found himself struggling in lessons because he was living with ADHD and dyslexia without even knowing it.

Danny Boy Hatchard was complemented on his performance as Lee Carter, who’s suffered from depression (Credit: BBC)

Read more: EastEnders viewers point out obvious mistakes in Steven Beale’s fake cancer plot

And he says that he feels like the school system really let him down because they never understood the issues he was dealing with as he grew up.

“I went through a mad journey when I was being bullied at school,” he told You’re Welcome magazine.

“You have all of these emotions that you’re going through and your hormones are pulsating through you left, right and centre.

“I was going through a real identity crisis during that time. I was also trying to deal with the way male bravado worked and get my head around the hierarchy of people trying to fit in at school.

Danny says that he was bullied at school (Credit: BBC)

Danny, who is about to star in thriller Eyes Closed, Ears Covered at the Bunker Theatre in London, added: “I found it really hard at school and if I’m honest, I think the educational system failed me because it didn’t take into account that kids have different ways of learning.

“I am dyslexic and I have ADHD and I found it hard to focus in class.

“I hadn’t been diagnosed at that point, so my teachers just assumed it was a behavioural issue, which in many ways it is – but it’s also a disability.

“It was something I struggled to control.”

Danny says he was diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia at 21 but thinks schools should help more (Credit: BBC)

Read more: Jo Joyner opens up on dementia heartache

Danny says that he only got diagnosed with Sylvia or ADHD when he was in his second year of drama school.

“I was 21. It was a lot to deal with,” he continued.

“These things need to be discovered a lot earlier, but I think they are getting better. I just think the way kids are taught things needs to be looked at.”