Kevin Clifton shares life lessons from ‘being divorced 3 times before age 35’

Kevin Clifton says he’s too old and hanging up his dancing shoes

Strictly Come Dancing star Kevin Clifton wowed fans for years before leaving the show in 2020, and while the professional dancer was a consistent fan favourite, his love life was more than turbulent throughout his run on the BBC series.

Kevin entered his first marriage when he was just 20 and by the age of 36 had signed his third set of divorce papers, after three years of marriage to his former Strictly colleague Karen Hauer.

Now in a long-term relationship with TV star Stacey Dooley, the 40-year-old candidly revealed that the biggest lesson the divorces taught him was to “do the work on yourself first”.

Speaking on The Disrupters podcast with Rob Moore, the professional dancer revealed he believes his mindset was the reason his marriages weren’t working, sharing: “It’s that thing of thinking, ‘Ah if I just have that I’ll be happy’, you know. But it doesn’t work like that.

“I’ve had so much anxiety and unhappiness in all of that for so long and things went wrong. Now I feel really happy and everything goes right.”

Sharing some sage words of wisdom, Kevin declared: “You’ve got to be happy on your path and then things will fall into place how they will rather than how you think they should.”

The professional dancer doesn’t think of his failed marriages as mistakes or regrets, noting that he can’t class them as that as they each taught him something.

In fact, when faced with the question of what was his biggest regret, the star emphasised that he doesn’t regret “the big stuff” like the end of his relationships as regrets, adding that he doesn’t count things as regrets if he chooses to learn from them.

However, he does still have one moment “that makes me cringe inside”, dating back more than 20 years to his early dancing career when he was still taking corporate demonstration gigs to make ends meet.

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As a budding dancer, the Lincolnshire-born star was still learning how to interact with a crowd through words on a microphone rather than just moves on the dancefloor.

Kevin enlisted the help of his charismatic dad to write some jokes for one gig, without realising he’d “got a bit carried away” and had put one “really rude joke” in.

The dancer shared, recoiling in his chair: “I had just planted this joke in the middle of this ballroom dance show and you felt the air go out of the room. Still to this day it’ll pop into my head and I wish I’d never said that joke in that room.”

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