Former LIMITLESS Member Yoon Hee Seok Speaks Up About Conflicts With Members And Agency CEO

Former LIMITLESS member Yoon Hee Seok has opened up about why he left the group.

This May, Yoon Hee Seok took to his personal Instagram account to state that he was leaving LIMITLESS. Soon afterwards, his agency ONO Entertainment released a statement saying that they had not canceled their contract with Yoon Hee Seok and were unable to get in touch with him.

On August 10, Yoon Hee Seok made a post on his Instagram account to state what had happened.

Warning: discussion of suicide.

Read the translation of his post below:

I am currently in a very unstable state, so please understand if this post is not very coherent.

I gritted my teeth and endured it for almost a year because I didn’t want to write something like this, but I decided to write this post because it doesn’t seem like there’s any other way anymore.

While I was preparing for my debut after joining the agency, the company the agency had merged with went out of business. We couldn’t receive lessons anymore and didn’t have a practice room, but even in such poor conditions, we had voluntarily come together, so we prepared for our debut with the one thought that we wanted to achieve our dreams.

In July 2019, we debuted as a group called LIMITLESS. After we wrapped up the dreamlike promotions for our first album, we were informed about the addition of two Chinese members [to our group]. Not long after, I found myself in significant pain from the alienation and verbal abuse due to discord between the members. I wanted to recover my relationship with the members, but it did not work out smoothly, and as I was living in the dorm, I had no one to talk to about the situation, so the illness in my mind grew bigger. I told the CEO several times about how hard of a time I was having due to the problems. However, he turned a blind eye and told me to tolerate [the members] because that’s how they normally are.

Last December, I could no longer take it and told the CEO about the situation and that I wanted to leave the team. The CEO listened to what I said and told me that he knew how much trouble I was going through as well as the problems the members have. He stated to me that he would cancel our contract for me after our concert scheduled for late December. At the time, I was suffering from having to give up the job I really wanted to have and from the difficult situation I was going through. I worked hard to prepare for the concert since it would be my final one, but even then, the discord between myself and the members continued, and practicing for the concert was not easy. After the concert was over, I spoke with the CEO, and he suddenly blamed everything on me and said he would cancel our contract after a radio show appearance that was scheduled for early January. So I carried out all of the activities as part of LIMITLESS as he had told me to, and I had countless talks with him during the times he was available, but he postponed resolving the issue with a different reason each time. In the CEO’s meetings with my parents, he said different things to me and my parents and tried to pit us against each other.

The eight months were like hell to me. I took pills to fall asleep at night and got severe depression, anxiety disorder, and panic disorder, and all I thought about was wanting to die. Because of these issues, I even attempted suicide. I couldn’t bring myself to tell my parents, so I told the CEO in cries that I was having such a tough time that I even attempted suicide. However, the CEO turned a blind eye. I’m sorry to my parents who will find out about this through this post.

I lost my identity, and I felt like my life was crumbling down with every passing day. I couldn’t wait for the CEO who was avoiding me, so I uploaded a post on social media saying I was leaving LIMITLESS. The CEO hurt me once more by releasing a false statement saying that he was not able to get in touch with me and that [my post] was false. I was utterly distraught when he said to me about my depression diagnosis that anyone can easily get a medical certificate for depression.

I’m very sorry to have to reveal this to my parents, to those who supported me, and to my fans who loved me despite my shortcomings.

I gritted my teeth and bore with the situation, thinking that if I just endured it for a bit, everyone would be happy, but it’s too hard for me to stand it any longer. The thought that I don’t know who I am deepens, I keep getting negative thoughts, and I think I am having issues with controlling my behavior. I’m really having a hard time.

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제가 현재 많이 불안정한 상태이므로 글에 두서가 없더라도 이해 부탁드립니다. 이렇게까지 글을 적고 싶지 않아 1년이 다 되어 가는 시간동안 이악물고 버텼지만 더이상 방법이 없는것 같아 글을 적게 되었습니다. 회사에 합류하여 데뷔를 준비하던 시기에 합병했다는 회사가 망하여 엎어지고 레슨이 끊기고 연습실도 없는 열악한 상황속에서도 자발적으로 모인 만큼 꿈을 이루겠다는 마음 하나로 데뷔 준비를 하였으며 2019년 7월 리미트리스라는 그룹으로 데뷔하게 되었습니다. 꿈만 같던 첫번째 활동이 끝난 후 갑작스런 중국인 멤버 2명의 합류를 통보 받았으며 얼마 되지 않아 당시 멤버들과의 불화로 인한 이간질, 언어폭력 등으로 상당한 고통을 받고 있었습니다. 멤버들과 관계 회복을 원했지만 원활하게 되지 않았고 숙소 생활을 하고 있는 저로서 아무에게도 터놓을 사람 없이 마음의 병이 커져갔습니다. 대표님에게도 수차례 안좋은 문제들로 인하여 힘들다고 얘기하였습니다. 그러나 결국은 묵인이고 걔들 원래 그러니 참아라 였습니다. 결국 작년 12월 더이상 버티기 어려워 대표님께 이러한 상황들을 말씀 드리며 팀에서 탈퇴하고 싶다는 의견을 말씀 드렸습니다. 대표님께서는 제 얘기를 들어주시며 제 수고를 모두 알고 있다고 하고 멤버들의 문제점 또한 너무 잘 알고 있다며 12월 말에 예정된 콘서트만 끝나면 계약을 해지하여 주시겠다고 말씀 하였습니다. 당시 저는 너무 하고싶은 일을 그만둬야 하는 것과 너무 힘들었던 당시 상황에 괴로운 상태였습니다. 마지막이라고 생각하고 저는 그렇게 최선을 다하여 콘서트를 준비하는 와중에도 멤버들과의 불화는 지속되어 콘서트 연습 또한 수월하지 못하였습니다. 콘서트가 끝난 후 대표님과 면담을 하였으나 갑자기 모든 책임을 저한테 돌리셨고 1월 초에 예정된 라디오 스케줄을 끝내면 계약을 해지하여 주시겠다고 말 하셨습니다. 그렇게 지금까지 대표님의 말씀대로 리미트리스로서의 모든 스케줄을 소화하고 대표님의 스케줄에 맞춰 수도 없이 면담을 하였지만 대표님은 매번 다른 이유로 해결을 미루셨습니다. 대표님은 대표님과 저희 부모님과의 면담에서도 저와 부모님에게 말씀을 다르게 옮기며 이간질을 했습니다. 8개월의 시간은 저에게 지옥과 같았습니다. 저는 매일 약을 먹고 잠들고 우울증, 불안장애, 공황장애가 심하게 오며 죽고 싶다는 생각뿐이었습니다. 이러한 상황들 때문에 자살시도까지 하게 되었습니다. 부모님께는 차마 말씀드릴수 없어 대표님께 자살 시도까지 할만큼 너무 많이 힘들다는 상황을 울부 짖으며 말씀 드렸습니다. 하지만 대표님은 모든것을 묵인하였습니다. 이 사실을 이 글로 알게 되실 부모님께도 너무 죄송합니다. 제 정체성을 잃고 제 인생이 하루 하루 망가져가는 기분이었습니다. 그렇게 저는 저를 회피하시는 대표님을 기다리다 못해 리미트리스를 탈퇴하겠다는 글을 SNS에 올리게 되었고 대표님께서는 저와 연락이 닿지 않고있고 사실 무근이라며 거짓 공식 입장을 내시며 저에게 또 상처를 주셨습니다. 또한 제가 받은 우울증 진단은 누구나 뗄 수 있는 진단서라는 소리를 듣고 가슴이 정말 찢어졌습니다. 저에게 힘이 되어 주었던 분들과 부모님, 그리고 부족한 저를 사랑해주셨던 팬분들에게 이러한 사실을 말씀 드리게 되어서 너무 죄송합니다. 제가 조금만 견디면 모두가 행복할거라는 생각에 이악물고 참아봤지만 더이상은 너무 힘이 듭니다. 제가 누군지를 모르겠다는 생각이 깊어져만가고 안좋은 쪽으로만 생각이 많이 들며 행동제어에도 문제가 있는 것 같습니다. 정말 너무 힘듭니다.

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