Bobby Bones proved he's not all fun and games and crazy antics on Monday night's episode of Dancing With the Stars. The country music radio host opened up about his heartbreaking childhood during the video package before he and partner Sharna Burgess performed a contemporary dance.
In the emotional video package before the dance, in which Bones discussed his "most memorable year," he revealed that his most memorable year is 1998, the year he graduated high school — something no one in his family had done before.
"My mom was pregnant with me when she was 15 years old and struggling with addiction and she had to drop out of school. She didn't graduate high school," Bones said, revealing that he "didn't know my real dad, he left when I was — I can barely remember."
Bones' childhood in Mount Pine, Arkansas was not easy. "I never had a bedroom growing up. I slept on the couch in the living room," he said in the video package, while real-time video footage showed him crying while watching. "My closet was underneath the couch. I kept all my clothes under there."
"I knew for me to kind of get out of the culture that I was in, I needed an education. School was important to me to try and break the cycle," he continued. "When I graduated high school and put on that cap and gown, it was a big deal to me and it was a big deal to my mom."
In fact, it was such a big deal to his mom that she herself went back and got her GED before she died. "My mom, she died in her 40s from drugs and alcohol abuse, but right before she died, she went back and got her GED. She told me it was because I graduated high school and I inspired her to do that," Bones said, tearing up.
"Oh man, sorry — I don't want to cry on freaking TV," he said, wiping his eyes.
The SiriusXM host said that the lyrics to the song he and Burgess were dancing to, "A Million Dreams" from The Greatest Showman, were significant to him because they reflected how he felt growing up.
"The words to this song are just the words that I felt as a kid and feel right now," he said. "What I would like for people to see is that it doesn't really matter so much where you come from. It's where you're going. It doesn't matter where you start. It's just how much you want it."
Later, after the show, he told Entertainment Tonight that he hopes viewers were "touched" by his emotional routine.0comments
"I hope that people are touched by that. I think it's why I tell my story, so people don't feel so alone," he said. "I felt very alone for a lot of my life. But once I shared my story more and more, people say, 'Hey, I get it and I understand you.' It kind of encouraged me to tell it more. I just don't want people to feel alone."
Dancing With the Stars airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.