Music

Nick Carter Reflects on Journey of Grief One Year After Brother Aaron’s Death: ‘It Hurts’

Nick Carter is still grieving the loss of his younger brother Aaron one year after his passing.

The Backstreet Boys singer, 43, says he’s still having a hard time coming to terms with the loss of his sibling, who suddenly died on Nov. 5, 2022, at the age of 34.

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“It’s still unbelievable to me,” Carter told E! News. “I’m still processing the whole situation and trying to make sense of it –because it hasn’t.” He added, “But I’m hoping that one day I can make sense of it all.”

Aaron, who struggled with substance and mental health issues, was found dead in the bathtub of his home in California. Earlier this year, the former child star’s autopsy results were released by the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner, who ruled his death as accidental and revealed that he drowned in his bathtub after taking a deadly combination of difluoroethane and alprazolam.

Nick told E! News that despite their differences over the year, he and his late brother always made an effort to repair their relationship.

“No matter what he and I had gone through in our lives, we always were able to make amends, always were able to get back to that place, and now I can’t anymore and it hurts,” he said.

To help cope with the loss, Nick has been finding comfort in the support of his wife, Lauren Kitt Carter, and their three young kids.

“My children are my everything,” Carter said. “If I lost everything, if I wasn’t a Backstreet Boy anymore, if I didn’t have the opportunity to still perform for people and entertain them — as long as I still had my kids and still had my family, I’d be OK. All this stuff on the outside doesn’t matter to me.”

At the time of his brother’s death, Nick posted an emotional and devastating memorial to him, writing, “My heart is broken. Even though my brother and I have had a complicated relationship, my love for him has never ever faded. I have always held on to the hope that he would somehow, someday want to walk a healthy path and eventually find the help that he so desperately needed…God, Please take care of my baby brother.”

In January, Nick also released a tribute song to his late brother. The emotional ballad “Hurts to Love You” was accompanied by a video featuring footage of the siblings as children, along with a message from Nick on Instagram.

“Feel like we’ve been through some wars together/ Nobody else could understand/ Way too many nightmares to remember,” Carter sings over a spare, heartbeat-like beat. “Always hoped your tomorrows/ Would be better than the days before/ I hoped you’d find your road to follow/ To a place you were happy in this world,” he adds before the heartbreaking chorus, “Cuz it hurts to love you, but I love you still/ Miss you with all my heart you know I always will.”

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