STRICTLY judge Shirley Ballas has admitted men see her as a threat because she’s a strong woman.
The 60-year-old said the dance world was full of ‘dog eat dog, backstabbing and adverse bullying’.
She revealed she had suffered from feelings of ‘inferiority’ and ‘anxiety’ at the start of her career.
But Ballas told That Gaby Roslin Podcast that men didn’t like the confidence she now exudes.
‘I always had anxiety. My industry… was full of bullying,’ she said.
‘I learned through my life to have different personas and put on different hats.’
Ballas said she had ‘grown up with the inferiority of a woman… hang-ups about the shape of my body, my crooked teeth, my moles.
‘To get over that when I’m doing my job or striving forward — I have this different persona and I can switch it on in front of a camera.
‘What I’ve got to do is learn when to switch it off.’
Strictly’s head judge said that ‘as a strong woman’ in the dance industry ‘men seem to see that as a threat and there’s a lot of ego involved’.
And she told the podcast: ‘As I got older I got disliked by some people.
‘They didn’t like that you became a strong female who had earned the right to have an opinion.
‘I had earned my stripes in order to give my opinion and I generally find that men don’t like to hear that.’
But the star, who has been married and divorced twice, had praise for her boyfriend, Danny Taylor, saying: ‘He’s everything in a man that I never had before.
‘He likes me the way I am. He doesn’t think of one thing he would change about me.
‘He always sees the glass half-full, he’s that kind of person.’
Ballas also told the podcast she would love to land a role in Corrie.
‘I’d like to be the dance teacher that’s very strict on the Street,’ she said of her soap hopes.
‘All these things that go on in my industry, I’d like to bring to Coronation Street… the Strictly curse — it could be the curse of the [cobbles].’
And despite being nicknamed the Queen of Latin, she confessed she was ‘forever tripping over’.