Liam Payne says he and Girls Aloud star Cheryl enjoyed a solid relationship - until their son Bear came along.
Cheryl, 39, gave birth to their son in 2017 when ex-boyfriend Liam was just 23 years old.
Speaking to US YouTuber Logan Paul on his Impaulsive podcast, Liam said how he didn't "know what was coming" and struggled to come to terms with being a father.
He touched on the breakdown of his two-year relationship with Cheryl, and said: "To be honest with you, it ruined a relationship at that point – but for all the right reasons."
Image:Doug Peters/EMPICS Entertainment)
Praising his ex, Liam called Cheryl "the best mum in the world" and said: "I couldn't ask for someone better."
But he revealed it was scary when Bear was first born as Cheryl "haemorrhaged quite badly" after the birth.
This meant she had to rest for much of Bear's first day in the world – leaving a young Liam to care for his baby son.
"It was me and a baby in the room and I had to take care of it. It was fun," he said.
Just a year after Bear's birth, Liam and Cheryl announced their split.
At the time, they released a joint statement which said: "We are sad to announce that we are going our separate ways.
"We still have so much love for each other as a family. Bear is our world and we ask that you respect his privacy as we navigate our way through this together."
Their son Bear is now five years old and at school, but his parents have never revealed his face to the public, preferring to keep him out of the spotlight.
Discussing the relationship he has with his son, Liam said: "I take my son to school one or two times a week and it's the best thing.
"The relationship we [him and Cheryl] have now as friends has only grown more.
"We broke up for a reason and now she gives me full autonomy of my life and to do what I do and I know he's [Bear's] taken care of.
"He is all she cares about and I couldn't ask for more."
Talking about the legacy he wants to leave for his son as he grows up, Liam said his life now is all about Bear.
"My life now is his. My money is his. I have several companies he can run if he wants one day or sell – but right now he's only five so we have a long way to go."
But one of his biggest fears as Bear gets older is if he wants to follow his famous parents into the entertainment business.
Liam said: "The scariest thing for me is him waking up one day and saying, 'I want to be famous'.
"I've protected his face since he was young. I chose to be famous, well a singing career when I was 14... I know you can't pop the lid back on."
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