Skip to Content

Simon misses Sanjaya, who is “the straight guy that understood” women and whose mom was jailed for pot

It’s time for another Sanjaya! news round-up. With even lower ratings now that Sanjaya is gone, even Simon Cowell misses Sanjaya, which might explain why Sanjaya was in the audience during Idol Gives Back.

“I do miss Sanjaya in a way. Even though I had problems with his vocals, I always looked forward to him coming on each week,” Simon told Entertainment Tonight. “I never knew what he’d wear or what he’d do. He’s very charming! I’m glad he is on the show, but I’m equally glad he’s not going to win. I think if he’d had won we might have had a problem!”

Speaking of problems, Sanjaya tells People that he had a problem getting teased by kids who thought he was gay. “I got teased in school because people figured I must be gay because I understand women. I think that’s why guys didn’t like me — because I got along with girls so well. When I went up to girls they would give me a hug and a kiss on the cheek like I was their gay friend. But I was the straight guy that understood them,” he said.

Right now, Sanjaya is single, because he dumped his “clingy” girlfriend. “I had a girlfriend but she became clingy, and I didn’t want to get into a really serious relationship because I was 16. I just wanted to date and have fun,” he told People.

In tangential Sanjaya news, his “mother went to jail for running an indoor pot-growing operation out of a garage,” the National Enquirer reports. “Jillian Blyth was busted in Pierce County, Wash., in February 2005 after neighbors reported smelling marijuana and noticed a large vent on the garage roof, according to court records obtained exclusively by The ENQUIRER.” Police “discovered 310 marijuana plants, growing lights – and Sanjaya’s then 17-year-old sister Shyamali.”

TMZ has her mug shot, and says Sanjaya’s sister “was arrested for possession.”

The ‘Idol’ Chatter! [Entertainment Tonight]
Sanjaya: ‘I Understand Women’ [People]
‘American Idol’ Bombshell: Sanjaya’s Mom Sent to Jail After Drug Bust [National Enquirer]
Sanjaya’s Mom — Popped for Growing Piles of Pot [TMZ]

All reality blurred content is independently selected, including links to products or services. However, if you buy something after clicking an affiliate link, I may earn a commission, which helps support reality blurred. Learn more.

More great stories

About the author

  • Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means.


I value our community at reality blurred, which connects people through open and thoughtful conversations about the TV we’re watching and the stories about it.

Comment rules: My goal is for us to be able to share our perspectives and exchange ideas in a welcoming, supportive space. That’s why I’ve created these rules for commenting here. By commenting below, you confirm that you’ve read and agree to them.

Happy discussing!