Tulisa Contostavlos, 24, has reportedly reunited with her long-lost half-brother Neil Jones, who is 35. According to a report published by the Daily Mirror on March 5, 2013, Contostavlos and Jones met in person for the first time on March 3, 2013. The Daily Mirror quotes Contostavlos as saying about her reunion with Jones: “I’m so happy to finally meet my brother. This has been a very important weekend for my family.”
When Tulisa's father, Plato Contostavlos, was 13, he fathered a son with an older teenage girl (whose name has not been made public), and their son was put up for adoption. That child was Jones, who did not find out that he had a biological sister until he was 17.
Tulisa's parents split up when she was 10. For a while, she lived with her mother, Anne Byrne, who has had a long struggle with mental illness. (Mother and daughter went public about this struggle in the 2010 documentary "Tulisa: My Mum and Me," which was televised in the U.K. on BBC3.)
After her parents' breakup and when her mother was hospitalized over psychiatric problems, Tulisa went to live with her father and her stepmother Melanie. (Plato and Melanie are now divorced.) In several interviews, Tulisa has discussed her troubled childhood and her rebellious teen years, including her battles with depression, eating disorders, self-harming and substance abuse.
According to the Daily Mirror, Tulisa spent five years looking for Jones, who met Plato before he met Tulisa. An unnamed source told the Daily Mirror: “Tulisa feels like the final piece of her family jigsaw has been completed. She has spent years trying to find Neil and was delighted after finally discovering his whereabouts.
"They communicated online and agreed to meet up over a coffee. Tulisa was incredibly nervous but the meeting went really well and Neil has been welcomed into the family with open arms. Tulisa could not be happier. It’s been an emotional few days.”
While things have been going well in Tulisa's personal life (she has been happily dating soccer player Danny Simpson since October 2012), things haven't been so great with her career. She has not commented on tabloid reports that she has been fired from "The X Factor" U.K. (Representatives for the show will only say that decisions are being made about the show's judging panel.)
Tulisa (who found fame in 2008 as a member of the hip-hop trio N-Dubz) became a judge on "The X Factor" U.K. in May 2011. In her first year as an "X Factor" U.K. judge, she mentored Little Mix, the first group to win on the show.
But Tulisa didn't do as well in her second year on the show: In 2012, the highest-ranking contestant in her mentor group was Ella Henderson, who came in sixth place. There were also reports that Tulisa was frequently tardy at show rehearsals, and she got a lot of backlash from the public for her profanity-filled Twitter feuds and flaunting her hard-partying antics. The backlash was evident when Tulisa's memoir ("Honest: My Story So Far") and her first solo album ("The Female Boss") were huge bombs when they were released in 2012.
N-Dubz has been on hiatus since 2012 so that the members can pursue solo careers. Several insiders have predicted that because of Tulisa's faltering solo career and reported "X Factor" dismissal, she will likely want to do a new album and tour with N-Dubz in 2013 or 2014.
"The X Factor" U.K. judging panel for 2013 should be officially announced by May.