Zayn Malik tearfully asked his mother if he should quit One Direction.
The 22-year-old singer, who recently announced his decision to leave the band, turned to former £7-an-hour dinner lady Trisha during a series of emotionally-charged conversations over the phone and she ultimately told him to "follow your heart".
A source said: "Zayn is incredibly close to his mum. She has been his guiding light and he respects her massively.
"She and his dad Yaser raised him and his three sisters on very little money but they were always happy and wanted for nothing.
"That has made him realise that happiness is more important than fame and fortune.
"In any case, now he has the fortune he doesn't need the fame. Trisha pointed this out and told him the family are immensely proud and he wasn't letting them down by quitting.
"That's what swung it. If she had told Zayn to stick with the band, he'd have listened."
It's been widely reported that Zayn intends to launch a solo career, but his pal says his immediate priority is to "remember what it's like to live in the real world".
The source told the Sunday People newspaper: "He's spoken about this kind of breakaway idea for a while. He was thinking of combining it with One Direction but their runaway success ruled it out.
"He won't be doing anything until he's had time out and a good rest. He wants to remember what it's like to live in the real world."