Married at First Sight star Tracey Jewel has revealed the horrific toll of her stint on TV – exclusively telling WHO this week that she wasn’t the only reality TV face who was forced to seek help in a mental health clinic.
Forced to check herself into hospital for two and a half weeks to deal with agoraphobia and anxiety she says stems from her traumatic experiences on the hit show – as well as its painful and humiliating aftermath – Tracey says her admission to the facility was the first time she was given decent care.
And she says that another reality TV figure was also getting help there at the same time she was, pointing to a much wider problem with what the genre can do to people.
‘Let’s just say I wasn’t the only reality TV star that was in there,’ Jewel says. ‘They were going through exactly the same things as I was, so it was a really good support.’
Since moving back in with her parents, Jewel says she’s received overwhelming comfort from her friends, including her reality show ‘ex-husband’ Dean Wells.
‘Dean’s in Sydney but he just calls and texts to check in on me,’ Jewel explains, saying she’s heard nothing from ex-boyfriend Patrick Kedemos. ‘I just received a legal letter – through [Kedemos’] lawyer – asking to repay money, which I was quite shocked about.’
A spokesperson for MAFS producers Endemol Shine said the company had offered appropriate support during filming, and afterwards.
‘We are not aware of any diagnosis however we take our duty of care extremely seriously. Throughout production and during broadcast of Married At First Sight, psychological support is fully available to all participants at any time. Once the show concludes on air our production remains in contact with participants and psychological support is available to them if needed.’
Read the full interview in this week's issue of WHO, on sale now.