The third season of The Real Housewives of Melbourne came to an end last night — and as usual, the reunion show served up some serious drama. When we chatted to the one of the Housewives, Janet Roach, at the Logie Awards last week, she filled us in on how harrowing those reunion shows really are — despite the fact some people may think it's all an act.
Janet also opened up about being diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, five years after her son was badly burned in an accident in 2011. Scroll for the experience in Janet's own words.
- On the reunion show: "We just filmed the reunion and, you know, normally the next day you're pretty tired because it's about 19 hours of filming. It took me a couple of days to get over it, it was a bit of a bloodbath this year. I was emotionally completely drained. We thought we were pretty seasoned, and I wasn't concerned going in. But wow, yeah."
- On wanting to throw in the towel: "Yep, I get to the end [of the season] and I say, 'I'm never coming back. I hate you all, don't ever speak to me again.' That's really how you feel, you're just so emotionally dead. And everyone changes their story at the reunion and you sit there going, 'I was there! You are making this up!' It's really frustrating, emotionally. And for poor Susie [McLean, the newest Housewife], it was her first! I said to her, 'You'll be fine, Susie,' and she said to me about two days later, 'I feel like I got hit by a boulder.'"
- On her post-show regrets: "Always the next day after I film I go over it in my head and go, 'Why did I say that? Why did I do that?' I just don't know that you can . . . Because it's your immediate reaction, you don't have the opportunity to filter it. I had a relatively easy season this year. I was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress this year [after her son's accident in 2011], and I didn't have any major fights with the girls. The first two seasons I was in the middle of them."
- On how the drama affected her PTSD: "I'd be in a position sometimes where I'd get really, really emotionally distressed and, being diagnosed, I thought, 'That's got so much to do with it.' Because everything was emotionally heightened. And I thought, 'Oh, well it's a good thing to be diagnosed.' I think the first two seasons I really struggled with all the fighting, and I realised you don't normally fight with people all the time. It's really, really upsetting. Particularly because we spend so much time together and we are friends, then we fight with each other . . . It's just the worst thing. It really hurts. And I think people think it's very interesting to watch but they don't realise that it really hurts. And when people say awful things to you, you're thinking, 'So many people are going to see this.' It's really hard."
- On opening up about PTSD: "I didn't want to tell anyone in the beginning. I didn't even tell the producer. Then a few things happened, they asked me a few questions . . . and then I decided that I would. And when I did, I honestly got about 40 telephone calls from people, which was amazing! It didn't turn out to be a bad thing, it turned out to be a good thing."