Content warning: This article discusses suicide and suicide ideation.
A concerning video has emerged of Married at First Sight’s Olivia Frazer speaking about how distressed she became during filming.
It happened just before she and Jackson were asked to spend a night apart after being accused of having a codependent relationship.
“That whole [storyline of] me having a meltdown because Jackson was gone for a night,” Olivia says in the video, “I was freaked out that he was gone for the night because the day before I wanted to go home [and quit], but the psychologist behind the scenes told me, ‘It's okay you're with Jackson, just have a good weekend with him’.”
She then says Jackson needed to leave and she was left in the room without her phone or laptop, “after I'd been saying, ‘I will throw myself off the balcony.’”
“I told the house [associate producer], ‘I will throw myself off the balcony,’. He said, ‘Ah, don't say that.’”
Olivia is then asked if she said it as a joke and rolls her eyes. “That's a strong thing to say,” the reporter says, and Olivia replies, “Yeah, but I was like seriously distraught.”
Pressed about whether she was suicidal at the time, Olivia says, “I was not suicidal, but I was that upset, that distraught”.
'Some people laugh when they're nervous'
The video has been inundated with comments since being posted on Instagram on Thursday night. Those who have interpreted it as Olivia making light of suicide because her expression appears trivial, and are understandably deeply angered, however others are expressing genuine concern for Olivia's mental health and questioning whether there's more to the story than first meets the eye.
“Hmmmm this really doesn’t sit well with me,” one person says, “I don't think Olivia was trivialising or joking about suicide at all and I think it's pretty poor form to repeatedly ask her whether she was suicidal before telling her she wasn't suicidal (which, respectfully, is what you did).”
Someone else wrote, “If you want to read a smug look into that go right ahead. I know people that laugh or grin when they're nervous, it doesn't mean they think the situation is funny.”
Others took aim at the hate many commenters have been directing at Olivia, with one saying, “Very concerning that some of these comments are so sure of Olivia’s head space and state of her mental health…”
“You don’t really know what is going on in her head?? Why is everyone still hating on her?? We don’t really know her,” another insists.
A spokesperson for Lifeline tells Yahoo Lifestyle, "When people talk about suicide it is always important to take it seriously.
"Lifeline is here to listen and support all Australians. Call 13 11 14 or get support via text and chat Lifeline.org.au".
Fellow reality TV star Angie Kent has repeatedly expressed her concern for Olivia in the wake of the intense online backlash her portrayal on the show has sparked.
“The amount of online hate Olivia is receiving is starting to make me feel quite ill at ease,” she says in a column for Yahoo Lifestyle.
“If editing has a massive part and the chopping and changing of what’s been filmed and what has happened are making [the backlash] that little bit next level, then I do fear for her mental health. Heavily. I mean, I already do fear for her mental health but more so.”
Suicide after reality TV
Tragically, there have been many cases of death by suicide amongst former reality TV stars from shows including The Bachelor, The Voice and Gordon Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares.
Producers behind popular UK reality show Love Island have changed their duty of care guidelines to include psychological consultation throughout the series as well as in the 14 months following, after star Mike Thalassitis, died at age 26 in 2019, a year after former beauty queen and Love Island contestant, Sophie Gradon, died at age 32.
Another of the show's stars, Alex Miller, said a producer saved his life by putting him in touch with a psychiatrist after seeing some of Alex's comments on social media.
"I had a little rant on Instagram. I went through a bit of a dark patch and luckily one of the producers follow me on Instagram, saw the rant, got in touch with me and put me back in touch with a psychiatrist," he said.
"Looking back, all I needed to do was be forward and go talk to them. I didn’t want to talk to anyone about it, but after having ranted after answering a fan’s questions and speaking to the Love Island psychiatrist, it got me through it. It gave me a plan on how to take my life forward and now we’re here."
At 'breaking point'
Olivia has previously described herself as being at 'breaking point' after receiving abusive text messages from former clients who have her private number from when she used to work as a driving instructor.
In a recent interview with Mamamia’s No Filter podcast, she explains, “Not just kids I used to teach, but parents [messaged me] to call me a pig, a delusional t**t.”
“I think that was the breaking point, when I started getting texts to my phone, because I’d removed myself from online.
“That was really, really breaking point – people that I know, saying I’m disgusting, and they’re mortified they let me teach their kids to drive.”
In another interview with KIIS 101's Jase & Lauren in the Morning, Olivia admits that she and her loved ones have been the target of death threats.
“I’ve been getting death threats, my best friend's been getting death threats, people are sending violent messages to my mum saying I should go join my (late) dad,” she says.
Police called to Olivia's house
Just last week, Olivia had to call the police after disgruntled fans of the show drove up to her house and started hurling abuse at her.
Recounting what happened in a video shared on social media, Olivia says, “Some lunatics have just pulled up outside my home - don't know how they got my address - and have screamed that I’m a c***, I’m a rat, and I should die in a hole.”
“I can barely go out in public and now I can’t even chill at home.”
Her facial expressions in this video can also be described as trivial, but she was so distressed she also called the Channel Nine security team who came to spend the night outside her home.
Referencing the incident in her chat with The Wash, Olivia says, "I'm kind of feeling safer now. I've stopped going out in public as much."
"I'm getting a lot of hate, but some love. Little old ladies have been coming up, giving me cuddles."
Former MAFS star Cyrell Paule came to Olivia's defence online after seeing some of the negative comments about Olivia. “Ok guys, this is pretty f**ked. Let’s not go overboard now,” she says.
“She’s lost her job... she is already hated as f**k, and now this… Regardless of what she’s done, she doesn’t deserve this.”
Olivia has previously said that she lost her job "as a direct result" of her appearance on MAFS, and there are also rumours circulating that she may have been expelled from her university where she was studying to become a teacher, because of the nude photo scandal that played out on TV.
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