Mel Greig reveals dark thoughts following royal prank call tragedy

Penny Burfitt
Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
Mel appeared on this Morning to talk about the prank call tragedy seven years on. Photo: ITV

Former radio host Mel Greig has opened up to British breakfast show This Morning about the heartbreaking 2012 royal prank call tragedy that saw a nurse take her own life, saying the backlash and guilt was so extreme she herself had to ‘battle’ to stay alive.

The now infamous prank call saw Mel and then radio co-host Michael Christian call the Lindo wing as part of a practical joke in which they impersonated the Queen and Prince Charles, asking about Kate Middleton’s health while she was hospitalised with morning sickness while pregnant with Prince George.

Tragically, the nurse mistook them for the real deal and forwarded the call to another professional who spilled confidential details of the pregnancy to the duo.

The incident saw the nurse who made the transfer, Jacintha Saldanha, take her own life just three days later.

Though seven years have passed since the tragedy, the host says it continues to permeate every aspect of her life, and at one point almost led her down a very dark path before she found closure in an unlikely place.

"If I’m perfectly honest it's been hard to live. There was a point about six months after the prank call where I contemplated if I should still be here,” Mel told This Morning hosts Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford.

Mel and co-host Michael Christian intended the call as a joke, and could never have guessed at the tragedy that would ensure. Photo: 2Day FM

"The guilt I felt for what happened and the trolling I was going through. I was in isolation and people were continuously telling me 'go kill yourself, you don’t deserve to be alive’. I did face the battle to save my own life,” she admitted.

The host went on to explain she eventually overcame the turbulent emotions saying she ‘chose life and to learn from what happened’.

Mel attended Jacintha Saldanha's inquest to apologise to the family. photo: Getty Images

She also revealed it was attending Jacintha’s coronial inquest and apologising to the family that marked a point of closure and helped her move forward.

Mel says the incident still haunts her, affecting her personal and professional life to this day and even resulting in a contract being torn up less than two weeks ago in connection to the tragedy.

Mel is now an outspoken advocate of women’s health, and continues to work in the media.

If you are concerned about the mental health of yourself or a loved one, seek support and information by calling Lifeline on 13 11 14, Mensline on 1300 789 978, or Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800.

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