A recent episode of Jamie and Doug’s podcast saw Jamie sharing her most raw feelings and bravely sharing her struggles with depression and anxiety.
Jamie Otis and Doug Hehner are one of the great success stories of the “social experiment” show Married at First Sight. Of the three couple who were matched for the first season of the show, one divorced before the end of the show, one divorced years after the show, and that leaves Jamie and Doug as the soul remaining couple. While from the outside, the couple may appear to be living the perfect life, Jamie recently opened up on her podcast about the difficulties she and her family have that aren’t clear to see to viewers on social media or TV.
All reality shows are more interested in presenting their own narrative than the actual reality. When couples on Married at First Sight reach decision day, it makes it seem like a couple’s entire marriage hinges on the choice made on a single day. When couples like Cortney Hendrix and Jason Carrion get divorced, it comes as a shock to viewers who fell into believing the narrative that a couple who is in love on decision day has found love for a lifetime. Jamie and her husband are bravely combating that narrative to help people realize no one’s life is a fairy tale and everyone has struggles, sometimes ones that are hard to see.
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Jamie held nothing back on an episode of her and Doug’s podcast, Hot Marriage, Cool Parents. She said that she wasn’t expecting to open up to the extent it did, but she had so much “on her heart and on her mind.” She also said it is freeing to share her honest truth, even the ugly side, although she also admitted it was embarrassing. Jamie talked about things like her problems trying to get pregnant again, her trust issues, and both her physical and mental health problems. Their podcast guest was professional life coach Dr. Gertrude Lyons, who specializes in helping mothers and families. She tried to help Jamie work through some of her feelings, telling her she needs to identify her root issues that keep coming up in her life.
Despite being a reality star, Jamie struggles with the same difficulties that many people do. She feels overwhelmed with her life, paying bills, taking care of her children, being a good wife, providing for her family, handling the COVID-19 pandemic, and alternating between feeling like she isn’t getting the support she needs and like she isn’t doing enough herself. At a particularly emotional moment, she said, “I’m begging for help…in every aspect of my life.” These utterly raw feelings are so relatable to so many people, and to have a reality TV personality like Jamie who doesn’t hide the pain in her life behind a perfect, touched-up photo is praiseworthy. Doug stepped up and tried to be open and supportive of his wife in a moving way. Dr. Lyons had meaningful advice to offer, as well, telling Jamie, “We really are way more safe and secure than our mind wants us to think we are.”
On top of speaking with Dr. Lyons on the podcast, Jamie is working with therapists to deal with her depression and anxiety. Jamie and Doug both encourage people to not shy away from seeking the help of a therapist to get through difficult times. Jamie was a great example of how even people who seem from the outside to have their life in perfect order always have hidden struggles. Prince Harry and Ed Sheeran have encouraged people to not struggle in silence. Life has highs and lows for everyone and the more open people can be about their struggles, the more we can relate to each other and help each other through to the other side. Jamie is using her Married at First Sight platform to model how others can be open about their feelings and be brave enough to ask for help.
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