‘I really fear for Rox­anne’s well­be­ing’

In the wake of the back­lash, psy­chol­o­gist Emma Kenny ex­plains how Rox­anne could still bounce back

Closer (UK) - - News - By Kather­ine Romero

Her crit­ics de­manded she never work again, af­ter it was con­firmed last week that Rox­anne Pal­lett had quit her ra­dio show and stepped down from her up­com­ing panto role as Cin­derella in the wake of the “Punch­gate” scan­dal. One com­menter Tweeted, “I hope Rox­anne’s ca­reer is well and truly over, she has made a mock­ery of abuse char­i­ties and tried to de­stroy a man’s life”, while an­other blasted, “Rox­anne doesn’t de­serve to work again!”


The star has in­di­cated she’s quit­ting show­biz, with many of her crit­ics be­liev­ing there is no way back for her. So what does the fu­ture hold for Rox­anne now? TV psy­chol­o­gist Emma Kenny – who in­ter­viewed the ac­tress for Closer in 2016 – says she be­lieves she needs to re­flect on her ac­tions and ad­mit she lied in or­der to move on.

Emma says, “When I in­ter­viewed Rox­anne, she was very pleas­ant to chat to, but I felt she was a bit re­hearsed and was some­one who craved the lime­light. For Rox­anne to say her past vi­o­lent re­la­tion­ships ex­plain how she acted to­wards Ryan feels false. Of course there are such things as emo­tional trig­gers; a wo­man who was once abused may re­act strongly when­ever some­one in­vades their per­sonal space. But it’s a mo­men­tary re­sponse. It doesn’t ex­plain why Rox­anne seem­ingly em­bel­lished and then stood by her ac­cu­sa­tions days later, al­low­ing them to be­come even more dra­matic.

“From what many of her former co-stars are say­ing, I be­lieve Rox­anne dis­played ma­nip­u­la­tive be­hav­iours and intended to ex­ploit a sit­u­a­tion for her own gain – in this case, to grab the lime­light. She craves the at­ten­tion to an ex­ag­ger­ated level. It doesn’t mat­ter that the CBB house had cam­eras, a nar­cis­sist thinks every­one will be­lieve them, no mat­ter what.


“That be­ing said, the wave of back­lash against Rox­anne is scary. I ad­mit I posted some angry tweets about her be­hav­iour – which I still firmly be­lieve was wrong – but the pun­ish­ment should fit the crime, and it’s gone from Rox­anne need­ing to apol­o­gise to her not be­ing al­lowed to re­cover from this. And I’m a big be­liever that every­one should feel they can come back from a neg­a­tive sit­u­a­tion.

“I really fear for Rox­anne’s men­tal health and well­be­ing with this in­tense back­lash. For her to move for­ward from this, she firstly needs to ac­cept the fact she lied. When I work with clients who have caused hurt to other peo­ple, as a ther­a­pist I need to make them fully own up to their ac­tions and feel the shame and re­morse. Only then can you progress.”

Emma adds, “I do think CBB could have han­dled the sit­u­a­tion bet­ter. Their big mis­take was not show­ing Rox­anne the footage when she first made the com­plaint in the di­ary room and ex­plained that her ver­sion of events didn’t match up. By al­low­ing her to sleep in a sep­a­rate room and giv­ing Ryan a warn­ing, they made the sit­u­a­tion ap­pear se­ri­ous and al­most reaf­firmed her ver­sion of events. If they had nipped it in the bud straight away, not only would they have saved Ryan a lot of emo­tional tur­moil, but they would have likely pre­vented the huge pub­lic back­lash.”

“I don’t be­lieve Rox­anne de­serves the surge of hate she’s re­ceiv­ing, but she does need to own up to her mis­takes. If she does, I be­lieve she has the po­ten­tial to be­come more hum­ble and lik­able to oth­ers.”


But while Emma be­lieves Rox­anne could bet­ter her­self, pub­lic re­la­tions ex­pert Nick Ede be­lieves her celebrity ca­reer is un­sal­vage­able. He says, “I don’t see how Rox­anne can come back from this. It’s be­come clear this isn’t a one-off in­ci­dent, and the re­al­ity is that she’s had so many co-stars come out and pub­licly slate her. Pro­duc­ers

and di­rec­tors may now feel she won’t put bums on seats in the­atres or draw in huge au­di­ences.


“Be­fore Rox­anne’s scan­dal, the big­gest drama in CBB was the late Jade Goody be­ing caught up in a race row against Shilpa Shetty. That al­most ru­ined Jade’s ca­reer, but she pulled it back be­cause she showed re­morse for her ac­tions. The is­sue with Rox­anne is she wasn’t sim­ply mean to Ryan; she ap­peared cal­cu­lated and de­cep­tive. It’s no won­der view­ers don’t buy her apol­ogy, be­cause now peo­ple feel they don’t know what’s real or fake with her.”

How­ever, PR agent Mark Borkowski be­lieves there could be hope, telling Closer, “It’s fair to say Rox­anne is at a cross­roads with her ca­reer, but noth­ing is over un­til it’s over. The first stage of cri­sis man­age­ment with PR is self-help. If you have is­sues that need ad­dress­ing, you have to seek help. Rox­anne’s fo­cus should be ad­dress­ing her is­sues and tak­ing some time out of the spot­light. Time is a great healer when it comes to pub­lic per­cep­tion, and de­spite the back­lash be­ing in­tense, that usu­ally sub­sides – espe­cially if a celebrity shows they feel re­morse­ful.”

Open­ing up to Emma Wil­lis last week about whether she could ever save her ca­reer, Rox­anne ad­mit­ted, “I am scared about the fu­ture, but to be hon­est Emma, I just need to think about to­day. I saw a sit­u­a­tion that was in­no­cent and mis­judged. And that was be­cause of me and my sen­si­tiv­ity, fragility, over­re­ac­tion. I used to think they were char­ac­ter traits but they are char­ac­ter flaws and that’s what I need to go away and work on and sort out.”

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