Trigger warning: This article contains descriptions of sexual assault
Form Home and Away star Mat Stevenson has made a bombshell revelation on the new episode of spotlightcalled “The Fame Game”.
Mat played Adam Cameron on Home and Away from 1989 to 1994 and became famous for “killing off” the character of Bobby in a boating accident.
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When talk on the spotlight program turns to the “dark side of fame”, Mat speaks about the death of his friend and co-star Dieter Brummer, who died last year after a struggle with his mental health.
He then drops a bombshell by opening up on his own personal tragedy as a teenager.
Mat revealed that when he was 18, he was drugged and sexually abused – the day before winning a role on Neighbours.
He said he “suppressed it and suffered in silence” for a long time.
“I’m a bit uncomfortable opening up about my life because not many people know about it, but if it’s going to help someone, that whole notion of being vulnerable, then I’m all for it,” he begins.
“I was basically drugged and raped and dragged into a spa and thought I was going to drown, and then woke up naked somewhere.
“I was 18. And then I won my role in Neighbors the next day.
“I was a pretty fit guy back then too, but when you’re paralyzed there’s nothing you can do.”
Mat said despite suppressing the rape, the trauma came through in toxic behaviors such as drinking and gambling.
“I basically wanted to find the bottom as quickly as I could, and I got there pretty quickly,” he says.
“When you’re backing slow racehorses and drinking a lot, they’re two vices that’ll get you where you want to go pretty quickly.
“And when I found the bottom, I rang my brother up to snip him for some cash, and he said, ‘Aren’t you tired of making s*** decisions?’
“And I said, ‘Yeah. I am, mate. I think I am’.”
‘Good life now’
After the bombshell revelation, Mat said he was now in a good place.
“I got a bloody good life now,” he says.
“My greatest role has been (as) a dad.
“I’m coming through it. So Deit’s death ripped my heart out and I just don’t want to lose another block.
“So, if you’re suffering, reach out is the message.
“Yep. That’s the message.”
The Fame Game
spotlightwhich airs on Channel 7 and the screens of 7plus, explores the upsides and downsides of fame – including what happens to stars when their time in the spotlight comes to an end.
Hosted by Home and Away’s Ada Nicodemou and Cameron Daddo, TV legends including Tony Barber, Rowena Wallace, Greg Evans and Mat Stevenson share their highs and lows of celebrity life.
Also on the show are some of the most well-known stars who found fame on reality TV, including Brynne Edelsten, Ajay Rochester, Melissa Rawson and Bryce Ruthven.
If you need help in a crisis, call Lifeline on 13 11 14. For further information about depression contact beyondblue on 1300224636 or talk to your GP, local health professional or someone you trust.
If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit 1800RESPECT.org.au. In an emergency, call 000.