Matthew Newton appeared on A Current Affair last night to answer some tough questions about his very public derailment over the past few years.
You can watch the interview here
Whatever your feelings about him (or ACA), it was pretty gripping television.
Does he owe the Australian public an apology? Certainly not, but one would think that Brooke Satchwell, Rachel Taylor and whomever else he’s belted over the years might get a look in while he’s establishing his own victim status on prime time television.
He wouldn’t want to cause them any further embarrassment he tells us, or bring the incidents any more attention, though by the very act of committing to a lengthy interview with A Current Affair he is doing exactly that, isn’t he?
Matthew is effusive when it comes to his own suffering, peppering his conversation with words like destruction, harm, panic, scars, breakdown, devastated, sad – all in an effort to help us understand what he’s been through. He turns a question about his final assault on Brooke Satchwell into an answer about his escape from a psych ward and his concussion. Matthew’s conviction for that assault was quashed, but he doesn’t feel he got off too easily he assures us, he feels he was not treated properly at the time for his mental illness.
He’s right about that of course. Late diagnosis after years of misdiagnosis is the greatest frustration of many sufferers, and many more family members who suffer alongside them. Matthew’s talent for articulating his experience is a gift few share and he was able to explain some aspects of his illnesses – which he says include “manic depression, acute obsessive compulsive disorder and some personality traits connected to those two” – honestly and with candor. He says he is now on daily medication to treat his health.
As gifted as he is though, why were there so few words for his victims? Was there ever a dawning realisation, as the medication and therapy did their jobs, of what he had done to those women who loved him? Who trusted him? What he’d taken from them? Is it fair of me to have expected to hear some of that in his comeback showcase?