Australian Survivor contestant Georgia Jane Ray has opened up about the “agonising” illness that briefly forced her out of the game this season – and has revealed that her situation became even worse after she was voted out by her tribemates.
Viewers were shocked last week when Georgia, who was shown around camp looking pained and listless, first sat out a challenge and then left camp entirely to seek medical attention. She even skipped a tribal council – unheard of in Survivor – before eventually returning to the game. Her return was short-lived, though, as her tribemates voted her out at the next tribal council.
In a detailed new post shared to Australian Survivor’s social media accounts, Noosa-based forensic psychologist Georgia, 35, says she later discovered she was actually dealing with a potentially life-threatening ectopic pregnancy at the time. An ectopic pregnancy occurs when a fertilised egg attaches somewhere outside the uterus, and can be fatal if left untreated.
“Where to begin?” she started. “I want to take this opportunity to put to bed some of the confusion concerning my health on Survivor. I have had some people question the timing of my illness and also the 24 hour medical exemption. Most importantly, I want to find the courage to share my experience because I believe that telling your story releases you from it, no matter what it is … The good, the bad, and the ugly.”
Georgia writes that on the evening of her 18th day on Survivor – the night before she was briefly removed from the game and taken to hospital – she “suffered an extremely painful rupture to my fallopian tube due to an unknown and unexplained ectopic pregnancy.”
She says it was “longest and most agonising night of my life,” and says that “unfortunately the pregnancy was not identified by doctors” when she did receive medical treatment the next day.
Returning to the game within 24 hours but then getting voted out, Georgia’s symptoms worsened when she returned home. “I suffered another painful rupture (severe abdominal pain and further internal bleeding). The doctor at Noosa Hospital told me I was in fact 6 weeks pregnant and needed emergency surgery to remove the pregnancy and ruptured fallopian tube. Full on right?!?!”
Georgia writes that “quite a long and bumpy road of ill health” followed her surgery, but she has since made a full recovery, thanking her husband and two children for their support.
Georgia also writes that she decided to go public about the mystery illness to raise awareness of ectopic pregnancies, which account for around 1-2% of all pregnancies.
“I also want people to remember that it is more important than ever not to judge others harshly as we are all human and you never truly know what someone else is going through.”
Georgia’s fellow Survivor contestants have flooded her social media with supportive comments. Close ally Rachel, who was voted out in Monday night’s episode, wrote: “Your strength and bravery was formidable on that long, hard night. I am so sorry for your loss and the pain and the extra strength that you needed to find to get yourself through; not just only in the game but beyond it too.”
Fellow alliance member Laura wrote: “You are one hell of a woman GRay! We love you and just so happy you have now had the treatment you needed.”