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20 December 2023, 10:47
The MAFS expert Mel Schilling made an emotional announcement online.
The relationship expert took to Instagram to announce the heartbreaking news, but assured fans that she was expected to make a 'full recovery'.
In the moving statement, Mel explained that she had developed 'severe stomach cramps' while filming the newest series of Married At First Sight Australia. The TV star then sought medical advice and was eventually diagnosed with colon cancer, despite initially being told her symptoms were due to constipation.
Mel also announced that she will be having a 5cm tumour removed this week and will be spending Christmas Day in hospital.
Mel shared the heartbreaking message on Instagram, writing: "'YOU HAVE CANCER'
"Three little words that everyone dreads but no one ever expects to hear. Last Thursday my consultant told me those 3 words.
"About a month ago when I was filming in Australia I developed severe stomach cramps on set, I put it down to all the travel I’d been doing and the upset it caused to my system. I saw my GP in Sydney and he put it down to constipation, gave me some laxatives and sent me on my way. Fortunately I knew something still wasn’t right so I booked in for a scan when I returned to the UK. On Thursday I was told I had colon cancer and in an instant my whole life changed."
Mel continued: "John Lennon famously said that life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans, how right he was. This week I had planned to travel to Northern Ireland with my family to spend Christmas with loved ones.
"Instead tomorrow morning I’m checking in to hospital to have an operation to remove a 5cm tumour in my colon, a tumour that had it gone undetected for much longer would have killed me.
"Despite this I feel incredibly blessed that it’s a cancer that is relatively easy to eradicate, I’m expected to make a full recovery though it’s a rough road ahead.
"I also feel so lucky to have an incredible support network around me, both personally and professionally, my own family and my TV family have been amazing this past few days."
The MAFS favourite added: "It will be so tough to spend Xmas Day in hospital instead of being surrounded by family but getting rid of Terry (what I’ve named my tumour) will be the best present of all.
"I just wanted to finish by saying that if something doesn’t feel right, please, please don’t ignore it and if you don’t think the answers you have got are right, keep going until you do, it might just save your life 💋"
Mel's followers were quick to flood her comments with supportive messages.
Loose Women panellist Colleen Nolan wrote: "Thinking of you Mel… you’re a force to be reckoned with and you can do this! Sending you so much love ❤️"
This Morning presenter Josie Gibson penned: "Mel, I am so sorry. I am sending you so much love. Your a life Angel ❤️"
While fellow MAFS expert Charlene Douglas posted: "You've got this Mel. Praying for a full and speedy recovery 🙏🏾"
Mel first burst onto our screens as an expert on Married At First Sight UK and the Australian version of the show.
She quickly became a fan favourite on the series, often offering supportive and insightful advice to the MAFS couples, alongside fellow love gurus' Paul Carrick Brunson and Charlene Douglas.
Speaking to Heart earlier this year, Mel teased what fans could look forward to on the 2024 series of Married At First Sight Australia.
Watch Mel Schilling discuss Married At First Sight Australia here:
Married At First Sight expert Mel Schilling teases upcoming Australian series
It is currently unknown when MAFSAU will air, however it is believed that the series has finished filming.