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The Capital Weekender with Charlie Powell 10pm - 1am
1 October 2019, 17:11 | Updated: 1 October 2019, 17:16
The Circle contestants have psychological support on standby, much like Love Island.
Channel 4’s reality TV series The Circle means players must spend up to three weeks in an apartment on their own, communicating with the eight other players over a specially designed social media network meaning they never get to meet face to face – unless they get blocked.
Three weeks completely alone can easily take its toll on a person's mental health, but there is a psychologist on hand to help the contestants through when times get difficult.
When we asked just how lonely things really get, 2018 winner Alex Hobern told Capital: “You get runners that come in and out of your room, but you don’t get to speak to them. You get to speak to psychologists, which is always helpful to have someone to confide in when you’re experiencing symptoms to do with isolation – as you can imagine being stuck in a flat for three weeks.
“Outside of that it’s just speaking with the people on the screen and engaging with them as much as you can.”
Explaining how things did get difficult, Alex said: “You pick up feelings very quickly about the people you’re engaging with because suddenly that’s your world – there are only eight people in your world for three weeks. So when things get heavy or there are arguments you’re just stuck in a room with no one else to talk to except for those eight people.
“But there were definitely times I thought, ‘I'm going to throw in the towel here’. There were times I wanted to tell everyone who I was and there were times I was absolutely living the dream thinking, ‘I’ve got this in the bag’. It’s ups and downs but it’s all part of a journey, which is why we’re so close as a group after the show.
“Particularly the final four, because we were the only ones who had that journey together from the beginning all the way to the final. There’s no one else yet – there’s about to be – but we’re the only four people who can say, ‘that was hard’.
“When we’re all together now people say, ‘please can you stop talking about The Circle’ and we’re like ‘you don’t understand!’”
Alex added that he and the other finalists are still all in touch, even with Dan who Alex catfished into thinking he was a girl named Kate whom Dan developed feelings for.