ABS-CBN’s Pinoy Big Brother (PBB) is proving to be as popular as ever. Casual and even non-viewers of the latest celebrity edition batch of the reality TV show are being inundated with drama that occurs in the show.
There is the usual drama about housemates having gripes about other housemates. Of course, the “Mariteses,” the derogatory term for gossip mongers, are their usual selves having a field day.
There are, however, issues that raise awareness on relevant and relatable concerns.
Albie Casiño, who recently got out of the house, shared that he has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD.
Albie was known as an exercise nut during his stay at the PBB house. He would later reveal in an episode that he turns to exercising for his mental health. He explained that it keeps his mind focused on one activity since his condition makes his mind preoccupied with a lot of things.
“Dahil po sa condition ko — meron po kasi akong ADHD — ‘yung utak ko, ang dami niyang iniisip palagi (Because of my condition — I have ADHD — my mind always thinks a lot). Pag nakakapag-exercise ako (But when I’m exercising), I’m in the moment na, ‘Walang ibang importante ngayon except itong workout na ‘to (Nothing’s more important than this workout),’” Casiño shared in the confession room of the famous house.
The American health agency National Institute of Mental Health describes ADHD as a disorder that is “marked by an ongoing pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning or development.”
Albie has always been in the spotlight since being dragged into the controversy involving the paternity of Andi Eigenmann’s daughter a couple of years ago. It turned out that after all the brouhaha, Jake Ejercito fathered the child, not him. Now he’s slowly gaining back his good name.
His contemporary and close friend, actress Alexa Ilacad with whom he had a sort of misunderstanding inside the house days before leaving it, also opened up about her body issues.
“I see myself differently than how it looks. When I look in the mirror I feel disgusted. I despise the person I see in the mirror,” Alexa shared to Big Brother in a previous episode. She revealed that it was her first time to seek professional help regarding this matter.
Alexa is among ABS-CBN’s homegrown talents who practically grew up before the cameras along with her contemporaries Belle Mariano, Sharlene San Pedro and Nash Aguas.
“I just never got the help that I need. Now, I know ito pala yun (that this is it). I’ve been in the industry for more than half of my life, starting as a kid. I was never the thin type. My body type was different from all the other girls. That made me hate myself. I tried all kinds of diets, workouts,” she added.
Psychologist Randy Dellosa said that Alexa might be suffering with major depressive disorder due to body dysmorphia.
He explained that body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is “an elevated feeling of insecurity tungkol sa kaanyuhan natin (in our appearance) and a dislike for one’s physical appearance.”
Dellosa added that unlike other forms of insecurities where most people manage to let go, BDD sufferers tend to obsess over their body insecurities.
Alexa was saved from leaving the house last week after being nominated alongside Kyle Echarri and Anji Salvacion.
Another issue that arose in the controversial house is the allegation of a housemate being too close for comfort or touchy with a housemate. Comedian TJ Valderrama was called out on social media, with the hashtag #ForceEvictTJ trending on 20 November. Some netizens alleged that TJ was a little bit too touchy with Shanaia Gomez. Some cited several clips that they claimed were proof of his untoward behavior. Big Brother called for an open forum and indirectly asked about the matter. The session ended with Big Brother reminding the housemates to “set boundaries.”
Women’s rights group Gabriela even issued a statement after taking note of the brewing issue.
“A reminder that unsolicited touching and physical contact, even in the context of friendship or even relationship, can be a form of sexual harassment. Maaring hindi agad napapansin subalit karaniwang hindi komportable ang biktima sa ganitong mga sitwasyon, at maari pang magdulot ng (It might not be noticed immediately but victims are often uncomfortable wiht the situation, and it could lead to) trauma.
“Nawa’y maging positibong venue ang PBB para matalakay ang mahalagang usapin na ito hinggil sa (We hope PBB will become a positive venue to tackle important topics such as) Safe Spaces, lalo’t bahagi ito ng paggunita natin sa darating na (especially if it’s a part of our celebration on the upcoming) International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (IDEVAW) sa 25 Nobyembre,” read the partlylist for women’s statement.
TJ’s girlfriend Cherry Valderrama, meanwhile, took to Twitter to call out the show for allegedly putting her boyfriend in a bad light.
“So PBB, porke gumawa kayo ng (just because you released an) episode to explain yung ‘closeness’ ni Shania at TJ, magiging ok na lang ang lahat??? Mga siraulo (It’ll fix everything? Crazy people).”
“There’s no way you can fix this! At di ako makikipagmeet sa inyo (I won’t meet up with you). Si TJ lang ang kailangan kong makausap (TJ’s the only one I need to talk to). PERIOD,” she posted.
The singer also aired her frustration over the issue’s effect on TJ’s parents and siblings.
There are still a lot of housemates living inside the house. PBB still has a long way to go and most probably will unearth more issues — and gossip — in the days to come.
Much to the delight of the gossip mill. Hopefully, there will also be more lessons to be learned. After all, popular TV meshes the good and the bad in between.