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Winner of Channel 4’s The Circle reveals she had six months of therapy

Winner of Channel 4’s The Circle reveals she had six months of therapy to deal with an ‘identity crisis’ after tricking a fellow player into believing she was a man named Felix

  • Recent winner of The Circle, Natalya Platonova, has spoken of guilt about stint
  • She spent weeks posing as a paratrooper called Felix to woo a rival contestant
  • Ms Platanova revealed she has since had to undergo six months of therapy 

It’s the controversial and bizarre TV show in which contestants can create a fake social media persona for themselves.

Now Natalya Platonova – the most recent winner of Channel 4’s The Circle – has spoken of her guilt after spending weeks posing as a paratrooper called Felix to woo a rival female contestant by telling her ‘everything a woman wants to hear’.

And Ms Platanova, from Reigate, Surrey, revealed she has since had to undergo six months of therapy.

Natalya Platonova (pictured) – the most recent winner of Channel 4’s The Circle – has spoken of her guilt after spending weeks posing as a paratrooper called Felix

She said: ‘I was torn apart with feelings of guilt and imposter syndrome. What I was doing was morally wrong because I was leading a girl on for a relationship. 

I was lying essentially to everyone about who I was. It started to really get to me.’

Contestants on the programme, hosted by Emma Willis, all live in an apartment block in Salford, but never meet in person and instead form relationships using fake social media platform The Circle. 

They rate each other, with the lowest-scoring player getting the boot, until there is only one person remaining. 

It was not until the final – recorded last year and screened this year – that rival contestant Manrika Khaira, 25, discovered ‘Felix’ was a sham.

Contestants on the programme, hosted by Emma Willis, (pictured) all live in an apartment block in Salford, but never meet in person

Contestants on the programme, hosted by Emma Willis, (pictured) all live in an apartment block in Salford, but never meet in person

Uzbekistan-born Ms Platonova said: ‘I kind of dug myself into a hole with that romance angle and I think as soon as you start to get emotionally connected in a romantic way that’s when boundaries start being crossed to a sense where you could actually be hurting a real human.

‘I was living in that lie. After I left, I just ate pizza and sat staring at a wall for four days. I didn’t know what to do. I had six months of therapy.’

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