Tania loses track

Tania Jeffries’ (Faye Smythe) mounting stress sees an increased dependence on quick acting anxiety medication Zolopam on Shortland Street this week.

Recent events such as sister Maia’s (Anna Jullienne) broken marriage, Tania’s pending nursing promotion and being caught in the middle of the Scott-Spear medical scandal have all contributed to Tania’s anxiety. Unable to cope, she has closed off her family and friends and developed a heavy reliance on the drug.

Actress Faye Smythe says Tania is showing all the signs of a drug addict. “She starts to accept within herself that she needs Zolopam and she starts to justify it. That’s what people with addictions do, they justify why they need just one more and believe they can stop when ever they need to.” Tania’s addiction has her stuck in a downward spiral and boyfriend Anthony Richards (Michael Morris) is only making matters worse.

Ant recommended the drug to Tania and Smythe believes it is a way for him to maintain control of their relationship. “If Tania ever needs anything she is going to lean on Ant and ask him, because she is going to believe that whatever he is saying is true,” says Smythe. He likes that she is really dependant when she is on the Zolopam.” Tania has left everyone in the dark about her dependence and has her family and friends playing guessing games as to her strange behaviour.

“Anyone who has something to say who is not Ant is completely irrelevant,” admits Smythe. Tania refuses to listen when sister Libby Jeffries (Fleur Saville) accuses her of having a drinking problem after she mixes champagne and Zolopam, keeping her problems to herself. “[In Tania’s mind] Libby doesn’t know anything; how can she comment? She doesn’t know what she is going through.”

When Tania begins faking symptoms in order to gain further prescriptions, Ant finally becomes worried, but it may already be too late. Tania reacts badly when he advises her it’s time to stop. “When he does start to [become concerned], then she starts to believe the whole world is against her,” explains Smythe.

Smythe believes Tania must act now or face serious consequences. “[She risks] losing track of who she is, losing track of her true self.”

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Co-founder of Throng. Favourite TV shows recently: Homeland and The Newsroom.
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  • jelly

    I’ve just seen the info about the 15 years of Shortland Street dvds. Have they got actual episodes or just special features?

    Also, do any of them have James & Johhny (Approx ’96 – ’99)in the episodes?

    Finally, is there a website where I can find out some more info about these dvds?