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The Real Housewives Of Melbourne On Handling Difficult Women

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Things are heating up as The Real Housewives Of Melbourne kicks off Season 3. So will there be tears, tantrums and feuds? Well, all will be revealed when the show commences at 8:30pm on Sunday February 21 on Foxtel’s Arena, when our favourite housewives plant their luxury lives square in our living rooms! Prepare for plenty of antics and entertainment as Gina, Jackie, Lydia, Gamble, Chyka, Pettifleur and Janet are joined by new housewife Susie McLean – the country girl turned Toorak housewife. We couldn’t wait that long though, so decided to ask the housewives for a little advice on how to handle women you can’t stand. Here’s their gloves off answers. Go ladies!

Gina Liano: Criminal barrister and glamazon

“Usually I avoid these women but sometimes that’s not possible. It’s important that you play nice and keep your dignity, although you may need to handle confrontations with conflicting personalities and women who are high maintenance. In difficult interactions, I usually just let them rant, but occasionally they can get the better of you (not mentioning names, Pettifleur!). On those occasions you might need to meter some tough love!”

Lydia Schiavello: Jet owner and fashionista

“My advice is to feel sorry for them, walk away and disengage. I have been accused of being a ‘fair weather friend’. Rather than argue, I walk on by – their opinion is none of my concern. My friends know who they are. Believe in yourself and kill them with kindness and smile.”

Gamble Breaux: Lover of all things beautiful

“Give as good as you get and don’t back down! Humour is the best cure to any intense situation, so say something to them that will make you laugh afterwards. When I was hopping mad at Janet for calling me a stripper, I called her a bunch of outrageous things in return. I was crying in the car on the way home from Chadstone after our fight – I was really very upset. However, I started laughing because the expression on Janet’s face when I called her the ‘Keith Richards of Toorak’ flashed was gold!”

Susie McLean: Country girl turned Toorak housewife

“Typically if I am in a situation where I completely detest the woman, then I would usually just ‘fresh air’ her. Or, if really provoked, just tuck a strip of toilet paper into the back of her skirt! I once had a situation where a woman that I didn’t like came up and interrupted the conversation I was having with a couple of girls. I stopped talking, stood silent and stared at her with a blank face. The other girls, knowing how chatty I usually am, suddenly did the same thing and she ran away with the wind in her hair.”

Janet Roach: Twice divorced and playing the market

“I try not to give conflicts any oxygen. It annoys the other person so much more if they hate you, but you just don’t care about them. In Season 2, Gamble suggested I ‘sold my body for heroin’. I didn’t jump up and down and retaliate. I said, ‘that’s a bit rough,’ and left it at that. She didn’t have anywhere to go.”

Chyka Keebaugh: Socialite and event party planner

“There really haven’t been many instances in my life where I have met a woman I can’t stand. There have definitely been annoying women, but I try to see the good in people and always believe there is a reason that some women can be tricky.

“Working in the events industry, there are many women and men who feel the need to show you how important they are. What I do know is that killing a person with kindness and just listening to what they want and have to say usually works for me. Don’t allow your ego to get in the way and know that if you can soften them down just a little, you have them! For me, that’s the best way to handle a problem and get the best results!”

Jackie Gillies: Psychic and a rock star’s wife

“Gina and I had a few issues in the first two seasons, so I decided to ask Gina to meet up for a coffee off camera and work it out. We both came to the conclusion that there were a lot of lies being spun by third parties and we made a pact to only speak to one another if we had issues with each other – now we are BFF!”

Pettifleur Berenger: Determined, feisty and glamorous

“How do I handle women I can’t stand? I cannot categorically say ‘I can’t stand a woman’, because I will not allow myself to carry that burden of anger on my shoulders. It is easier to show love to someone that has been mean to you than it is to take on the negative energy yourself – I leave people like that to drown in their own anger.

“I entered a cafe a few months ago with three other ladies and politely asked the owner if we could have a quick breakfast because we were in a bit of a hurry. She answered, ‘Well, it’s up to you – we are very busy.’ That should have been my sign to leave. We were in Degraves Street in Melbourne’s CBD with a tonne of cafes, but instead I looked at the ladies for an answer and they suggested we stay. The owner then proceeded to speak in a foreign language to the staff and didn’t attend to our table for at least five minutes, while her staff stood around the counter. She finally decided to attend to our table and take our order with a very stoney, distasteful look on her face. We were quite aghast at her behaviour, however, sat through this unnecessary treatment. We were trying to figure out why this woman was treating us this way. Her husband realised her behaviour was atrocious and had a word to her and from what we could gather, she had a massive go at him too. She looked like she could slam him on the ground and break every bone in his body! I then decided to flip this bitch over and treat her with the utmost kindness. I smiled at her. I told her the food was great – even though it sucked and was overpriced. I said hello to the frightened husband and daughter. And when I politely asked her for the bill, she barked back at me, ‘You need to pay at the counter.’ I replied, ‘Absolutely. Not a problem.’ The next moment the crazy woman brings the Eftpos machine to me at the table with a very forced smile!

“Deep down I was disgusted with the treatment and wanted to tell her where to go. However, I was not going to give her the satisfaction of letting her feel good about upsetting me. Instead, I wanted her to feel like the total bitch she was and let her grovel in her filthy, disgusting actions. I refuse to give disgusting behaviour any attention and treat women who are mean to me with a zero care factor.”

Want more goss’? Check out the Real Housewives Of Melbourne for catch-ups, insights and videos here

Written by Franki Hobson

Franki Hobson has worn many hats during her many years as a women's lifestyle journalist and editor. Her launching pad was COSMOPOLITAN magazine, where she moved from News & Entertainment Editor to Features Director, covering everything from the legalisation of the Morning After Pill to Gwen Stefani, fashion, beauty, sex, health, fitness, entertainment and relationships.

In 2003 Franki immersed herself in all things teen as Deputy Editor, then Editor-in-Chief of teen Bible DOLLY magazine. Following this, Franki was made Editor of COSMOPOLITAN Hair & Beauty, COSMOPOLITAN Pregnancy and COSMOPOLITAN Bride magazine, where she held the helm (and tiara) for more than 10 years. Franki was also the launch editor of COSMOPOLITAN Health magazine, and is an accomplished Homes Editor and Travel Editor, covering honeymoon destinations, family travel, luxe abodes and health retreats. Franki Hobson is a contributing lifestyle writer for The Carousel.


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