Neighbours spoilers follow for UK viewers.
Neighbours star Sharon Johal has spoken to Digital Spy about the reaction to Shane's (Nicholas Coghlan) drug addiction storyline.
"I've been really pleasantly surprised with the feedback," she said. "We have such an amazing viewership and they're a very invested audience as well. You know exactly how they feel, because they will tweet it straight at you when stuff's happening!
"I watched the reveal episode twice and cried both times. That's really weird when you're the actor doing it, but I really feel for Dipi as a character because it is her whole world that has come crashing down."
"Drugs are an edgy, touchy subject and I'm really grateful that Neighbours have taken it on," she continued.
"It affects the whole family and Dipi is looking down the barrel of being with a drug addict for the rest of her life, so there's a bit of resentment there already because of the other things Shane has been dishonest with her about in the past."
But while viewers loved the storyline, some fans felt Shane deserved more sympathy from his loved one, while others pointed out it was the final straw for Dipi.
Speaking about the mixed reaction from fans, Sharon said: "It's one of those things where, whatever feedback you get, 99% will be great but that 1% is what you focus on. That's usually the negative.
"It seems to be middle-aged women who hate on Dipi for some reason. I feel like they forget what's happened up until now. Dipi has always had to baby Shane from the get-go."
Sharon went on to point out that Shane has put Dipi through a lot, including losing their property in Bourke and even moving them to Erinsborough without consulting her.
"He's done all of this stuff behind her back, he's lost money, and he doesn't tell her what's going on until it's exposed," she continued.
"They don't have this trust in their relationship. If this was a normal, ordinary marriage, it wouldn't have lasted 20 years like it has with Dipi and Shane.
"There is no way – whether it's the man or the woman in the relationship – you could get away with not consulting your other half and being dishonest like that."
Sharon also explained that Dipi is supporting Shane by sending him to rehab. "She's telling Shane to go to rehab because she's not a specialist, but he didn't want to go," she said.
"He reluctantly went but then he pulled himself out of it, thinking he can handle it. That's really frustrating for the family because he's not taking it seriously.
"So Dipi is supporting him but with tough love, because there is a real history of indiscretions, being dishonest with her and not being able to handle situations."
And Sharon also pointed out that Dipi has put up with 20 years of Shane letting her down.
"You have to remember there's 20 years where he's promised to do better and there's no way in hell a person can be that much of a saint their whole life," she said.
"Sometimes it does affect me when people say: 'Dipi is such a nagger, she's so annoying, she's so on her high horse'. She's nagging because he's not listening and she's having to repeat herself, which generally is what nagging is about!
"She has to take that position of being the responsible adult because he's acting like a child. My husband even says: 'There's no way I could get away with half the shit Shane pulls in real life!'
"So I actually think I'm being quite mild as Dipi! What's interesting to me is that it's women who seem to not get that."
Neighbours airs weekdays at 1.45pm and 5.30pm on Channel 5 (UK) and 6.30pm on 10 Peach (Australia).
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