Whitney Dean will be called to make a tough decision in upcoming scenes of EastEnders.


The character, played by Shona McGarty, is pregnant following her brief fling with Zack Hudson (James Farrar) and is to discover that her child has Edwards' syndrome. This is a condition that could, sadly, affect the baby's life expectancy.

"She's shocked, she's obviously devastated and it only leaves her with two options, and she really has to make a very difficult decision and think about what she would be able to cope with going forward," McGarty explained to RadioTimes.com and other press.

The actress also said that Whitney has always wanted to be a mum and is "battling with her own thinking".

"She tries to keep herself to herself. She locks herself away, and she doesn't want to think about it," she continued. She's battling with her own thinking and it’s such an unbelievably tough decision for her to make."

The diagnosis will have an impact on Whitney and Zack's relationship, but McGarty hopes that this heartbreaking moment in their lives could bring them closer together.

"Zack's devastated. They're both in two minds and they're both on different pages, but it's difficult and it puts a real strain on their relationship," she continued.

"As a viewer I would hope it brings them closer together."

Shona McGarty as Whitney Dean and James Farrar as Zack Hudson in EastEnders.
Whitney and Zack will get closer as they face a sad diagnosis for their baby in EastEnders. BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron

EastEnders has worked with Antenatal Results and Choices and SOFT UK to raise awareness of Edwards' syndrome.

"Working with the charities and speaking with women who have had experience with this really helped me to get a better understanding of emotionally what they were going through," McGarty added.

"Being an actress, I felt it was important to portray their feelings as accurately as possible, and also to get the medical information completely accurate, even the smallest details."

You can read more about Edwards' syndrome on the NHS website, or visit SOFT UKand Antenatal Results and Choices for help and support.

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