#134 – Mick Hall — Prison, Heroin and Rehab/
- July 20, 2018
The Daily Talk Show — Friday July 20 (Ep 134) – Josh Janssen & Tommy Jackett
Mick Hall has lived what can only be described as a colourful life; shaded with some of the darkest human experiences and struggles. From prison time to a heroin addiction, Mick has remarkably done what many others can’t — build a whole new life. He’s the founder of rehab centre, DayHab, helping Australian’s with the complexity of addiction.
Mick’s company, DayHab – http://www.dayhab.com.au/
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Wait a minute.
sometimes worth recording
with Josh Janssen
and Tommy jacket. The Daily
talk show. We've got a special guests, Nicole. Welcome, Max. Hello.
How are you guys? Yeah, we're very good. Excellent.
We're just talking about a day. We've all
I mean, I can only speak for myself. Everyone's pointing the finger at me when I was young saying I had it. And my mom said, You got it? Yeah. And
I do turn
jokes. A new mom. What's the difference? Do we know what the difference between ID day and Id HD is one sort of
hyperactive disorder or attention deficit disorder.
I think that that he was added later in. I think it was a bit of an add on here. But but a good
add on. It makes sense. And another letter in that
hey, we wanted you on. Well, I'd sort of told you and I have explored your storey with him because you and I've worked in the past I've helped your good friend Craig Harper and yourself capture your storey through interview and you're a fascinating is it really just a colourful?
colourful, colourful is really, really plot? Yeah, really fun and
colourful character because I mean, you can go anywhere with colourful Yeah, well know the way that Tommy it's always funny hearing how people sell different people in and so Tommy's quick sentence to get people excited about you is, you know, was in jail with chopper and that's your hair and heroin addiction who's saying the other side and now having people but I follow it with
now has founded a rehabilitation clinic.
The last bit to be clean. He goes, he goes on the hard bit. He goes on. This guy's a bit funky and loose with a now he's he helped was loose, but now I'm tired.
Yeah, it's very, it's very true, but it's a good description. I mean, yeah, the colourful fits. And you know, you the elevator pitch Batman is quite good.
finishing with your wholesome guy. And you know, the thing with the, and I, I would love to push in different areas. I don't know how comfortable you are. But the reason I talk about the Java stuff, and not to glorify, but at a time when I was young at in high school. Yeah, I was reading all of choppers, books. Yeah. I was so fascinated by get this just quickly. I went to this. I went to an affluent Melbourne school. One of the kids parents bought the Pinterest prison. Which bought you.
Were you in the Pinterest? Oh, yeah. I did do a bit of time at the very end of the Pinterest prison era
was each division around when you were there or not?
Yeah, I was around. Yeah.
And so the reason I mentioned Pinterest is kids parents bought Pinterest prison. We had a dance party in B division. Literally, we had the sales over like, Hi, we had
a couple of dance parties. There's
Yeah, which one had more drugs.
And so that's where I'm like, everything about it was fascinating. And I'm sure we'll touch on bits of your storey. But from what I've heard, you've been to hell and back.
Yeah, yeah. When you're on I mean, absolutely.
Now, my, my personal storeys, it's, even to this day, it's sort of when I describe it to people, it's still, you know, it's hard for me to imagine me being the little one, you know, other people sort of listening in, but and funnily enough, I mean, I'm a I'm an an ex addict, I'm in recovery have been for almost 18 years. But yeah, it was a few years into my recovery. Before I actually realised how extreme my storey was. You say to me, when you're living a particular lifestyle, it's your only normal? It's kind of all you know, and I knew it wasn't normal, normal. But it was that bad. Yeah, but now that I look back, I got back. Well, you try to survive at the time, so you can't be thing. It's too bad. Because you're amongst right. Yeah, yeah. No, I mean, look, I was suicidal, I want to didn't want to live and, and had, you know, like many suicide attempts, and some pretty serious ones, too. But, but I still didn't, you know, it's weird. You know, like, I got clean and sober. And I thought, I almost thought I wasn't bad enough to be a real addict. You know, incredible. And that's, I guess that's the denial. And and I guess, in one sense, you have to have that denial. When you're living in extreme life. And you're involved in addiction to be able to survive, you've got to have a certain level of denial. Because if you accept reality as it really is,
man, who won live, you know, can't can't live with that. Do you have Facebook? No.
Because I was was wondering, I was always wondering me, I'm afraid. Yeah, I always start the show with finding out if we could be friends on Facebook. No, because I always want to having a transformation, you've got the you know, did you find that as the addiction, you know, as you started to, to go through rehab and go through that? I always wonder about sort of your friendship groups and your network. Do you have to people leave when the drugs go?
What What happened? Yeah, quite often. I mean, that's, I mean, that's normally what happens, I mean, for me, was a little bit different to the average Joe, because I was involved in a criminal element was involved. And that was just part of the lifestyle I lead. Yeah. Or that. Not that I led that I was led by. And, and when I did sort of come out of the addiction, to leave that old world, would you believe that was incredibly dangerous, and it was very detrimental to me, and it was scary, and all those things, I was almost more scared of leaving it behind. Because it was the only kind of thing that I thought that I could do. I didn't believe that getting clean and sober and getting recovery was actually possible. And once you connect from the top of world that I was in, he can't go back, you know, I want sort of you not well liked once you leave it. And you know, and it has to be a real definite decision to walk away from that lifestyle.
I think we'll get to sort of, you know, that I didn't year ago period, and what that felt like for you, but Josh and I were both not addicts or anything, you know, just food addiction and having an addictive personality. And you know, Josh has never done drugs. Yeah, I have done drugs. I did
the whole genome testing through Dan through 23andme. And it said that I'm not predisposed to if I was doing heroin, I'd probably go harder or something like that. But I'm sort of study
and so you know, like, looking back to when you first started dabbling?
Yeah. What I mean, was this just circumstantial, or did you feel like you had, you know, maybe like, I shouldn't do it, because I've got, I might be a Josh, you know, I might be a Josh. Nah, no, I had no understanding of addiction whatsoever. I mean, when I first started using and drinking, I mean, I was 12. I didn't know anything about addiction. I didn't know anything about anything. I all I knew was that in my life, and so so from primary school, I started using and form one in seven. And all I knew was was that I hated who I was. I felt embarrassed of myself. I was completely and utterly frightened of everything.
Terribly bullied, and bashed at school, and just felt
awful. You know? And, and when I had my first real drink, it was, I mean, I used to wag school all the time. Not like, I mean, yeah, weekly, I would wag school. Not because I was a bad boy, but because I was intensely lonely, frightened, and, you know, and just felt shit. So I would waggon school and I met a guy. I've told the storey before I met a guy down the back of the train tracks, I went to single tech down the back of the train tracks, which runs along the back of the school and he was a couple of years older than me his nickname was monkey and he whistled at to me and he said, Hi make Do you want to get paste? I said, Boy, yeah, we're on a simple cable white here and he got on his push bar. He wrote it up to me at widely shops, people to fly guns a Portage and brought it back and he handed me the flagging. And I didn't even know what port was. And I whip the title
is Josh No, no, I do. It's horrible. It's horrible. Our whole issue
with the top off the bottle, the pungent smell hit my nose and it fucking stunk like, Oh, it was terrible. My thought was not it's it's a real pungent. Anyway, I took the bottle to my lips. And as it as this stuff hit my lips. It tasted worse than it smell not. But as it hit my stomach. Man I can to this day, I can still remember how it made me feel. And all of that negative shit that I was just telling you about. Left me vanished.
Did you know about the the negative shit? Like Is that something that you retrospectively say now or in the moment? Where you actually feeling and recognising those thoughts? It's retrospective. You know,
I didn't know what was wrong with me. I thought I was just pathetic. I thought there was something wrong with me. And that was just a pathetic mistake.
You know, that scares the shit out of me hearing you know, a 12 year old kid feeling those feelings. I've got a Cinderella storey make up a 16 month old. Wow. Congratulations. Yeah. And you know, your father I am. And you know how it makes you more emotional soon as the ELD become a big softie. But it's I think about those feelings as a toy, you know, for for my son. Where was your parents at that? At that stage?
Hey, look, my parents, my parents loved me. And but unfortunately, my mother was, you know, very emotionally unavailable, not deliberately, she had her own issues going on. And she was incredibly emotionally inviolable. My father is a legend, not luck. I love my dad so much, right. He's, he was my best friend, throughout my whole life. And he always tried to back me, but unfortunately, he's very naive. And, you know, back in, in the era, if you can imagine in the, you know, late 70s, early 80s, where he just really didn't understand he didn't know anything about addiction. He didn't know anything about talking about your feelings, or you know, how you going, you know, he knew that are struggling at school, and he knew that there was stuff going on, but he didn't know what to do about it. Yeah, basically, they relied on the teachers, at school, teachers at school with back and hopeless. So, you know, there was just no help. I just received no help. And it wasn't from this is nobody else's fault. Like, I don't blame anyone. It's just the time that I grew up in, and the people that are around, I just didn't know any better. And, and certainly, I didn't. So, you know, I was kind of caught in that. But it is, you know, it is hard, but it makes me feel sad talking about it. Yeah. As to how I was, you know it. And it's driven me as a father now. You know, my kids, I've got three kids, I've got a 29 year old daughter, who was an addict, when he's clean now. And I've got two younger kids, I've got a 17 year old son who's about to turn 18. And I've got a 12 year old daughter. And these kids. Now one of the things that I wanted to do with it, especially the two youngest, is I wanted to make sure that all the stuff that I missed out on, I would provide for them. So that means for me, you know, it's been incredibly important to teach them how to be emotionally articulate, to be emotionally intelligent, because that is going to be the best defence against addiction that I could possibly have, the more I can get my kids to understand their emotions to be able to be able to articulate them, the less likely they are to have a problem with drugs and alcohol. Because they're not going to turn to it for a solution. They've already got the skills. But not only that, you know, on on near for my son in terms of my son's a boxer, and he's won his first three fights. I'm very, very proud of him.
He training you now. You're looking bloody trim as well, I do
train with him. And we're actually sparring against each other tomorrow morning.
So this is your last interview.
And he's that he's given me a couple of injuries as well. But But look, he's got Olympic dreams. And he's, you know, he's training and and and you know what, it costs a lot of money. You know what I mean? Like, there's a lot of equipment is a lot of time, a lot of effort, lot of that on there for my son on there. Because I wish I hadn't been given the opportunities that I can give my son to Alex create other attics.
It's not a thing. Well, the addicts
create other attic,
it gets in the sense of two parents, did parents have kids that are addicted? Like what's that relationship? Was it just pure coincidence? Is there a genetic component?
Yeah, yeah, there is a genetic component? No, we know that. That if a family has alcoholics and addicts in it, that any children that are born into that family have a greater likelihood of picking up the addiction. Gene, so so genetics play about a 30% role in determining whether or not someone becomes an addict or not. So just because your brain is susceptible, and already has the makeup without getting too technical, but or already has the makeup to become fully addicted, not everybody will go down that path, you know, and again, even if the Brian has that makeup, if that person develops the right emotional skills, right, and psychological skills, and, you know, make some good choices in their life and, and and kind of doesn't, I guess, doesn't fall into that, you know, into that position where they're going to start feeling emotional pain or psychology pioneers start using drugs? Yeah, they've got a great likelihood of not ever developing a full blown addiction, well, they have
this, they have this energy, right, and they have a choice of where that energy goes. And it could be really a positive that you probably athletes are created from that same sort of Yep. Instead of genetic makeup is showing up every day in the drive to do something. Yep. So you could you can put it into boxing, or you can put it into something that's not as good for you. Well, yeah,
That's, that's right. But I mean, you know,
it's like somebody, it's like somebody coming from an abusive background. You know, just because someone's had an abusive childhood doesn't mean that they're going to be an addict, it doesn't mean that they're going to have problems when they get older. It really depends on the person. And and it can depend on what supports around what, who they come across in their life, how, you know, a million different factors come into play, just because it's been so background doesn't mean that there's going to be a certain outcome. It's the same with successful stuff as well. Just because someone's successful doesn't mean that the child is going to be successful either.
Yes. Right. You know, so I, I left school when I was 16. I started drinking at 12. Yeah. And my life, I guess it's going to know, much different direction. And I've always had those thinking around. Am I doing this too much? a smoker, I remember smoking weed for 30, at least a month straight. And I was like, That's too much. And I had that that was like 16 that time? Yeah. And so that's pretty thoughtful around that. Normally, my friends were all talking about that. And and, thankfully, the circle I was hanging around with my close friend, none of us became addicts in that respect. But we always dabbled. And so you kind of went on from being the 12 year old kid who's had his first taste. Yeah. I mean, what's that journey then along along that path?
Man, for me was it for me was instantaneous. There's some people that slowly but surely, drink or us themselves into addiction over a long period of time. And there's many people that can sit here at 25 or 30. Say hi, now I'm lucky on that was never an addict. And then at 50, we got man get this going to rehab, because it's taken over, you know, so this is something that can develop over a long period of time. For me, it happened right from the get go. My first drink was the best drink I ever had. So it only got worse from there. And my first drink, I was in a blackout. So that's where you're still operating and doing things, but you have no memory of it. It's like an amnesia. So I was in a black hair, went down the back of the school and called the principle of fracking this and the fucking that wander down the train lines apparently passed out on the train lines, Principal family ambulance cold in hospital, alcohol poisoning, parents cold, and that's the best that ever got. It only got worse from there. So my, my life, and my addiction was an epic train wreck from the first drink. And so I never I can tell you I never thought about doing this too much. I just, you know, quiet in this day. My I was out of control from from the word guy. Was it self destructive? Oh, yeah.
And was it? Do you think it was designed that way? Were you? were you doing it in a way? Where was it sort of suicide by alcohol? Or was it actually an enjoyable experience that you feel?
It's a really good question. I think it fluctuated. Sometimes it was a bit of a suicide, you know, like, sometimes it was it was done in complete and utter self pity. And just I just want to Skype, whether that's through death, or whether that's through a chemical feeling, or whether that's through whatever consequence, see, part of the things with addiction is the consequences really don't come into play. We push them aside as addicts, you know, there's a there's a real, I guess, denial that slips in and pushes all the bad consequences to one side. We know they're coming. But we don't give a fuck yeah, we do it in Why? Because I just cannot live in this moment like this anymore. So I just want to fuck and I'm going to drink and you know if that, that if that results in me being locked up, if that result in me being, you know, dead, if that results in me being in trouble, and I'll think about it later.
Is that driven by anger inside? Like, you know, the feelings of hating yourself and all of that. But I know in terms of my life, I've felt like, I've when I was young, I feel that I don't give a fuck about it. And that, you know, there's a freedom to it.
Today having having Yeah, having never done it, it's sort of Yeah, it's it's, it's they talk about, you know, detachment being a powerful thing. in some regards, what you're describing is detachment in a really sort of negative. Yeah, the only, but it's a Yeah, it's sort of opening yourself up to whatever happens happens without any sort of idea of consequence. Was it anger driving you for those years after? You know?
Look, if I'd say it was anger, I mean, I definitely
spies looking back and say that was self hide, you know,
you know, I didn't like who I was, I thought I was a defect. You know, I thought that that I just wasn't, I was just different to other people and not different in a good way. Are you different? You know, it was different as in New York City, you know, and I've never believed in my life until I got well into my recovery, that I was worth anything. And it was any possible why I could have any type of success at anything. never believed for one second. So so that's just what I went with now. At 1213 1415. I wasn't walking around thinking anything too deep.
Yeah, it is almost like a mask, right? It's not like the thing that like you were going at anger. Like that's just what comes out of all of this sort of that's right self whole
I don't get the fact who it is, whether it's we're in pantry, Jean de division in the odds, and there's a big teddy guy with tattoos, libraries, faces, you know, wanting to smash everyone and Shin, or whether it's, you know, me on any given day, or anyone else in between all anger is covering fear. Right. It's all about fear. The biggest, toughest blog that has to continually prove himself is frightened of not of being someone coming along and being you know, bigger and badder. You know, I like it's so the fear is what's underneath. And I've always had a fear talk about the loneliness and, and I was frightened, and all that sort of stuff. And as a little child, and you know what, like, when I was 28 years old, up in Queensland walking to maximum security prison, with no drugs or alcohol in me. I was no different internally to what I was when I was eight, 910 11 years old. Yeah, exactly the same, I'll just exactly where I was back at, except now, my life really was on the lawn, and I couldn't show it in any way, shape or form. So So become very, very good it this is part of addiction, you know, we've become very, very good at masking, at surviving, adapting, all that sort of stuff. I mean, addicts are very resourceful, extremely resourceful, usually incredibly smart people in a particular way. Yeah. You know, we're very, very good at, at making it through at, at finding a way through finding a way to survive, even though you know, big part of us internally is trying, is it going against that? You know, it takes a lot of energy, a lot of effort to do that
is an entrepreneurial effort.
So you've you've used that entrepreneurial element for good
of light to tell us what so what is the business? What's the business? Yeah, so I run a rehab, rehab called die head. It's a residential treatment centre, and, and helped thousands of people turn their lives around from addiction to an organisation that I started about seven years ago. And I put my heart, my soul and some of my money into it as well. And, and and slowly but surely over the last seven years, I've built a really good strong organisation. I'm incredibly proud of it. I've got lots of people that work for me, most of whom have been through addiction themselves. Yeah,
what's it like having a workforce that are all
exotics? Good and bad?
Because we're all fucking crazy. And everyone's fucking highly emotional, super sensitive, and at different stages of their recovery. And no, I mean, people think that, you know, you're in recovery. Ah, thank God, everything's okay. Now. That's golden, you know, but it ain't locked back, you know, just the start
of the journey. Oh, yeah. So use him that resourcefulness that you had in finding drugs and surviving jail to create this was some of those feelings of the 12 year old kid or that person that sounds like, you know, they couldn't break through that. Those young years, those feelings come up when you started this business, we doubting yourself?
Yeah. Oh, yeah, definitely, you know, but I mean, this business was started at 10 years into my recovery room. So for the first 10 years of my recovery, I spent most of that not really still not really believing that all is going to be successful, or I could be successful in any way, shape, or form. It all started at the very beginning, when I first rented an apartment, I'd never had an apartment or a bill in my name ever.
What is that process? Like?
It's unbelievable, right?
Yeah. is a hard as well, like, what's the actual administrative sort of stuff when they looking like it's, it's hard enough, someone who hasn't been in jail or has left school? apartment, that's, yeah, super hard. So being in in that sort of position of guess that you're relying on the the world and community to give you a another guy,
absolutely solid, really relied on, someone should have just done what might really have fucking high plus, but we'll give you a shot and just see what happens. And that and luckily, for me, that's what happened, you know, I'll go to go to little unit and buys water. And, and it was an exciting time for me and I walked for the first time I ran to the property and, you know, some fucking crazy and I like I was getting recovering 90 stops type responsibility for yourself, you know, but I used to, I used to get off on paying my bills, you know, like, I used to walk down to the post office with my, you know, like my gas bill, and I'd scan the barcode and staple the receipt onto it and fold it up, put it into my pocket, walk out of there gonna have a big boy, I'd be I'd get off on it. It's been at,
you know, is that a conscious thought to do that, or you just, that was just how you felt? Well, I think now I'm going to, I'm going to turn this into something really positive, not just how
it came about, you know, like, I was just saying that it was like a whole new world opening up to me that I never dreamed in a million years was possible for me. You know, um, but it was simple stuff like that. But, but look, you know, the self doubt plagued me throughout my recovery, I'd get a job. And I'd never work legally since I was 17. So almost 30 at this stage about Tommy, but really got some work and got a job about 32. You know, so I was like a 16 year old leaving school, you know, and I got into the job as a child and an adult body. And the top, I'm sitting in, you know, wherever I am at work, I'm waiting for the old stuff, tap on the shoulder, excuse me. So it made a horrible mistake, you're really a fuck, wait, and I get out. And I've always been waiting for the rug to be pulled. So as an addict through my life, I'm the master of rebuilding my life. And this is this is helped me in good stead in recovery. And in business. I am the master of having my life completely athlete fucking pulled out from under me, and completely entirely rebuilding it in a very short period of time to do that again, and then do it again and do that again. So but that becomes what you expect.
rehabilitation. I've had some friends in jail, and I've gone visit them. And I didn't really get a sense that the jails are they rehabilitating them, which is essentially what they're trying to do. They're trying to turn you over into a new person in a confined space. What did you find? What When did you first go to jail? And what was your take on it?
Yeah, good question.
Well, I don't know if Giles about rehabilitation. You know, um, I mean, was I sell it tonight? Well, I didn't, I didn't I mean, it's about punishments about justice. And I reckon it's about punishment.
Yeah. Yeah. But I think if they go, we should, you should have in 10 years, and you come out the other side, and you should have learned your lesson.
And along the way, they that's not rehabilitation, is it like
little things in there, I've always maybe I'm wrong, but I've always felt like they sell it as you've been caught, you're in trouble. Now you're going away, and you and we're going to try and at least
help you out gets it, I get the sense of it's like you're not fit for public consumption. So we're going to put you away with a group of people who are also a big fucking tweet to can't be in public feel like it would be a pretty scary, scary sort of place.
It is, look, there's not a lot of rehabilitation that happens. But I mean, it's up to each individual prisoner as to how much effort they want to put into rehabilitating themselves. You know, and, and that's really what it comes down to, you gotta push for it, you know, you got to have some good behaviour, you got to be transferred to a prison where there's some programmes available. And then you've got to apply for them, and you've got to push for them. So this is what I want to do. And of course, it all comes back down to behaviour, how you acted within the prison, but you've got all sorts of peer pressure there. Remember, prison is a world that you don't know about. Unless you find in there, and it's anything that you think you know, out here on the outside means nothing in prison. It is a completely different world, different rules, different different fashion. And believe me, there is prison fashion. Right. So everything right, so what is
my and I was looking to shoot, and usually Where's narky? You said that banknock he's in here because everyone was rolling each other for them. Yeah, they'll bashing each other. I want you to Rockies. So they only had like two brands that they could wear
Yeah, you've got a few tattoos any that you got in jail? yeah
wait until you got out and like pocket now go to court a few. What's the deal? what's the what's tech culture like in jail? What was the deal?
mall? I don't know anymore. It's been a long time since I've been in there you know, and the back when I was in there, I mean, today's weren't as popular as they weren't as they are now. Some guys said something to me. Not that long ago, I thought was quite funny. He said so many people got tattoos. Now it's too hard to tell who's tough. But it's bit but look back in the day. I mean, tattoos were you know, only the people that had sort of been to prison or had had some sort of you know, being gang affiliated or something like that. Really heads to the prison terrorism we used to call it you got to earn your stripes, you know, and let's
just go to Smith straight on calling way
nobody's earning this draw. You know, and but you can tell the difference between between prison tats and you know, attach that a designer, you know, playing Gundam at the local shop and
what are the what are the tattoos mean to like, what does it mean at the time and what do they mean to now?
You know, my very favourite Ted was one that's on my ankle, which is probably my worst head. Oh, yeah. I'm just at lifting my leg up and let the boys have a look at the rise of the Black Rose, yeah, it says Jessie on it, Jesse. So that's my daughter.
That one was done at one run prison.
I went so the goal is nine but we're in the in the breast guy. So we're in the toilet. And I'm there with my leg kind of up in the A him with a dirty old tattoo gun with a blunt needle and Indian ink and you know, trying to ram this thing into my leg and it was so fucking painful. It was unbelievable. And I've got a guy watching out for screws and you know, so that we wouldn't get caught doing it and had to pay him if he passes when he raids for and and it was actually that he that I won the count on two different times. But I won the sweet I won the Melbourne Cup sweet power won the Melbourne Cup. And I was like something like 200 cans of coke and about 20 packets of white oxen the day that I was meant to collect I got I got swept by security in the prison and I did drug test and I've been done for using drugs in prison and I transferred me I didn't get paid at the swipe
so who is it 200 well how can
we not use our podcast to reach out to prison is
currently yeah I'm not sort of the I don't want my glasses broken or anything that's
what was that so what was what was rock bottom
rock bottom in the addiction
yeah in like like it maybe it's it's Yeah, it's not addiction. What it What was the what has been go through go through what was the first rock bottom the first moment where you like, obviously there was that time with monkey? Yeah, you know, it probably didn't feel like rock bottom at the time. It's only retrospectively but what was the one that in the moment? Yeah, you like actually make I think you really fucked yourself here.
Yeah, I know exactly where to go with this one.
So there's a moment of time. It was that prison sentence that I was just talking about got released, and I had no way to live, I had no money. And and just to sort of paint the storey in that prison sentence I used to I hadn't used heroin yet. So I was a heroin addict for the last five years my addiction. And I hadn't used heroin yet. So I'd been doing time and whatever and it was through criminal behaviour. But I was an alcoholic and not used other drugs and all that sort of stuff. But in prison. I used to watch on us they used to have visits on a Sunday. And after the visits you go back to yourself and you look across across the way and you'd say all these prisoners milling outside somebody's cell and you knew that they were heroin addicts, and you needed someone who just had heroin smuggling and ice to stand there with me with me my ballpark and we got Have a look at these fine idiots are they fucking wake is peace here I am an addict in prison with him pointing the finger at him saying look at these fucking idiots right they just so pathetic there so weak using heroin. And we scoff at them and whatever and you know going into drink a prison gronk and smoking a prison cones through an apple you know ever done. Yeah. But anyway, resourceful, very resourceful. But, but look, I got released from that prison sentence had nowhere to go no money. You know, I just had nothing and I was drinking and everything. And you know, I look I was just in such a depression. I was just so low within myself. I just just absolutely bereft of any hope, you know, and
what was that day? Like? You go out? What what was day one? What does that what does that actually look like?
Day One is exhilarating. Because you get it the first thing you do, which is it's like gold, you get a check from the from the prison, you know, basically to double check.
Yeah. So they might few hundred bucks, 200 bucks or
something like that back then. And that was just like, great. I can you know, I'm just looking forward to some freedom and actually getting on the Grog. And on the drugs. If you don't call that rehabilitation, the
definitely isn't regular.
So it's exhilarating. And then and then the next morning, it's the depths of depression and you realise reality sets in you actually, you're now out on the loose, so you're not getting any meals provided anymore. You've got no shelter, and there's just not you got nothing.
Did you open up a bank? Did you have a bank account already? Like What's that? What's that? If I can already with the admin things that you do when you forget of
the doll office? You gotta send a link. Yeah, you know, and you gotta ask for another pie. And you work you work the system and say that you're in distress so you can get another pie out so that you can use or drink again so that you can forget about what's going on. And then, you know, try and get somewhere to stay. And that's what I did I come across a guy who I used to knock around with who owned a car tiling factory and Danny home. Yeah. And it was a dish he discussed enjoy this guy. He was a heroin user. Right hand he kept his business open. Oh, no, not but anyway, every day, okay. He got me to start working with him. Right. And he had this broken down caravan inside the factory. It was a shithole. Greece will live it was fucking terrible. And he said, you can live in it. Right? But you've got to work for me Ah, die. Not in the day, Thailand castle, was my only option I had to the best deal we had best deal I'd ever had. Anyone else started doing it. And then of course, every day back in the day, you know, heroin dealers was a was an Asian going driving a super wr x, it he's a boxer engine coming down the road, oh, that's the dealer, the dealer would turn up every day, we might go into the office have a big hit a smack. And come out just a different man scratching his chin and just you know, nothing's bothering me anymore. And and get on with it. And and I was in such despair. And I really wanted to die to be honest with you. And I remember saying to him, Hey, I want says I'm sorry. I made him I want to use I want next time the deal comes get me Get me a taste of heroin. He said mine. You really want to do this, like this is this is heroin. I said, I don't give a fuck. I say get it. I said if I can put that shit in my arm. And if I'm lucky, it'll kill me. You know? And, and he said, Well, he said, welcome to the problem. Welcome to the battle for the rest of your life.
So he's even got some awareness around it. Oh, yeah, nice. Awareness. Wow, big awareness. And I'm gonna be sitting there.
And him jacking that needle back when it was in my arm. And I remember saying the little, you know, spirit of blood go back into the, into the syringe, and in plunging that stuff into my arm. And as it was going into my arm, I could feel myself almost losing consciousness. But I was just thinking, a hype. This fucking kills me, wow, and an addict. And then what ended up happening is, is that I was chained to him for the next number of months, because I needed to use heroin every single day. And if I didn't use it, I was incredibly sick. And so I had no choice but to keep working for him. And then he bought me little little bits and pieces of heroin each day. And that's that was a pretty big low. Yeah,
well, Tommy is mentioned about, you know, suicide, he's had a few friends in his life commit suicide, and he's talked about it being, you know, that the permanent solution to a temporary problem? Yeah, in some regards. It sounds like, you know, heroin, this type of thing is that that same exact sort of thing. It's almost like it the way you're describing, it seemed like a bit of a life sentence,
or it was the last sentence and back from me when I was using heroin in those days. We never saw I never knew of any heroin addicts that might have that of addiction, it the way that it was back then is that if you got onto heroin, your likelihood of actually stopping the easing and 20 a law firm was almost zero, we just, you know, what you could expect through using heroin is you expect to overdose and die, certainly within a 10 year period of using it. Within 10 years, we will either died or you will have done a significant period in prison. You know, and that was the that's the that's the best case scenario.
Do you identify that is rock bottom or is it didn't get worse. Now I got worse than that.
That was that was the that was the beginning. That was the beginning of the really bad beat, which is wow. Which is there was another half decade on top of that. Where everything that I'd been through in my life, I thought was, you know, like, it was pretty bad. And I've been through hell. But it was nothing. Nothing compared to where heroin took me for the next five years. Absolutely nothing. You know, I went down to the depths of depravity that I never even believed was possible. You know, I got caught this addiction governed everything that I did thought said. You know, it had me hook line and sinker. You know, my thoughts, my feelings. My actions were no longer my own. I was completely governed by this drug and it's, it's hard to describe the power of heroin. Oh, is
it a retrospective thought? Or is it a you? Were you aware like the bloke who said don't do it? I was way Okay, so hundred percent. That's what is it? What's the play like hell is it word for fucking forgot it was like between heaven and hell and psyche stuck in this middle bit? Yeah, yeah. Yeah.
The it? I used to live on in Abbotsford. And there's a there's a corner, sort of new Victoria straight where I was walking with my brother. And we're talking I was talking about the proximity effect in regards to the people that you're around. And it was almost like this straight was a metaphor for this exam. Whoa, where it's like, so fine. Everything's good. Leafy fuckin grain. So Nicholson straight and they made a lighter.
Yeah. And then one made a light on the remedy.
Yep. And so what I've always found interesting is I've seen my view of drug addiction, and they sort of think change over time when I remember being a kid, it was sort of, it's sort of the drug dehumanises people and not only does it do it for them, it does it for the community around we don't see them as real people. Yep. And so I like I just, I think that over spending, you know, three years and habits for them walking past, my mind has shifted from a place of look at this fucking junkie, just doing their thing to he's a person who's gone through all of this stuff. Yeah. And you'll see there's the common visual that you'd say us you've got someone who's got it sort of semi together and they're a little bit better dress and they're back and walking faster. There's two of them behind and if I can chasing and you know, that they're showing them off to wherever the fucking next hits gonna be. Yeah. And they're just following along. What is your What is your take? What is your view now that you're sort of you're on your journey with the whole rehabilitation? Yeah, how do you sort of how can we reconcile How can the general public How can we do our part in this whole whole thing?
Geez, that's a good question. That's a complex one too, you know, and so one thing that we tend to do is we stereotype addicts we think that they're the you know, guys down Victoria Street or the and I locked back in my day at least the score and Danny normal look awesome, straight and Danny normal spring vile, or wherever. And, and it's, it's the the creams and, you know, I look up an extreme storey, and I am you know, I'm just one of those extreme storeys, but they're not all locked mon. You know, I'd like like a diction, you know, the people that I trade, man, I've had, you know, I've had stars, I've had, you know, celebrities, I've had, you know, successful people, I've also had people from prison and I've had and everything in between so, so, you know, addiction doesn't discriminate. So I guess that, you know, one of the things that are likely want any sort of podcast or radio or anything like that, one of the things I'm interested in doing is, is breaking the stigma around addiction, you know, like, what, like, what, we're not people that are just scumbags that that don't deserve life, and they're just, you know, choose to just be ourselves. Yeah, you know, that's, that's not how it is not most people living this way. If I were to break it right down, they don't want to be living that way. They just do not know how to not live that way. And, and so so help is needed. That's not to say that every addict is an awesome person, and they only do good stuff. Now they don't we all do stuff. I deserved every bit of prison time i got i mean that, you know, I never ever walk around and go, Oh, I copped about a bum bum rap, copped, you know, hard time. Bullshit. I did shit wrong. Yes, I was unwell. Yes, I was not in my own mind. And yes, given no drugs and alcohol on board, there's no way in a million years, I would have done any of the things that I did. But I still did. And I need to take responsibility for that. And and that's something that, you know, that needs to happen for any addict that's out there doing stuff. So, but there are people that are out there that are addicts to fucking ourselves to?
And what do we have to do the people around, like, I remember a storey of a friend of mine who his brother had all different types of addictions. And, you know, he was talking about his own safety and not feeling safe. But there's this desire to, you want to you want to help. And it felt like in that moment here to just make a decision of mate, you're, you're on your own, like, there's nothing else that we can do you do you believe in in that idea? If someone doesn't want to help themselves? If they can't help themselves? Yeah. I just bringing down the rest of the family, the rest of the community? Or is there some way that we can actually be a good force and actually help these people?
Yeah, I mean, really, the good force that you can be is to not accept unacceptable behaviour. Yeah, I mean, that's really what it comes down to. One of the biggest problems with people using is that the people around them, it's usually family members. And and the closer community and this can happen a little bit in the public sector of, of drug and alcohol rehabilitation and social working and that sort of stuff, is that a lot of the consequences for the person that's using can be mocked up behind them and kind of taking care of that enables them to continue their behaviour without feeling the full brunt of the consequences. So the most important thing that a family member can do, if they've got it, because most addicts when they're in the middle of using, they're not going to go, mom, get on the phone to the rehab. I'm changing my life right now. But that's not going to happen. Yeah. Does it ever happen? Like is it does happen? Yeah,
yeah. It Meanwhile, like often someone's shooting up and that like, for whatever reason, they've been able to have that enlightenment in that time, there's plenty
of people that go through that and feel that, but very quickly, the realisation comes that, you know, they've tried it 10,000 times before, and it doesn't work. So it's a lot of shit. So and then the obsession to us kicks in again. And it makes me keep going. But, but the majority of cold so we get a die hand from family members. So yeah, but he doesn't even want help. We got Yeah, that's okay. So this is what we want you to do. So we hope God the family, to tackle a situation in Hawaii, which is about them protecting their environment, and the boundaries, explaining to the person they love them, and they want to help them. But unless they willing to get some help themselves, they've got to go to detach. So it's about cutting them off. Not cutting them off detaching with love. So so so if I was to say, if you were living with me, Josh, and you know, and I and you were using, and I decided, Listen, man, I can't do that anymore. I can't live like this is my environment. Right? And I care about you. But I'm not going to live like that with this in my house. So you need to leave. The only way that I'm going to lay the stay is if you're willing to come to a couple of appointments and get some help for yourself.
Putting that advice I saw make a when I lived in Chevron, yeah, I was up there working. And I saw a friend of mine who lives there, post an article of a drug addict who had stolen something and was on the run. And it was a mate that he grew up with. Yeah. And he shared this link. And he said something like, you know, I grew up with him. He's such a great guy. You know, give him a break or something. Yeah. And then I read in the comments section, his sister, so the dude who's on the run, sister said, we don't want your help. He is a scumbag or So basically, she was saying he's done the wrong thing. He needs to get caught and be in trouble. Yeah. And it was like this hard thing to fathom that. Yeah. Going against someone that you love. Yeah.
But it is a kind of that has to take it sounds like she was doing the wrong thing.
Yeah. And and now hearing you that, what triggered that thought? Or
what's the language like? I'm curious, make what's the language is so important. The words that we say and the actions that we do are super important. So what's the difference between you know, you're fucking scumbag? versus, you know, do you find that people with addiction relate well, to that sort of thing? Or is it the empathetic type of thing? Like, I know, you're not this person, you're not acting the way that you are as a human
is spot on? He just said it beautifully. Yeah. I mean, that's, that's and look, you know, what we do when we're trying to help people's we plant seeds, right. So so. So the addict that's using keeps hitting low spots? Right, while you're in the middle of with I've just used I don't want to hear anything. Yeah, man telling fucking anything. But if you give them a couple of United like words, but you just said, yeah. The next time that they're in that live spot, they remember that you spoke to them that way. Fuck, and so you're going to be the poor Nicole, they're going to come back to you and say, Hey, listen. Listen, you're right. On fact, I need help. Can you help me? Yeah, right. But it's important. It's one thing. being empathetic and saying, Listen, we want to help you. Oh, yeah. Hell, yeah. Because unless you've got fucking arm with a solution, your promise of health is absolutely worthless. And the person will know that. Because I know that you just don't have anything to offer. Like they know that nothing is
going to work. And so what is the solution? And how much of it you know, with what you're doing it directly how much of it is sort of real sort of scientific sort of chemical type stuff of like, okay, we're going to get you off the substance versus psychological and mental.
So in terms of the Yeah, that's, that's another good question. So everybody gets caught up with addiction, that it's the actual substance that the person's using, and as soon as I stop using that substance, that they're being traded, and it's okay. And that's not true.
We just look at you as an example. Right. Like I'm still unit. Yeah, you. You've gone through it. You went through like you had the, as you said, the the 12 year old. Yeah, you know, that experience? Is it is actually the same action of you in dandy having your first hit of heroin in a lot of ways.
Yeah, the same three words. I don't give a fuck forward. I don't give a fuck yeah. It was assigned dude. Yes, take family off the table. Because we're talking around solutions of when someone else can step in or do their bit. Yeah. But if you got nothing, did you have anything when you were coming off the end? It felt like I had nothing.
In actual fact, I did. And we don't need much. And there is lots of people out there that don't have any family and in these harder for them. Definitely, it is harder. But there is support, there is help. That's why we encourage people to get professional help. But if you can get professional help from people that have actually been through it as well, then you're really getting onto something there. You really getting amongst people that can help you. You know, nobody does this on their own. Yeah, there might be one in the million that says now I was in the depths of you know, depravity and, and full blown addict, and I pulled my socks up and made a decision and got a job and turn my life around. There's one in the million that does that. But man is so rare. It's ridiculous. You know, most of us 99% of us need a massive amount of help to do this cannot do it alone.
What's the conversation that's getting missed in the public eye that you're exposed to?
I just think there's a lot of
I think there's a lot of scare tactics out there. So we know that AWS has become a huge issue
in Melbourne, in Australia, in Victoria,
was that around when you were
not definitely not, that wasn't a un dabbling, you
know, there was not Washington. Yeah, the big thing then was heroin. Now, you know, heroines kind of hit the hit the bottom of the barrel and an ISIS there and, and so that's a massive problem at the moment, everyone's fixated on the scare tactics ago, and that, like if anyone uses it, you know, they could chop you up or you know, they have a, you know, going to an ice rage and, and there is some truth to that some truth. But everyone's fixated on on fixing the ice addict by getting them off ice. And so where the concentration from the from the government, from the public sector, and the perception of I think of the general public, is that if we can get that person off ice, they're going to be okay. And that actually isn't true. Getting a person off ice is detoxing them. That's not treatment. treatment is a completely different scenario. So to just remove the substance from the body takes care of 10% of the problem. We're still left with 90% of the problem, which is within the person. Wow.
Okay. And we've got a methadone clinic up here. You can see on Smith straight, yeah. Why is that? I mean, you just said 10% is getting them off the drug. Yeah, methadone is keeping them on a drug. Yeah. I mean, is it a solution? Do you think that's that's a government run initiative, isn't it?
Yeah, yeah. So it's, so it's it falls into a model of care that we call harm minimization. So so a type of facility that that is involved in helping people with drug and alcohol issues that's funded by the government runs a model of care called harm minimization.
yes, it's fat, minimising the harm to the person and the community which it has its place on certainly not disregarding that it does have its place. But if we are to truly treat addiction, it is rubbish. It's like putting a bandaid on a gaping wound that needs surgery. It really is. So a methadone clinic. It is I'm not saying it's not made. It is made. I was on methadone on methadone for the first two years of my recovery took me two years to come off. It is such a powerful drug. What
is it like a liquid what it what it wants to consume it by how do you consume it to liquid
is if you mix it with a bit of Correale. It's a schedule light medical. So it's a really powerful if I was to give you always on 40 mils of methadone if I was to give you 40 mils of methadone right now, I'd probably kill you. Well, you would, you would most likely overdose and you're doing the same effects that you'd get from heroin. Now you're not meant to kill him. So what it does, and some people they get takeaway method. I'm that guy on the hit it up? Yeah, so we're very resourceful people, we find ways to do stuff, but that methadone what it does so so when you use heroin, one of the big things about heroin addiction is people think you're getting a high or low whichever way you want to describe it. And that's a byproduct of using it, but what you're really doing when you using heroin, it becomes a medical issue. If you don't use heroin for a certain period of time in the day, like if you guys say more than it was without having a shot, you start to go into severe withdrawals. Right? So medically, you start to get into a bit of trouble within yourself, you can become very ill, you mind psychologically become very bad. So you need to use heroin again. feel normal, to stop all the withdrawal symptoms to stop the physical symptoms and to stop your head going off
kill you if you just try and go cold turkey.
You know what now can?
They cannot the pain is too bad. It's
unbelievable. emotional, psychological and physical pain is something that I've never it cannot describe it unless
you actually go through it. You went straight to go cold. I went cold turkey many times we see it in the movies. And then the room Trainspotting is in a room sweating. And like that's right looks like he's going through hell,
they go through hell. So methadone. And so the original reason for methadone is a harm minimization tactics. Remember, it's about minimising harm to the community as well. Yeah. So so what we're all a heroin addicts doing when they're out there hanging out that don't stick ups. They're doing robberies, right. They're trying to find money, because you gotta use I mean, for most addicts, if they've got a running a habit, you need to use between one and $500 of heroin a day, seven days a week. It's crazy.
Uber rates you could get
exactly what do you think you gotta do to get that sort of money? If you don't have a job?
Most people aren't making 500. But majority of people in the world, I'm making five and
what was your crime of choice?
Is that is that a dumb question? Like why? Like, what was that? What was the easy way?
of choice of choice? Now, I won't get into that, because there was no crime? Because I didn't I didn't want to do any of the crime that I did. Yeah, I did. It wasn't, I didn't have a choice. You know, and I did, what was that whatever was available, you know, and I was not a good person.
You did what you could to make money to feed fear? How do you feel if you got guilt on all the things that you've done in your life, I mean,
not feel a little time across a field that I've contributed to society, I feel that, you know, I've have changed. I've made amends wherever possible. So so one of the things about getting into recovery and getting Well, it's a bit of a process that not everyone, but a lot of us do. And part of that process is is doing it, an inventory on ourselves, like a moral inventory, we call it, and I go through and have a look at, you know, our conduct over my using time. And I start to get honest and get real about the harm that I've done to others. And then I start to have a look at what what type of restitution needs to be made, and what type of men's Can I make, in some cases, it needs to be financial remains, in some cases, it needs to be, you know, a personal amends. And other cases, it needs to be an action that means, which means that I need to change what I do from now on and make sure that never repeat that behaviour again. And it's a long journey. And one that, you know, I've gone on over the last 17 and a half years. And, you know, I I don't hold guilt anymore around that, you know, I'm, like I said, you know, the prison time that I done, you know, I'm glad I did that prison time. Because I really felt like I paid my price for those crimes that I did. So I don't have any guilt about that. Now, I know that I did wrong, and I know that I paid for it. And, and, you know, I've changed
how do you think you actually survived all of this? I have now because I struggle with my, you know, my own life. And I have I'm not going through addiction and all these things, you know,
it's all relative as well, too. Right. Like, I guess it sort of it came to and,
you know, I think I was I think there was a lot of luck. Yeah, you know, I think that there's I think I've had a higher purpose. To be honest. You know, one of my suicide attempts was a very serious one, you know, I'll get a leg together with screws now. But I mean, I I jumped off the Blackburn road bridge over the Monash freeway into the middle line in the middle of the night in a deliberate attempt to kill myself and somehow survived didn't get hit by a car and woke up in hospital two days later. You know, I've done I've done a lot of things where you know, I should not be here.
You shouldn't my best mate when he was he jumped off onto the freeway and died. Really? Same thing. Wow. Yeah, and when I heard you talk about I've heard you say that before fact can see it so scary,
man. That's, that's that's the most serious attempt. I have that didn't kill me, I'll never know. But I have no choice now but to believe that there's a reason why he you know, and, and going back to you know, like we said, you know, when you get clients, I block once you get off the substance, surely everything's like high then, you know, a lot of people have spiritual awakenings. But in the very beginning of my recovery, I had a rude awakening. And the Rude Awakening was that I got clean and sober. But I had no money. No way to leave no emotional or psychological coping skills. No nose education. left school when I was 14. No work history. A prison history. No licence, no car. Yay, I'm clean and sober. You know what I mean? Like, I had to start from below zero. Yeah. And that was incredibly tough. But you know, even starting from below zero was better than where I come from. Yeah. You know, that's funny, you know, but
where's the what's the internal monologue? Like what I was, was asking about the, the the crime of choice one of the things I think about is I wonder whether you when you walk in whether you look at a premises and be like, geez, that's the way they've got that set up. I wouldn't do it that way. If I
was using and I walked in here Yeah, I can see me and things that wouldn't be standing he could see the mobile phone sitting on the table later. I can see like, there's just so many things I could sum up in seconds. Who's got money? Who hasn't were like vaping at what's going on? What can I
do I look rich? How do I look
at someone I'd like to wrong.
The funny thing is joke's on you. I've got nothing. Is it?
That street smarts, you know, you look at? I'm going to intelligence, but I'll get a lot of street smarts.
Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, like I am, it's funny, you know, being from the world that I've been in. And certainly prison time does this to you as well well, but you just have a naive come out with a new awareness of what's around you, you know, like I see things happening around me and I'm sure that other people general public don't say, you know, I can I can tell with people who's you know, who's a little bit hard, who isn't who's possibly who's done time who hasn't dumped on, I can sum it all up pretty quickly and I'm pretty accurate with it. It just, it just kind of you just get into this other realm, you know, and and all kind of a loser. Where'd you learn that was a prison. I believe it was prison prison and the streets, you know, using using heroin and all that sort of stuff. And, but but mainly prison, I mean, that's where you really get hardened. And that's where things really, when your insides twisted, and you click into another realm, you know, like, I remember, you know, just to a quick storey of a time in prison, I was um, I was he was in coins and I was in maximum security and was my first day in the unit actually and in this prison unit and, and I got there and those is the big duck skin goes in Ireland the guy and and he was huge, but he's young. He's like 21 you know, I was like 20 either way, but he was like 21 he was massive ripped you know and he was easily the toughest go on the unit modern modern man the toughest guy on the job right but anyway, we're in there in there in the unit and and he comes up he asked me for smite was my first day so I had a patch of white ops on me and he didn't have any smoke so he came up he asked me for
a white ox By the way, you've mentioned it's a type of CPE rolling tobacco Okay, I thought you might have had some sort of brand deal he hadn't told us about
it that's how that's that's a finance presidency easy
I gronk so um, so you asked me for a cigarette and I said and man cigarettes a lot that's the biggest reason for someone to get stabbed or bashed in jail like they just hard currency. And I said not God because that's all I had I had nine Monday night you got to buy your own CD so I had no money nothing in my jail account on your couldn't get any more cigarettes and man on a to die cigarettes. So I said not. And he looked at me said give me a fucking cigarette. I'll said not is it give me a fucking cigarette, a dog. Now when you call someone a dog in prison, so dog means police and former so when you call someone the dog in prison, on then obliged to retaliate, and to retaliate violently. If I don't, I'm considered weak, and I will be preyed upon and I will be bashed and taken all my possessions taken from me. So this happened was fortunately it was you know, only a few minutes before lockdown, you get locked down at four o'clock in the afternoon, or 430 in the afternoon and maximum security. So it's about quarter past four or something like that dinner time. And, and and I'd refuse not I didn't answer back at him. So he starts calling me a dog Latta and lad and lattice of the rest of the prisoners in the unit start to hear it. So that's cool. putting someone on show starts putting me on the show, calling me a dog
middle of so many roles and shit. It's
a lot. And, and I'm just absolutely fucking crumbling and saw. And I knew right at that moment that I couldn't cave and give him a smoke because that's just as bad as not retaliating. So I'm caught in the position that I never wanted to be in. But then I was putting it was, you know, it was starting to get pretty sort of, you know, loud and rowdy, and then the screws to get locked down, right. So so we have to go and stand in front of ourselves. For lockdown, that's called master. So we can stand in front of ourselves and master in the screw comes along one by one and lock us into ourselves. And it just so happens that this guy's like to settles down from your right. So he's looking at me as we're standing there for muster. And he turns around to me, and he runs his finger across his throat like he's going to cut my throat. And, and so so I knew that the next day, when I got locked into my cell, I knew that the next day at in that prison yard. It's on. It's on like Donkey Kong, not so I have to, I have to attacking. And I have to put him in hospital or he's going to kill me. And so I spent the night in my prison cell. Absolutely shooting myself, right, like this guy could have just smashed me all over the place. And I knew it. But a funny thing happened to me that night. That day, earlier on, I'd say my lawyer and she told me I was looking at five years, right. And I just thought to me five years was like 15 years. And I just thought my last fact that's it, prisons, my home. I cannot be one of those people that gets stood over. Right. So I have to have to make a stand. And during that not through a lot of tears. And funnily enough through praying. something clicked inside me. And I knew I knew that I was prepared to murder and I just knew it. And I got my toothbrush and I started shopping my toothbrush on the wall. During the night, I started to get more and more aware that not I'm going to do this. I'm going to get him before it gets May I sharpen it up. I held it in my hand the screws came in the morning that came to unlock my soul door. He's would have been opened first I had already be out in the yard. But unlock my cell door. I had the the homemade homemade knife in my pocket with my hand in my pocket. Like a head cocked and ready the guy the screw up in my door. I walked out into the yard and I was just absolutely my heart was racing a million miles an hour and I just went full steam out into the yard. And as I got out into the yard, there was another gentleman got in between me and the big dark guy and got me to stop. And as it turns out, through a bit of through a bit of squabbling that happened in the arm. As it turns out, this guy that got in the middle knew me from the outside and you actually knew me from Melbourne was in Queensland at this time, Mimi from Melbourne. But he also knew the doc I even better and he vouch for me. The doc I realised that I was a friend not a foe. And, and he completely backed down and he befriended me. And he protected me from my whole prison sentence. We became best friends. And at the very last day when I was getting released, he came out to me he gave me a big hug. And he said, I make Did anybody pick on you when you're in here? And when not. And he looked at me and winked at me said see. And he said just don't come back here. And I was just so grateful to him. You know, like, but okay, but getting back to the to the crux of the storey is something changed inside of me. Yeah, like something really snapped. And to not because I'm a bad person, but because it's a survival mechanism. And I and I knew that I had to imprison you either got to adapt to those rules. And to that to that world, if that's where you're going to live. Or you're gone. You know, all your life is beyond any, you know, hell that you can imagine. It's worse than being out there using. So
did you escape self saying where you go thinking you can murder someone?
Yeah, I scared myself. But I also funny that when you know that you could do that. If you put in that position. It's empowering as well. Because a lot of the fear leaves you, you still got caution and all that stuff. But I could start to be more true. I didn't have to be as fake. You know, I could start to be more of who I was. For me, it was the beginning of a positive change. Sounds weird. It was the beginning of a positive change. Because it's awareness. Its internal. Its reflection, it's looking at your situations really thinking about Yeah, what you're up against?
Well, it's putting a male him situation. Yeah, that's what I felt. And and I'll watch them and that's the way it goes in prison. I mean, anybody that's done any time that's been in any kind of situation like that, I'll tell you the same thing that's kind of like, it's your then do you feel like you have to be sort of the mediator between with the the past that you've had and the experiences? Say you say, you know, rough rough people on the street? Like if you saw something going down? Yeah. What goes through your mind? What What role? Do you think that you play in something like that? Well, I try not to have any role,
to be honest with what to be honest with you now it
I'm older than you know, Welcome Young, pushing towards 50. You know, and I was in prison in my 20s you know, the main lock, I'm a different person. Now, I still have that. That age. I know, I do. I know that people, some people can make me and I just know, I had this bit of sort of something going on he and I know that. But I'm not the same, you know, like, I see violence now. And it, it's, it frightens me, you know, I don't want to be involved in I don't want to get hit and get killed. And I don't want to hurt anyone else. I don't want to get caught in any situations, you know, where that's going to happen. Although, from time to time, you know, I've been in a couple of stripes in my recovery. And I don't lock it there's nothing good that comes from it. You know, I prefer to, to mediate to talk to find negotiate away, rather than, you know, do anything that's kind of volatile been involved in any common bond. Like
you said, Your daughter was an addict. You just talked about something being a moment in your life. That was fucking scary. Yeah, what was more scary that moment in prison or realising your daughter's an addict? And knowing the journey she's going on? She has to go on?
I don't know. I don't think I can compare the two You know, they're different two different worlds. So I look at my life as being one of the very fortunate people that's been able to live two sides of the coin. You know, I've lived in how but I've also had some enormous success in my life as well. You know, for me success Anyway,
you know, the tree was the word I was looking for before it's like the heaven and hell so it's worth
it because you say close the loop. Yeah, we
also got better.
Yes, what now? What was what what was the responsibility that you felt so as a as an ex addicts, but also recovered? What it? What's the terminology use a recovering drug addict, recovering addict? Having a daughter, what could you do in this situation? Well, fortunately, I could do a lot. But one of the first things I had to do was not enabler. And I had to detach with love. I mean, that was really hard. But in some respects, when my daughter was using for a lot of that she didn't want anything to do with me. Now, she just would have no contact with me, you know, and, and that was tough. But it was the way it was, you know, but when she did one health, that's when I stood in the second that she said, Okay, I'm ready helped me and kind of wasn't like that, she sent me a photo message, she'd had her head punched in the head was smashed open. And, and she begged me for help. And you know, and I fortunate that I run a rehab, you know, so I got her to make me at the front of the rehab, and I put her in my rehab, and then go to the come and live with me for the first 12 months of a recovery. And, you know, the storey now she's playing inside of a house, he's
how's rehab change? Like, when you when you started, you know, doing the rehabilitation thing to now have you learnt a lot of stuff has it changed much, or is all the sort of core principles, the same core principles at a very much the same, there's that there's a model of care that we utilise that some that we know is really, really effective? It's called the Minnesota model or the recovery model, or some people call it the disease model.
Here we go, we can step into a quagmire.
some of these podcasts
podcast is that so we know that the disease of addiction is actually that it's a disease and paperwork, I will have a fraction of a disease, you pick up a substance you put it into your body? Yeah, it's a choice. Fuck you. Yeah. Well, you know, amazingly, that there's a lot of people around now that don't actually believe that, you know, that the dunk away for that bullshit, don't believe that bullshit anymore. They understand that addiction is a disease. And one of the reasons that we know this is through extensive medical studies that have been conducted in the in the US, over a long period of time, they confirmed some facts that we, as addicts have always known, but have never been able to prove. And that is that the disease of addiction centres in the brain, there's a neurological pathway that that's in the brain, it's part of the the pleasure seeking neurological pathway of the brain. And there's some defects that have happened in that, that happened in that newer logical pathway that predispose a person to addiction. We know that when a person stops using, that those neurological pathways aren't being fulfilled. And one of the chemical the neuro chemicals that's really, really important when we talk about addiction is dopamine. You guys know what it means to feel good. And that's the euphoric stuff. So anybody that suffers from addiction has an overload of dopamine, that's, that's released into Brian. And that's where that euphoria and that just gives the fact that, you know, the No, no care factor, all that sort of stuff comes in. And so when a person is, you know, deprived himself of that dopamine dump in their brain, that's where the psychological and emotional side of addiction starts to come to the surface. Because what that dopamine does, is it, it meditates the thinking, and it mitigates the emotions to help the person escape. So it's not necessarily the substance, although that's playing a part that does it. The substance triggers a dopamine dump within the brain. And that dopamine dump is what gives them a relief, from the obsessional thinking and relief emotionally. When a person just puts the substance down. They're left
with no dopamine, they've got a whole basically they're in a deficit.
Yeah, and all their emotional baggage and this psychological, uncomfortable comes to the surface. And if you can imagine, you know, people that are caught in the cycle of addiction, that acting, reacting doing and saying things that cause deep seated guilt, shame, remorse, regret, depression, anxiety, fear, you know, the list goes on, I couldn't list 100 things. And that's all part of the baggage of the addicts. So when it's so quite often when a person just puts the substance down, but don't get treatment, then move into a state of what we call white knuckle sobriety. And white knuckle sobriety is when you're gone, you're clenching your fist, and you're clenching your ass cheeks to go Yeah, I'm not drinking. I'm not using I don't even miss it. And then someone slams the door or beeps a horn and you throw the fucking table in the end. I fuck you. You walk out the door, you go on us and drink again. Yeah, you have the fact that that happened. It's because of all of this on comfortability, which was always been there, but it's just, it's just accumulated more and more and more along the way. It's all still there. And it's and dealt with.
Either when you having had the past that you have when you hear people quitting sugar, do you roll your eyes? Or do you actually realise it? You know that sugar is the new fucking What did they say? It has the same reaction as you know, taking coke or stuff like that. Do we have what do you
know, you're not admitting people in
other other other point? Yeah. Other other other other addictions? And what sort of Who are you trading? For? Not that I quit sugar. Sarah Wilson's got that covered. But yeah.
Well, gambling is a big one. sex addiction. Yeah. Yeah. Look, look, we're talking with jack about sugar. But you know, eating disorders, I mean, they're a messy thing. And they all fall back to addiction. You know, there's lots of stuff. Anything could become problematic. You know, we're talking about training before and that sort of stuff. I mean, that can become problematic. People can get obsessed with it. And their emotional and psychological well being concentrated on whether or not I can try and and then I get an injury, like how trying and I find that have a huge psychological and a emotional standpoint, which then places them in a position where they're more susceptible to peak to turn towards other things. Yeah, it's amazing. And I love
it scare. It scares the heck out of me all this stuff like it and it's there. Because I know that, you know, with my experiences with food, and all that sort of thing. It's the Yeah, I'm constantly aware. Like, I don't drink alcohol. Yeah. And it was it wasn't a specific choice. It wasn't a specific, you know, moment where, you know, I became everyone assumes when I say don't drink they're like, are when you know, when when we were in alcoholic, basically right people in Australia.
Yeah, exactly. So it's, um, yeah, addiction. It's a it's a scary thing. Like
you said before that, you know, some of those times when you really hit rock bottom, and you kind of saw it as a sign that you survived, as you know, it's a reason for being here. Whether it's a storey or whether it's true, you've done amazing things. Right. Thank you. Congrats. I've actually met someone who went through the day. Oh, really. And they killing it. And
kill it. Like when you say killing it with the business owner, just
you know, clear and so yeah, it works. Yeah. And yeah. So good having you on the podcast.
Thanks for sharing your storey. It's a daily talk show everyone send us an email. Hi, the daily talk show.com if you've got guest suggestions to because this podcast is about just interesting people who have something to share and i think it's it's great to have people like you make on who can give us put it put a voice put put, you know, a face to you know, the these issues so we can actually like empathise and make the right choices to be able to help the people around us as well. And also really appreciate it and also like internally as well, like, I can take so much out of all this as well. So thanks so much.