Inexcess: In search of recovery

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dealing with drug and alcohol problems

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George Williams

George is the founder and the presenter of Here in his blog George talks about his inner most thoughts on his journey through recovery, his experiences making the show and shares his insights into the world around us etc.

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Surviving Gazza

Posted by George Williams on Tuesday, January 6th, 2009

Wow what an insight to the impact of addictions on a caring loving family. I have so much to say and I’ve earned my stripes for sure and more than most I can see clearly both sides of the story.

I thought Sheryl was outstanding and I saw her in a completely different light. She reminded me of so many amazing women out there who handle so much crap and abuse but still manage to shine and make things work. Women are the stronger sex and it’s about time men paid them more respect. As a mother in a dilemma, effected by her earlier relationship and marriage to Paul, her love for him still but more in a caring way, she tried everything to support a man out of control at the same time juggle being a mother and handle the wreckage that it all brings. Most of all from the media frenzy.

In many ways Gazza is her fourth child. Of course he’s a good guy in a really bad place but he’s also out of control, full of self loathing full of pity because this is what addiction does to someone. It is heartbreaking to see him mumbling and stumbling and It’s plain to see he’s lost, alone and full of fear.

For me where he did himself no favours was as a father. That’s the truth of the matter. The children are definitely effected by his behaviour and lack of being there over the years. They, like their mother are the real victims in this, it’s not something they asked for. They all showed great affection towards him and Reagan shone. How amazing was the clarity of his feelings and direct manner in how he conveyed his thoughts and memories.

On an earlier show we had two fantastic women in who spoke from the heart about their family support group. The word that really leapt out for me was hostage. People in addiction hold family members hostage. This is what I saw last night. The ripples in the water reach far and wide.

This is such a complex subject to talk about, it’s a minefield of emotions and there are definitely no winners. Be careful what you wish for is the saying I use a lot. I think Gazza thought for years that the happiest time of his life was with Sheryl but he blew it. Inside I’d bet he thought if they got back together he could recover and they could start all over again. Sheryl did everything above and beyond and Gazza blew it, you see inside only each one of knows the real truth and his may be the realisation that Sheryl and the family aren’t the answer. Unfortunately he managed to give a family hope and then shattered it. Of course I know his problems but it doesn’t excuses him from a lot of what he’s done. I’m telling the truth when I say we know more than we crack on when we are in the eye of the storm.

When I look back I found it difficult to be responsible all of the time and when “the calling” came i could be very destructive to myself. I was the life and soul of the party with an audience and falling apart inside.

I think Paul finds it hard to just be himself, his created such a strong identity over the years of being a clown and feels that’s the only way people will accept him. It becomes exhausting dragging yourself out of bed each day to pretend to be something only you know you are not. Once the mischief kicks in then GAZZA and not PAUL appears.

Catch our shows on family support and the impact of addiction on families and friends in series 2 archive here

Or you can watch Surviving Gazza on the Channel 4 Catch Up service here.

Category: George's Blog

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