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Paul Gascoine- A Fellow Human Being

Tuesday, January 6th, 2009 Paul Gascoine- A Fellow Human Being

A Channel 4 documentary aired (05 01 09) featuring the struggling Gascoigne family was extremely candid, moving and above all harrowing at times for all concerned.

The former England player on his own admission, has said he’s on his “last chance”. Gascoigne is already approaching or at the point where he is beyond salvation. He has also lashed out at ex-wife Sheryl for “poisoning” their 12-year-old son Regan against him.

The pair are at loggerheads over the Channel 4 documentary in which Regan said of his dad: “I wish he’d go away. He’s probably going to die soon.” He further adds “I Don’t think there’s any point helping him”. These words which were spoken so eloquently, revealed the despair and frankness of a 12 year old boy Regan Gascoigne, the youngest child of Sheryl and Paul.

Oliver Kay of the Times (05 01 09) writes “The Surviving-or-Saving debate at Channel 4 — is that the modern-day tragedy of Paul Gascoigne has entered its final act. Those are not easy words to write, but, as he battles with his demons, with alcohol and mental illness, it seems that he succeeds only in pushing himself closer to oblivion”.

Furthermore, it has been suggested that there are those who simply see Gazza as a useless waster, but on reflection the past decade of this man’s life actually reveals how desperately ill and tragic his life has become, not only to himself but also to his loved ones.

Gazza has the ability to sell newspapers and when back in September there were rumours of his death, newspaper desks went into meltdown and the feeling was that of ’sadness rather than shock’. Also highlighted was the fact that he has been sectioned twice over the past year under the mental health act. Upon release Gascoigne has spent time in a rehabilitation clinic.

He has been seen on YouTube and this was also aired last night, trying apparently to impress customers at a bar in Newcastle. Sheryl had actually stated that he becomes delusional. Gascoigne, was heard saying “I’m in the f***ing pub, watching EastEnders, and John Paul rings us up. Yeah, Pope John Paul rings me up. I know where he lives, in his house. I’ve f***ing been there, all around the Vatican. Billions of pounds kicking around. I tried to run away with a couple of billion.”

However the point of the documentary is to create an awareness, insight into the despair families struggle with in relation to addiction and coping with the aftermath. Equally the programme gave a harrowing account of this fellow human beings state of mind.

There were some ethical questions that needed to be addressed in relation to the motives of the documentary. How much money was paid to the Gascoigne family?

Overall, the programme achieved what it set out to do in exposing the difficulties faced by all those involved. Gascoigne according to reports is giving himself one more chance to redeem himself.

Mental health issues are often very complex. According to Gascoigne he suffers not only from alcohol misuse, but also depression, bi-polar and OCD. This is a vey troubled man and hopefully he seeks the professional help he so desperately needs.

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