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Paul's People

Paul's guests talk about their life journey, how they became addicted to drugs and how they stopped. Paul, himself a recovering addict, is a respected drug and alcohol recovery specialist.

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Dennis

In the first show of Season 2 Paul speaks to Dennis. Paul's first memory of Dennis was when his best mate Dave pointed him out. Dave advised "I'd advise you get to know that bloke, he'd be good for your Recovery". Dennis talks about his interests, what it's like to have decades in Recovery, illness and his family. He discusses his father and their shared love of Cricket. Paul learns that Dennis enjoys bird watching (did you know Melbourne's Western Treatment Plant, aka the Werribee sewerage farm is considered one of the worlds greatest bird habitats)! Scotland is discussed, his application of 12 Step Recovery when faced with a serious illness, along with the love he feels for his wife, his family and how his Grandson kept Dennis accountable one afternoon...

1hr 5mins

27 Sep 2020

Rank #1

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Suicide Prevention

This is one of our special episodes that explores an issue related to mental health and recovery. Paul, drawing on his professional work in the mental health field, gives advice for loved ones, friends and acquaintances of people who may be at risk of suicide. Note: this episode may cause trauma and suffering for those touched by suicide. Listener discretion is advised. 

50mins

4 Aug 2019

Rank #2

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Wazza 2

Paul's recovery role model Wazza joins us for Part 2 of his interview. Growing up in Nepal, the son of Christian missionaries, Wazza's time on the planet has been anything but average. Wazza takes us through his life, from the pet monkey of his childhood, to the monkey on his back as a young adult and then right through to recovery from addiction. His work now in the recovery field takes him into prisons, Parliament and everything in between.

50mins

9 Jul 2019

Rank #3

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Wazza

Paul's recovery role model Wazza joins us. Growing up in Nepal, the son of Christian missionaries, Wazza's time on the planet has been anything but average. Wazza takes us through his life, from the pet monkey of his childhood, to the monkey on his back as a young adult and then right through to recovery from addiction. His work now in the recovery field takes him into prisons, Parliament and everything in between.

1hr 17mins

2 Jul 2019

Rank #4

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Alex

Alex joins Paul to talk about his life of addiction and recovery. Starting in the UK, Alex then moves to Australia where, at a young age, he becomes fascinated with the allure of drugs. Dealing with issues of psychosis and coming to terms with his sexuality, Alex slowly moves into a lifestyle of addiction until one day a close friend alerts Alex's mother to the extent of his substance abuse. This begins the road to recovery, one that Alex still walks years later. (Thank you to Whitt from Spiderbait for our theme music 'Breathin Moonshine'.)  

1hr 17mins

30 Jun 2019

Rank #5

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Owen

When Paul first met Owen, Owen was an addict living in his car. Now he is studying to get his commercial pilot's licence. In this episode, Owen takes us through his childhood, where he was left to fend for himself as his alcoholic mother lay passed out on the couch. He remembers going to other kids' houses and being surprised to find mothers that were conscious and could interact. With a growing curiosity about what other households looked like, Owen began a series of impromptu 'visits' to homes all around his childhood neighbourhood, mostly via bathroom windows and removed roof tiles. This lifestyle led to an adolescence of burglary, theft, alcohol, clarinet playing and drugs. Owen tells the story of how all this played out in adult life (spoiler alert: not well), and his eventual transition into recovery.    

1hr 3mins

2 Dec 2018

Rank #6

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Lissy

Lissy is a talented artist, musician, yoga instructor and a strong animal rights activist. Her courage to speak out for what she believes in hasn't come easily. Despite being from a prominent, high-achieving Australian family, Lissy suffered childhood trauma that led to self-medication through drug addiction. In this episode, Lissy takes us through her story.    

1hr 49mins

2 Dec 2018

Rank #7

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Sarah

We've lost the bit of paper where we wrote down the episode description. We've been saying we'll just write it again from scratch. We've been saying that for about three months. So in the meantime, we're putting this episode up. Bloody hopeless. Sorry, Sarah. We'll put up a proper description ASAP.

1hr 17mins

2 Dec 2018

Rank #8

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Ella

For Ella, growing up in Bondi Beach wasn't the seaside paradise of tourism brochures. An athletic, active childhood was interrupted by a serious knee injury at age 11. With her leg in a cast for a year, in constant pain and gaining weight, Ella's self-esteem withered, and in its place the tendrils of self-loathing began to take root. At age 12, Ella started smoking cannabis. This brought on, as she puts it, ‘an overwhelming sense of relief' and a 'quietening of the head': a reprieve from her relentless inner self-critic. This was followed by a gradual escalation of substance abuse, with all the associated miseries and – to be fair – some strangely productive phases: ice-fuelled, four-day sleepless essay-writing sessions that resulted in a double degree! But apart from these few highs, the trajectory was ultimately downward, and in this episode Ella describes the darkened rooms of those lower levels. Finally, hitting a floor of exhaustion, having spent two thirds of her life in addiction, Ella decided to get clean. And she did. And she is.

1hr 13mins

2 Dec 2018

Rank #9

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Jack

A recovering addict, Paul's sponsor, Jack, was initially attracted to the recovery community by the huge amount of sex available. From the hard grind of those early years, Jack has gone on to become an activist, researcher and policy writer fighting for those affected by addiction, hepatitis, HIV and AIDS. Dubbed a 'Hep Hero' by Hepatitis Victoria, Jack has obtained a PhD and ongoing research funding to pursue his ambition of changing the world for the better.

1hr 11mins

31 Aug 2018

Rank #10