Troubled ex-AFL superstar Ben Cousins has opened up about his battle for access to his children in a candid interview about his fall from grace.
Heartwarming footage from the Channel 7 documentary shows Cousins' son Bobby, eight, laying on his bed watching his dad - a former legend in the sport - in his prime.
'That's Daddy,' the young boy says as he points at the athlete on the field.
In the rare interview, the Brownlow Medallist and West Coast Eagles premiership player, 41, spoke about the challenges he has faced since being booted from the game, including battling a drug addiction, stints behind bars and homelessness.
During the documentary Cousins says he wished he was addicted to heroin instead.
'I don't like heroin, it's not my go,' he told broadcaster Basil Zempilas.
'I wish it was, I sort of think, I wish I could get on the heroin and just, f***ing, cruise through this next six months.
'It would just, it would help. But it's not, I don't, it makes me feel a bit squirmish in the stomach.'
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Troubled ex- AFL superstar Ben Cousins has opened up about his battle for access with his children in a candid documentary about his fall from grace
The once-celebrated sports star (pictured last year playing footy with his son Bobby) revealed he once offered underworld figure Mick Gatto his Brownlow Medal to mediate a custody discussion between Cousins and his former partner and mother of his children Maylea Tinecheff
The once-celebrated sports star was sacked by the West Coast Eagles in 2007 after he was arrested for drug possession and refused to give a blood test.
His career ended in 2011 and plunged into a decade-long battle with addiction.
One of his biggest struggles during that time has been gaining access to his two children, Bobby, eight, and Angelique, six.
During the interview, Cousins revealed he once offered underworld figure Mick Gatto his Brownlow Medal to mediate a custody discussion between Cousins and his former partner and mother of his children Maylea Tinecheff.
Gatto, a key player in Melbourne's gangland wars and former boxer, now works professionally as a mediator in the building sector.
'I've never met anyone as defiant. You know? Mick Gatto couldn't tell her what to do,' Cousins said.
'Mick … I'm just telling you - and I honestly was going to get him to come over, I was going to give him my Brownlow - to mediate.
'That's how big a thing it was, you know?'
Cousins eyes light up when he speaks about his children.
He described daughter Angelique as a daddy's girl and spoke about his eight-year-old son Bobby's love of football.
The doting dad (pictured with his son) was in good spirits, seeming cheerful as they happily played for more than half-an-hour under a cloudless sky in July lasts year
Cousins looked relaxed as he played he kicked a Richmond Tigers footy with his kids. It was one of two AFL clubs he played for during his illustrious career
Cousins (pictured) appeared fit and healthy, kicking the ball to Bobby and Angelique with the poise of his champion years
Heartwarming footage from the Channel 7 documentary shows Cousins' son Bobby, eight, laying on his bed watching his dad - a former legend in the sport - in his prime
'I haven't pushed him into it or whatever, but he's got a bad case of it at the moment,' Cousins said.
'When I got out (of jail) last time I'm A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here was on, so my boy he just loves f***ing spiders and lizards and snakes and everything.
'I said to him, ''would you like dad to go on that?'' He goes, ''I'd love you to go on that, dad''. But he said, ''I think you have to do something professional first''.
'F***ing not far from the truth.'
Sporting long hair in a ponytail and a scruffy beard, Cousins admitted he'd 'stuffed things up royally' and that it was time to put things right.
'I hope people can see I'm having a crack at turning it around,' he said.
But Cousins gave an unconvincing answer when asked if he was still using drugs.
'I'm just thinking how... I'm just not sure about how to answer that,' he said.
'My issues have been more greater and complex than my drug use.
'In a perfect world, I would've have liked come out the other side a long time ago. That hasn't been the case.'
Cousins was tight-lipped when asked when was the last time he took drugs.
Ben Cousins (pictured with his former partner) opened up about his battle with drug addiction
Ben Cousins had two young children with his former partner Maylea Tinecheff (pictured)
'It's just one of those things, I'd rather not go there,' he said later in the program.
'I don't think it helps.'
'Last week, last month?,' Zempilas pressed.
Cousins replied: 'Well... you know, not today is enough for me and it should be enough for other people.'
He was grilled about his tumultuous relationship with the mother of his children and former partner, Maylea Tinecheff.
In January 2018, Cousins was released from prison after serving 10 months of the one-year sentence for breaching a restraining order taken out by Ms Tinecheff.
He was back in jail months later following charges making threats and breaking a violence restraining order.
Cousins admitted some of his behaviour towards former partner Maylea Tinecheff (pictured together in happier times) which landed him in jail twice was inexcusable
Ben Cousins was seen giving the thumps up with West Coast Eagles player Nic Naitanui earlier this month
He spent eight months in jail until his release on bail last April.
Two charges of stalking and threatening to harm Ms Tinecheff were later dropped.
Cousins later pleaded guilty to the remaining 12 offences of breaching a violence restraining order and was sentenced to eight months in prison, which he had already served.
'As you know, I wasn't convicted of some of those things', Cousins told Zempilas.
'But I agree with you yeah, some of it is inexcusable.'
When asked if he