Baz Ashmawy has spoken out for the first time about being arrested for drink driving six years ago.
The TV presenter opened up about how the incident affected him, his family, and his career, on the first episode of his summer series That Baz Thing on RTE Radio 1 on Wednesday night.
The 50 Ways To Kill Your Mammy star hasn’t spoken about the incident publicly until now because he felt “ashamed”.
“Six years ago, or one of the last times I sat in a studio like this manning a show with my name on it, I had just spent the night in a Garda station and I had been arrested for drink driving,” he explained.
Opening up: Baz has revealed how his drink driving arrest affected him and his family | BRIAN MCEVOY
“I remember I arrived in to the studio to review the morning papers like I always did and there was my face all over nearly every front page. I could literally see that my world was collapsing right in front of me. I could read it. It was there in black and white.”
“It’s difficult for me to talk about. It’s something I’m ashamed of and something I hate about myself but, not just that, I kind of passed all those feelings on to my family and the people I love. It was embarrassing and shameful for them. I know they get upset when I talk about it so I haven’t really spoken about it publicly.
“I suppose I wish it never happened so I just don’t talk about it, I was sorry I did it but the fact is I did do it and all the flippin sorries in the world isn’t going to change that.”
Honesty: Baz spoke about his personal experience while discussing the power of change | INSTAGRAM
Baz based the first episode of The Baz Thing on the ‘power of change’ – and revealed how he turned his life around after hitting “rock bottom”.
“The reason I’m talking about it tonight is because shortly after that incident I ended up in hospital with my health. My contract was cancelled. I lost my job in radio. No one would employ me in TV. I was unemployed for 18 months, We had a one year old, Hannah, and my missus was 7 months pregnant.
“I swear to God if I could touch it it would turn to sh*t. I hit rock bottom,” he continued.
“You see you can avoid looking in the mirror for a long time but one day when you least expect it you’ll catch your reflection and you’ll be forced to ask yourself do you like who you see? Are you happy? And I didn’t. I wasn’t.”
“It took me a long time, years, to change my circumstances but over time I came to realise the power of change. Sometimes you’re directly responsible for your circumstances like in my case and sometimes you have no control over what life throws at you but the one thing that’s common to both is how you react or deal with it and that’s what tonight’s show is about, the power of change.”
Thankfully, Baz turned things around in his personal life and career – as he went on to win an Emmy for Best Non-Scripted Entertainment for his Sky One series 50 Ways To Kill Your Mammy in 2015.
Tune in to That Baz Thing on RTE Radio 1 every Wednesday from 10pm for the next seven weeks.
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