Maylea Tinecheff knew her relationship with troubled AFL star Ben Cousins was over when he continued using crystal meth in front of her earlier this year, the day after she finally allowed him to see his children again.
In an exclusive Sunday Night interview, Maylea told reporter Steve Pennells about the extraordinary control the drug ice had over his life.
“He’s chosen drugs over everything,” she said. “The drugs have destroyed him. He’s a broken man. It’s very sad.”
The couple’s relationship became so rocky that Maylea took out a violence restraining order (VRO) against the Brownlow medallist in May last year.
But despite their tumultuous relationship, Maylea agreed that Ben could join her and the children on a day out at Perth’s Adventure World theme park in January.
“He asked if he could come. I said yes, because he was clean,” Maylea said. “We had a good day, really good day there.”
It went so well, that Maylea let her guard down a little more and, despite the restraining order, agreed to go with him to a Bruce Springsteen’s concert.
Photographs of the pair at the concert circulated in the media and online – but what was never reported was the incident that occurred after the show.
Maylea claims Ben’s demons resurfaced.
“On the way home from there he used again,” Maylea said, confirming that he had used ice in front of her in the car.
“That’s when I put my foot down completely because nothing had changed.”
Only weeks later, Ben was sentenced to 12 months behind bars for stalking and repeatedly breaching the VRO. His fall from grace was complete.
Maylea now hopes that Ben will walk out of jail a changed man, ready to put his family first.
"Ben needs to know that when he steps back into the children’s life, it’ll be a process. So he’ll need to make right the wrongs that he’s made. He’ll have to do the drug testing, he’ll have to prove himself," Maylea said.
“Hang up your boots up for goodness sake. Your kids need you, we need you, come home to us.”