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EXCLUSIVE: Osher Günsberg reveals why becoming a dad has changed how he sees his Australian Idol days

“I don’t recognise him at all. I don’t even know who he is. He is a stranger to me.”

By Erin Doyle
With his high-profile career in television and radio spanning over two decades, Osher Günsberg has many, many gigs under his belt.
As well as hosting two reality TV juggernauts (Australian Idol and The Bachelor franchise), Osher can count podcast producer, radio host and author among the entries on his résumé.
And with Osher and his wife Audrey Griffin expecting a baby boy within weeks – Osher is already stepdad to Audrey's first child, 15-year-old Georgia – the affable star is soon to add "father of a newborn" as his newest role.
Speaking to Now To Love, The Osher Gunsberg Podcast host revealed that the baby's impending arrival has caused him to reflect on who he was as a person during one of his most famous gigs to date – his stint as host of Australian Idol.
"My office is now becoming a baby room, so that means I have to clean out the garage which has a heap of my old sh*t in it," Osher explained.
Baby on board! Osher (pictured with wife Audrey Griffin) is currently prepping for the impending arrival of his first son. Image: @osher_gunsberg/ Instagram
He revealed he discovered some old boxes containing "quite voluminous amounts of stuff" that he had collected during his Idol days and then opened them with his wife Audrey by his side.
"And I looked at it like … I obviously went to a lot of trouble to get this stuff and it was really important to me at the time but I looked at it and went, 'Who is the guy that did this?' "
Osher, who is nine years and three months sober, admitted it was disconcerting to realise he no longer recognised that past version of himself.
WATCH: Osher opens up about his past battle with alcoholism as he speaks on-stage at the ARIAs in 2015... Story continues after video
"Who is the guy that is obsessed with this stuff? Because I don't know him," Osher continued.
"I said to Audrey, 'I don't recognise the man that thought this was really important. I don't recognise him at all. I don't even know who he is. He is a stranger to me.' Yet that was who I was. That is who I was at the time, in like 2005.
"So the guy who did that show - I did it, I was there, I remember parts of it ... but I don't remember seasons two, three and four basically. Life was very different for me, I was drinking a lot. But the kind of man I was back then is very different to the man I am now."
And in one eye-opening episode, Australian Idol judge Ian 'Dicko' Dickinson also reflected on his own time on the show, opining that maybe his trademark blunt criticism that made him famous, perhaps went too far.
Osher (pictured with Idol co-host James Mathison) said life was "very different" for him during that period and that he doesn't "remember seasons two, three and four basically". Image: Getty Images
For his part, Osher divulged that at the time he didn't take a breath for long enough to think about whether they crossed the line.
"I think about what Dicko was talking about - the ritual humiliation of it all - at the time, I was so lost in the whirlwind of all it, I didn't stop to think about it," he said.
"I knew we had psychologists on set and I was very proud that we psychologists on set, who were there to brief and debrief people and help people as they were voted off and basically told the whole of Australia doesn't want you.
"And that was that. I clocked off and went home. I don't know if the same sort of show would air now… maybe it would, I don't know. But I'm such a different person to who I was back then."
WATCH: Osher and his wife Audrey Griffin speak candidly about his mental health battles. Story continues after video...
Osher added that Dicko was around the same age that he is now, and the judge had kids who were similar ages to the artists auditioning for Idol, and because of this, Osher believes Dicko probably "felt it a bit harder".
"In that podcast, he described it, of not wanting to be that guy," Osher said.
"We had a similar conversation to the one I just told you, he doesn't even recognise the man he was. He's not that guy anymore. He's just not that guy. And isn't that a wonderful thing? That we, in our life, get to be so many different people if we choose to make the effort and choose to make the change and choose to be deliberate about it."
And for this period in his life, it's that attitude Osher's choosing to emulate as he prepares to welcome his new bub – and he admits he can't wait for the arrival.
"I'm not freaking out at all, everything's pretty great. We know the date, better be ready! We're looking late August, early September, so that's our launch window!" he laughed.
Osher's former colleague Ian 'Dicko' Dickinson (pictured left) has been a guest on The Osher Gunsberg Podcast and the pair reflected on their time on the show. Image: Getty Images
Osher added as the due date rapidly approaches, he's been keeping busy preparing for that date – buying baby furniture from Gumtree, recording extra podcasts so he can have time off and trying to figure out what to call the baby.
"I thought 100 per cent it was going to be born with XX chromosomes but what do you know, the tests showed that it was a XY," he said, explaining that he and Audrey were adamant they were going to have a girl.
"Currently, as every parents do I'm sure, we're currently throwing around baby names but if the kid gets to five and goes I'm sorry, you're gonna call me Christine, then alright then! We'll love you no matter what. So it might be coming out with XY chromosomes but whatever it wants to be, we'll love it no matter what.
"We're so happy that so far everything looks tip top. I'm really quite present to the fact that that's not the same for everyone and I'm really aware of that and I'm just super, super grateful that at this point everything's going really well."
Osher's podcast, The Osher Gunsberg Podcast, is available on Acast, Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.
Osher and his wife Audrey (pictured) are expecting their baby boy in late August or early September. Image: @osher_gunsberg/ Instagram
Osher thought their unborn son would be a girl, but added that he will be happy with whatever gender his child chooses to be. Image: @osher_gunsberg/ Instagram