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Day 1 again...further back then ever

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#1 Posted on:
Fri, 22/06/2018 - 23:04

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

So close to clearing debt... only to slip back further than I was before. Will this madness end?? Somehow able to get a second loan to replace existing and save a few pennies only to burn through the majority in 2 days! Lowest I've ever been. Gambling is killing me. So ashamed and feeling hopeless. Multi operator scheme a joke. Debit transactions in shops should be banned. Slot machines have ruined my life. Not sure I can make it back this time...

Posted on:
Fri, 22/06/2018 - 23:08

Change

Joined:
2015-01-30

Bloody hell! You can make it back. Chin up. Clean sheet. Aliens abducted you and you landed on earth with what you’ve got (I know it’s weird but it helps me to think this way...) and you’d survive! Keep a grip and keep the faith.

Posted on:
Fri, 22/06/2018 - 23:38

Whip94

Joined:
2018-06-21

You can turn this around. Talk to someone, no one would want you to go through this on your own

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 01:14

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

It's not just the money lost its the life that goes with it.
All those years working for nothing.
Pointless
People earning half as much as me have moved on in life and I have less than nothing.
What's the point???

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 08:35

gamparentanon

Joined:
2016-04-22

I am the parent of a  gambler so I have heard the words in your last post many times over.

"The point is" - you  can have a future that will mean you are working for good things and not losing all to gambling.  The important thing and the best thing you have done now is to come on here to get help. That means you really want to overcome this. A lot of people are in denial but you are facing up to your problem and admitting there is a problem. That takes guts.  I can only  offer some advice that has worked for us. Ring Gamcare and they will advise you on where to go to get your finances sorted. There is good debt advice around.  Stop taking out more loans - especially if that money is tempting you to gamble. Loan companies are a nightmare and some make it so easy for people who cannot actually afford them.  Don't get me started on them!!  Try and get someone to take over your finances so that your funds are not easily accessible to you. I know this is not always possible but it really is a deterrent. Ask Gamcare about  ways of getting blocks on the gambling sites and Gambling meetings etc. Make an appointment with your doc if you are really down. Be honest about your problem and they are really good at recommending support.  You say you had nearly sorted out your debts before so if you can do that once you can do it again.  I will not lie, trying to get this sorted is very much a rollercoaster ride of good and bad days but I can assure you there is light at the end of the tunnel if you put your mind to it.  Make today  Day 1 of not gambling and keep counting the days and keep talking on here. You already have good supporters above.

Read the posts in all sections of Gamcare and you will see you are not alone with your problem.

Good luck.

 

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 11:53

Forum admin

Joined:
2010-11-01

Dear Cantstopkeeplosing

Welcome to the GamCare forums.  Please don't be alone with this, if you need to chat to someone in the coming days I would encourage you to call either our HelpLine 0808 8020 133 or on the NetLine

Kind regards

Forum Admin

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 13:45

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

I do appreciate those kind words I really do. But this time feels different. I'm no longer a young man (Will be 32 shortly) and the weight of all these losses is crushing me.
I've no idea how or why I let this get to this stage. All my options feel like some version of terrible. My girlfriend had been supportive but has no idea about the last 2 days of madness. Even worse is I had managed to recover my recent online losses and be able to pay off the one loan with the one I had recently taken out. 48 hours ago I had a future...

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 14:39

bluescreen

Joined:
2018-03-13

Hi Cantstopkeeplosing,

I have been there, several times, had a win that would have improved my situation immensely, would have made it more managable, a light at the end of the tunnel. Not square one, but good enough to give me air to breathe, to lower that feeling of despair...
You know what I did though? Every time? Take a guess. And take a guess what you would do the next time it happens to you...
It's a viscious circle. The only way out is to stop completely. Now. For good.

The solution to a gambling problem can't be to gamble more. Results don't come overnight. You know that, you have done it before. Let go of the losses. Start afresh. You may not be 20 anymore, but still young. Imagine you'd still be running around in circles in 10, 20, 30 years... this needs to stop. Now.

Forget about the money. It's gone. You shouldn't aim for being rich. Just aim for being a content human being. It's about emotions. No stress, no lies, no despair, no secrets, no deceipts, no anger and self loathing. That alone is worth it. Broke and miserable for the rest of your life, struggling to get along, or broke and relaxed, with an end in sight?

Time to get back in the saddle and try again. You can do it. :)

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 16:23

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

The trouble is now for the first time the goal is no more than starting at zero. I respect your views on being content but I just wanted a better life for myself hence why I did all the qualifications and stayed in a toxic job. Even my dad told me all I'm doing now is giving money to people who are already rich. This was before the last 2 days.

I've been diagnosed with anxiety and depression as I've had issues with a toxic manager at work.

Thought I'd escaped through a secondment only for that to not lead to anything more permanent. Forced to go back to my old job and same team / culture.
Shock horror old problems resurface. I wanted to quit rather than go back but was talked out of it - most expensive mistake I've made since.

Me and my partner are supposed to be looking at buying in the new year. It's a case of me now being a liability if we went for a joint mortgage. The irony is she's the complete opposite in terms of savings and being sensible!

Convinced if I tell her about recent events than that's it for us... Part of me would be relieved as at least id never be able to put her in any financial difficulties - though would like to point out I've only ever spent my own money on gambling

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 17:32

Whip94

Joined:
2018-06-21

Hi can’t stop keep losing, I have just read your most recent post about your partner. I am the girlfriend of a gambler, in less than a year he racked up over 50k of debt and I found this out before he ever got the chance to tell me. He lapsed last week and gambled £800 (which is a lot, especially as he is forking out for debts). If I had any advice for you whatsoever, it would be to tell your girlfriend, be completely honest because it is 10000000x worse if she finds out you have done it without ever telling her. If she loves you she support you.

 

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 20:34

aimee08

Joined:
2012-05-24

I am in the same position as you it’s been 7 years of hell your not alone good luck x

Posted on:
Sat, 23/06/2018 - 22:47

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Cheers Aimee08 Whip94
It's much appreciated. Day 1 complete.
These institutions promoting things like fobts and online casinos allowing credit cards deposits are predators. The worst part is recognising problem gambling developing in others. You can almost see someone slipping to the other side. All I got to do next is plan my next move.

Posted on:
Sun, 24/06/2018 - 11:59

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 2. It's a beautiful day but I still wake up thinking of debt and the effect it'll have on the future. Also on my mind is the fact I'm going to be at a family wedding where people will be wondering and enquiring why haven't I got my own place yet? Can't exactly tell them the truth.

Im worried of being exposed, the whole pack of cards ready to collapse around me... It's pay day this week so need to take necessary checks and protection. I've increased the number of shops on the self exclusion list. Not helped by the fact I travel for work and am commuting to another city until August. Just hit me that half my pay slip will be going to debt for at least 10 months :(

Posted on:
Sun, 24/06/2018 - 20:33

Whip94

Joined:
2018-06-21

Can’t stop keep losing, be optimistic!! You’ve made the decision to stop which is amazing and whilst 10 months seems like a life time, it could be a lot worse and 10 months will fly by once your into the hang of things!! Good luck with your journey!

Posted on:
Mon, 25/06/2018 - 01:52

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Struggling to overcome the self hate. I'm embarrassed at the sheer weakness of it all... Looking to get a 2nd job to speed up the repayments. I can't stop thinking about the things I could've done with all this money wasted on gambling.

I go to bed most nights hoping I don't wake up. Hate having nothing. Couldn't imagine my life being like this.

Where'd did it all go so wrong?

Posted on:
Mon, 25/06/2018 - 19:02

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 3 passed.

Trying to look forwards but keep looking back.

Anyone else feel like they've been personally cursed by this disease? The worst part is there's so little support available and gps are next to useless.

You just feel all alone tackling this evolving and resilient addiction.

The fact I can now no longer be trusted with large cash in my account is distressing. I feel more of a burden to my partner and those around me then anything else.

No one knows about the recent relapse as I'm too embarrassed and ashamed to bring it up.

Posted on:
Mon, 25/06/2018 - 19:52

Whip94

Joined:
2018-06-21

Can’t stop keep losing, stop putting yourself down, you need to feel the lowest you can be to overcome this, if you didn’t feel this way you would just go and do it again. Do you not feel like you can talk to your partner about this? You’ll feel a massive weight taken off your shoulders

Posted on:
Mon, 25/06/2018 - 22:20

Magnetism

Joined:
2017-12-15

Hi, I was close to clearing debt too today and ended up losing everything again.
 

Posted on:
Mon, 25/06/2018 - 23:44

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Oh no that's terrible
Make sure you're not alone and have support around you!

I know exactly what you're feeling. Just focus on the now, forget the plan today and give your self a chance to recover emotionally.

The final steps are always the hardest.

Keep going!

Posted on:
Tue, 26/06/2018 - 12:55

gamparentanon

Joined:
2016-04-22

Secrecy is the worst thing.  Tell your partner, confide in your Dad. That will be a deterrent. Get them to take over  your finances and hold your cash for you. I know it is hard to open up but you might find it is a weight lifted off your shoulders if they know the full story.  By the way 32 is still young and you still have plenty of time to sort a future for yourself.  Stop worrying about what people think about you not having a property yet. There are loads of 30somethings sttruggling to get on the property market anyway. You have a job which is a bonus so build on what income you get from that.  Look into everything you owe and ring a debt management company.  If you stop gambling now,  and I can see you have already achieved Day 1 and started putting blocks into place, you can concentrate of sorting your finances and planning on how you can eventually afford that house.  You have time and if you start looking forward instead of mulling over your losses you might see a light at the end of the tunnel. Go to that wedding with the thought that you can have a future after all.   I hope you will ring Gamcare. 

Take care.

Posted on:
Tue, 26/06/2018 - 14:16

geordie

Joined:
2009-08-17

Listen mate, there'll be lots of folk here who can genuinley empathise with you, you are not unique in what you have done. The fact is though, that you have done it. You cant deny it. But it's done now, acceptance is a very hard thing to practice but it is neccasary if you are to move on.

Accept that the money and the time you've spent has gone. Dwelling on it will serve no purpose. Neither will keeping things from the people who love you. Yes it's hard, very hard but secrets and compulsive gamblers, even those in a long period of absitinence/recovery, is a deadly combination.

When I was 32 ( 20 years ago ), I felt exactley as you described in your first couple of posts. You are not as young as you were, but you still have a long future in front of you, it is possible to change.

I had been to prison 4 times by the time I was 30, all crimes I done to fund gambling. I come from a good family I am the only one in my family to ever get into trouble with the police. I was never a criminal before I gambled. In 1998 (when I was 32), I was in hiding in a scruffy squat after stealing a substancial amount of money from a criminal gang I had been involved with. I ended up taking an overdose with vodka (shoplifted vodka....tablets on free prescription, sleeping tablets, painkileers, anxiety and depression tablets). I ended up in a psychiatric ward, it must have been this time of year because the world cup was on.

I was in that hospital for 6 weeks. I'm not going into the details of how I stole the money or what criminal activity I was involved in, however I ran away to the USA with it, nearly six thousand pounds. I didnt go straight to Vegas, but eventually ended up there via Atlantic City and Hollywood Park, I commited 3 crimes there, they are all classed as felonies as oppossed to misdameaners which means I would be arrested if I were to ever return to the USA. I even managed to get a loan there I had to leave my passport as security, I also had to leave my return plane ticket as security at the hotel I stopped in. 

My intention was to do myself in at this stage, my family hadn't heard from me for months, this effected my daughter big style.

But here I am.

I'm not going to hijack your thread with details of my journey but please believe me, that people, including you and I can learn to change, however hard it may seem when you are at your lowest ebb.

But in order to do so you have to believe in yourself, believe you can change. For me accepting the fact I could change was something I didn't truly believe until many years later. Once I accepted I could change, lo and behold I started to.

I would suggest that you taking control over your life from the addiction is the most important thing you have to do, for your sake, the sake of your partner, and your loved ones.

If you continue and keep your last gambling catastrophe a secret, what has changed? Isn't this something you've done before? It dosn't help you or anyone. 

Start taking control of your life mate. I went back to jail in 2005, 17 years after I had last been inside, it never left me until I really started afresh. I went into re-hab which was great that was in 2010, but I still went back to gambling it has been a hard fight and I had given up on myself. 

I'm now over 500 days since I last gambled (that was a lottery ticket) if it weren' for that I'd be another 50 or 60 days gambling free. The amount of days, weeks, months or years isn't important to me, what is important is today. 

If you genuinley want to stop then I think you have to spill the beans, the amount of shouting and swearing when you spill the beans might be awful but once people have had time to absorb what you've said I would think all they'd want is for you to get this sorted once and for all.

You're a compulsive gambler mate, there's no shame in that. You are here seeking support, have you tried GA and/or counselling to help. There is also the NHS gambling clinic, and the GMA if rehab is something you'd consider. The reason I ask is when you tell your family you'll be able to show them that you're taking steps to get your life back in order rather than just make the same old half hearted promisses that you've made in the past. Remember they've "heard it all before", this time show them what you're doing prehaps ask your partner and or Dad to get practically involved with your recovery. Let your missus handle the money, let her have your online banking details so she can monitor your account, there are lots of things you can do to help yourself.

10 months might seem a long time at the minute, but its not a lifetime.

I have no qualms about telling people I am a CG, I'm not ashamed of the fact. However I can understand you not wanting to tell people, it's up to you how you proceed with that.

You should be proud of the fact you are at last standing up to this addiction, many don't. 

It's not going to be easy but the rewards if you turn yourself around are well worth it. 

Gambling dosn't work for you, you've tried. Its now time to take your life back from it.

Nobody ever makes us gamble, although that's how it feels at times. But despite what we think at the time we dont "just end up gambling" we've gambled when we've wanted to. We chose to gamble, we chose to lie, we chose to keep things to oursleves. We didn't have to do it. But we chose to do it.

Chaos is a ladder. (Quote from Game Of Thrones). Out of the chaos you can climb. 

I dont post on here too often, I read a hell of a lot though. When you said you were no longer young at 32 compelled me to post. 

Like I said I am 52, my life is so much better without gambling in it. But the biggest bonus for me is not wanting to gamble, the desire has long gone. I hope it never returns, one thing I've learnt is that losing touch with support is a very dangerous thing, thats why I keep reading the forums. 

I wish you all the very best in your quest for a gamble free life. There's no need to ever make a comittment to a gamble free life, just a commitment to remain gambling free for today. Thats all I ever do. Thankfully the last 514 todays have all been gambling free for me. Today is the one that's important though.

All the best.

Geordie.

Posted on:
Tue, 26/06/2018 - 14:31

Magnetism

Joined:
2017-12-15

Day 1.

I spoke to a couple of operators over the phone last night and am relieved to get some support.

I struggle with ways to cope and have been under an enourmous amount of stress lately. I dont want to walk deeper into the water because i'm already drowning. This has to be it, because it has dawned on me that my mental health has suffered so much since last October.

I have really been through the mill trying my best to cope at work with crippling anxiety. Someone asked me whether I was making up excuses; I had to think for a considerable amount of time and maybe it is just me not willing to go on anymore.  my mind is competetive and I used my body for so many years trying to keep myself in shape! Therefore, I'm certain that I'm a fighter and will get through this time and everytime I relapse I'm closer to total abstinence...

I watched a few videos on youtube about gamblers losing money and realised I'm not in this alone. I want to climb out of this hole and the reality is there is no quick fix.

I stupidly fell into a trap recently and wish that I could of managed myself better. The first few bets I won and walked away thinking..Wow! I walked away with a nice profit...Only to end up somewhere else to lose everything...

I am at work tomorrow and don't have enough money for lunch...It's disgraceful that I keep punishing myself...I already have been under stress, I need to think that winning money doesn't make me happy and losing makes me worse!

Today I wont gamble...1 DAY IS SUCH AN ACHIEVEMENT!!!!

Posted on:
Tue, 26/06/2018 - 15:21

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Hi Geordie, first of all I have to say thank you for posting your personal story. It sounds as though you have had an incredibly tough time with gambling over the years. I wish you all the best on your continuing journey.

I've read some of the recent posts about opening and talking to someone. The reasons holding me back are not just the shame/embarrassment but the fact that the only person (potentially) benefiting from that will be me.

The other part is that I will be giving the message that I am a liability to those close to me. They will have to spend energy and effort to help me whilst always wondering what I am doing every time I'm more than a few minutes late or early. Its not fair to them.

It's the escalation of the amounts that's knocked the stuffing out of me, along with the speed it all fell apart. Neither of the 2 high street bookmakers staff did anything, happily taking debit card transactions one after another. These are supposedly safe places to gamble responsible as they have argued whilst trying to defend reducing limits on fobts.

In my experience the staff have no training nor interest in protecting a vulnerable customer. Coupling this with the completely ineffectual multi operator scheme and there's an argument for saying it's as dangerous on the high street as it is online! At least online once you have self excluded most operators will be alerted to your email, card etc. So at least some level of shield is put forward.

The realisation to my gf is the worst effect, as she will eventually realise she can never trust me with money. I have tried the gp route already and have not really had the level of support is hoped for - just getting an appointment was enough of a drama.

I'm not sure what I'm looking for here; might be enough to just have somewhere to track and vent. Trying my best to look at the bright side but struggling...

Posted on:
Tue, 26/06/2018 - 17:05

geordie

Joined:
2009-08-17

We are all individuals so please dont think I'm trying to dictate to you. 

But I will quickly tell you why I disagree. You most certainly would not be the only person to benefit from openning up. Suppose the very worse scenario. You tell your girlfriend, she's had enough and ditches you A bitter pill to swallow I agree, but how much worse for her if she ever found out? How on earth do you intend on getting through the next ten months without telling her?

Say you dont tell her, in 6 or 7 months she expecting to go for a mortgage with you...the spit will really hit the fan then, (not allowed to say "****"......told ya). 

If she' see's that  you are genuinley and activley seeking the help and she loves you, chances are she'll support you mate. If she dosnt or needs time, or wants to leave, thats her perogative but at the end of the day living a lie to woman you love, and one who loves you back is not fair, and it's certainley no basis to start off a lifetime together. The best thing for her is hear it from you before it becomes just another dirty little secret.

The reason so many people, (mostly those who have an amount gamble free time behind them or the partners or parents of recovering gamblers), suggest this to you is because we've been there and lived through it. Nobody wants to see you make the mistakes that we all have. It never changes mate. Compulsive gamblers and lies go to gether. Break the cycle. Tell her, and tell her everything once its out its out.

In fairness to you, I never listenned to other peoples advice I also had great reasons for not telling my partner, parents and others. Then it clicked I wasn't going to get better carrying on living a dishonest life. Its hard I felt 5 years old. It's embarrassing but to get better it just has to be done.

I'm not going to use your username mate, because you can stop and you wont keep losing if you dont gamble.

You'll start winning the day that you bite the bullet.

Mate I'm no proffessional I just know from over 35 years of pathetic gambling what eventually worked for me, but from reading of others experiences's and my own I know that those who dont come clean for whatever reason nearly always end up deeper in the dirt eventually.

Seriousley man, you cant keep this a secret for 10 months. 

Also I know from speaking to many partners and parents of CG's that the worst of it is from their point of view the lies and deceit because you couldn't face sharing a problem. Regardless of the amounts of money, the lies and deceit is usually what brings down a relationship. Sadly a leason I've learnt the hard way. 

Anyway enough said.

What I post is only my opinion, whatever way you go you will always be supported here. 

All the best.

Is that day 4 done now?

Posted on:
Wed, 27/06/2018 - 08:58

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 4 complete
Real test will be payday in a few days time.

Came clean to the gf. She's was supportive but I dont think she realises what I was confessing to.

I told her the whole truth but I'm convinced she did quite comprehend the implications of it all. Honestly the whole scenario is a complete nightmare.

Posted on:
Wed, 27/06/2018 - 17:42

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Any tips on dealing with being completely fed up with life?

I am now committed to working for free until this debt is cleared. If using up savings left and a few over payments could be debt free by end of year.

Negative is though would literally have nothing. The damage feels permanent- I feel I have no choice but to now accept a lesser life...

Feel like the stupidest person I know or am likely to meet!

How could I not figure out the enormity of these losses and just stop???

Posted on:
Wed, 27/06/2018 - 18:36

bluescreen

Joined:
2018-03-13

The stupidest person, eh?
Well... you have obviously never met me then... :)

Noone on here has seen this coming, and after we did finally realize what was going on, we started to just ignore it. Dwelling on that doesn't help. Just look forward.

A lesser life? Lesser than what? At least you would be starting it gf. From that moment on it will constantly get better.

Actually, for me, the days and weeks after I finally became debt free were exceptionally hard. Hadn't had such strong urges for a long time. These thoughts of a fresh start crept in. Of now being set free to try again. What harm could it do? I made it... it was over and I deserved a treat after all this, didn't I? ...

Of course it wasn't over. Never will be. And I can't do that ever again.

That's why I said you shouldn't be too tight on yourself regarding debt repayments. Recovery and dealing with the consequences of your actions is a thing worth doing, an achievement, progress, and not some sort of punishment. Of course you need to face it, but leave some room for a treat here and there. This is tough, no need to make it harder.

Just enjoy your life after the last bet you have ever made. It's actually quite okay. :)

Posted on:
Wed, 27/06/2018 - 18:42

gamparentanon

Joined:
2016-04-22

Hi again CSKL

Keep reading the posts above. Look at Geordie, bless him - what a rollercoaster life he has had but in the end he really wants that good life and it sounds like he is going all out to get it - 500 days - and it sounds like he might double that because he has now turned to thinking positive and he his  helping people by sharing his experiences. I hope he is leading a less stressful life now.   I know that is hard when you have hit rock bottom but it can be done. It is good to see you have been taking some advice from above writers and told your partner.  I am afraid that her losing trust with you and your money is part- and- parcel of all of this, If it was her gambling would you not feel the same and want to be watching her every move? That is a bit of a penalty for you but it is your job now to get her to trust you again.  Let her into your finances, let her help you sort out a budget etc, get her involved in your recovery.  You say you hope to be debt free in a year - some people take years - that year will go quick. I know you are fed up about this but that is a price you have to pay but when it is all sorted you can properly plan for the future.  The trouble is the gambling and the losses and embarrassment etc leaves you mentally exhausted and you just cannot see the light at the end of the tunnel.

My tips for dealing with being fed up with life:

Get a pen and paper and make a list of to dos to overcome the gambling and not get into any more debt.

1.  Ring Gamcare to talk

2.Talk to your gf if you are feeling tempted

2.Don't drink too much alcohol - that is a real spur to gamble

3. Get those blocks in place

4. Listen to the people on here and  read all the posts from each section

5. Make a plan with your gf to do something nice with available money after your hard financial year - make something to look forward to. Easier said than done but look for other interests i.e. gym, swimming, running, cycling al cheap and healthy interests. Look on the Matin Lewis money website. He has brilliant ideas for cost-cutting, financial advice and cheap deals for meals, hols etc.

6. Keep counting the g free days

7.Day 4 - be proud of that and keep building the days up.  Stop putting yourself down and worrying about what other people think. You have a problem that many good people have been landed with. It is in the past, you are making an effort to deal with it - be proud of that too. The money is gone, you will recoup it again. You have a job - you are so lucky to have a job. It sounds like  you have a good gf.  If you write dow all the positive things in your life, achievements, etc, past and present it might buck up your self esteem.  Don't eat yourself up with shame and losses now, thatis what is making you feel fed up. Make this a project in hand with the end target being debt free and eventually getting onto that property ladder. If you get yourself organised it can be done. In fact I know it can be done because I have watched all this at home with my own eyes and I can tell you that a life here has been turned around for the better. It was really hard work but things are working out well.

All the stuff above is what we have tried and a lot of it has done the trick. It is just food for thought for you.

Good luck to you and your gf and your gfree days.

 

Posted on:
Wed, 27/06/2018 - 23:34

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

I'm very withdrawn at the moment. Don't really want to spend time with anyone. Just want to crawl in a hole and die.

Meeting the gf tomorrow after work. Will force myself to try and be positive. She's want to discuss a plan and budget moving forward.

I unfortunately cannot shake the image of what the lost money could have bought me. I once joked in my mid 20s I wanted to buy a range rover evoque. Friends laughed (We were all drunk) but I could actually have done that without these losses. I'm not that into cars and have not driven in many years anyway. Whilst that's just an example I guess my point is I just wanted to be a success in life.

Whilst my upbringing was by no means poor we were not rich and I always had an idea of how I wanted to live. Being broke, overdrawn and owing more than I had in savings was not a part of it.

My problem gambling has been a nuisance for the first 3 of the last 5 years but the last 2 have completely humbled me.

I'm beaten.

Eventually it will be obvious to people that he's lost his money and I'll be exposed for what I am.

My resilience is at an all time low. Have I got another rebuild in me?

My professional progress has halted thanks to a truly awful boss who has made it impossible for me (or anyone else) to stay. Whilst I've secured another role outside the company, it's a sideways move (or feels like it) and I am starting from scratch here. Yes on the one hand it's an opportunity, but the other part of me thinks I've failed here as well...

My former classmates who I joined with have progressed much higher than me and have careers. I have a job and nothing more. I feel I've wasted at least 2 years watching lesser talents go by me. Perhaps more evidence of my poor judgement.

If I'd left this job at the start of the year how much better off would I be right now...

Part of me wishes my gf would just give up on me. I'm still convinced she doesn't realise what this all means or worse is in denial.

Posted on:
Thu, 28/06/2018 - 10:44

geordie

Joined:
2009-08-17

I don't think anyones's words will lift your spirits mate, it does take time..but you have to sit with it. Eventually you will start to view things in a more positive light. 

I could probably give you hundresds of examples of the times I felt like you do, I bought Merc Eclass last year, I had loads of weeekends away. All it took to get there was time. And no bloody gambling. I am paying some debts that will never be paid in my lifetime. But I am positive. I am positive that today I wont be gambling. 

The mess that you're in didn't just happen over night it took time, but it's worse than it was last month, and the month before that.. Worse than last year, like your gambling, like your lies I would reckon, your debt has gotten progressivley worse.

No suprise it will take time to put right, but stands to reason that, next month will be at least a little bit better, the following month better still. The years to follow rosier and rosier. Your gambling, your honesty, your debt will get progressivley better.

Listen it's easy for me to say "10 months is nothing", I know its daughnting for you, the hardest work is where you are now. You have a great lifeline that your GF is willing to help in this way, she might not fully grasp the magnitude of it, she might look for some support for herself, your gambling will have effected her too. 

Of course, when things have been getting worse and worse over the years you wouldnt have been noticing the time fly by, but you spent a lot longer than ten months gambling. Without your gambling you could have bought your dream car, well then you know thats acheivable. In time. 

I know how hard it is to get over the loss of money and time. It's almost like being bereft.There are similarities; when people lose a loved one, some will mourn for months or years and can't seem to move on through life, they get stuck dwelling on the loss. Others will talk either with a bereavment counsellor, or just talk about their loved one to friends or family. These people the ones who talk seem to accept the loss and start progressing through life. They have accepted that that person has gone for good.

Its the same with the time and money we have lost. It's gone for good. By talking about it hopefully you will start accepting more and more that the money is gone. The time has gone, no question about that. You can't win it back. Just like the money, you cant win it back, we've all tried, that's what brought us here. 

Today you wont lose time or money gambling, a small step in the right direction. Let your girlfriend help you put some blocks in place and let her handle you're money. It can only help, it shows her you are trying.

And as to others finding out, by the time they do, you should be weeks or months down the line, you'll be getting on top of your addiction. More people will admire you than you can imagine. You look around you and see what appears to be normal happy families but you dont know what goes on behind closed doors, you will be suprised how many families have some sort of addiction in the familiy.

People dont even have to understand addiction to know how hard it isto get it under control.. There will be one or two who might take the pith, let them. It's them with the problem. You're taking charge of yours!

I also get what you say, "Part of me wishes my gf would just give up on me." You probably feel you dont deserve her, I doubt she'll be in denial she probably genuinley wants to help, but like I said before she will benefit hugely from some F+F support you could maybe suggest it to her. Mate sounds like she loves you, she'll be pleased that you've told her I would think.

It's good that you're posting at the minute, I think the chatroom is up and running now, you never know you might feel the benefit and see things a bit more positive.

Take Care.

Posted on:
Thu, 28/06/2018 - 14:50

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 6. Means nothing until I get paid again tomorrow. First real
Test. Absolutely shattered, no energy, hardly slept.

Looking to change Gps as current one is too busy and useless. Got a headache and body feels lifeless. Obviously a reaction to recent events. Does it ever get better?

Is life just a rich man's game...?

Posted on:
Fri, 29/06/2018 - 12:29

Forum admin

Joined:
2010-11-01

Hi Cantstopkeeplosing,

Well done on your first 6 days gamble free. You say that you get paid today and I wonder how you are doing. This could be an excellent time to put some blockers in place to ensure that you don´t have easy access to gambling opportunities and to money to gamble with.

If you give us a call on the Helpline, we can talk thhis through. 0800 80 20 133.

I have moved this thread to "recovery diaries" and it is good to see how much support you are receiving here already.

Stay strong!

Kind wishes

Gabriele

Posted on:
Fri, 29/06/2018 - 16:22

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 7.
A plan in place. Current paycheck planned and stops put in place.

Gf recommended I try top up card instead of normal card- will try anything at this point.

Have also taken advantage of switch offer. Will bring in a little more money when paid. Hard month ahead...

Not gonna lie, upcoming wedding I'm attending will be a nightmare. Questions questions questions!

How do you look past previous losses?

Can't stop totalling them all up in my head.

Add this to upcoming job change and it's all a bit much

I still go to bed hoping I don't wake up :(
Sad but true

Posted on:
Fri, 29/06/2018 - 18:15

bluescreen

Joined:
2018-03-13

You just have to let go. Start afresh. Dwelling on the past losses only weights you down like a millstone around your neck. Draw a line and end that chapter. It's much better for your own wellbeing if you don't think too much about it.
When I finally stopped for good I had racked up a pile of debt twice my annual income and earned less than today's minimum wage. The light at the end of the tunnel was only a very distant glimmer.

Don't get me wrong. It wasn't easy. Throwing in the towel was something I considered quite often. It's pointless. Does it even matter? I won't make it out anyways, so what harm can a little try do, it might even speed this up a bit...
But the alternative would have been worse - skint a n d miserable. I didn't want to go back and this was the only way out.
See the positives. You are able to pay it off in a considerable time. 10 months is great. Less than a year. Just remember how long it took you to get into this mess. Rome wasn't built in a day.

As for people asking questions... well... how you live your life and where you set your priorities is none of anyone's business. At least that's what I think. You don't need to prove anything to anyone but yourself. Start putting your own wishes first. You are the one that needs to be content, not the people around you. Make yourself feel better and people's perception of you will also change. Stop being in defensive mode. You don't need to justify the fact that you don't own a home, there could be a thousand different reasons for that, one of them being that you simply don't want to...

I have never been rich, and never will be, but I live an okay'ish life and I am able to treat myself and others to something every now and then. This wouldn't be possible if I wouldn't have somehow found the will to go through that time (it took me much longer than 10 months).

Stay positive and keep in mind that one day you will reach the other side. No need to look back. There isn't much to see there anyways. :)

Posted on:
Fri, 29/06/2018 - 21:34

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Hi Bluescreen
The trouble is I've been effectively working for years now just servicing my gambling debt. I've been badly advised to stay in a job I hate. And you guessed it, my problems spiralled the longer I stayed in it, peaking last week.

I'm feeling too weak to carry on. Everyday since the 2 days last week has been a struggle. I feel as though I haven't slept for days. If anyone looked at me for more than a few seconds they'd surely notice how tired I look??

I tried the GP route but that has been a dreadful experience. The stress of continually getting an appointment before my medical note expired, whilst receiving no treatment I should add was awful. In my opinion the training to deal with this simply isn't there. Having grown frustrated with this I decided to go back to work as I now had finally had some counselling promised.

I have a new job to start in less than 2 months but everyday feels like a huge expedition to negotiate.

As I am now leaving my current role, as I anticipated my old manager is messing me around trying to tarnish my record my finding any excuse to mark down my performance review. Whilst I am technically being managed by someone else, the reality is this person isn't allowed to make any decisions themselves -they are terrified of the consequences. Therein lies another battle I am fighting.

If I had a time machine...

Trying to keep looking forward. My gf has been ultra positive and very practical since. I just worried she's ignoring the reality of what this means, namely I cannot be trusted.

For the first time ever I didn't trust myself with money. Handing over control and majority of decision making is humiliating.

First week now complete and perhaps the hardest few days of my life.

Posted on:
Fri, 29/06/2018 - 21:44

sjw

Joined:
2017-10-27

My advice from what you've written, one thing. Work on your sleep. Lack of sleep throws everyone and everything off.

Make time to rest, listen to meditation, relaxing music, stop watching screen all day and rest your eyes. Close them, read a book. If you can calm down and focus the mind you can feel more rested and everything will seem easier (not easy). Life might still suck for a bit but you won't be walking round like a zombie wishing time away.

Don't put everything on yourself all at once or you will overwhelm yourself and feel hopeless. You aren't. Its going to take time but there is an end to this if you make this the beginning.

One step, one day at a time.

All the best.

Posted on:
Sat, 30/06/2018 - 12:15

bluescreen

Joined:
2018-03-13

Yeh. I also always thought that it must be obvious that I'm just functioning. But I obviously did a good job in doing so. Another side-effect of an addiction that thrives on secrecy, I guess.
But as sjw says, you have to make yourself feel better to turn your life around and to finally get to a point where you no longer have to serve your gambling debt. Lower the pressure on yourself, get some rest. Don't let things affect you that much. The damage is done. Time to get things straight. Slowly but steadily. Easier said than done, I know. But yo have to start somewhere. Best to do it now.

I totally get the point regarding your girlfriend. I am also quite sure my partner wouldn't understand what this actually means. But how could they? It's all in our heads. No substance abuse, no visible affects on your physical health. Unfortunately even professionals sometimes don't take it as serious as it should be taken.

You really don't do yourself a favour if you dwell on this. Leave it behind. Getting some counselling is a good start in that direction.

Time for a change. :)

Posted on:
Sat, 30/06/2018 - 21:29

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 8 negotiated.
Lots of events that I would've bet on today. No more than a passing interest today though. The weight of the losses though are still fresh in the memory so unclear how permanent this feeling is.

Have self excluded from every shop I have ever gambled in across multiple cities. Whilst I have first hand experience (easily been able to go back in shop excluded from) of how ineffective it is in practice, still at least a sign of my intent. Until it allows debit cards to be blocked it's not gonna protect the most vulnerable. Only Fobt players load up rapidly in debit.

Online sites nearly all excluded on. Thankfully my interest in horse racing meant I wasn't interested in many sites as they didn't cover this.

Have removed cash from my account so not sitting on available funds to raid.

The hardest part is accepting the reality though of having no equity. There are 2 events coming up I'm dreading, one being a family wedding the other my birthday the month after.

Not sure I'm gonna feel like celebrating for some time. Trying to appreciate a simpler life... completely humbled and embarrassed by this weakness.

Hate being poor, it's s###

Posted on:
Sun, 01/07/2018 - 16:13

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Just been asked to contribute more towards bills by my family who aren't aware of recent gambling binge.

Not sure what to do here. I could tell them but to be honest they have struggled to accept this as a disease rather than something I am doing out of choice.

The one thing I learnt from last week that I have no control over my gambling. If I choose to gamble I will keep going till I lose everything. A win on the day will be followed up by another attempt to win more and more. Whilst a small bet after to 'ride out my hot streak' appears sensible, a gambler like myself will chase every small loss to the bitter end.

Looking back the number of times I could've walked away with a small loss but continued to try and break even are all too frequent.

Therein lies the difference between us and other normal gamblers who can accept they won't win every time. But I will add that you always saw the same faces in bookies so part of me thinks they are just further behind on the way to ruin...

As I commute on the train the number of people you see on betting sites is worrying.

I feel I have a big decision to make here. Struggle to pay this increased rent whilst also covering 2 loan payments until next year, come clean about losses and ask for a gap before higher rent contribution. Or contact a debt charity for help but have my credit ruined... my concern is about absorbing all payments is that I get depressed again about simply doing nothing but paying debt and end up losing my new job.

It feels like every option I have is as negative as it is positive at best!

Problems just seem to keep piling up :(

Posted on:
Tue, 03/07/2018 - 10:17

gamparentanon

Joined:
2016-04-22

Hi again

This stage of your recovery is the hardest and probably most exhausting.  The trouble with gambling is it eventually leaves you with a load of messy thoughts running around in your head and you are finding it hard just what to do next.  But, you are doing really well in putting stuff into place to help yourself. With the job thing, try and ride out the next few weeks of this job and see the next one as your fresh start.  It is a case of finding ways to cope with the chore of it all. Personally, I think it would be a good idea to open up to your family about your problem to increase your support network. It is up to you, you know best how they will react but maybe they will understand your struggle and try and help  you recover. Not by bailing you out though. It can be  kept in the family and when you go to parties, weddings etc all you have to say maybe is that you have had a few ups and downs lately but you are managing to sort everything out.  You keep saying your gf is in denial.  You need a gf who maybe is worried sick about you but is keeping her cool so you can both remain organised about sorting out the problems. I have said before, if your write down each problem you have to tackle and treat it as a project in hand. Tick off each problem as you get it sorted, and you have already done a lot as above.  Take some quiet time this weekend and convince yourself that what is lost is lost and you cannot turn the clock back, the money has gone and that is it. It is thinking about those losses that is stopping you from moving on and leaving you feeling exhausted.  The future is what matters now.

Try and tell your family so you may get a reprieve from the rent increase. There are supportive parents and family who write on here.

Tell them you have plans in place to sort everything out.

There is no harm in getting debt advice. Gamcare will advise you to where to go for that.

Plenty of people keep their jobs even if they are on debt management schemes.

Make today Day 1 of thinking/planning for a future with your gf.  She is working hard to support you.  There are ways of dealing with all of this - it is just a case of getting you in the right frame of mind to start building your self-esteem back up and get you feeling more positive about things. 

You are right about the advertising around all the time.  It's the same on the TV sports channels  - they say "bet responsibly"  but throw adverts out every 10 minutes!! 

I wish you lots of luck and you are doing really well - even though you can't see it yourself!!

 

Take care

Posted on:
Tue, 03/07/2018 - 10:59

duncanmac

Joined:
2012-01-26

Hi.
I don't post on many threads anymore but I read a great deal.
Your thread struck a cord this morning, it was like tearing a page out of my own life story.
Denial is a huge part of the the makeup of addiction.
The pretence that you some how can juggle all those balls and the rest of the world will be oblivious to your behaviour and actions.
My guess would be your nearest and dearest will be aware that something is a miss.
I spent countless days in a room in person but my mind was somewhere else.
Fella open the door, because yes your immediate honesty will cause upheaval but you will be surprised how folk react.
Share your thread here with them, get the folk around you to read the family and friends section it will help them to understand better how to help you and themselves to boot.
There are many innocent victims of gambling addiction, I left a wake of them.
As for gambling it is something that has existed since man walked earth and will continue to do so.
For me there is a place for it, just for me and mine I can't wage a single penny because I know it won't end there.
Have you considered ga, it was a place where I met folk like minded in 3d, no judgement just folk sharing their feelings, stories and lives.
I will leave you with this.
Why did you stop gambling??
For me I ran out of the ability to, my funds and the ability to source them ran dry, after starting this journey six years ago I have relapsed twice the last punt I had led me to seek putting an end to my own life.
I am grateful that the circumstances meant that I was unable to, because today I believe that I have changed as a result.
By arresting the next punt rarely does that mean an end to the carnage gambling has caused, there is a great deal of emotional and financial damage to repair.
From experience honesty is the place to begin addressing both.
I wish you strength.
Duncs stepping forward never back.

Posted on:
Tue, 03/07/2018 - 14:28

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Hi gamparentanom duncanmac

There's almost too much going on at the same time. Everything at work is a battle and my finances feel like a minefield I'm trying to negotiate blindfolded.

The debt management advice I will look into but from what I have already come across, all options will impact your credit rating, avoiding this is not possible. Thankfully I don't have any payday loans nor ever considered them! Legalised loan sharks at those rates.

Whilst I have mentioned to my brother about the recent relapse. He had no reaction. I do feel let down by my family. My brother has had my bank savings for a number of years but failed to manage my money properly. It's not his fault but he's terrible with money. Barely noticed or kept track of what should have been in my account. I was better off when I was managing my own money!

My parents advised me to stay in a job making me miserable. Never once or since told me to walk away. Many problems will come to an end the minute I leave this job. I do blame them for not considering my health first or believing I could succeed elsewhere.

Ultimately I'm the one gambling but I can't pretend I have had the right advice around me - it's just not true. I've had better support from my gf in a week than over the last 3 years from my family. No offers to help me self exclude, get counselling etc.

I don't trust there advice as i feel the real damage has been done over these last 6 months, something which could easily have been avoided.

Maybe I am being too hard on them, but it's how I feel.

Posted on:
Tue, 03/07/2018 - 23:35

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 11 complete

Just read another post that gave me deja vue. Another young person snowballing their losses through sports betting, later chasing losses on casino games.

If we all had a time machine...

Posted on:
Wed, 04/07/2018 - 20:26

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 12
More stress at work. Thankfully resisted temptation to try and gamble on commute home. Mind plays tricks and all of a sudden you realise you can go to the arcades even if you have self excluded from shops.

The disease that refuses to die is gambling. Always lurking, dormant waiting for you to slip up. Never stepped in them but the addiction encourages creativity in finding opportunity and funding. How this energy could and should be transferred to something actually positive!

Less than 2 months in current role before I'm gone gone gone! Journey to financial freedom begun. Must stay the course.

Posted on:
Wed, 04/07/2018 - 20:48

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

For anyone not sure if they are just bitter from a few losses vs someone who is a problem gambler consider this:

Do you chase a tiny loss until you have no money left? One of the things I found was that even a huge recovery to virtually break even wouldn't satisfy me. I somehow was compelled to squeeze a profit. Ridiculous I know... especially when involving Fixed odds betting terminals. They will get there profits, it's just not always your money stacking their pockets.

Have you found yourself seeking solace in gambling after a stressful situation? This unfortunately is the WORST time to gamble. You will almost certainly chase every loss with this mind set; you are seeking comfort but it's not gonna be found here long term.

Do you even know how much you've wagered in total this week? Last week or the whole month? Forget profit or loss for a second, what else are you spending similar similar amounts on? Do you go on £1000 nights out (as a comparison)?

This one only came to me recently, but do you catch yourself imagining yourself with extra spending money from the bet you've placed before you've actually won. I'm hindsight, you could have done whatever you were planning without this win. You are just too preoccupied with funding your habit you can't see it.

As a final bit of food for thought consider this, with gambling you are simply giving people money who don't need it. They're already rich and you're help keeping them there! Stop funding your own misery.

Good luck people.

Posted on:
Thu, 05/07/2018 - 20:51

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Day 13 complete

Another stressful day looming tomorrow. Thankfully no gambling losses to ponder over from today making it 13 in total.

Day at a time. They soon start to stack up. Little by little debt being eroded. For now piece of mind will suffice.

Posted on:
Thu, 05/07/2018 - 21:10

geordie

Joined:
2009-08-17

13 days ago you couldn't find peace of mind. 

Your comments above are spot on. For me it was hard to accept I was so guuliable to get sucked in by such a stupid non-sense. But I was, now I see it for what it is. A complete waste of time and money with the potential to mesmerise and control me. Some people can take it or leave it. For me I've tried it thousands of times and I admitt defeat, I choose to leave it. Just for today. 

Hopefuly tomorrow I'll be of a similar mindset.

Great start mate.

Posted on:
Sat, 07/07/2018 - 06:23

gamparentanon

Joined:
2016-04-22

Hope others are reading your posts. As a parent of a gambler  your posts shine a light on the reality and consequences of having this problem in your lives. It lines the pockets of greedy companies who leave a great deal of their clients to ruin their lives. Much healthier to keep that money in your pocket. Keep counting those gfree days and clearing those debts - it is still possible to get that house you know!! To you and everyone above - Have a good weekend.

Posted on:
Sat, 07/07/2018 - 13:18

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Thanks gamparentanon, geordie
2 weeks passed. It's nice to not be worrying about trying to recover losses on a sat morning.

As gambling memories & urges fade, time is freed up. Counting down the days until I've finished this job as well.

Something new to look forward to with less and less baggage by the month.

Enjoy the weather and weekend people.

Most importantly don't be tempted by the wave of advertising coming your way this weekend. Or worse someone on your Facebook, or Instagram posting a picture of some big accumulator win.

No-one posts about the day they lost a month's wage or mentions the previous 20 accumulators that they didn't win. Enjoy the sport gf ppl :)

Posted on:
Sun, 08/07/2018 - 10:33

Ukds69

Joined:
2018-04-28

Hi cantstopkeeplosing,

My thoughts for what it’s worth.

Firstly, the sheer quality of advice that you’ve been given from posters on this thread can’t be bought. Geordie, gamparentanon,  bluescreen and several others on here are giving you top top advice from every angle.

When I saw your username I though ah... The ‘keep losing’ bit struck me. That said to me, at the time, your focus was more on the losses than the gambling itself. I recognised it instantly, I’ve been there, time after time after time...

I can’t give any different advice to what you have already been given but I will say that once you GENUINELY accept that your losses are gone for good and stop looking back, only then, can you get on that road to recovery. It takes time but acceptance is absolutely key. Only ever looking back with regrets is toxic, an obvious cliche it may well be, but what’s done really is done.

The other key acceptance is that of accepting that you are giving up for good. Not for a month, a year, 5 years. Forever. This was undoubtedly my biggest failing and the primary reason I could never stop. Although I was unaware at the time that that was why.

32 is young. Yep, I remember being 32, feeling old, having nothing, and wondering where I was going in life. I’m not here to boast, quite the opposite, to try and show you that life for you can start again now. Now later on, in my 40s, I went from that meandering low point in my life to driving that car I’d always wanted, being my own boss of a thriving company and earning good money. However, as good as things are now for me, wow things could’ve been even better. I gambled throughout most of that period and I would now have been seriously well off if I hadn’t, but hey, I’m no longer looking back, as I changed my mindset earlier this year. Do me a favour and do a better job than I did at your age, give up now while you are only in your early thirties.

Accept that your losses are gone. Accept gambling is gone forever from your life. Get as many blocks in place as you can (GAMSTOP is a massive lifeline to online CGs). Remember, support is key. Remember, we do have choices. With time you will see. The brain gets re-wired and everything gets easier. That dark feeling of hopelessness that we will never change, it does go away eventually. We will never be fully ‘cured’ but no addict ever truly is but we can live a perfectly ‘normal’ life with our gambling urges left, if not fully gone, dormant.

Posted on:
Sun, 08/07/2018 - 21:11

Cantstopkeeplosing

Joined:
2018-06-22

Hi Ukds69, thank you for posting. It's good to hear success stories such as yours. It's as important as reading the horror stories on things to avoid such as triggers temptation etc.

Whilst I accept things will improve because I have stopped gambling, the position it has put me in is far harder to cope with. I am turning 32 in little over a month and will have no equity at all. I owe more than I have; It's a horrible feeling as I have stuck with a job I hated in the hope I would secure a promotion. My contemporaries who joined at the same time are all doing well, and I feel very left behind. The building up of debt also mean it has been for nothing...

I remain gf but lost in so many other ways. It often feels like giving up would be a victory of sorts.

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