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The hardest thing I have ever written

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#1 Posted on:
Tue, 30/01/2018 - 11:34

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

Hi all as mentioned this is going to be the hardest thing I have ever written. I have been gambling since I was around the age of 14. It started with online poker when I began watching it on television I managed to persuade my mum to let me play a little bit as I was good with numbers. At first my mum was hesitant but let me play with a small amount. In the beginning I was winning money only 14 years old could dream about, but suddenly I began losing. I lost so much that I began remembering my mum's bank details. I was lucky my mum and my family have supported me everytime I have a blip. I then moved out of the country around the age of 16 and after a family tradegy had to return to England around the age of 18. I needed a job and saw a local bookmakers were offering jobs. I appliedas I was interested in sport and ended upworking with the company for 8 years. This is when my gambling really started I started small on horse bets which progressed to sports and then finally the dreaded FOBT'S. At this time I had no bills or responsibility and had disposal income. Over the years my mum has noticed a change in behaviour and knows when something is wrong. I have been bailed out with loans, credit cards and payday loans. I have been so distraught each time and never ask for help as I believe I can get myself out of trouble and stop gambling. This never appeared to be the case as I genuinely believe I will stop and then months later start again.

Fast forward to the present I now have a lovely girlfriend of 5 years and a 17 month baby girl. I have also started a new job with great responsibility and great prospects. When leaving the bookies I found it hard as it had been my routine for years, but I suddenly snapped out of that behaviour leaving a mountain of debt behind. I have never told anyone the true extent of my debt as I am so ashamed.I know my girlfriend and family will always help me but I never ask for it. 

It has now come to light as my girlfriend found a £30.00 betting slip after I had a night out. This has prompted her to ask for bank statements and she knew I had been gambling. I know how disappointed she is with me and it kills me inside. I also nearly breakdown at the money spent as it is money for baby's future. We have written down all the debts I have totalling approximately £20.000. I have never missed a payment on anything but never seem to clear the debt due to minimum payments.

We have plans in place to clear the debt and my girlfriend has taken control of my finances. This is the first time I feel I can beat this addiction as I have been truly open about my addiction. I also have so much to lose after getting everything I have ever wanted.

I am sorry I have written so much I just had to clear my head. 2 days in and not even thinking about gambling and want to do the right things to build the trust in me.

Posted on:
Tue, 30/01/2018 - 12:55

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

No problem in writing too much - its great to get it off your chest.  Firstly well done for coming on here - recognising you have a problem is a great first step.  The good thing is that your partner also knows - loads of diaries on here have people agonising over whether to tell friends and family, so you've got that out of the way.  I know the debt might sound like a lot, but there's much worse stories on here ... you're also relatively young, and you say you now have a job with good prospects, so you can definitely move on from all this.  I've found the easiest way is to limit the access to money - either hand over control to your partner, or at least have her check your bank statements regularly.  Forget about the losses (I know its not easy - to put into context I lost £48k in less than an hour just before Xmas) ... if you try and get them back you'll lose more.  You'll find though that once you start getting that debt down you'll feel loads better.  Other advice would be don't try and think too far ahead ... it feel overwhelming thinking about never gambling again ... just think you want gamble today, and then think the same again tomorrow.  Good luck!  Rich

Posted on:
Tue, 30/01/2018 - 14:15

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

Thank you for your comment they definitely all help. I know my partner is struggling with everything and I am hoping she sticks around although I wouldn't blame her if she doesn't. She hasbeen very supportive but I know she is hurting. I have been lucky that a slip has falling out of my pocket and there will be people there to support me. I know it's hard to tell people who you are close too these dark secrets. I have been there many times and there is always someone who will help you. I don't want to be hypocrite as I didn't tell anyone on this occasion but my girlfriend put it best. You are just delaying the inevitable I hope everyone who reads this has managed a gamble free day and good luck tomorrow.

Posted on:
Tue, 30/01/2018 - 16:14

Colt11

Joined:
2014-06-26

I was in a similar position to you pal. My wife found out and told me in no uncertain terms that any decision to gamble again would be a decision to throw my family away

That statement helped me so much- when ever i got the urge i relive that message. Basically gambling or family???? easy choice when you think about it.   

 

All the best

Posted on:
Tue, 30/01/2018 - 22:46

Crossintheroad

Joined:
2017-11-03

Don't worry about the money that has gone you won't get that back. I'm about 3 months in but all I can say is the money situation gets better the longer you stay away from gambling I spent the last 10 years promising to pay off debts but getting further into debt keep going it'll get better

Posted on:
Tue, 30/01/2018 - 23:47

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

That's how I feel at the moment ! Things have taken a change for the worse I think my girlfriends parents are trying to end our relationship. I understand why but I really feel this time can be different and have never been so serious about quitting. I know they seem like empty words to people you have hurt. I am so low and I don't know what to do. I am not even thinking about gambling I just want my family intact.

Posted on:
Wed, 31/01/2018 - 07:22

Merry go round

Joined:
2017-06-08

Hi John gambling will not help as you know. Gambling gives you nothing it just takes everything you have. There are many here who've lost everything. I think you should call gamcare and get some support. I don't know if you've been or are going to GA. Your priority is to not gamble today. If you want to keep your family together you have to show you're getting help, doing everything possible to stop. Retrain your brain, find something else to do to occupy your thoughts. Concentrate on your job. Stopping is possible if you commit 100%. You cannot do it alone. Put your blocks in place. 

Posted on:
Wed, 31/01/2018 - 10:43

Lethe

Joined:
2016-12-10

Hi

You've done the right thing in coming clean whatever the outcome. Your girlfriend's parents are looking out for her. They may sway her, they may not but the crucial thing is to keep showing her that you mean what you say. Action speaks louder than words at this point so get your blocks skyhigh, get on the Gamcare counselling list and find your nearest GA group.

Posted on:
Wed, 31/01/2018 - 11:31

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

I am definitely looking into Breakeven counselling as I'm not even sure why I gamble. 

Posted on:
Thu, 01/02/2018 - 15:09

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

 

Day 5 

I still feel depressed about the situation even though everyone knows. My girlfriend has given me one opportunity and has said she was close to ending the relationship. I do struggle with the thought of never gambling again but Inhave so much to lose. We went town yesterday for shopping and bless my girlfriend she didn't want me to take my card even though I was with her all day. This was more as she didn't want me to spend any money. I still have money and can support our family I am just in major debt and she worries. I am still clear that I want to stop gambling it is not a life I want to continue.

 

Posted on:
Thu, 01/02/2018 - 15:49

Took a wrong turn

Joined:
2012-02-22

Sounds like your girlfriend and family are going to support you so you've got your chance to do this for yourself and them

Well done on 5 days 

Wilsy

Posted on:
Thu, 01/02/2018 - 18:02

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

Thank you I do appreciate the comments.

Posted on:
Thu, 01/02/2018 - 18:08

Colt11

Joined:
2014-06-26

That’s ure first positive in your recovery. Now hold onto that! This could be a major turning point

Posted on:
Sat, 03/02/2018 - 13:27

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

Good morning,

I am feeling a bit happier today even though Saturdays are my hardest day. I know I can't gamble and I need something else to do to occupy myself. Everyone almost knows about my problem and everyone is willing to help. I have been told this is my last chance or I am effectively homeless. 

 

Heres to another gamble free day

 

Posted on:
Sun, 04/02/2018 - 20:09

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

 

I made it through the weekend gamble free which is a big achievement for me. I feel better about this but must not become complacent. I hope everyone had had a good weekend

 

 

Posted on:
Mon, 05/02/2018 - 11:30

Took a wrong turn

Joined:
2012-02-22

Hi John,

pleased you made it through the weekend, often the hardest days, now just ride the next five days out and keep racking up those all important days.

Wilsy

Posted on:
Sun, 25/02/2018 - 14:14

Johnhoyle101

Joined:
2018-01-29

Hello all I haven't been on in a while as things have changed dramatically. My relationship has ended as I don't think my ex could get past my problem which I completely understand. I am still in a good place and my only concern is seeing my little girl. I have also been to two counselling sessions with break even. I do feel this is helping as I can discuss things I might not in the real world. During the sessions the therapist has told me I do not have a gambling problem which I find strange and conflicting to what other people have been telling me. I am still not gambling and approaching a month. I do feel happy for not doing it but can't help feeling a small bet would not hurt. I will not follow these thoughts and move past today