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Posted on:
Thu, 12/10/2017 - 20:57

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

Thank you for your continued support. I feel like I am really making head way!

DAY 15

I'm exhausted!! I didnt realise how battling tempations and impulses all this time (15 days) could be so hard. I have been busy with the house, work etc but in all the rest space I've had I have been battling my thoughts. They are always there in the back of my mind but I am focusing on the future.

My therapist (2nd session tonight) is encouraging me to not squash the thoughts but rather use them, consider them and make better decisions. The idea is that if you say to yourself that you 'can't gamble' it makes it more appealing. 

I feel proud of my progress and looking forward to many more days GF. I am aware that I have another 13 days until pay day...the real test. But Im hoping to be in a better place by then so it can come and go without too much anxiety. 

I'm thinking of starting to make candles for a hobby and plan to use some of my wages to buy the equipment for this. 

My name is Xenedra and I owe my recovery so far to the lovely people on this forum. 

Posted on:
Thu, 12/10/2017 - 23:44

ODAAT

Joined:
2014-11-10

Strange that your therapist said that Xenedra because when I started, I never intended it to be forever & so I kind of had in my pocket that I would gamble again one day.  I’m not sure of exact time frames but @ some point, I was planning my gamble & trying to figure out how much money I needed...It was a fairly complex process but I think I got to needing to be prepared to lose a 4 figure sum before it hit me, I needed that money to lose!  Since letting go of it completely, I have found it much easier to dismiss any thoughts & now I know I never can.  Kind of like having an allergy to it...If I had a peanut allergy, I may crave a Marathon (aka Snickers) but I wouldn’t eat one.

Congratulations on getting the house & biting the bullet with the therapy.  Life isn’t easy but facing your fears will help you move forwards - ODAAT 

Posted on:
Fri, 13/10/2017 - 21:01

adam808

Joined:
2017-08-27

The more I read your story and chat to you Xenedra, I am positive we are in the same place on the gambling free marathon. I feel this payday is a huge test for the both of us and I hope we can keep going together to ensure we beat this horrible disease. 

I like the idea of candles - I would buy some for my Mum for Christmas - ha! 

Posted on:
Fri, 13/10/2017 - 21:09

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

Hi ODAAT, yes i thought it was strange but I can see what he means. Deny yourself then you will put it on a pedestal and forever want it. I actually said the same thing in therapy last night, that I sometimes (in a moment of madness) think I will be able to gamble again in the future and it will be ok. Im learning each day that this is never going to be the case.

DAY 16

I am still here, still fighting. I'm having more thoughts of my beautiful (late) black labrador Welly recently. I think she is coming into my mind to comfort me but at the same time she would have loved my new house and it hurts me that she left this world when I wasnt with it, wasnt present and in the real ditch of my addiciton. I miss her every single day, she was the most beautiful soul. 

I am finding that I am quite irritable. I am finding stress more difficult to deal with. Stress with work for example seems overwhelming. It might be coinsidence but I suppose I have given up my outlet, my chill time and I havnt found anything to fill it yet. So 'spare time' is exhausting to fill in the evenings. I kinda feel like I want to go to sleep and wake up when all this is over and no longer so hard. Although saying all this, some days are much better than others. 

Im thinking ahead to payday and how this time it will be different...it has to be different. 

Starting to move house this weekend so will be fully distracted from gambling! 

My name is Xenedra and I am fighting this addiciton...one day at a time. 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted on:
Fri, 13/10/2017 - 21:13

ste_ven

Joined:
2012-05-11

Hi Xen

Good chatting tonight (and you Adam!). 

We are on a long, difficult path and taking our first steps. Care is needed with each one, we have lost our sight of life and must move slowly until our eyes begin to open again. 

The forum and chat are great places, they definitely help.

Take care and stay GF.

Posted on:
Fri, 13/10/2017 - 23:02

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

adam808 wrote:

The more I read your story and chat to you Xenedra, I am positive we are in the same place on the gambling free marathon. I feel this payday is a huge test for the both of us and I hope we can keep going together to ensure we beat this horrible disease. 

I like the idea of candles - I would buy some for my Mum for Christmas - ha! 

Haha!! I think we are and it is a great comfort to me to know that  someone else out there (or others out there) do know how I am feeling and what I am going through each day. We are the best support system for eachother. As great as family and friends can be you have to be a compulsive gambler to know one sadly. 

Knowing me il become a compulsive candle maker!! 

We can do this. We can so do this!

Posted on:
Fri, 13/10/2017 - 23:03

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

ste_ven wrote:

Hi Xen

Good chatting tonight (and you Adam!). 

We are on a long, difficult path and taking our first steps. Care is needed with each one, we have lost our sight of life and must move slowly until our eyes begin to open again. 

The forum and chat are great places, they definitely help.

Take care and stay GF.

Always a pleasure! I am so grateful for this forum, like minded people sharing in the peaks and troughs of this devestating addiction. 

Let's keep it up...to the future and not a stake in sight...

Posted on:
Sat, 14/10/2017 - 07:01

Smashed

Joined:
2017-08-13

Put me down for your first candle sale. :-)

Posted on:
Sun, 15/10/2017 - 09:23

Tommyt124

Joined:
2017-09-27

Hiya xenedra

Great to see your doing so well and are doing everything right in your recovery count me in for a candle Xmas pressies for Mrs keep going jft x

Posted on:
Sun, 15/10/2017 - 20:32

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

Thank you all for your best wishes (and candle orders lol)

Day's 17 & 18 

Let's get to bussiness first...both days were gamble free! 

I was hopeful, 18 days ago when I started this journey again I was hopeful that it work this time, that I would be strong enough to come out of the darkness and back into the light of the free world. 

Day 18 marks the longest period of abstinence from gambling I have had in the last couple of years. But as much as the number increasing spurs me on it reminds me that I am still in very much the early days and will forever have to keep my wits about me as gambling will be waiting to pull me back whenever I let it. 

I am busy at the moment, trying to organise a the new house, bills etc. When all the dust settles and routine returns I will have to be extra cautious. I am trying to lay the foundations for a better life in this time.

My name is Xenedra and I am slowly rebuilding my life...one day at a time. 

 

Posted on:
Mon, 16/10/2017 - 19:42

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

Day 19

I don’t really have much to report. Just to say that I am still here, still free from gambling and still very motivated to seek a better future for me and my daughter. I had today off of work to try and sort more things for the house, including calling StepChange to reduce my monthly payments which they were brilliant about. 

I feel more in control today than I have for some time now. To know that things are new, things are changing and things can be better. I have the opportunity to make such a great life for myself and my family and I am not going to jeapodise it this time! 

My name is Xenedra and gambling had me but now I’m free. 

Posted on:
Mon, 16/10/2017 - 20:47

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

It genuinely fills me with joy to read how optimistic and positive you are, as it wasn't so long ago things seemed grim. Totally respect to you for bouncing back and staying GF. You and your girl deserve every happiness, take care S:)

Posted on:
Tue, 17/10/2017 - 20:00

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

 

Sharon41 wrote:

It genuinely fills me with joy to read how optimistic and positive you are, as it wasn't so long ago things seemed grim. Totally respect to you for bouncing back and staying GF. You and your girl deserve every happiness, take care S:)

Thank you so much. I don’t want to make this look easy as it is far from that. It’s is a battle most days. Well, most evenings to be honest as that was my gambling time.

Day 20

I had a refund for something I sent back paid into my account today, I wasn’t expecting it. I checked my account just to be sure to expect to see £5.46 which I have done for weeks now but I had £20.46 (£15 refund) and my thoughts straight away went to gambling. I thought instantly ‘free money, money I didn’t expect’ ‘money for gambling, this £20 will win me money enough to solve my issues’ so I put off going to the cash point to withdraw it ALL DAY and about 5pm I went to the cash point and put my card in and cancelled it, my card popped out. I then stood there thinking, ‘shall I play the £20 on the slots?’ ‘It wouldn’t matter, I once won £280 on a line bet from a £1 stake I could do it again’. A man in a wheelchair joined the cash point queue behind me (Who knows how long I had stood there in a gambling daydream). And then as quick as the gambling inpulses come over me when I would be depositing my last £100, I stuck my card in and withdraw the £20. I was in such a rush I nearly walked away without the money. 

But I had it, £20 cash. £20 that when you have no money, and it’s still 8 days until payday is most welcoming. 

Today makes me worry for payday, I am thinking of leaving my bank card at work in my locked drawer overnight until all my direct debts come out, then I can withdraw the rest of the cash in the bank. I don’t have anyone that would hold my card for me and I can’t completely trust myself yet. But I am still GF and I am proud of the decision I made today! 

My name is Xenedra and today showed me that gambling is an addiction strong enough to hold up the cash point queue for a REALLY LONG TIME! 

Posted on:
Tue, 17/10/2017 - 22:22

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Hi you don't make it seem easy, especially reading your early diary entries. I have so many times had unexpected cash and straight away blown it on gambling trying to double it etc. Now just take a day at a time and make small good decisions, then if I go to bed knowing I haven't gambled can sleep well. Good move to plan a strategy for payday,  for some insane reason if I had money in my account I wouldn't be satisfied until I had gambled all of it, sad times. Take care S:) 

Posted on:
Wed, 18/10/2017 - 00:31

Abstainer

Joined:
2017-05-10

Hi Xenedra congratulations on 20 Days GF. I am sure I am just one of many who are wishing you a successful recovery. We are all with you on this and want you to be happy in your new home.

I am fortunate as I have never gambled on line and am not tempted to do so, I imagine it must be really addictive so I am keeping well away. 

Is it not possible to exclude yourself from the gambling websites or take some other preventative measures ? 

Posted on:
Wed, 18/10/2017 - 08:29

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

Hi all! 

Abstainer, I have blocks on my laptop and have self excluded everywhere I could think but there are always more. 

I’m having a bit of a struggle this morning. I got a text from a +44 number with a link (didn’t read the text properly it said something about entering a competition) as soon as I clicked it it said I’d paid £3 to enter a competition for the Phone Casino and that the £3 would be added to my phone bill!! I am so angry! Firstly because I clicked on a dodgy link, secondly because Iv paid £3 for essentially nothing and there was no warning that it would be taken automatically! And thirdly its to a casino!!!! I have never used these casinos before! Never gambled using a phone bill but other companies have obviously sold my details to them!! Angry because I don’t think Iv gambled (I don’t even know what the prize is?) 

Please help guys! I feel pretty rubbish about it all to be honest! Like I was so close to an online casino and technically gave them money :( I was thinking of emailing them today to see if it can be resolved but to be honest I don’t want to go on to the site! 

Advice please...Iv been doing so well :( 

Posted on:
Wed, 18/10/2017 - 09:10

Muststop123

Joined:
2017-10-03

Hi Xenedra
Well done on staying GF and resisting the temptation at the cashpoint. Proves you have the self will to beat this, just keep strong.
Personally I would try and forget about the £3 text thing. It was not deliberately gambling, it was a genuine mistake. I know the £3 is annoying but I would not do anything that caused me to have to interact with any casino/gambling organisations if I could help it. I have come to realise that they are just too big and powerful for me to have anything to do with them. I block all the emails I can and delete anything immediately that has anything to in the title relating to casino/gambling/slots etc. without reading them. Just don't want those sorts of thoughts in my head anymore.
Keep the GF days going. You can do this.
 

Posted on:
Wed, 18/10/2017 - 09:52

Merry go round

Joined:
2017-06-08

Hi xenedra maybe call your provider and ask for them to block this stuff and report it. The amount is irrelevant it's deception surely? I've heard this before they will entice you back anyway they can. Good luck!

Posted on:
Wed, 18/10/2017 - 11:18

Dean0

Joined:
2017-09-14

Hi xenedra,

Firstly never click on a link sent via text, you’re lucky it was 3 pound, scammers have been known to empty bank accounts through this method, it wouldn’t be unusual for them to continue to take the 3 pounds monthly some cases daily, I’m not scaremongering either . Phone your service provider immediately and get them to remove it from your bill, and any contract the link has you signed upto

Posted on:
Wed, 18/10/2017 - 14:01

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

Thank you for all your advice. 

I will call O2 and discuss with them and ask them to block such access. and i am going to email the phone Casino and ask for them to return the money and to delete all my details off of their system. I am so angry that they can do this type of thing! 

I will keep my wits about me even more from now on! I wish you could block and delete all your details from such places! 

I have deleted all my phone browser history as well as sometimes I would search for innocent things and the casinos would be the first thing to show in the url. 

Thanks again everyone I’m going to try and not let it get me down 

Posted on:
Wed, 18/10/2017 - 14:31

ODAAT

Joined:
2014-11-10

Hi Xendra, I was sent this by one of my GA friends & thought it highly appropriate for you right now...”When trying to recover don't stumble over something behind you!”

Also, have you had a look @ the GAMSTOP sticky?  I didn’t do my damage online so it’s not relevant to me but it must be worth a look if you want to get stronger blocks in place.

Posted on:
Thu, 19/10/2017 - 22:11

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

DAY’s 21 & 22

Just checking in for more gamble free days! Still busy with gradually moving things in to the new house. 

Had another therapy session today and it’s all starting to make more sense. I just wish I could fast forward the time so that some of the damage I have done is partly resolved and I am further away from the addiction! 

My name is Xenedra and I sometimes wish we could erase the past.

 

Posted on:
Sat, 21/10/2017 - 20:24

adam808

Joined:
2017-08-27

Just caught up on your diary... that cash point story. It's strange but it brought back a whole feeling I'd almost forgot about. That desperatation and FIGHT you have with your mind when an urge is latching onto you. Well done for sticking to your guns and being strong. 

It was my payday yesterday and I did everything we discussed. Paid my bills (bar Car Tax because they're awkward) and withdrew the rest. I need to start properly planning Christmas as I'll be doing a lot of online transactions so I need to be very careful with money and make sure it's all managed and safe. 

When is your payday? How are you feeling about it? I quite like the idea of keeping your card at work. You can have a cash fund at home for nights and the weekend and then you can just grab your card for online purchases when you need to. 

Posted on:
Mon, 23/10/2017 - 19:04

adam808

Joined:
2017-08-27

Hey Xenedra, just checking in. Haven't seen you about for a few days. How are things doing?

Posted on:
Tue, 24/10/2017 - 19:53

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

DAY'S 23, 24, 25, 26 and 27

Phew! Where did that time go? 27 days without a bet...and counting! 

I have not be on here for a few days and i'll explain why. There are many benefits to this forum, I attribute my recovery to the support I have received on here along with the comfort in knowing that I was not alone. I love posting, reading replies and reading other's posts and in the early, early days it was a great help to come here to post when I was twitching and aching to gamble. 

But I had to take a break and the main reason for that is because I find discussion around gambling triggering. I find that the more I read and engage with other (ex) gamblers that part of me is kept alight. I found myself coming here to read the intro threads, reading heart breaking stories of loss and people at their lowest and my mind would tell me 'if they have lost there is more chance you will win'. It all got messy and distracting for me...so i took a break. I went back to basics with what I used to do before gambling and before Gamcare. I had nice, long baths, called old university friends, drank hot chocolate (and a couple of gins), talked to my daughters father, talked to my mum on the phone, I read magazines, planned shopping lists for new food to make, made a christmas list and arranged with my sister to take my daughter trick or treating with her cousins. All normal life stuff, stuff i had neglected, not had time or money for when gambling. 

It is amazing how much gambling takes up your life. Not just sitting in front of the laptop or standing in the bookies or casino but the worry, stress, sleepless nights, lies, working out how much petrol £3.57 will relistically buy you or whether its best to use it for a bread or your daughter's school disco money, changing work and social plans so that you can avoid spending money and the questions that come with earning a £30k a year salary and living at home but NEVER  having any spare money. 

I am aware that I am still in the very early stages of my recovery. But over the last 27 days, I have changed the way I think about my life, and how gambling found me. Misery loves company and gambling is the best company, any time, anywhere, never changing, always willing to offer that hope that your own life lacks so badly. My attitude to money and it's value is slowly changing although it is not by any means restored. 

They say it takes 21 days to break a habit. I am not sure what I think about this.

It is pay day tomorrow. The distress that followed the last pay day serves as a bitter reminder of the constant knife edge that this addiction keeps you on. I have my plan. But mostly i'll be treating it like any other day. Up, wash, coffee, cigarette, work and home, fill the time, bed. If only we could all bottle the day that gambling finally broke us the bitter tears, the dispair, the hatredl, the guilt, the emptiness. We could then sip it each time our mind wandered off into gambling as a sharp reminder. 

My name is Xenedra and I get paid tomorrow. I will pay my bills on time. I will withdraw my money and I will not gamble. 

 

Posted on:
Tue, 24/10/2017 - 20:16

Moorey631986

Joined:
2016-09-08

 

Xenedra wrote:

DAY'S 23, 24, 25, 26 and 27

Phew! Where did that time go? 27 days without a bet...and counting! 

I have not be on here for a few days and i'll explain why. There are many benefits to this forum, I attribute my recovery to the support I have received on here along with the comfort in knowing that I was not alone. I love posting, reading replies and reading other's posts and in the early, early days it was a great help to come here to post when I was twitching and aching to gamble. 

But I had to take a break and the main reason for that is because I find discussion around gambling triggering. I find that the more I read and engage with other (ex) gamblers that part of me is kept alight. I found myself coming here to read the intro threads, reading heart breaking stories of loss and people at their lowest and my mind would tell me 'if they have lost there is more chance you will win'. It all got messy and distracting for me...so i took a break. I went back to basics with what I used to do before gambling and before Gamcare. I had nice, long baths, called old university friends, drank hot chocolate (and a couple of gins), talked to my daughters father, talked to my mum on the phone, I read magazines, planned shopping lists for new food to make, made a christmas list and arranged with my sister to take my daughter trick or treating with her cousins. All normal life stuff, stuff i had neglected, not had time or money for when gambling. 

It is amazing how much gambling takes up your life. Not just sitting in front of the laptop or standing in the bookies or casino but the worry, stress, sleepless nights, lies, working out how much petrol £3.57 will relistically buy you or whether its best to use it for a bread or your daughter's school disco money, changing work and social plans so that you can avoid spending money and the questions that come with earning a £30k a year salary and living at home but NEVER  having any spare money. 

I am aware that I am still in the very early stages of my recovery. But over the last 27 days, I have changed the way I think about my life, and how gambling found me. Misery loves company and gambling is the best company, any time, anywhere, never changing, always willing to offer that hope that your own life lacks so badly. My attitude to money and it's value is slowly changing although it is not by any means restored. 

They say it takes 21 days to break a habit. I am not sure what I think about this.

It is pay day tomorrow. The distress that followed the last pay day serves as a bitter reminder of the constant knife edge that this addiction keeps you on. I have my plan. But mostly i'll be treating it like any other day. Up, wash, coffee, cigarette, work and home, fill the time, bed. If only we could all bottle the day that gambling finally broke us the bitter tears, the dispair, the hatredl, the guilt, the emptiness. We could then sip it each time our mind wandered off into gambling as a sharp reminder. 

My name is Xenedra and I get paid tomorrow. I will pay my bills on time. I will withdraw my money and I will not gamble. 

 

Excellent post Xenedra, and I can also relate to finding it difficult sometimes to read through forums and not think about gambling myself. As fantastic a forum this is, filled with lots and lots of inspirational and friendly people who offer lots of great advice and words of wisdom, I feel like I'm spending too long on here sometimes, talking about gambling and how to avoid it. Maybe that's needed in the very early days. I'm talking less than 10 days.

Pay day for me tomorrow too. I've just had the most amazing evening.... Long walk in the rain, egg sandwich when I got home, a nice hot shower and then I'm going to make myself a hot chocolate and watch a box set..... Is that sad? It seems so mundane but you know what, I'm loving it at the moment. I feel so much more at peace.

2 days ago none of those things would have been in my evening plan. It would have been purely gambling. 

Keep up the good work, Xenedra. Take care

Posted on:
Tue, 24/10/2017 - 22:00

Who am I

Joined:
2017-05-17

Your doing great Xenedra!!! 

Tomorrow I light a nice scented candle and think of you, wishing you strength.

The last 27 days are proof of your strength and the amazing changes that have all happened because of you, looking forward to hearing what the next 27 days will bring. You have done this, you can do this and you will do this. Keep following your dreams, never stop believing in yourself. So happy some of your dreams have already started to come true- I hope you and your daughter are settling in well in your new home. Maybe with your upcoming halloween plans you might find some nice pumpkin recipes.. enjoying cooking, spending time with loved ones, making memories, calling friends, enjoying a hot choccy etc.. Lovely to hear, keep enjoying these things and discovering other things that make you happy :)

Stay strong x 

Posted on:
Tue, 24/10/2017 - 22:11

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

Thank you for your reply ​Moorey!

Life is full of simple pleasures. Best of luck with your pay day...its a tough day for all on here. 

Can I ask what was your vice?

Xen :)

Posted on:
Tue, 24/10/2017 - 22:23

Moorey631986

Joined:
2016-09-08

Xenedra wrote:

Thank you for your reply ​Moorey!

Life is full of simple pleasures. Best of luck with your pay day...its a tough day for all on here. 

Can I ask what was your vice?

Xen :)

I’d start off by placing ‘innocent’ little sports bets. But then get quite cheesed off when they didn’t come in....

(They’d be 6/7 fold accumulators at 30/1 etc).... (Why should I have been expecting them to pay off???)....

So I’d try and recoup those losses with roulette (all online). Yes, I’d be trying to recoup my £3 and end up losing hundreds. That’s how much of an idiot I became!....

Posted on:
Wed, 25/10/2017 - 00:54

4D

Joined:
2010-02-10

Hey Xenendra you've been doing so well. I hope you can make it through this payday, there's light at the end of the tunnel. I found the first payday really hard so I'm hoping its a bit easier for you but do whatever u have to do to get through without gambling! If its coming here posting then great, if its taking a break and treating yourself to some of life's pleasures like you say above then that's good. I am nearly at payday 2 and feeling a lot better than this time last month!
What you say above about reading the intro threads being triggering, I think this can be true especially when fighting urges, where you're reading about gambling wins and money amounts. Sometimes best to read the long term recoveries or the success stories for inspiration if feeling vulnerable or like you say take a break.
Anyway Im wishing you strength...I hope to see you in the 'striver' ranks..thinking what a great Xmas for you and your girl it can be if you keep going and beating this day by day.
Don't forget to treat yourself (not to gambling on those stupid slots who pretend to be a treat but are really a TRICK!!!) and have some me-time...most important!
All the best
4D

Posted on:
Wed, 25/10/2017 - 07:47

Smashed

Joined:
2017-08-13

Hi Xenendra

Thats the thing about gambling addiction that there is no set path to quitting you have to make it up day by day. It's a wierd one as every day is different, and you read everyones journey and most are vastly different to your own path. I dont want to be on a recovery path, who does but we do get allsorts of emotions from others. The forum is like a community centre, there will be good days, bad days, and days you just dont wanna go, and do whatever suits you. Your doing good look what youve achieved this last month, follow the path :-).

Posted on:
Sun, 29/10/2017 - 15:00

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

DAY'S 28, 29, 30 & 31

Well PAYDAY came and went by. The 25th of the month always held in such esteem. And rightly so, it is the day that I reap the benefits of a long, hard month at work, I am sure that millions of people across the country eagerly await payday each month addiction or no addiction. This month was slightly different. I was with biated breath for payday. You see, I have been so used to not having any money, paying bills very late and getting letters phone calls etc, only ever window shopping for things that I could comfortably afford. Addiction takes you to dark places and during some of my sleepless nights I would wish that I could get paid, pay all my bills on time and buy simple things such a new duvet set (I have had the same one for years) etc. It all seemed impossible. Gambling took ALL of my income some months, other months I might withdraw some cash to pay some bills and the rest went to the slots. I was so used to payday being a day full of dread and guilt but first the excitment of having money to feed my addiciton again. When the 25th October came around I knew this would be different.

I have spent the last 31 days changing my life for the better. I have found that my mind is no longer constantly occupied with thoughts of gambling although, I do still suffer with fleeting thoughts and impulses that I am careful to manage. I have not allowed any gaps for gambling to sneak in the will power to respect this boundaries is the hard work of the individual. And it is a struggle some days. 

So it has been 4 days since pay day. I have paid all my bills, put a full tank of petrol in the car, bought some new things for my house, bought some christmas presents, did a big food shop and have money left over for the month. This to me is a success. I am happy beyond comprehension whenever I look in my money tin (money not in the bank for obvious reasons). I feel that this pay day has been a big turning point in my recovery. I can see no way but forward. 

Thank you all for your continued support. 

My name is Xenedra and I got paid. x

Posted on:
Sun, 29/10/2017 - 15:11

Moorey631986

Joined:
2016-09-08

Xenedra wrote:

DAY'S 28, 29, 30 & 31

Well PAYDAY came and went by. The 25th of the month always held in such esteem. And rightly so, it is the day that I reap the benefits of a long, hard month at work, I am sure that millions of people across the country eagerly await payday each month addiction or no addiction. This month was slightly different. I was with biated breath for payday. You see, I have been so used to not having any money, paying bills very late and getting letters phone calls etc, only ever window shopping for things that I could comfortably afford. Addiction takes you to dark places and during some of my sleepless nights I would wish that I could get paid, pay all my bills on time and buy simple things such a new duvet set (I have had the same one for years) etc. It all seemed impossible. Gambling took ALL of my income some months, other months I might withdraw some cash to pay some bills and the rest went to the slots. I was so used to payday being a day full of dread and guilt but first the excitment of having money to feed my addiciton again. When the 25th October came around I knew this would be different.

I have spent the last 31 days changing my life for the better. I have found that my mind is no longer constantly occupied with thoughts of gambling although, I do still suffer with fleeting thoughts and impulses that I am careful to manage. I have not allowed any gaps for gambling to sneak in the will power to respect this boundaries is the hard work of the individual. And it is a struggle some days. 

So it has been 4 days since pay day. I have paid all my bills, put a full tank of petrol in the car, bought some new things for my house, bought some christmas presents, did a big food shop and have money left over for the month. This to me is a success. I am happy beyond comprehension whenever I look in my money tin (money not in the bank for obvious reasons). I feel that this pay day has been a big turning point in my recovery. I can see no way but forward. 

Thank you all for your continued support. 

My name is Xenedra and I got paid. x

What a positive post to read on this beautiful, sunny, Sunday afternoon :)

Doesn’t it feel great to not waste your hard earned money on gambling? Doesn’t it great to feel ‘normal’, like most other people. That’s how I feel anyway. 

Keep up the hard work Xenedra! You’re doing bloody well my friend. 

Posted on:
Sun, 29/10/2017 - 16:27

adam808

Joined:
2017-08-27

Fantastic news and I am super pleased that you've managed to get your head round being gamble free. I know for myself, it feels like something has just clicked?! It's very odd but I am so pleased you've managed to get past the dreaded payday and act properly by withdrawing money.

Also - I did a full shop the other day too. How weird is it being able to buy whatever you want?! Usually I have to plan every item in order to fit the tight budget that's been caused by a gambling binge. 

Amazing news - and please check in every now and then if you can, would be nice to hear how you are getting on.

Posted on:
Sun, 29/10/2017 - 18:42

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Great post Xenedra and so great to hear you happy and positive. Just doing the everyday stuff like paying bills etc is a pleasure when we're not gambling. All the best for your new place, you and your daughter deserve it, take care S :) 

 

Posted on:
Sun, 29/10/2017 - 18:49

ste_ven

Joined:
2012-05-11

Xen, Adam

I have felt that click too, however it is important not to rest on our laurels and stay strong and focussed.

Xen - great news on getting through payday unscathed. I like the forum because it is there as much as you need it to be... no commitment to post every day, even week... but if we need it we have our diaries to get our thoughts down on. 

Take care and stay GF.

Posted on:
Fri, 03/11/2017 - 20:59

4D

Joined:
2010-02-10

Thinking of you Xenendra and I hope things are going well for you. I enjoyed Halloween but didn't get any trick or treaters so had to eat the sweets myself lol! I know you were taking a bit of a break from the forum so I hope your therapy has been useful in keeping strong (and maybe even started the candle making?!)
Best wishes to you :)

Posted on:
Sat, 04/11/2017 - 21:00

adam808

Joined:
2017-08-27

Thinking of you as well. Hope things are still going good for you. Let us know when you can!

Take care.

Posted on:
Thu, 09/11/2017 - 22:05

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

DAYS 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, AND 43

Good evening to all my GamCare friends, I am sorry for my prolonged absence. 

Life is good. What can I say? I am 43 days clean. Although one slip...one deposit of £10 which I did not play...immediately contacted their customer services to say I wanted to close the account and having to explain that 'yes I know I deposited moments earlier but I checked myself before I wrecked myself'. It was an impulse and I was weak for a moment. 

My thoughts are no longer occupied with thoughts of gambling, quite the opposite actually, to a point that I am now 5 (or 6) sessions in to GAMCARE therapy but I am using the time to  disucss other issues that led to my gambling family, grief etc...my therapist and I have an agreement to avoid talking of gambling as this is a trigger for me. Sadly my therapist called in sick tonight but we had a quick chat and he was pleased I had had another good week (slip was over a week ago). I honestly could not recommend counselling more to anyone. It is hard but it is worth it. 

My daughter and I are settled in our new home and so far all bills paid in full on time and Christmas shopping underway. I feel good to be able to have money at this time of the month (16 whole days after payday). I bought a rug for the dinning room and its huge, loud and gorgeous and it is my symbol to myself that I am better than gambling! I deserve better and work hard enough to have better!!

I dont have any magic for quitting...for me abstinence was the only cure initally and the therapy is putting it all together for me. Plus I do not want to let my therapist down. 

Now the fog has lifted I am starting to grieve for my dog Bella who passed unexpectedly during the height of my addiciton. This is difficult as (I have recently learned) rejection and loss are huge triggers for me. I miss her so much, her ashes are on my mantle piece above an open fire and it is not fair that she sits on the mantle piece and not in front of the fire. But grief is the price we pay for love. 

I sincerly hope that all my conrades on here are happy. I am learning to be happy again and it feels good. 

I am hoping to be updating more often now because although it was a dark time gambling was a period in my life where I learned a lot about myself. 

My name is Xenedra and I am grieving for the loss of my baby but I have better coping strategies now. x

Posted on:
Thu, 09/11/2017 - 22:36

Muststop123

Joined:
2017-10-03

Hi Xenedra

Great to hear that you are still GF and are starting to enjoy life again. Keep it up!!

Muststop123

Posted on:
Thu, 09/11/2017 - 23:15

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Hi Xenedra, fantastic to hear how well things are. I guess sometimes thing just click and I'm sure having your new home is a massive incentive. Keep going and enjoy your GF future S:) 

Posted on:
Fri, 10/11/2017 - 11:37

Smashed

Joined:
2017-08-13

Good to see you moving on, and back here, and booted addiction up the rear when it whispered in your ear "Just £10" you done well a big test.

Posted on:
Mon, 11/12/2017 - 22:58

Xenedra

Joined:
2017-08-16

Days and Days

Hi all, I'm back after a fair few days. I would love to say that I'm dropping back briefly, taking a break from my wonderful gamble free life (and for the most part I suppose I am) but there is a small part that is not so wonderful. 

A week or so ago, the emails of free bets, free spins started to look appealing from my junk email folder. They had gone from the normal inbox, the text messages had diminished from up to 20 a day to one or two a week, but the ones that were creeping through were being opened and not immediately deleted. I can't tell you (or my therapist) why this is. I suppose I thought i'd beaten it and it might be ok to look again. I logged on, used the free spins...having to register with a few new casinos to do this and for a while all was ok, in control. Until I deposited and played my own money...£20. Not a massive tradgey, a rain drop in the ocean to what it has been, easy to rectify...I have quit smoking...4 weeks now so easy money I would have spent on smoking. I played that, won £101...put all that back in (of course) and walked away.

Then it was all back, the emails in the inbox, texts from other sites, and the entry on my bank statement...that was disgusting to see. But a night or two later I went back...this time £30. Lost this in about one minute. But I walked away...I have since played some bonus money but have not made any more deposits. Considering my last binge 76 days ago cost me £800 I know this isnt a relapse but it is a slide in the wrong direction.

I am not going back to where I was I am sure of it and I am pleased to say that the urge has left me now. But I did want to come back here and talk about it. Be honest with you all and myself. 

I have started to watch the birds in my garden and each morning I feed them (a feast...as I can never do anything by halfs) and I have befriended a robin who is just beautiful...the other morning he took a dried worm from my hand and everything felt wonderful. This is living...gambling is not. But why is living so much harder than gambling?

It will be Christmas Day two weeks today and last Christmas I spent it in front of my laptop, gambling all day. I didnt play with my daughter, I didnt even cook a Christmas dinner. I even sat on the stairs because my daughter and her dad wanted to watch a film in the front room and I wanted to keep playing but near a plug socket so I could keep then laptop charged. This Christmas will be different for sure. 

Thank you all for reading. 

My name is Xenedra and I am trying, I really really am. 

 

Posted on:
Mon, 11/12/2017 - 23:36

Norland27

Joined:
2017-12-07

Hi Xenedra, i was skimming through some of your earlier posts before. Sounds like you’ve come a long way since last Xmas. You should be proud of yourself! Keep going, and keep making your daily lists of everything that your grateful for in your life, Maybe it’s a trick of the mind but you always get more of what you concentrate on. 

Posted on:
Wed, 13/12/2017 - 00:11

4D

Joined:
2010-02-10

Hi Xenedra good to see you back and posting, you are in the right place and I was a bit worried when there were no posts from you for a while.

Sorry to hear about you going back to gambling, however briefly. Yes I think you have to be positive and see that you are getting stronger compared to before, I know you will keep trying because you want to be rid of this evil habit for good like we all do!! You have come back here and been honest and that is a step in the right direction.

Use this experience to get stronger, close the loopholes that allowed you to gamble this time, ask yourself what was happening that week when the emails started to look appealing again and use it to help develop your strategies to avoid or deal with those triggers.

Your question "why is living so much harder than gambling" is really poignant and you have hit the nail on a head here for many of us who have used gambling to escape before... this is something only a gambling mind would think. I suppose we should try and look at it from the other side of addiction, think about something you can't see the appeal of. I look at a heavily addicted heroin addict who has lost everything and while on the one hand I can understand the need for a fix on the other I can see they are throwing their life away and its frustrating & sad. I do try and think of gambling like this, its a short term fix and it robs your life away. In fact there may be more similarities than people think, withdrawal symptoms for a cg can be physical as well as psychological, I definitely experienced this in the first few weeks and have heard many people say this. That's also why willpower alone is the hardest method, would you put a recovering heroin addict in a room full of heroin and expect them to keep resisting?

I am sending you hope and strength, please keep going!! I know you want to beat this, don't let it back into your life because you have so much to lose! Remember the old saying on here 'we cannot win because we cannot stop' - and let go of the recent losses or they will play on your mind.

All the best
4D

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