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Lying and honesty if you are in a relationship

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#1 Posted on:
Mon, 23/10/2017 - 21:06



Some thoughts.

I'm not a fan of the words "recovery" and "relapse" but will use them on this thread for context.

When I stopped gambling I knew I had to tell my wife everything including pawning the wedding ring, selling a fancy phone etc. Trust has been slowly being re-built and I can totally understand her suspicions if I don't come home say at 7 and come at 7.30.

Our only real disagreement when I was genuinely being truthful was about an ipod I sold to get money to gamble after we got married. She insisted I sold it before we got married adamently - Amazon receipts proved me right and she apologised.

Moving on - I can see why some people who have stopped any destructive behaviour like gambling keep it from their nearest and dearest.

There is in my view lots of differences between lying, honesty and concealment especially if you have "relapsed". Concealment to me is to do with self-preservation and perhaps knowing disclosure could have horrendous consequences on your life.

Why in my view?

Because you are horrified if you have insight into your behaviour or gambled again after "swearing" you wouldn't to your partner.

No-one likes being judged or criticised but unfortunately that is how life is.

Saying that I believe - despite my integrity being challenged which is fine - if you stop this horrible behaviour without 'fessing up I have no problem with that because we are all different - and let's be realistic we all tell white lies from time to time. None of us are perfect or can predict the future?

To me commitment is KEY from day one and an approach that suits YOU as an individual and perhaps at some point an individual will open up to their partner with a bit of time under their belt.

All the best, Phil.

Posted on:
Tue, 24/10/2017 - 06:37




Its a subject that needs talking about but would you not agree that compulsive gambling has gone further than just being able to ride out the loss of half a months wages? By the time people reach for the forum its reached a highly dangerous level

The addiction is so deadly that it can lead to thousands being bet in an instant. It trampled all over any willpower I thought I had.  I was never in control when gambling. Thats why it needs to be treated with the fear and respect that it deserves. I think we have found that it can not be casually brushed off in a go it alone style of recovery

Wouldnt it be lovely if people could just summon up some willpower and spare the loved ones any hurt while quickly changing their behaviour. However I know it doesnt really work like that. I looked at my smiling wife and children and knew I would be a man and save them from the doesnt really work like that as everyone comes along for the after effects and ride to destruction

Everyone has to deal with it as they wish. I cant force anybody to do the right thing. I firmly believe that openness and full honesty is needed to tackle one of the deadliest addictions

I used to ride out my losses with secrecy and borrowing which eventually led to my bankruptcy. The concealment is dishonest. I was even lying to myself so what chance would anybody else have had? What hurt are we saving our loved ones from if the debt is horrendous and the stress levels intense? It will all show and people will be found out sooner or later.

I feel the scenario you are leading us to towards is a low level of gambling where somebody snaps to their senses and has some willpower and the fear to stop immediately. Arguably before an addiction takes hold. Maybe in that case the secret could be ridden out for a short while. Its still a hidden secret and not being honest with a partner.

That wasnt me. It took me 40 years and then 10 months after joining the forum to abstain from gambling. I know what you mean about the words recovery and relapse but if anything the words should be stronger because I was suffering from a full blown mental illness....words that many people are very scared of.

So its an interesting debate and I am open to the debate 

Best wishes to everyone on the forum

Posted on:
Tue, 24/10/2017 - 09:37



I definitely agree with you JD ("fear and respect" for sure) and totally believe that active compulsive gambling and other forms of destructive behaviour lead to mental health problems and also think your comment about "openness and full honesty" is totally right.

When I stopped gambling I knew I had to tell my wife everything - no-one advised me to do so but I knew I had to because my behaviour had been so awful. The criticism I received was/is incomparable to the disgusting things I did to access money to gamble.

Perhaps people who haven't told their nearest and dearest will do at some point when the time is right for them as I said above. Perhaps they won't. I personally think you should but that's just my view.

For me, even though I knew I was going to have to swallow some bitter pills, there certainly was some relief in getting it all out in the open, re-build a marriage that was definitely on shaky ground, start to be trusted again by friends, re-build self-respect, pay off debts and ultimately stop feeling the self-loathing that came with active compulsive gambling.

Best wishes, Phil.

Posted on:
Thu, 26/10/2017 - 11:32



Hi Phil,

Thanks for your post. There are a lot of parallels I can see with my situation.

My husband came clean to me and although it was a massive shock I'mn so glad he did. I know everyone's situation is different but now it means he is more accountable as I know the signs to look out for - how he got money, where/when he would gamble and the lies he would tell so he could gamble more (said he didn't get a bonus from work, hid payrises, made up tax bills etc). 

Obviously if someone wants to gamble they will but coming completely clean to someone (if you are fortunate enough to have someone you can do that with) means it will be trickier to fall back in to that spiral in the future.

..... I hope this is the case anyway!

Posted on:
Sun, 29/10/2017 - 10:28



" I can see why some people who have stopped any destructive behaviour like gambling keep it from their nearest and dearest"

I guess my view is - when do you know you stopped? 90 days? 2 years? 500 days since the last time? When a friend tells you so? Plus, not disclosing a relapse which then escalates will have potentially horrendous consequences on your neareast and dearest lives too.

Posted on:
Sun, 29/10/2017 - 11:59



I think inherently human beings do not like being criticised by a partner, family member, friend, boss etc.

My point about "understanding" was more to do the fear of being criticised, "told off", fear of being left by a partner etc. if you see what I mean?

I know, however, that living a lie is no way to live so being as truthful as possible in my every day life is what I attempt to do.

Posted on:
Fri, 15/12/2017 - 22:39



No we dont Phil but we know its coming. Just that look on my Dads face could sink a thousand ships but I know I had to face it to start healing myself.

The point comes when I was walking home on a cold night skint and suicidal. I had done it again and I didnt really understand what was going on.  It wasnt even an addiction realisation at that stage. I just knew I had to act on the advice because I couldnt take anymore of the extinction gambling binges. Something clicked in me that something had to change.

A bad reaction from others is natural. We know we are in for the high jump. I understand why partners leave or threaten to. That is what so dangerous about an addiction that couldnt care less in the heat of the moment. Im still working out how I could stand there and feed two months rent into a machine in just two sessions. Was it me? Do I have a get out of jail free card or did I just think I could walk on water. It makes no sense whatsoever.

I understand why the lies and dishonesty start but they are no good for us and will just eat us up from within. I dont think recovery can start until it all comes out into the open.

Best wishes to everyone on the forum