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This might sound a little harsh but..

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#1 Posted on:
Tue, 28/11/2017 - 14:47

cg-rambler

Joined:
2017-11-21

Hey all.

I have been using the site for a week or so now and I think it's a really awesome resource to help people who struggle to control their gambling.

There is something that I guess slightly bothers me though, if that's the right word to use. I see a lot of new members sign up and introduce themselves in the new members forum and I think thats a really good place where you're offered a lot of support from people. But it seems that a lot of these people don't respond to all the suggestions after their initial message. I suspect this is because people come on here after a heavy loss when they're feeling low and want something to make them feel a bit better about it, but I think there is a difference between wanting to stop gambling, and wanting the bad feelings and emotions related to a gambling problem to stop.

I have found it really helpful in my own attempts at recovery to try and engage as much as possible with the people in these forums. I guess my advice to others on the site who really wants to stop is that they should do the same. I know how bad it can make you feel to gamble away all your money etc. but ultimately feeling sorry for yourself and perhaps looking for sympathy isn't going to help anyone get over their problems. At the end of the day, despite the fact we are all addicts, we must take responsibility for our actions and take a proactive role in trying to make things better.

 

Just my two cents :)

Posted on:
Tue, 28/11/2017 - 15:11

Christer1

Joined:
2016-02-29

You are right many of times I have left a reply and not got a reply

Posted on:
Tue, 28/11/2017 - 15:23

cg-rambler

Joined:
2017-11-21

Christer1,

It's just something I have noticed. I'm not trying to be overly critical but if these people really want help then they should stay active. It's not much use leaving a post because you're feeling bad if ultimately you don't actually want to stop. And i do understand that. Over the last year when things have been bad, If I was honest with myself I didn't really want to stop gambling, I just wanted to stop feeling like **** about it.

Posted on:
Tue, 28/11/2017 - 23:10

Christer1

Joined:
2016-02-29

I knew you weren't being critical it's a observation I agree with and also I like to engage with people on here myself some peoples advise has been helpful and I find if I havint looked on here to face reality I think bout gambling more

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 07:45

Cynical wife

Joined:
2015-06-23

Beware the trap of excess focus on what others are doing at the expense of focusing on what you need to be doing. Although if it frustrates you that the proverbial horse is led to water but refuses to drink, spare a thought for their nearest and dearest.

Those who sincerely want recovery will do it in their own time (but not in their own way) when life has become unmanageable. But no one else can make it happen.

CW

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 09:04

Loxxie

Joined:
2016-01-15

Intersting post...and I hear what you're saying ....
I'll usually say hello and welcome newcomers...advise them to ring helpline and have a read on here..
Some stay around. ..and start there journey....others don't...
I don't let the later ones bother me....I just feel sorry for them...the boil will burst for them one day..

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 10:09

Lethe

Joined:
2016-12-10

I think you've highlighted the difference between those who want to stop and those who want to stop losing.

Best though to keep the focus on your own recovery.

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 11:20

Muststop123

Joined:
2017-10-03

Agree there is the issue of people just wanting to be be sympathised with after losing large amounts of money rather than actually wanting to stop but I think there is also the fact that the advice given possibly is sometimes not what they want to hear.

Confess you have been been doing something really dumb/irresponsible to your loved ones, hand over control of your finances to someone else, accept you are never going to see your money back again and make time to get counselling or go to GA meetings does not really sound like a lot of fun. Hardly surprising many people decide that sounds like far too much like hard work and decide sticking their head in the sand and hope it will go away is a far easier method. Taking responsiblity for what we have done is a painful thing to do and as humans our natural inclination is to shy away from things that hurt us even if we know they are the right thing to do.    

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 12:46

cg-rambler

Joined:
2017-11-21

Some interesting responses, thank you all for your opinions!

I think it frustrates me perhaps because I want to see people, especially those who perhaps have only recently developed their compulsive gambling not make the same mistakes many of us have made. But I agree it's obviously a very difficult process that many of us have failed at more than once before we start making changes.

In response to those who say to focus more on my own recovery rather than the recovery of others, agreed! But for me personally, getting on these forums and engaging as much as possible with others I have found extremely helpful and I'm currently at my longest gf period in quite some time and feeling good! :)

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 12:48

cg-rambler

Joined:
2017-11-21

As far as the sympathy goes, it's understandable that people want comfort, but I think perhaps it isn't all that helpful and people need to hear what they don't want to hear. I often wish people had been a little harder on me at first, who knows if that would have made any difference though.

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 15:24

Merry go round

Joined:
2017-06-08

Nothing will stop a cg unless they have no more access to money. Most people cg, wives, partners, parents don't like what you say. They are in denial. They find another route. Some like online, some don't. There's even some that stay here and don't listen to a word of advice. Each person has their own path and some get lost along the way. The most important part of recovery is to be true to yourself. You can't worry about those who aren't ready. 

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 15:51

cg-rambler

Joined:
2017-11-21

Hey merry go round, thanks for your response.

You definitely make a good point, you have to worry about yourself (believe me I do all the time!! ).
But I definitely worry about others here too and it seems other people posting here do too which I think is great! I do believe that people who engage a lot and come to places like this regularly are giving themselves a better chance at recovery though. That's just a suggestion I'd make to anyone using these forums as at least for me it's helping a great deal.

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 16:32

ODAAT

Joined:
2014-11-10

I hear you loud & clear cg-r...I have spent many hours worrying about people & many more hours formulating posts that could in fact just as well be rubber stamped. 

 

In the early days of my recovery, doing both kept me safe from my nemesis, Mr Gamble, but also caused an uncomfortable anxiety in me.  Now, I do little more than hope when I write a post, hope that the person is ready to commit to recovery & doesn’t sink to any new, invariably more painful lows.  

 

My particular bug bear is the poster who ignores everything that anyone takes the time & effort to write to them & lays down a new thread asking the exact same questions (grrrr)...When this happens, I can’t kid myself that they’ve marched straight to the nearest 12 step group & found the right support elsewhere!

 

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 16:43

cg-rambler

Joined:
2017-11-21

Hey ODAAT I agree with what you say. I notice you're pretty active on these forums, do you find that helps keep you on the straight and narrow?

I think as a community we are the only people who truly understand the issues that face the compulsive gambler and we ought to do everything we can to help others out as well as helping ourselves individually

Posted on:
Wed, 29/11/2017 - 18:36

movingforward2017

Joined:
2017-11-06

Good post, in the past few years I’ve always returned to gambling once the pain of a big loss fades. This time I not only know I need to stop but I want to stop.    

Posted on:
Thu, 30/11/2017 - 09:21

gra60

Joined:
2017-08-04

cg rambler

I suspect those accessing the forums do so for a multitude of reasons and there is no straightforward answer as to why some come and go? Maybe on the "rebound" after a big loss, a "lapse" etc. Some might just ignore what is said to them, some part take it in, some become fully committed to cure our addiction.

 

In many ways the most "hard nosed" and sensible thing to do, is just solely focus on yourself and forget about others? After all this is cyber space, you will never meet any folks on the site in real life. But I think part of recovery, is reigniting your own self respect and showing kindness and compassion to others. Which has usually been lost whilst being a CG?

 

You are clearly taking such a positive route. So maybe just accept that part of the "downside" of engaging with others is that some may not wish to help themselves. However there are still hopefully many others on here, whom are doing there very best to help themselves and others, like you are.

 

Posted on:
Thu, 30/11/2017 - 09:54

cg-rambler

Joined:
2017-11-21

Gra60,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. There seems to be a recurring theme about focusing on yourself which i'm pretty sure i'm trying to do but perhaps I do need to remind myself of that! I find it very interesting what you say about reigniting your own self respect by being compassionate towards others, we do definitely lose a lot of that when our gambling is out of control.

I find it feels really good to post on here as often as possible. It keeps the issue at the front of my mind so I don't get complacent. I've certainly had that complacency or the feeling of blocking it all out in the past and it's probably contributed to my failures to get on top of the problem.

Posted on:
Thu, 30/11/2017 - 13:18

gra60

Joined:
2017-08-04

cg-rambler

I often see things as not being "black or white". A bit like us CG's different backgrounds, experiences, means of recovery etc. For example, could also be that your method of regular posting on here, works for you. But maybe not for others? Sorry if this comes over "as a little harsh"?!!!

My sincere advice, is for you to currently solely focus on dealing with your most pressing issue i.e. not gambling. Then in tandom and/or when and if opportunities arise. Expand, which hopefully will be soon, to start focusing on starting putting right any collateral damage that has been caused as a result of your CG? 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted on:
Thu, 30/11/2017 - 14:05

cg-rambler

Joined:
2017-11-21

Gra60 that is kind of the exact point i'm making, I am focusing on not gambling and the reason i'm trying to engage as much as possible with people on these forums is because I find it is extremely helpful in achieving that. Additionally I have made it virtually impossible to even be able to gamble in any way.

Fortunately I dont have an enormous amount of collateral damage casued by my gambling as it is mostly myself that has been affected. However the damage that I do know that I have caused to others, mostly trust issues in my relationship, I have been working on over the last few weeks and will continue to do so through transparency of my finances and by being a better partner.

 

Posted on:
Thu, 30/11/2017 - 18:05

SEL87

Joined:
2017-10-18

Totally agree with you I've seen a lot of people posting here and just relapsing straight away after a few days and posting again looking for sympathy,I don't post too much on other people's diaries unless it relates more to myself but I do be on everyday reading every topic on here and this has helped me reached 40 days gf,this site alone and well of course along with the help of my girlfriend who manages my bank card.

Posted on:
Sun, 10/12/2017 - 19:44

Joydivider

Joined:
2015-03-11

When I joined the forum I thought I was very open and forthcoming. I wrote quite an eloquent post about losing £700 in a fruit machine. I thought I will make it more detailed and soul searching so people can see Im sincere and reasonably intelligent :) Ho Ho. What did I know...I was nervous and that was my way of dealing with it. I thought I will go one up on those that just write a few lines because I mean business :)

I politely nodded along at all the welcoming and advice as if I was on one of my Hi Fi forums. I didnt really understand much about the addiction and to be honest about it now I was sceptical about what possible use a recovery forum could be. I had my own preconceived and snobby ideas that it would be like a GA meeting I couldnt cope with twenty plus years ago. An idea that I was a lightweight gambler with minor problems and I didnt really want the stories in darkened rooms about life savings stolen from biscuit tins 

As I have often mentioned I did nothing about the advice or what anybody was saying for 10 long months. I started repeating the advice to others as if I had joined a club and knew it all....meanwhile I was constantly relapsing after managing a month through sheer fear and no money left after paying some bills.

One of the best things that happened was someone caught me out for being a hypocrite and mentioned it. I forget who it was but I thank that person now. After deleting my posts in a huff ( which was childish, silly and part of being an addict) I really started thinking about it, my hypocrisy and just how I had been acting on and off the forum. I just started to realise more how this addiction was controlling me and how much money I continued to lose. Nothing added up....I had joined a forum and had then done nothing effective about stopping. I had every excuse in my mind...... embarrased about self exclusion forms and pictures, not wanting to tell my parents and just feeling that it was a level of stupidity that I could not admit to. There is a twisted comfort and a twisted dignity in certain secrets and I understand why people find it hard.

People on a forum were at a comfortable distance....you didnt really know me and I was hiding behind an internet connection. Telling my father was a whole new level but it needed to be done and I finally realised that.

So I can understand why people find it hard to stop. I have developed a sixth sense but at the same time Ive been there and people in glass houses dont throw stones. I try and put something back in but I can only mention things and I cant make people stop until they are ready to do so

Best wishes to everyone on the forum

Posted on:
Tue, 12/12/2017 - 10:29

Josh280

Joined:
2017-11-17

That’s the reason not many members will post on the new comers section. People will write an initial post get feedback and never be seen again. It’s frustrating sometimes, but if you can get through to one out of 10 it’s worth a few minutes of typing.

Same thing happens in the other sections. Where you’ll notice they’ll have a multitude of diaries with the same tales different week.  Some get a lot of support and throw it back in people’s faces. When the gambling dummy gets spitted out.  You get used to who’s worth posting to after a while and who’s best left alone.

Best to look for people who are at least trying to stop gambling. Not just those who pop back after their weekly loss for a there there arm around the shoulder.

Just my humble of course 

Posted on:
Thu, 14/12/2017 - 11:30

Phil83

Joined:
2017-01-17

I couldn't agree more but I think we just have to accept that the majority of these posters just aren't ready, either:

- They have arrived off the back of a bad loss and just want to vent

- They don't want to stop gambling, just losing (you can normally spot these ones because they use monetary values)

- They know they should stop but don't WANT to.

- They are looking for a quick fix and, having been given correct and valuable advice, realise that there isn't one and go back to their old ways.

We can but hope that they eventually come back with the right attitude and that, in the meantime, something may stick.

Posted on:
Sat, 16/12/2017 - 22:54

Joydivider

Joined:
2015-03-11

Yes well said Phil. Thats the line "looking for a quick fix" then "realise there isnt one" on their terms.

You can almost see their brains ticking over on the advice and they are off...silent... vanished. You can almost see them thinking its all too heavy as if we are the mad ones or nutters advising them. 

 As Josh280 says I find it sad when I feel I am wasting my words. I dont want to give up on anyone but what can I possibly say when they have been back a few times and are still confused.

Then again I have every sympathy because we are watching someone in the grip of a full addiction which isnt letting go.

Im very worried about the number of people joining but know this is just the tip of the iceberg with an issue that is exploding exponentially. I see the adverts now creating new addicts on a large scale

so yes I do hope something we say plays on their mind and they come back with a fresh slant and willingness to really seek recovery.

Best wishes