just wanted to share my journey and emotions so far having spent a few weeks reading all of yours. Some incredibly strong family members in this forum which I have taken some comfort from and I would love some thoughts and insight into my own story.
so much time and energy is focussed on the recovery of the addict that often what it is taking from those supporting can get a little sidetracked can’t it.
for me, I learned early on into my relationship that my partner had a history of gambling back in his teen years that he had overcome. It was not an issue or talked about for quite a few years in. We set up home together in a little rental and soon dreamed of owning our home and moved back in parents to save up. The pot mounted up so nicely and we were within touching distance of the goal when the first bombshell hit. After a period off work in which he had made himself really poorly over what he had done, he confessed that he had blown just over half of what we had saved on gambling. After I calmed down from my initial reaction we put a plan in place to recoup it, he was incredibly remorseful and I naively thought he had punished himself that much that he wouldn’t do this again. And he promised he wouldn’t. And he didn’t for a good while. Feeling a little soul destroyed and struggling to live with parents for any longer we just started renting a lovely house and decided to save up more slowly. The saving pot built back up, he proposed and I accepted and everything was back to normal. We saved up for our wedding. We paid for it ourselves with very little help and we’re so proud that we would be starting our married life debt free. The week before the wedding was the second bombshell. He had been gambling and had racked up about £14000 worth of debt on credit cards and loans. He had been hiding the paperwork as it case to the house and I hadn’t been looking for anything. Needless to say this put a huge dampener on what should have been a happy filled final countdown to the wedding. We pushed forward and the day was beautiful. We had a plan to get some proper help after the wedding and as he has such a good job, we worked out how we would pay the debt back. I had put a block on his phone that was given to be by a company and thought it was offering protection. I didn’t know he had worked out how to turn it off. The 3rd and final (to date) bombshell was a few weeks after the wedding. He had continued to gamble and the total amount now racked up was just over £30K.
this was the moment where I stopped burying my head in the sand, started to research, seek professional help and put measures in place. I took control of the finances. I took his mobile phone away and got proper barriers installed on it. He attends a weekly GA meeting. I sit outside in the car for 2 hours to make sure he has gone in. We have written all the money down and how it is juggled. We regulars ring the help lines, read stuff, watch stuff and talk about the journey and the recovery. GameStop and Gamban exclusions are in place. I did everything I could find.... And the biggest positive here is that he is fully submerged in his recovery, wants an end to this and is prepared to do anything it takes willingly hands over anything I want to me and actively seeks out measures needed himself along side me.
but it’s where this has left me currently that I really want to talk about.
definitely not feeling like a newly wed. Robbed of how I should have felt in the run up to the wedding, no post wedding high of newly wed bliss. No booked honeymoon and no means to pay for one anytime soon or when this might be. Might sound a little selfish and material but as someone who romanticises most things, it’s***t me hard
still desperate to finish the saving pot and buy a house, start a family. We have some Savings and it’s growing but he will struggle to contribute with the debts as they stand. I am In a difficult position where financially the best way to move forward for us as a family would be to consolidate this myself, so that he can solidate and take it back off me himself. But knowing that is always advised against in recovery. Without it though we can’t have any sort of life as we planned. And the pressure of the fact I’m not getting any younger and don’t want to miss my chances of becoming a mum.
battling his emotions that flit between regret and guilt, anger at himself, lack of motivation at work which is seeing his performance dip and could potentially do harm to the career he has worked so hard to build
desperate to know this will be ok, we will feel like a normal family without this taking over just about everything at some point. And that my very new marriage as well as my sanity will survive all of this.
Hi, I feel your pain. It is not easy loving someone with a gambling addiction. I've done it for 8years. My only advice to you would be to take control of everything and I mean everything financial! If he's sure he wants to change he will let you then follow all the advice given on Gamcare and in the forum's.
Take care of you
Thank you so much for your reply. Now that he is on the road to his recovery I have only just really started to sit back and look after me and think about how I am feeling and how this has effected me. Thank you also for your advice. I have financial control currently as well as other measures I have put in place. I know I’m at the start of a long journey with a number of risks and uncertainties. Mixed in with my need to have normal things like start a family and buy a house. I guess I am seeking some form of reassurance and advice from others living this. Thank you.
I am now 25 years into my journey and my husband has just had his 45th year of gambling! What can I say other than that it has ruined the lives of four people, ours and that of our beautiful children.
It saddens me when I read the stories of others who are just setting out on their journey with a CG. I wonder why we choose this difficult path for ourselves? As women we should be strong enough to walk away and seek what we deserve, a life of happiness with a man who puts us first, who provides for his family, who wants to do whatever it takes to make us feel loved and cared for. Instead we choose a life of doubt, worry, deceit, uncertainty, insecurity and of course anger.
My husband will never stop, never put his children first, never stop lying or kidding himself that he can change. He loved his children once, but now even that pales into insignificance. He hasn't seen them for months, even stopped enquiring after them for a while. They worshipped him, thought he was the best dad ever. Now they can barely look at him. My daughter is 14, and already has learned how it feels to be let down by a man. She just never expected that man to be her dad. My son is 16, he tells me he wants to be everything in life his dad is not.
We have learned in recent weeks that we will very likely be losing our house too. A home (once almost mortgage free) we love that is so dear to our hearts. Our business is now lost too. How can you run a successful business when you only have one goal in life....to gamble.....today, tomorrow and always!
Mmmm.......what would I say to the younger version of me if I could? I would say "run and never look behind you, keep going until you are far away" the alternative is a half life spent babysitting a grown man who will never be what you need.
I'm sorry if this is not what you want to hear, it isn't pretty is it?