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fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

I just feel as though I need to get this out. To actually type to others who may understand. After six and a half months together (living at my parents for about 5 of that together) I walked past the TAB and caught him in there. He came running out when I saw him declaring he was only 'checking' the odds. I asked him if he wanted me to drive him to his parents then or later. We drove back home and he left in a huff, I called his parents - mind you, he's 35 - I'm 28, I'm back studying at uni and living downstairs at mum and dad's for a year. I told his parents what had happened . He had admitted at the beginning of our relationship that he had had a gambling problem but wasn't doing it anymore. Whenever we saw his parents his mum asked if he was doing it and he said no. I think I knew all along, I kept getting sick cause of all the stress of lying and some other family stresses - even ended up in hospital on antibiotics. Anyway, so after I called his parents and told them I wanted him to go he arrived home and we started to talk, he admitted to loosing maybe 12 or 13 dollars and he called a gambling hotline to ask for strategies to help him. It was late friday and he asked that he could see a counsellor, but was told he would have to wait until monday as they were only open in business hours. It was a long weekend. I was supposed to go to uni on saturday but drove home after an hour cause I just couldn't concentrate. We went to the library and I got a book about addictive behaviour and sat down to devour it, the book talked a lot about forgiving, accepting the person but not the behaviour and being supportive. So I tried to do that. On Monday I called the counsellor just to ask questions about how the service worked, what their quals were etc.... not to book the appointment, coincidently he called them just after that and made an appointment. I still suspected I guess that I was not getting the whole truth.

..... I was distraught at this point and knew that if he continued to live here I would keep covering up his problem and letting him do it. I was buying the food and paying for things. As he wasn't earning a lot and paying child support, I knew about some of the debts, but not all. So I called his parents and asked if I could take him to their place, drop off his stuff with him. I hadn't talked to him yet cause he was at work and I didn't want to cause any issues for him there. I know the stigma that this can have and also knew he would be quite sensitive and I didn't want to cause any issues for him at work. So his parents ended up driving near his work. I had packed up all of his stuff and we put it in his car, before I picked him up and told him that I was letting him go, I wanted to be there for him, but couldn't be until he accepted the extent of his problem. He was always O.K. with admitting he had a problem, but I guess he was never O.K. with admitting the extent of it. I've told him he can call me, but now we're going to give it two weeks. He's going to counseling next week and he's started to make a list of everything he owes to everyone. He rang up today apparently to see if there were any places that he could go to for re-hab. They're going to look at getting him a place for 60 days. It breaks my heart to not be with him and he thinks I've woosed out when he needs me the most. I just think I was enabling him to continue and would continue to do that. He needed to come to a place where he understood that I love him regardless, he doesn't need to be ashamed and that we can work through this. I just can't counsel him cause I'm too emotionally involved. I want to be with him again one day, but I don't know if I can ever trust him again. I had six months of half truths and lies. Last night on the phone he admitted he didn't even know what the truth was anymore. So we talked about and he started to admit more people he owed money to and more debts he had. I love him and miss him so much, he was/is my best friend. I am proud that he's starting to take responsibility and book counseling and look at going to re-hab. It's so early on in our relationship and I guess I want to use my head and heart together. He said tonight that he had ruined so many things in his life because he thought he wasn't worthy. I believe he is - but that will never be enough he needs to realise and believe in himself. He's encouraged me to go and get counseling too and discuss all the hurt he has caused me. I think that's probably the best thing to do. It just hurts soooo much and I do love him and he is my best friend. His parents think I did the wrong thing too and that true love was sticking by someone. I just didn't want to keep encouraging his behaviour. Has anybody got any advice? Would love to know I'm not the only one.

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Posted : 5th March 2009 12:16 am
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

I phoned this morning and made an appointment to see a counsellor. I am going to see the same person as him which the lady on the phone said would be good in case we ever need to see each other together. It's been a long morning. Yesterday and today waking up and not having him kiss me goodbye, not getting emails all day from him. I miss him so much. He was my best friend and it hurts so much to not have him around. I just don't know what the truth is anymore. I am so afraid of all the things he told me that I trusted. I feel like a fool, a fool for falling in love, a fool for believing him, a fool for walking away when he needs me the most. I just can't stop crying I think today will be the third day in a row my face is puffy my eyes are sore and I just don't even know how to carry on without him by my side. We were only together for a short time but we both felt it was a love of a life time. - Do I even trust that anymore? I'm usually so optimistic and not cynical. Do rehab and counseling really work?

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Posted : 5th March 2009 12:21 am
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

Today, it's now almost 24 hours since we've spoken, I don't think we've gone that long since we started going out. We text/email/call each other at least every couple of hours throughout the day and come home to each other. no more though..... not for now? or no more? everyone keeps telling me to not make the decision about if i could ever have him back until my head is clearer. i just am wondering around in a state of unsteadiness. i am barely eating. my mum made me have some toast last night. i keep crying and crying and crying. i had a shower and washed my hair and washed my sheets today to try to actually help clear up this mess in my head. my uni work is completely forgotten and neglected.

i just wish i knew what to do and that i could speak to him and let him know that i still care sooo much, that my heart is broken without him.

i can't believe i actually went through with it. but i'm proud and praying that he goes into recovery. you never know in the future if the disease could return and he could illegally gamble your house away. i guess this is a possibility? i just have no idea... he's managed to hold onto his unit (i think) but even then i have no idea if he has re-mortgaged or re-financed and how much he actually owes on that. he said he had applied for more credit cards, he was after more credit.... i have no idea what to believe..... where do you find the truth? am really hoping the counselor is good. i just don't know what to do..... i miss him.

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Posted : 5th March 2009 8:11 am
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

I'm going out tonight with a friend. She's convinced me to go out. I feel guilty for wanting to have fun and feel bad and some strange reason dirty. There's so many thing i keep thinking about wondering if he told me the whole truth. I doubt everything at the moment, he had cancer? he had a tattoo removed from his back that his mates had done when he was drunk? he went to the physio? he went to the doctors?

I read a website the other day and it said think about if you still like him (yes) if you respect him (i respect his intelligence and how he acted in some circumstances, i don't respect the lies). i know that God would have more compassion than me, i feel guilty, Jesus' love was merciless and i'm walking out on him. am i doing the right thing? how many lies has he told his parents about things?

i read also that compulsive gamblers are also quite immature - one of his endearing characteristics was his childlike quality and his ability to tell the most elaborate and beautiful stories.

it just hurts that so many people with so much talent could be hurt in so many ways.

how do you ever trust anyone again? we don't know the future, we don't know what's going to happen. we don't know anything. if i got diagnosed with a terminal illness right now i'd want him by my side. so how b***** selfish am i??

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Posted : 6th March 2009 7:35 am
Ostrich
(@ostrich)

Hi Fourleaf clover, Love comes in many shapes and sizes, but the only true love is Tough Love, in my opinion. You have done nothing wrong. The nature of this illness makes us believe we can 'save' our loved ones, somehow they convince us that if we had 'loved enough. been more supportive' they wouldn't gamble. Not so, its their choice.

You are in a difficult place just now, all I can suggest is read as much as you can, start your own diary, dump whats in your head, it will drive you mad otherwise. Keep your finances seperate, and DO NOT lend him money to clear his debts, until he Wants to STOP gambling, it will just all go.

Supporting a gambler is about looking after ourselves. You are not selfish, gambling makes our partners selfish.

The deciet and lack of trust is a killer for relationships, but with much hard work from Both of you, it can be done. But you can't do it for him. Only He can make decisions related to gambling, only he can choose to give up. Take care, you are in charge of your destiny, Love Ostrich x

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Posted : 6th March 2009 11:16 am
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

Thanks Ostrich. I just am so confused everyone keeps telling me different things and i can only make the decision myself. it's hard because everyone thinks they know best and what's good for you. we never know what will happen in the future. he can't afford re-hab. so that's out, he's going to see a financial counselor this week and going to try and find a counselor near him now. tomorrow we're meeting up and swapping stuff. my mum thinks this is bad because we said we wouldn't talk until my birthday but he rung this morning. i miss him so much. i know he misses me. but i have no idea if i can trust him or if he can get over this. i'm scared that my lack of belief that this is possible could bring him down too. he has said that he understands what i did, he respects and thanks me for it and to believe in him and me and that he is going to beat this and fight it with help.

i just don't know what i want. i want him to have never had this problem. i want to have an honest and healthy and trusting relationship. but i'm so scared. i had no idea it was this big. but it is and that's reality. i had such a hangover this morning. but once i started drinking i did cheer up a bit and danced my way through the evening. i know it's bad but i bitched about my ex-friend as well just to make me feel better. she's not a nice person and it gives me something else to focus on. which is not a positive thing because all b******g is really destructive, but it felt so good! i just don't know, he says he thinks he has to let me go, that he's holding me back in the same sentence as telling me he loves me and will do anything to find a way back to me and that he truly hates gambling and is seeking help. i really think he needs rehab, i would feel so much better if he was going into it. how can you break a pattern that's been going over half your life?

He sat down and told his parents that he has this problem and they needed to face up to it too. i'm proud of that because i'm scared that they'll continue to live in denial. - even now. his phone is working, so i don't know if he paid his phone bill or if his parents lent him more money.

i feel guilty for thinking that life would be better without the disease, better without him and this cloud.

He always accepted me for who i was, because i was honest with him. i wish he had of accepted that i accepted him... but he didn't accept himself.

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Posted : 7th March 2009 7:51 am
ldriver
(@ldriver)

hey four leaf clover, I really feel for you. my name is Liam I'm 28 from Ireland. I was going out with someone for 5 years and we split up because of my gambling. I had a problem for a few years and my partner knew it aswell, but I was always able to cover up. The lies I told were unreal, I was so selfish. I used her credit card without permission on more than one occasion and although I paid ger back, I was constantly breaking her trust because of gambliing and numerous times she said to me I love gambling more than her. I always denied this and still do but what you have to realise gambling is like cancer, it can never be cured but can be arrested like remission. I miss and regret every ounce of badness I did, I wish every day that I could get back with her. we haven't spoken in about 2 months she did likewise and dumped my stuff back at my mothers. I dont feel any anger towards her because I know its of all my own making. I'm attending a counsellor which I find fantastic. But most of all I've gone to gamblers anonymous. I was always petrified of going into a room of strangers and admitting my problem. I could admit it to Emily (my ex) but I always asked her not to tell anyone. In hindsight I should have asked for help because you need all the support you can get, but it has to be the right support. Its good that you left him maybe it will make him realise how bad his problem is, you've probably read that a person needs to hit rock bottom before they seek help, which was defintely the case with me. But one thing I know from attending G.A is that relationships can be rekindled if love is really there. The trust can be rebuilt, it's easier to walk away then to face the hardship of working at the relationship. I understand your worries of the future but if we live like that in fear we will never enjoy life. In G.A I've met men who ruined there partners lives for 20 to 30 years yet they have happy homes now,they have got gambling under control but you must attend the G.A meetings. I cant emphsise that enough. Your story sounds like mine apart from the fact we went out for 5 years. But I really respect you for sticking by him, I would encourage you to be there for him but go to counselling together and have a CP session (concerend person) and this will enable you to tell him how you feel and felt while he was gambling. I've never had this chance but I know from others their relationship is better than it has ever been. He must hand over all his finances to you though, anly give him the money he needs for the day, carry no cash and he can't bet, it sounds simple but through. Avoid the papers especially the racing sections. Their are 12 steps to recovery, and I'm sure you could google these and find them, it would take to long to write them. I know I'm in reland but if you want to speak to a gambler who is recovering and can give you an insight you can call me, my numer is 00 353 86 0323289. Like I said stay strong and I will regularly check your thread as I would really like to help you to make you happy. Chin up and be strong!! HATE THE SIN LOVE THE SINNER

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Posted : 7th March 2009 12:34 pm
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

Thanks ldriver, you gave me many thoughts when he and i met up. It was an emotional day. My stomach was in knots and so was his, we cried, we talked, we discussed, he answered my questions without getting angry or defensive. so i listened. but i still don't know if i can trust him. i keep saying i need proof and that proof is time. i need you to face up to the full extent of this. i have managed to put a wall up a bit and told him so, it feel hurtfully liberating at the same time. he keeps calling to see if i love him (i think) i keep telling him that's not the issue. that i need proof, he keeps asking me to fight, i tell him i'm going to counseling, i'm going to go to gam-anon, that i can go to counseling with him, but i need proof, he says he feels terrible for what i did to him and that he's no longer living in denial. he text his friends and told them that he was an addicted gambler and that he was sorry for all of the lies and mistrust he had caused them and that he was getting help. even last night on the phone i said to him, do you have any outstanding tickets he said yes, got off the phone and went and ripped them up. i told him it scared me that he hadn't done that yet, he said it was because his mum put his stuff away and that he hadn't got to it yet, do i believe him? is there more that he hasn't 'found'?' i just have no idea anymore and i told him that. i told him that he would have to put up with me constant asking and needing proof. i understand that would be hard and when he felt like he could be trusted i still wouldn't, and he said he was prepared to put up with that and that he's going to fight for me. we'll see.... i need him to get his s*** together. i need him to give me proof over time. he wants us to start going to church - we were both brought up in the church and he's reading his bible tonight. i respect him for that. but i still need more. both of us think we are being un-fair to the other person by still being in contact. he feels as though i am gearing up to let him go and that he understands and can respect that i am doing that. i feel as though i can't make any decision at the moment, if i do, it'll be the wrong one. i can't see past tonight, let alone a week, a month, a year's time.... i've cried so much i don't think i can cry anymore.

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Posted : 9th March 2009 12:20 am
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

He's just made a list of all the things he is going to do. I was telling him that i read part of a book which says that self esteem is got to be balanced between love and intelligence. like i keep saying to him. it's got to be head and heart. he thinks this means i'll walk, and gets quite upset (which makes me question if he is emotionally manipulating me, hurting or if he's upset because he can 'feel the wall') i'm so sorry it's there, but i feel better for it. i feel more rational, more able to think logically. i'm lucky i've not had to go to work - extremely lucky circumstances (just, just gone back to uni) am going to go and take around my stuff tomorrow so that i can start supply teaching again asap. yes, i really am going to do it tomorrow.

i felt the need to come back on here and write because i am angry that he got upset with me because he feels 'a wall'. i know he says he understands why and doesn't blame me and is mad with himself. it still makes me feel cr** because i'm the one that takes that brunt of it. when he speaks like that i feel terrible because i care. when he says, 'i've got to go back to work, a text book won't solve this.' i feel terrible. i'm hurting too, i know that he has told me and cried on the phone because he is hurting too, and he says he's upset for what he's done to me and how this has affected me, but.... it hurts all the time. i don't want to take my anger out on him, i guess i am sometimes though. last night i asked, what if i got so upset and slept with someone else? admittidily not a nice thing and totally me taking out my anger, now he is really upset and thinks i am going to do it. which i fear he will hold over me. no, i don't want to hurt him. he says he thinks that i've got to let him go, i just don't know how.

he also says i've got to have courage to - let him go or courage to work with him on this. he's right they both take courage and i just feel at a cross roads not knowing which path to take.

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Posted : 9th March 2009 3:54 am
ldriver
(@ldriver)

I understand all the pain you are in. He has to accept that you have put a wall there, that you can't trust him. He has to be willing to accept the problems he's caused and the defence mechanisms you have put in place. If he really loves you and wants to give up gambling he will accept all this unconditionally and do whatever it takes to build that trust again. I've never got the chance to do it but I know I would have moved heaven and earth if given the chance. It may take months, years to fully rekindle the trust but if he stays gamble free it will come back. But he needs to follow the 12 steps and go through the steps with somebody in GA or a Counsellor. Has he gone to GA? Apart from telling his friends what has he done? I recommend not letting the world know either as you don't want to it to affect his work situation as alot of people won't understand and have a stigma about it. Close friends and family is enough! You seem like your making a huge effort attending GA, reading books seeing a counsellor, prepared to go to counselling with him! You can't do anymore at this stage, he must start his recovery and you must both see how its working but I feel if you truly love him he's worth another go but he needs to get his s**t together. Maybe the damage is done and you won't get back together but you will only know in time. Honesty is the hardest thing to a gambler, but if he is being truly honest with himself you will see the difference in him, he will blossom into a lovely person who you may fall even more in love with. If you follow the steps and stay gamble free I think you mellow out a bit, all the stress from covering up lies about everything is gone and you can relax and enjoy this wonderful life. I hope it all works out for you whatever decision you take. My sincerest best wishes to the two of you best of luck and i'll follow your thread as I see so many similarities with my feelings to my situation even though she walked away that all I hope is a happy outcome for the two of you whatever that maybe!

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Posted : 9th March 2009 8:52 am
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

Thanks ldriver, you're absolutely right, there's not much else to do, except sit back and see where time takes us. to see if he's just saying the things he wants me to hear. he understands where we are at and why and tell me he accepts that. i guess i just say now, that he tells me rather than the truth, cause i'm not sure what that is. on sunday his parents rung while we were sill out and they thought he was back doing it, it must be hard to always be doubted, but he knows he is in this position. he accepts it as a disease. he hasn't gone to GA yet, if he's not working on saturday (he probably is) he'll go then otherwise the next meeting he can make it to probably will be on tuesday. he's working until late and now that he's back at his parents it takes two hours to travel home. you're right about GA though, he does need to go and says that he understands that he needs to go for the rest of his life.

he told his daughter that he and i had split up because he hadn't been completely honest and she asked if he had lied to her, he said he was going to think about it and get back to her. he told me the other day that he gambled when she was visiting (she was staying with his parents - so she wasn't actually physically there, but she was there).

he seems to be 'saying' all the right things. i need proof/actions/evidence, even then he knows i don't know if i can commit. he says he understand he wants me in his life regardless because i am his best friend. and i guess that's hard for both of us too... we're best friends as well... so it's not just the loss of a relationship but someone you spent all of your time with.

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Posted : 10th March 2009 12:16 am
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

You know it's funny but i have friends going to vegas soon and i see the similarity between them and him, liking gimiks, marketing ploys all that stuff... i never had that much time for an extra feature for so much more. that's not me. i just like to know what i want and that i'm getting the best for my money.

so... i went to counseling today. it was interesting, the counselor was great, really made me see it from my perspective. how i was enabling and why did i attract someone like that into my life and how i let myself be manipulated and that is why we were attracted to each other. i let him manipulate me and he liked to manipulate. a perfect couple.. i don't want to live in denial about this.

he explained that gambling is not the route of the problem - it's bigger than that and having childhood issues are what needs to be addressed and i need to look out for if this is really being covered. i need to look at if i'm a victim. how i put myself into that place and why i let people manipulate. interesting. i want to know because what's the point of living life in denial? so, i can see things from a slightly different perspective. in that i can see how he is living behind a mask and doesn't believe that he is good deep down. i can see how i let someone manipulate me because i think i'm never going to be good enough and that i need to prove myself and live up to what people's expectations of me are. i need to work out what my expectations of myself are and allow myself to make mistakes and that sure there are consequences of mistakes, but that's life and you need to take risks in life. going to counseling is taking a risk and i am going to take it. i want to be emotionally healthy too.

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Posted : 10th March 2009 4:40 am
ldriver
(@ldriver)

Hey its brilliant to hear that you have gone to counselling and making you see things from a different perspective. Has he been to gamblers anonymous yet? I'm not trying to be harsh but can he not take time off work for a few days his recovery is much more important. I know he's saying the right things but is he doing? When i first owned up i said what emily wanted to hear, played her for a fool again. You need to be going no ifs buts or maybes no excuse get up off your effing a** and do it. I'm only saying this as i realise what a cheating lying a****** i was till i became a doer. I lost my girlfriend before this so i know what can happen. But he needs to understand this himself. I know your in oz but this week is the biggest race meeting in the ireland and uk bigger than melbourne cup so its all over the paper, tv and radio.Its unreal you just can't get away from it. I know your both religious, i stopped practising my fate but its something i've fallen back on in my time of darkness and its helping me see the light. Instead of being surrounded with all the hype and media frenzy that goes with it i'm staying in an abbey with a group of monks in a remote part of ireland. I need to get away as if i was at home i know i would slip and bring back the bad feelings and I never want that again. Take care

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Posted : 10th March 2009 12:26 pm
fourleafclover
(@fourleafclover)

Thanks ldriver for your thoughts, I guess it's funny cause he said the other day that he's now become a 'doer' exact words.. he he... well, he is going into work tomorrow and is going to say to them that he definitely needs the time off to get to the meetings and that he now knows it's a problem he'll have to deal with the rest of his life and he can't not go. he says he's not making excuses. i guess it'll just be time and evidence now. that's the only thing i can think that it can be for him to prove it.

as for me, the counselor had some really good stuff about the victim, perpetrator and rescuer drama triangle... hmm... so true, i am definitely the victim. i drag people into that triangle weather or not they want to, i have been my whole life wanting people to rescue or victimise me... the worst thing is i let it, i chose it and i continued on in this path. it's weird 'setting boundaries' now. i am trying to. i am just new at this but it feels good. i am not a reflection of how others treat me and the situation that i am in, i can choose to walk away from and not enter. i can offer to help, but i have my boundaries.

spent some time with him and he's paying for his share and me, my share. it feels so much better inside me. he keeps wanting to know if i can give it another chance. i am proud because i am saying i don't know. i guess by spending time with him i am giving him one message and by saying i'm not sure another message. very confusing. what i do know is regardless of what happens with him and i, i do still want to stay friends and i hope (and pray that we can continue to do that).

who would have thought that this coming into the light for him has brought up some big issues in myself, how i see my family interact and for all of his family too.

ldriver it sounds like you're facing this head on, spending time with monks sounds like fun - I keep reading in the Bible where it says God says to take some time out and be restful with him.

he's gone to counseling, gone to the doctors and is planning on going to GA (sorting out with work) so we'll see... my counselor did say that it is fully expected that people do return and slip up on the addiction. so i'm trying to be realistic about that too. (d**n reality!)

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Posted : 12th March 2009 8:57 am
ldriver
(@ldriver)

Hey sounds like your feeling a little better. I can relate to what the counsellor said to you as I think my girlfriend was the same always trying to please other people and in effect me. I know she was the person I hurt most and I truly would move heaven and earth to talk to her and ask for another chance, but as brother anthony who is looking after me says I need to sort myself out and if its meant to be its meant to be but thats a very hard concept to accept. Its incredibly hard not to contact her and do nothing, but I suppose dealing with the addiction is doing something. I have to tackle this head on i've no other way I don't know if you have read my recovery diary on here, but you'll see why. I really think the two of you are going to be very happy whether you are together or not as this will be a serious foundation to build the rest of your lives on and you will become so much stronger. The recovery program in Ga is a spiritual one and i've been reading a small little booklet on acceptance and two things are constantly with me; one is the serenity prayer, GOD GRANT ME THE SERENITY TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE, THE COURAGE TO THE CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN AND THE WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE. AMEN. Also there is DIVINE PROVEDENCE, God's willing to make good out of evil, to permit an act of evil so that he may do good out of it. I don't know if you have said anything to your partner about my comments but GIVE HIM MY REGARDS AND WISH HIM ALL THE LUCK IN THE WORLD AND TO BE STRONG AND TO CONSTANTLY ASK FOR HELP AS THIS CANNOT BE BEATEN ON HIS OWN.

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Posted : 12th March 2009 9:35 am
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