My husband has had a gambling problem for the past 10 years. We have been together for 7 and I found out about a year in but I felt I could help him as I loved him so much. We got married about 2 years ago and have a 1 year old son. We currently live with my parents to save money as we hope to build a house. I have all his bank cards and access to his account as we are applying for a mortgage and need bank statements. He has gone maybe a week without gambling before but at the minute he constantly asks for his own money to go and put a bet on. Its pretty much every day and uses The excuse that it is his money so he can have it if he wants. I feel I just cant have another argument so I give him the money. He is still lying and borrowing money off different people. He wont speak to me about it whenever I try and get him to see sense. I think I am blinded by the fact I dont want my son to have parents who are split up and I also want to get a house for my son too. How can I get through to my husband and get him to see he has a problem and have the strength to say no? He has seen counselors and gone to meetings and they have never worked!
Sorry to hear about this Anon209. Unfortunately, you holding the money is pointless if he will just take it off you as often as he likes. And i don’t want to be the bearer of bad news but there is little that can help someone who doesn’t want to help themselves. Your partner needs to acknowledge the problem and needs to lead on his abstinence and recovery. You can only support them. Otherwise they will always find a way to gamble. What i’d suggest you do is protect yourself, don’t lend him any money, no joint accounts and protect your own assets. My best wishes to you.
Thank you. I agree with you. I am also aware I dont want a mortgage with someone who is unreliable with money also. I thought when our son was born that would be the kick he needed to want to get better. He knows he has a problem but it is like he doesnt care as it is just too hard to stop gambling.
You are living with an addict unfortunately and things can get a hell of a lot worse. If you want to protect your family you need to take charge of the situation. You cannot control him, he can go to GA meetings or counselling but recovery takes total honesty and serious effort so he could attend those and just waffle his way through which is pointless.
You can control you which means getting support, so well done on posting here, you could attend a GamAnon meeting (google their site for their weekly virtual meeting) where you will get advice from others in the same boat as you.
My advice is to sit down and have an honest conversation, he either changes his behaviour and seeks serious help or its time to go separate ways. If he is seeking proper help he should have no worries about handing full financial control over, self excluding from all gambling sites and shops. Have full access to his emails, credit report etc. I know its a lot to take in but it's necessary, its what I have to do, not because myself or partner want to but if the relationship is to work it is essential. keep posting here, I will try and answer any questions you have. You are not alone.
The problem is I have threatened to Leave him and all that so much and never followed through so he doesnt believe me any more. I just dont seem to have the strength in me to actually leave him. I always believe him when he says next month will be different and it never is. I feel like Ive lost the person I married. I will get help myself as I need to for my son. I need to become a stronger person. He is self excluded from every website we can think of and has told me he self excluded from local shops but they have automated machines so he doesn't need to see anyone to put his bet on. I control everything money wise and he is giving me money to save. But he is still gambling even with me knowing as I cant stop him with his own money. He will always find a way to get a bet on. And seems to be the only thing that makes him truly happy.
Agree with the above, he needs to want to address his gambling, otherwise he will just continue because of the compulsiveness and progressive nature of the illness.
Also agree the past path would be to discuss the situation, explain your concerns about taking on a mortgage with someone who is unreliable with money yet is willing to address the issue and try and get it through that you can’t and won’t continue with things as they are.Not an easy conversation but one that needs to happen.
You sound very supportive which is great so come from it from that angle and explain he won’t be alone in this.