I dont know what to do anymore. My son has lost over ****** in the past 8 yrs. I have bailed him out at times and other money he has stolen from my bank accounts. I dont know what to do anymore. I am not in the best of health and nor is his father. Both elderly. I hate saying it but my son is not truthful . He tries to be but this problem has overtaken his life. I feel broken and cant hold the family together more more. I cant explain how i feel. As a mother i am trying to help by clearing depts from loan companies and setting up plans for my son to pay me back. He has done it again this month and now no money to pay me back. I dont know how to smile anymore. I cry everyday. He doesnt have any decent friends to help him and if something happens to me and his dad i fear for his future. I feel broken but cant control it.
Good Morning Dot,
First of all, welcome to the forum.
Second of all, you will hopefully receive lots of supportive responses and perhaps better advice than I can give.
I am terribly sorry to learn of your situation. You are clearly a loving mother who desperately wants to help her son. Sadly, you are more than likely providing your son with the ability to continue gambling. Your financial aid is what will enable him to continue. I know that that will be hard to take.
I have a gambling problem. I find that I can stay stopped once I stop but when in the action of gambling or chasing losses it is overwhelming and extremely difficult. Sometimes all it takes is for the supply of money to stop even if just for a few days or weeks for the mind to calm down, think rationally and take stock of the situation. Currently, I'm only 72 days gambling free but that time is enough for me to realise that my life is better again. I have no desire to gamble today.
Your son clearly needs help, and support groups exist, but its all for nothing if your son doesn't think he has a problem or fails to participate in his recovery.
As difficult as it must be you need to be able to take of your health and the health of your husband. Support and advice is available to you and you need to take care of yourself. You don't deserve to suffer.
As much as you love your son he will steal, lie and deceive in order to feed his addiction. All addictions result in the same deception. You have the power and ability to cut the supply of money. He may get it from elsewhere but you will protect what you have. You may have other kids to think of obviously I dont know.
My advice - no more money, no more bailouts, no more loans. Research support groups like Gamblers Anonymous. Make your son aware that you will always love him and support him through his recovery but he has to prove to you now that he cares about himself and his mum and dad to work a recovery programme and to get better. It’s crucial to your family’s future happiness.
You are a good soul. I wish you well.
Hi I am a compulsive gambler and first of all I just want to echo the excellent thoughts and advice from RR... and like he says no more money... it only feeds addiction.I understand its well meaning, my parents did the same for a while but then they wised up. They saw for themselves that it didn't help.
Part of me wants to give a very well thought out reply, but actually what i really want to say is this....
Enjoy your retirement, protect your finances and leave your son to it.
That is exactly what my elderly parents have done (though they wouldn't like me referring to them as elderly 🙂 ). They go on several holidays a year, they are always out socialising, visiting places, playing bridge with friends, dinner parties, long walks in nature....
Do you see what am trying to say???
You are helping by doing nothing... that is how you can help. If your son can see that you are enjoying life and are doing the things that you want to do in life then maybe he will start to think about his life and how he is living it.
I am beginning to see the light after many years of addictive gambling and it could be a long journey for your son.... but form your perspective the tough love approach is the only way really. he has got to see it for himself.
As a final thought, my mum once said to me.... "if you end up hungry and homeless.. I would be sad, but it would have been your choice"
All the best
Hi dot dot I'm shocked to see you here and read your story. As others have said it is time to protect yourself and your son.
money is his drug. The more you give the more he'll gamble. It lets the addiction continue, grow.
you can only offer emotional support. Make sure he cannot access you account again. He will know when you receive your money, he may even know you card numbers. Change everything you can.
There is help for you, gamanon meetings , there is online meeting Sunday night 8-9. Go to the website. Gamanon is for family and friends. You can call gamcare and talk to someone.
He needs to help himself he can find a GA meeting, call stepchange to sort his debt. There is help out there but he has to want it. Unfortunately paying is debts and allowing this behaviour keeps him sicker for longer.
get help you can't do this alone, addiction will take everything from you, your money, your home, your sanity. You have to let go and let him make his own decisions.