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Posted on:
Sun, 10/12/2017 - 10:34

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

So lovely to hear you've had the time of your life Matt! The last paragraph of your post, as you say,  is a reference point for anyone at whatever stage they're at. Take care S:)

Posted on:
Sun, 10/12/2017 - 20:46

chartom3

Joined:
2015-03-11

Matt 24 wrote:

Great last paragraph Matt, one i need to read when i am having a bad day, you are a great examble of what can be acieved and how life can get better .... all the best

Day 432

What a week. Went to Norway with 2 friends. Whale watching on the first day was incredible. Saw Killer whales and Humpbacks. I’ve always loved the sea since a kid and to see them so close in the wild was breathtaking. 

Next morning we went dog sledding which was both amazing fun and absolutely hilarious. My friend at one point fell off the back of the sled, leaving me with six hungry to run huskeys and no way of me stopping them!! Was terrifying, in the end I had to jump abandon ship and off into the snow! Fortunately the instructors managed to stop the dogs about half a mile after, no damage done other than to our egos.

We managed to catch a few glimpses of the Nothern lights but unfortunately due to all the snow and clouds around it wasn’t as clear as we had hoped but all in all a truly unforgettable trip. 

Wednesday evening, back in the UK I went to the O2 to see one of my old school favourites Jamarioquai. He put on a real good show and I loved it. I’ve had an incredible week that I have fully enjoyed to the maximum. 

Life is to be lived people, not gambled away and lost to this disease and the demons in creates. If your sitting there shattered after your last brutal binge, or you are looking at the mountain of debt you have created or you’ve lost loved ones please keep the faith and know that without that next bet life can truly be lived again and giving up will lead to so many better things.

Take care all.

Matt

 

Posted on:
Mon, 11/12/2017 - 11:03

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

DAY 434

Back at work after my little adventure. Good to get back into the routine. 

Thanks as ever for your comments, I do hope my journey this past year really can help inspire people to see some light at the end of the tunnel and to keep on that gamble free path.

Take care

Matt

Posted on:
Mon, 11/12/2017 - 22:18

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

 

Matt 24 wrote:

Day 70 begins, no urges at all to gamble or self destruct. Truly feel this is finally my time to leave this all behind me.

Long road ahead and under no illusion it will be hard but this all feels so different now. Am I back? Do I now truly have a shot at life in the proper context? 

I never plan to even buy a lottery ticket, a life free of risk but one of total fulfilment in a different way.

Stay strong everyone we can do this. 

So this time last year I wrote this. It appears I did have the foresight and I do feel I am really back as the person I always wanted to be and starting to live a life I will look back on that I will be proud of.

2 weeks until Christmas day, that day last year was the most painful of my entire life, emotionally distraught and haunted by my loss and feeling dreadfully alone.  Bought a Christmas tree today, can’t wait to decorate it and give my house that Christmas feel. Plan to listen to Xmas songs and wrap my presents and embrace everything that Xmas should be. I will never forget how sad I Was Christmas day 2016 but it will fuel me for the rest of time and hopefully have many many more happy Xmas’s.

Stay strong all

Matt

 

Posted on:
Fri, 15/12/2017 - 11:21

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

DAY 438

A good day. I have been paid a good Xmas bonus and for the first time since I can remember it isn't going to be gambled away and means Christmas is affordable and I have a little buffer of money for emergencies. I had a horrible start to the year but once I started to rebuild my life again I worked tirelessly and the rewards keep coming. It has been a long, painful, horrible slog to get to this point but I have made it and now the momentum really is on my side now.

Stay strong all.

Matt

Posted on:
Fri, 15/12/2017 - 12:11

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Hi Matt 'to hell and back' doesn't begin to describe what you have been through, so enjoy every minute of the Festive season. You have slowly but surely rebuilt yourself showing that anything is possible, have a great weekend S:) 

Posted on:
Tue, 19/12/2017 - 11:39

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

DAY 442

Eventful weekend, was my works Xmas patrty on Friday, on the way I started to feel unwell and had to pull over and was sick as a dog. I carried onto the event but lasted about an hour before retreating home to my bed! Had the Noro Virus which was nasty. Wiped me out all day Saturday but Sunday back feeling myself thankfully.

So here we are less than a week now until Xmas. No betting, no urges and really looking forward to Christmas and a "staycation". My house is looking really nice and festive and I am in a hugely better place than I ever have been.

Stay strong all.

Matt

Posted on:
Tue, 19/12/2017 - 13:34

breakfree

Joined:
2011-01-01

Hi Matt,

"I'm in a better place than I have ever been".

Your words have hit home to myself and as we are approaching Xmas I feel the same way.

You are doing amazing and I'm glad you enjoyed your trip to Norway. It's a beautiful country and I'm lucky to live here.

Wishing you a Happy Xmas :-)

Stay strong.

Breakfree

Posted on:
Tue, 19/12/2017 - 13:41

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Hi Breakfree.

I am really glad to hear from you and how well you are doing. Norway was absolutely beautiful and you are indeed very lucky to live there (bar the beer price lol). 

Thanks for your support and I look forward to seeing you achieve more and more milestones gamble free.

Take care.

Posted on:
Thu, 21/12/2017 - 17:10

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Day 444

Has a nice ring to it that number :-)

Last day of work tomorrow, then off until the New Year. Cannot wait for Xmas, more organised than I have ever been and really plan to enjoy the festivities. My head is clearer than ever and I am free of any sadness and secrets I had held onto before. I can remember many Xmas Eve's getting blindly drunk and feeling terrible Xmas day. Think Christmas has always been the time I have leaked pain and punished myself as I felt so worthless on many occasions. This year will be so different (especially compared to last year where I walked the streets absolutely devastated and in bits).

Keep going everyone, I wish you all the very best.

Matt

Posted on:
Thu, 21/12/2017 - 21:48

Self Sufficient...

Joined:
2017-05-10

Congratulations Matt on 444 Days gamble free. A massive achievement which sends out a strong message.

With courage and determination the urges to gamble can be overcome.

Posted on:
Fri, 22/12/2017 - 09:58

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

DAY 445

A full year ago I wrote "The current tragedy was inevitable in my life. The next inevitibility now is if I change my life I will live the next ammount of time being a man happy, content and hopefully surrounded by love"

How right I was. I couldn't be happier or more content with who I am. I looked directly into my demons eyes and my inner strength shone through to overcome them.

This may sound dramatic to anyone who wasn't here reading my diary but last year my heart and soul got put to the sword. I survived, recovered and quit gambling. My darkest most demonic friend finally left my life and no longer haunts me. I have no secrets, I have amazing friends and support that surrounds me and I have a purpose in life. This Xmas will be my best ever and I truly feel blessed with the gift that life is.

I really hope everyone on here can get to the point where I am today and the beast that lives within us all leaves you alone too.

My heart goes out to anyone who has to live with being a CG but we are human, we are worthy and we can win if we quit.

Take care all.

Matt

Posted on:
Fri, 22/12/2017 - 10:07

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Hi Matt the honesty in your posts is so refreshing and I'm sure will help many,  including myself. You are the proof that anything is possible. I hope you have a lovely festive break, you sure deserve it!! Time is quite confusing, sometimes an hour GF is hard work at the beginning but once you're in the swing if it and feel the benefits life is a million times better.  Thanks for being a pillar that helps to hold up this forum S:)

Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 00:30

Self Sufficient...

Joined:
2017-05-10

Hello Matt. Thankyou for posting on my diary and thankyou for being such an inspiration to myself and others.

Wishing you peace and contentment with fun and good adventures, as you celebrate over christmas and the new year.

Look forward to sharing the journey with you in 2018...stephen 

Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 16:01

Sars27

Joined:
2017-06-02

Hi Matt ,

Wishing you a very merry Christmas and a GF 2018 :) 

Sars 

Posted on:
Sun, 31/12/2017 - 19:35

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Matt I hope you've had an awesome festive season, thanks for your inspiration and encouragement. Wishing you lots of happiness in 2018 Sx

Posted on:
Tue, 02/01/2018 - 16:08

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

DAY 456

Appreciate your words Sharon/Stephen and Sars. I didn't find much time over the festive period to get on here but I had a really good Xmas and New Year. So So So different to the pain/torment and shame I felt last year. I spent time with the important people in my life and created some good memories and got some great pictures to boot.

I am back at work and it certainly all went very quickly but I really feel like the corner is turned in my life and the future is really something to be excited about.

This day last year I wrote the below.....

Day 91. Spent yesterday evening with my family, they were both so poorly with a sickness bug that my ex asked me to be there for her and her daughter. I spent most of it mopping up sick and comforting them. Really tragic feeling, realising how much I adore them. I have so much love to give them.

Another day gamble free, I'm changing and evolving everyday as a person. A guy I truly like and he is here to stay. Who knows what the future holds but as this guy I know it can only be positive.

It appears that guy is still here and thriving and building on his potential.

Take care all.

Matt

[/quote]

Posted on:
Tue, 09/01/2018 - 22:27

changemylife

Joined:
2016-11-02

Matt. I've enjoyed reading your diary which is so uplifting and inspirational. You've come such a long way in a relatively short time. You have taken the bull by the horns and improved every aspect of your life. Great that you have been to Norway for an incredible experience. What's next on your bucket list?

Posted on:
Wed, 10/01/2018 - 11:01

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Hi Changemylife.

Thanks for your comments, they really help me knowing others can take some hope form my journey.

Bucket list has plenty on it. This year I hope to knock a couple more off so stay posted :-). I have some achieveable ones in the pipeline and one quite far out there one which I hope I can do!

I hope everyone can stay GF. It is the only way to guarantee that life we all wish for and deserve.

Matt

Posted on:
Thu, 11/01/2018 - 16:23

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Day 465

So a full Year ago I hit day 100. I wrote the below and how right I was!

 

Matt 24 wrote:

Day 100 begins. Thanks all for your kind words.

Hard to see it as an achievement but what it does do is guarantee a more positive future for me. Today I will not gamble! 

Stay strong all.

Matt

Posted on:
Thu, 11/01/2018 - 22:41

Bryan

Joined:
2017-12-24

Just devoted a couple of hours of my life reading the back catalogue of yours ! Inspiring stuff something I needed to read . I’m Day 18 into this and will hold onto a lot of the things you have said . Thanks again for going through all of this so that some people don’t have to 

Posted on:
Fri, 12/01/2018 - 09:28

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Hi Vulture,

Long read these days! Outpourings of emnotional posts on here did help me in my recovery.

I hope you can find yourself in a similar place in the months to come.

Matt

Posted on:
Sat, 13/01/2018 - 13:56

Bryan

Joined:
2017-12-24

Hope you have a great weekend . Will follow your story with interest now I have invested so much time in it !! 

Posted on:
Tue, 16/01/2018 - 10:30

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

day 470

Had a nice weekend. Chilled out Friday, Saturday went for a long walk along some beautiful countryside near where I live, really appreciating the small things in life now.

Sunday morning I took my niece to the cinema, which is always fun. Then when I got home my brother broke the news that my ex has got engaged! She don't hang around and helps to highlight exactly what a lucky escape I have had! Painting herself into someone elses life financially! I do hope for her daughter's sake it is the real deal for them though.

A lot happens in a year I am proof of that :-)

Stay strong, stay gamble free and the path will clear for us all.

Matt

Posted on:
Tue, 16/01/2018 - 13:00

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Blimey day 470 time is speeding by! Lucky escape is an understatement non? But as always your thoughtfulness shines through referring her daughter. Matt you deserve every happiness and here's to a prosperous 2018,  take care S :) 

Posted on:
Tue, 16/01/2018 - 16:05

harry33

Joined:
2009-11-24

Hi Matt,

 

Just read and your diary and a big congratulations for what you have achieved my friend, your diary is truly an inspiration for many of us.  I love to read about the journey people have been through and how they have managed to turn thier lives around, i hope i will be able to do the same in 365 days read back my diary and feel proud of myself, i only have 6 days under my belt but am taking it one day at a time,

Keep up the good work mate and never get complacent as that is when we are most at risk from this horrible addiction as i know from my own experience.

Harry.

Posted on:
Mon, 22/01/2018 - 14:16

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Day 476

Had a good weekend. My house really getting my stamp on it now. I have a juke box going on and my brother came down at the weekend to put up a beautiful cork board map of the world in my dining room. It is both decorative and inspiring. I have loads of pins in it already of where I have been lucky enough to travel in the world and looking forward to getting lots more on it as I see the world and go through life. 

Really proud of where I am now and cannot wait to get my teeth into the future.

Stay strong, stay gamble free and we can all turn that corner onto a better path.

Matt

Posted on:
Wed, 24/01/2018 - 09:39

Sars27

Joined:
2017-06-02

Hey bro, I’m also proud of where you are now , I mean when I started my journey I used your story to realise how much more potential I have to recover . You’ve also been my inspiration here ! Keep up the good work . ODAAT :)

Posted on:
Wed, 24/01/2018 - 17:30

TM1985

Joined:
2016-05-30

You continue to be a shining inspiration Matt and are reaping the rewards of committing to recovery.

That 500 day mark is just around the corner.

Well done buddy.

Posted on:
Fri, 26/01/2018 - 17:07

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

DAY 480

Thanks guys for your comments, I do really appreciate them. It is nice to hear that I have in some way inspired some people to commit to their recovery.

So today has been an up and down day. I have secured a huge contract at work and will see our company well for a good few years. However this was put into perspective when a colleague told me this morning that he now has terminal cancer and has been given a maximum 2 years to live. In the past we have not seen eye to eye (generation thing and differing work views) however all that goes by the wayside when something like this happens. I feel so sorry for the poor guy and his family but shared my idea of a bucket list and he is seriously looking into it himself. Life is precious, it is short and it must not be taken for granted. Gambling isn't cancer and won't take your physical health but it takes your mental health and it will take your persona without a second thought. 

Stay strong all and have a lovely weekend

Matt

Posted on:
Tue, 30/01/2018 - 20:51

Annie_25

Joined:
2017-07-05

Hi matt

Just popping by to say well done on the 480 days achievement.Sorry to hear the news about your colleague , times such as these remind us that life is indeed precious.
Take care
Annie x

Posted on:
Thu, 01/02/2018 - 11:12

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Day 486

Thanks Annie, they really do appreciate it all the more.

I now consider myself to be an ex addict. It is still a dirty word but I plan to use it for the rest of time. I had an addiction that threatened me for 16 years, it affected my life, my well being and created an unhealthy version of me. I still have the potential to be that guy and that is something I will always live with but as long as that first bet doesn't come I will be guaranteed a better quality of life.

My past is my past, I have gambled, I have loved (although maybe not as much as I thought as no one knew me), I have lost but all this has made me stronger and I consider myself now to be a really good guy and I believe it. I am not perfect and never will be, I am however someone who knows himself and I bet (excuse the pun) that many people go through life never knowing who they really are.

Stay strong everyone.

Matt

Posted on:
Thu, 01/02/2018 - 13:36

Took a wrong turn

Joined:
2012-02-22

Matt your Diary is too long to read all the way through but I've latched onto your last few weeks and 486 days is truly inspiring and you should be really proud of yourself, I am determined to follow your lead. Well done mate!

Wilsy

Posted on:
Wed, 07/02/2018 - 22:58

Pwm101

Joined:
2017-01-23

Here wishing you all the best and making it to 500 Matt - wow that will be an amazing achievement from where you have been . Keep going 

Posted on:
Fri, 09/02/2018 - 15:42

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

DAY 494

Thanks for the support guys.

So less than a week from 500 days. Life is good, it is my Mum's bday today so taking her for dinner later with the family. I have bought her a nice present too. I am a world away from the days I was scraping money together just to be able to fuel my car and hoping for a win to pay for things. I still have debt to pay off, that will take some time but life is a lot more comfortable.

Work is going exceptionally well and I think this could be a big year for my company (fingers crossed). I really have my teeth firmly sunk into a better, gamble free life and I am really enjoying it.

I wish everyone here a nice gamble free Weeekend. Hope to check in again soon. I am sorry my updates are not as regular but life is very busy currently.

Matt

Posted on:
Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:46

Took a wrong turn

Joined:
2012-02-22

494 days, nice one Matt, no advice needed, just a huge pat on the back for doing so well.

Have a great weekend also!

Wilsy

Posted on:
Sun, 11/02/2018 - 16:12

Sars27

Joined:
2017-06-02

4 days out for the BIG 500 GF DAYS ! Proud of you brother ! Take it easy :)

Sars 

Posted on:
Sun, 11/02/2018 - 18:08

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Great to hear from you Matt, am unsurprised that all is good for you as yours is a journey of strength and determination. Will be waving a flag when you hit 500 days,  take care S x 

Posted on:
Thu, 15/02/2018 - 09:19

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Day 500

Hi all thanks as ever for your support and encouragment, it has been truly invaluable in getting to me to where I am today.

Been one hell of a ride but I somehow got here. This journey as we know is never ending and we cannot rest or get complacent. A year ago today I wrote... 

Busy working on a Bucket List. Once my house is sold I am going to start getting a lot of them ticked off. I am in the process of booking a combined whale watching and Northern lights tour. Two things I am desperate to do and see. It is amazing what being free of gambling can open up for you. 

If you have followed my diary you will know I went on the whale watching and Northern Lights tour (along with dog sledding). I set myself a goal I achieved it and loved it! Back when I set myself that goal I was in the throws of grief due to a horrible relationship breakdown. I lost 2 people I loved a lot but had the foresight that things could get better and they really did.

So yesterday was Valentines day, I haven't said much on here but I am in another relationship and this is a lot healthier than the previous one. She knows about my past, she knows about my gambling and that didn't stop her wanting to date me which was a big worry for me initially. However I had the mind set if someone can't accept my past they won't be part of my future!

As a valentine's gift I received a chance to tick off another on my bucket list, ride in a helicopter. It is apparently a high speed tour along the South Coast (where I live) I cannot wait to book it!

Anyway enough of that, I wish you all the very best and stay strong, stay gamble free and good things will be waiting for you too.

Matt

Posted on:
Thu, 15/02/2018 - 09:47

Self Sufficient...

Joined:
2017-05-10

Congratulations Matt on 500 days gamble free. A heartwarming journey of rediscovery, a testament to your courage and an inspiration to many who are struggling with gambling issues.

Wishing you continued abstinence from gambling and the peace, contentment and happiness you deserve.

Posted on:
Thu, 15/02/2018 - 09:57

chartom3

Joined:
2015-03-11

Well done on 500 days gamble free Matt ..... great to see you have fully got your life back and are  in such a better place, a great example of what can be achieved and what we all are trying for ...... all the best.

Posted on:
Thu, 15/02/2018 - 10:47

Sharon41

Joined:
2017-03-16

Hi Matt, thanks for posting and being a consistent source of encouragement and inspiration.Wishing you buckets of happiness S x 

Posted on:
Fri, 16/02/2018 - 10:10

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

DAY 501

Thanks again, your support to me continues to be invaluable.

Bit of a strange day today, feeling a bit empty but not sure why. No thoughts of gambling but maybe I have stopped and looked back and feel like at points I wish I had a time machine. Strange thing is though if I did have a time machine I have no idea where I would go back to!

I am a person who never let myself feel things before I would hide behind a smile and would always be upbeat no matter what was going on inside my head and behind closed doors. I no longer have any secrets and I am living my life now correctly but I do have regret and when I look back at the car crash that was my life I still feel some pain.

I know not every day can be a good day but I do feel a little frustrated with myself that I am feeling this way. I apologise for writing it on here but this diary has always been a safe haven for me to let out my thoughts and feelings.

Stay strong everyone.

Matt

Posted on:
Fri, 16/02/2018 - 10:12

Took a wrong turn

Joined:
2012-02-22

Matt congratulations on 501 days mate, absolutely brilliant

Wilsy

Posted on:
Sat, 17/02/2018 - 12:11

Little miss lost

Joined:
2016-05-24

Hi Matt, belated congratulations on achieving 500 days!!!
We'll let you off for feeling a little glum and giving yourself a few kicks - as you said, at least now you acknowledge those feelings, ride through them then jump on the next wave with happy days signposted on it! We'd be thinking there's something not quite right if every day was a tip top good day!!
Look at you being given helicopter rides as a present! More trips in the making, a new honest relationship - each and every one of these things are down to you making the right moves, taking the right path and never giving up on hope. It's payback time now Matt - get out there and enjoy it!!! X

Posted on:
Sun, 18/02/2018 - 17:25

Sars27

Joined:
2017-06-02

Belated happy 500 days brother ! Stay strong ! You’re an inspiration, I mean seriously life is wonderful without gambling ! Let’s not do that thing ;) 

Sars 

Posted on:
Tue, 20/02/2018 - 11:37

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Day 505

Hi all. I appreciate the kind words of encouragement. I know l shouldn't beat myself up about it anymore and what's done is done but I do wonder exactly where I would be if I never started gambling in the first place. What I am determined to do more than ever is to live a fulfilled life where possible, I want to reduce those what if questions from here on in.

I have made a lot of poor choices in life but I have survived them, I have my health and I have plenty of potential to fulfill so I am determined to keep on the correct paths.

Stay strong all.

Matt

Posted on:
Tue, 27/02/2018 - 16:24

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

Day 512

I am wondering if one day I won't feel the need to count my days. My fear is complacency. My new life is one that doesn't involve gambling and I am enjoying it but I know I am only ever one bet away from being back to square one.

I have to accept the fact I will always be an addict but without that next bet there will be no problem. 

Stay strong all.

Matt

 

Posted on:
Tue, 27/02/2018 - 17:52

Smashed

Joined:
2017-08-13

I think thats it never see as you've beaten the addiction, after four months I thought I had the upper hand but then it just slapped me about a bit and the last 71 days have been much harder, a relapse is just a reminder that it knows when your down and will attack. Ive been addicted for a very long time but had it surpressed and having money at my disposal ruined me, not ruined but let the gambling demons loose. Count the days until you have no gambling debts then know how it works and when it comes for you and be aware at all times, take it easy Matt.

Posted on:
Wed, 07/03/2018 - 17:02

Matt 24

Joined:
2012-04-25

day 520

So the weekend just gone I popped over to Belgium for the day, bit of sight seeing and some nice food. Literally a day trip and had a really nice time. I love being able to do this stuff now.

This weekend is mothers day so just ordered a big bunch of flowers to be delivered to my Mum on Sunday and will of course be seeing her too.

Life is going well, work is going tremendously well, I am almost amazed at myself what I have achieved recently!

Love to all and I hope you can get free of this horrendous addiction we all suffer with.

Matt

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