I'm mid 20s and have had a gambling problem since I was 19, I honestly couldn't tell you how much I have lost, I currently have around £12k of debt. The longest I've gone without gambling is around 5 months (2-3 years ago) but have fallen down a horrible spiral again. I thought joining here might keep me honest. I lost my last £500 today and have exhausted all sorts of payday loans that I don't even think I could get approved again.
Working from home means that I won't need to spend a lot of money this month but I'm also worried the impact of not going out much will have on my mental health so I am going to plan to exercise each day and I have around £100 on a credit card for food etc.
I earn a good wage, my take home pay is £3,500 each month so I am hopeful that I can get myself out of this mess within the next year. With modest spending and no gambling, this is completely achievable. If I paid back £2000 of debts each month I'd be debt free in 6 months, and still able to pay my rent (this comes out first each month so hasn't been an issue) and buy what I need. My issue is having any excess cash means I gamble. Ideally I would pay my full salary on repaying loans but then I would have nothing to live on.
Nobody knows about my habit, I told my mum when I was 20 and she helped me out of a hole which I repaid her for but I can't bring myself to talk about it with family. I do think that telling someone may help me as the shame could help me to not gamble again, and would like to know everyone's thoughts. I'd also love to know some success stories, as right now I am ashamed, disappointed and worried.
Day 0 is sad, and with 27 days to go until payday I am sure this will be a tough month. Month 2 will be more difficult as I will be in a situation of having money again, whereas this month I just need to make it through.
Welcome to the Forum Hannah,
It was really good to read your post and your openness and honesty. I was really sorry to hear that you have lapsed and found yourself in such a difficult financial situation. It’s good to read that you have come up with a plan to pay back what you owe as you look to recover from this.
I completely understand your worries about working from home and not getting out so much and the impact this may have on your mental health, so the idea of exercising every day is a great way to release endorphins and stimulate the release of dopamine, both of which can help with maintaining a healthier mind.
Aside from the positive steps you have taken, I wonder if you’d benefit from some extra support for your gambling urges? The good news is there is a lot of support available including tools that can help prevent gambling, money management advice and free 1 to 1 support too.
If this is something that interests you, please do considering talking to one of our Advisers on 0808 8020 133 or via our NetLine. It can be beneficial even just to talk to someone who understands a gambling addiction in a non-judgmental and supportive environment.
We look forward to reading more of your posts on the Forum Hannah, so thank you for sharing.
Tell your mum. It will be hard but you will get so many things from doing so. Relief for you, support from your mum and accountability. I can tell you these will help you stop and you'll go into recovery from your addiction. If I was you I'd give all surplus money to your mum each pay day as well. 3.5k a month is great but I know when I earned a lot of money I told myself 'oh its OK to have a gamble coz I'm earning a great wage'. Ultimately I went on to never manage to save anything spectacular which is sad given how much money I earned.
Best of luck with everything 🤞👍
Thank you both, unfortunately I wrote this post nearly a month ago, completely forgot about it (I was in quite a bad state when I wrote it), got paid today and lost £700 within a few hours. I placed an additional £500 with a casino and withdrew it immediately as I realised I would never be able to chase my losses.
So back to day 0, but small progress as after paying my debts for this month I still have £1000 which will keep me going. New day tomorrow, completely agree about the good salary actually being a problem.
I’m afraid I haven’t been brave enough to tell my mum but we have agreed that I will pay her more rent and she will keep that money for me for when I am in a good position to buy a house. So at least it is safe and hopefully I will be strong enough to be more honest about why I’ve asked her.
Double posting but I think it’s good for me to document - I was reading another thread here and learnt that banks can block gambling transactions. Perhaps very naive of me to not know this but I have done it and feel a lot better already. I know there are still ways for me to gamble but this is a really positive step.
I understand your dilemma I have not yet been able to tell my family. I’m 38 and been gambling for 15 years. Some of those years in control or what i thought was in control but in the latter years not so controlled and 2020 has broken me financially. I have a decent salary to hide it but the strain of that is hard.
I am also at the start of my journey and have found 6 days in the forum had really helped.
I really want to find the courage to tell my family ideally my husband but im not there yet.
Stay strong and positive and keep posting and reading posts as that has defo inspired me.