Just looking for any advice so throw it this way if you have any.
I have been with my partner for 2 years. When we met he had recently separated from his wife and ended up moving in with me quite quickly. Due to him still paying for half the bills at his old house and also having 2 kids to support I have never asked him for any money towards my bills (even though he has offered). We pretty much split everything else ie food etc. We don't have any joint finances.
As he is is now going through separation/divorce we have been discussing finances and future plans as one day we would like to get a house and even talked about having a baby of our own. I was aware earlier this year that he had several credit cards with a balance of just under 20k which he led me to believe had built up over time from when he was with his ex. Fortunately due to having very generous parents who didnt ask any questions, these were paid off at the beginning of the year and closed.
I have since found out in the past few days that the credit cards were a result of online gambling and that he had actually only opened them when he began living with me. I must add that his gambling did start when he was with his ex but because they had joint finances it was very little amounts as he knows she would have noticed.
He never told me the reason for the debt at the time because he was so ashamed and also when they got paid off he felt I would never need to know. However since then he has continued to bet from his current account. He doesn't know the exact amount (believed to be in the hundreds not thousands).
The only reason I found out about it all is because I questioned him about the debt and eventually he told me. He has admitted that if I didn't asked he would never have told me (knife to heart).
However more positively since this has come out he has fully admitted his problem and taken responsibility. He has excluded himself from all the sites and with my persuasion has told his mum and dad what there money paid for. I know its early days but I feel he wants to sort this out and will try his hardest.
My issue is I feel so betrayed that he kept this from me for 2 years and that he felt he couldn't tell me about it. I feel like i can't trust him anymore and that I dont know him as well as I thought I did. I feel upset because he was able to to keep it under control with his ex but its like he couldn't care enough to do the same with me.
I am worried that I'm going to resent him for wasting all that money that could have went towards our future plans. I want to forgive him and be able to move past this but I just have so many different emotions about it all im really confused.
Hi Kat ,
I’m really sorry to hear about the stressful situation you’ve been dealing with. Unfortunately lying and covering things up is part of the addiction but things can get better over time , and you should certainly never put any blame on yourself for anything .
Having someone to share your feelings with can really help your own mental well being. Whether this is a family member , friend or a support service such as ourselves.
There's support available and you are never alone . You can contact us anytime on 0808 8020 133 or via our website on our Netline service , and please try to encourage your partner to do this.
In regards to the financial side of things a good organisation to call would be Step change on 0800 138 1111 . They offer advice on debt and money issues .
Thanks for posting .
I just want to say I feel your pain. My partner confessed about his gambling problem to me in Feb of this year. He’s been an addict for almost all his adult life, we’ve known each other for 5 years. Until the confession, i trusted him whole heartedly and never thought he could betray me as he did. Personally what hurt the most was the betrayal and all the lies, it did feel like ‘do i even know this man?’. It also crushed my heart that he was all alone suffering in the misery created by his gambling. I went through an emotinal roller coaster and at one point was upset with myself for not recognising the clear signs that there was a problem.
re the debt, of course this broke my heart too. He knows all too well that I save every penny i can to save for the future. His dad paid off his debt (he pays the dad back monthly). The debt he accumulated could easily be a house deposit in a very nice area in London. Of course that crushed me. But I chose to look beyond this, focus on the present and see my partner beyond the addiction. He showed me he is actively seeking help. Got all blocks in place. Changed his bank to Monzo (so gambling block can be activated). Gave me access to his credit report. Allowed me access to his bank account to see all expenditures. Also showed me proof of all self exclusion possible (from betting shops and land based casinos). He attends GA twice weekly. All these mean the world to me as if he is not actively leading on his recovery, I will not stay.
My partner is from a wealthy but broken, very disconnected and sad family. The gambling problem is deeply rooted from his experiences as a child. His siblings have/had their own addiction problem of some sort. He did not choose to be an addict but I admire his courage to recognise and fight the illness. Lots and lots of gamblers relapse even after years of sobriety so if you choose to stay be reminded that you should never be complacent. This is a life long commitment.
Having said all this, we are happier now more than we’ve ever been in the past. We feel more deeply connected to each other and I can say our relationship is definitely much stronger. He will be 6 mos gamble free this month and that is a huge achievement.
I just want to say that there is hope but for me this all depends on how committed he is to start his recovery and of course if you think all of this hard work is worth it. I suggest you reflect on this and think about yourself above everything. There is no right or wrong decision. Above all my advice is whatever you decide, you should choose where you will be happy ultimately.
You could resent him for wasting the money but what will that achieve as its gone in the past you've got to make the decision now what you want and if you trust him enough to start building it up again as that's going to take time, and make sure you check it is only the hundreds not the thousands check his clear score as you'll see all the debt. It's easy just to say what someone wants to hear but you've got to second guess everything as one thing us problem gamblers are good at is lieing you've got to get him an account that won't allow him to gamble put as many blocks in place as you can as gambling is a evil addition and you'll find so many ways to cheat and con, but good luck to your partner as its not easy for both of you
Thanks for your reply Kev.
So since I made that last post, we went through his bank account together and worked out that it is actually thousands and not hundreds like he originally said. Absolutely gutted that even after getting bailed out by his parents he continued to gamble that much. He did honsetly seem as shocked as me and I dont think he actually realised himself how bad it was until he seen it in black and white. I think he was very much in denial for a long time. I just hope it was the shock he needed To make him want to stop.
So far he has taken all the right steps, i just hope that continues and I can learn to trust him again
I currently sit on your partner's side of the fence - recently found out by my wife after years of gambling. With her it's the trust and she's said my actions show I simply don't care about her. Obviously I can't speak for your partner, but I can say that my actions were never intended to hurt my wife. As stupid as that sounds. You see, when you're caught up in the middle of gambling it's like a fog descends and all rational thoughts go out of your mind.
Ultimately my words count for little right now, so it's all about actions and intent. While not an excuse, communication had broken down a little and that allowed me to go about my deceit without being questioned.
I'm not saying you should forgive, and you certainly shouldn't forget, but a gambling addiction can make a perfectly caring person do awful and selfish things.
The money is gone, so there's little to be gained about thinking what that could have done (believe me!). You just need to decide if you can work with him to get through it and allow him to earn your trust back.
I'm one of the lucky ones where my wife is willing to do that. And therefore I'm d**n sure I'm not going to let her down again.
I wish you all the best.
Its quite good to hear the perspective of someone on the other side of the fence. I think the broken trust is definitely the worst part of it all. Like you said the money is gone now and thinking about what could have been will only cause more pain.
I know deep down he would never do anything to hurt me intentionally. I guess its just disappointing that something can take hold of him so much that he has no control over and my worry is that it might happen again. But i suppose that is just something else that is going to take time. Wish you all the best for the future as well, and hold on to that wife of yours.
Thanks for sharing your story. I definitely get the wondering if you really know him at all feeling. I feel like I knew him inside out before this and now I feel like I didn't know him at all. I know that's not true and he is still the same person but its just difficult to feel that way just now. I also feel guilty for not noticing but there was a problem but he says that he didn't even realise there was a problem himself until it all came out.
It sounds like your partner has done all the right things and congrats to him (and you for helping him) reach 6 months. So far my partner has done everything to get on the road to recovery, it has only been days so im aware there is a lot of work to do. Hopefully together we can also celebrate in 6 months.