Hello everyone. It's nice to meet you.
Just wanted to introduce myself to this forum.
I'm a single woman in my early thirties.
Due to money problems, I started gambling at the start of last year- I was drawn in by all those tempting adverts showing big wins. I signed up to several different online sites and before I knew it I was depositing a combined total of hundreds of pounds each month. I got in really deep. It even got so bad that I was doing it at work too. My quality of work really suffered. I am forever thankful that I wasn't fired.
I also hid it from my family. It finally came to light when they asked me about my financial situation and I could no longer lie. Cue many tears and tantrums. And lots of denials: 'But I used the deposit limits!', 'It's my own money I earned!', 'I never went into overdraft!' etc. I now realised how bad it really was.
This was back in May and I immediately (the momentum) was strong went and cancelled all my accounts and signed up for GamStop. It went well for a while and I thought I could cope on my own. But the momentum has gone now and I find myself struggling. So I decided to take the new step of signing up to this website and getting help to be permanently gamble free.
Hi diamystical, welcome and well done for reaching out. You say you have registered with gamstop, which is good, but have you put any other barriers in place. I would recommend putting a blocker on your devices, I use betblocker, and sign up for the maximum of 5 years. Also maybe contact your bank and ask them to put a block on gambling transactions. I have done both of these and they really help me.
If you are struggling you could speak to an advisor on here, they are amazing, and they could arrange some counselling to help you talk about your problems. I had 8 phone sessions with a counsellor and it was very good being able to talk about anything without being judged.
Read other peoples stories where you might find something that you think could help.
The main thing is you want to stop and have got so far on your own since May which is great, longer than me as I am approaching 6 months gamble free after 5 years wasting loads.
Be proud of your progress so far and good luck
All the best
Your reaction is quite normal.....strong believe that you can quit and plenty of action and a real buzz that it can be beaten......all very normal. Then the cold-turkey comes along when things get a bit quieter (its Christmas so a turkey pun is acceptable). We all go through this to some extend so you are not alone.
Now, as you already know, is the time to be strong as you have done really well so far and you don't want a relapse and to slip back into it. Tell your family again as soon as you can what you are going through and explain that you are not gambling but struggling mentally with it - they love you are they will understand and help you simply by talking it through. Also I would take the advice from @Bladesman as its sound and the obvious thing to do but don't stop there as it probably isn't enough. Every time I get that urge, that restlessness that something I can't put my finger on which is called 'I want to gamble again' I come on here - you need something or somebody to just take the edge off it and I use these posts or a family member. It helps ease mu anxiety or stress until the urge subsides..........until the next time they come from nowhere! But please get help and tell your family again before you start gambling again.
Hi diamystical, plenty of good advice offered up already so I don't have any as such. What I wanted to say was that whilst I am personally GF for almost 3 years I do visit this site at least a couple of times a week to stay grounded and to remember where I was back in '18 so that I don't let my guard down. Keep strong and keep going.
Yes its very important to keep talking about it. Our emotions ebb and flow in normal life. Those wet Tuesday evenings will come and so will Bill days. Moments when the red devil of addiction will try and talk to you
The cold turkey must be done because it is a drug addiction more than anything
I understand what you mean by momentum but it takes a while to find peace of mind. That initial surge of pride can think right Ive got the hang of this now
Its more of a long game where thoughts about honesty and humility gradually take over from the confusion and delusion. You can never be complacent again but its about turning that into a positive statement that you deal with peacefully.
Im a good few years into recovery and the people that started helping me get a report on my finances and how Im doing. I make time to discuss it even though they are thinking its less necessary now. They listen though and make suggestions as we have a caring bond.
Being gamble free is a very good feeling. Im not saying we have been whisked off to the land of milk and honey but its great being in control of my life and my finances. Its a feeling of serenity at at times.
Keep using the forum. Its very good and I hope you will become a seasoned member reading and relating to the stories. It will do you no harm to learn as much as you can about this addiction and why you were vulnerable to it. It has its roots in escape from stress depression and what can seem humdrum. I believe the roots go to the core of the soul.
Best wishes from everyone on the forum