GamCare Logo
Login / Register

Out in the open

119 posts / 0 new
Last post

Pages

Posted by
Messages
#1 Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 15:18

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

 

 

 

 

 

Day one!

Been gambling for over 20 years, but I guess I needed rock bottom, which was a £35k loss in two hours playing online blackjack.

I told my partner and parents today, and transferred all my spare money to my partner. Fortunately I couldn’t get the instant loans and overdrafts I applied for last night for one more hand. My problem has always been chasing losses ... 9 out of 10 times I would win £50- £100 and be happy. The tenth time I could never accept it wasn’t my day and would lose thousands. Self excluded from FOBT’s but found online even worse, as not the embarrassment as going to the counter to ask the staff to load more on the machines.

So why do I do it? Both my grandad and dad have had the same problem, and my dad has done time for ‘borrowing’ from his employers (he got caught putting it back!).  I don’t blame them at all though, it’s my own choice, although there must be some genetic pre-disposition.

I generally bet when I am bored or stressed ... i’m Finance Director of a business where cash is very tight, so it’s a relief to be frivolous on the cards.  I also bet to try and win money ... I used to have a much higher paid job but gave it up when my daughter was born as she had a very severe skull condition and spent a lot of her first year in Alderhey. I guess I thought gambling could make up the shortfall, even though we didn’t need the money ... stupid ego I suppose.

So my partner and parents were so supportive ... my partner is very care free with money so she thinks it was just lucky I confessed before mortgaging the house. My mum has been ultra frugal and never had much money, so that was harder ... she was just glad i told her ... my 8 year old had told her I spend every night playing cards on the computer, so she knew, although not the scale.

I’m telling myself it can be a strange positive ... the big loss will prevent lots of little ones, but also free up so much time so I can be a better partner and dad. Didn’t feel that way when I was feeling suicidal last night, so I know i’m kidding myself and could have been a good dad without having to blow the money first!

Anyway, been helpful writing this down and will continue to do so ... sorry if it’s dull ramblings. If I’ve broken any etiquette please tell me as would rather know than keep putting my foot in it. Will hopefully keep posting ... should help fill the time gap where gambling been and want to be a participating part of the community.  Been reading diaries for a year now, but felt a fraud joining as wasn’t ready to quit, and was financially ok ... at least my stupidity means I can now come out into the open.

Happy Xmas to all and hopefully next year i’ll be on day 365!

Richard 

Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 15:54

ODAAT

Joined:
2014-11-10

Hi Richard, welcome to your diary :-)

Sorry to hear about your daughter’s condition & hope she is doing ok now?

No etiquette on here (although the forum police do have undercover agents that go a bit heavy on the asterisks sometimes) so ramble away to your heart's content...As you say, it’s a safe place to be when the urges bite.

I don’t know how much you’ve read outside of the forum but even being around here for a year you will have some idea of what addiction is all about & yes that money is a huge hit but as you say, it could be a small price to pay for your future!  The FOBTs bought me to my knees after years of prolonged agony on the smaller stake machines & for that, I am truly grateful now!  It’s a shame you didn’t jump on board before you did this latest bit of financial damage, because most people that arrive here don’t want to stop gambling either (I just wanted to stop losing) but that doesn’t mean we don’t have a problem.  Yours appears deeply entrenched & it’s little wonder your mother is frugal if she’s had to survive a life surrounded by compulsive gamblers.  I’m coming round to the idea that addicts aren’t born, they are created (foetal drug/alcohol dependency aside) although I would have offered to fight to the death rather than accept that when I 1st came here.  

Good on you for coming clean, I know how hard that must have been & hopefully your loved ones know that they can access GamCare services or go to GamAnon meetings if they need support.  You’ve probably read posts from me so will know that this is well intended...You need to strike while the iron is hot & get your barriers sky high whilst you figure out how you’re going to rewire your mind, you can’t recover on willpower alone.

Time now to figure out how to be the dad you want to be - ODAAT 

Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 16:20

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Thanks ODAAT.  Means a lot that you have replied, as have read your diary before, and always see how great your support is to others.  My daughter is OK now ... all the bones in her skull were fused together when she was born so had to be separated to let the brain grow.  All fine at the moment although still a risk that they will fuse again (they aren’t supposed to fuse until late teens).  I’m unsure on GamAnon ... seems to be mixed feedback but I might give them a go.  I guess I had hoped that having n money and willpower might work (accepting my willpower has never been the best), so I’ll certainly consider other options. Spending more time with the kids, reading bedtime stories etc rather than playing Blackjack while pretending to work will be a good start ... like the idea that the loss could be a small price to pay for more family time so clinging onto that thought ... would have given all my money and possessions for my daughter to still be going strong at 6 when she was born, so need to enjoy every minute.

Thanks again.

Richard

Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 16:36

ODAAT

Joined:
2014-11-10

GamAnon is for your loved ones...You will need GA.  It does get very bad press (often from people who have never walked through the doors) mithering about it being a religious program (it’s not) but you won’t know until you try it whether it’s for you.  I was the same when I 1st came here, determined that because I had all my financial plates still spinning, I’d not quite sold my soul to the devil & could do it “my way” but I was wrong!  Stopping gambling was the easy bit...You’ll know from my diary, it’s the recovery I’m struggling with.

That is so sad about your little girl & the uncertainty must be incredibly hard to live with whether you recognise it or not...I wish her the very best in this cruel fight, as I do all of her loved ones, struggling to watch, hoping for the best for her.  I was going to say I sometimes think but in my heart, I know my sister’s ill health contributed to my mother’s gambling!  She would have given her life to let my sister survive (she did give a kidney) & she would do anything for me, except quit gambling...She hurts me & our relationship is strained but I‘m working on that because it’s out of my control.

I’m guessing you’re experiencing a wealth of emotion right now including the sheer relief of it being open so enjoy the bits you can & try not to let the hard stuff play too heavily on your mind!  What a fantastic Christmas present to give your family :-)

Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 16:43

Dre

Joined:
2017-10-31

Thank you for sharing. I can relate to a lot of what you said especially the part about not wanting to join until you had your loss. This is a very safe place to air your views and feelings. Glad you have a strong support network this is worth its weight in gold... when I first stopped I tried will power and failed repeatedly since I put blocks in place it’s been easier... wish you all the best on your journey.  

Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 19:02

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Thanks both, means a lot to have some support from those who understand. My family have basically said it’s fine so don’t understand why I’m moping .... a row might have made my feel less guilty than this! Not sure why I’m so down ... is it the money or knowing I can’t gamble again??  Will read both your diaries again in search for inspiration. ODAAT ... suspect I might find the recovery harder, as you have. Thanks again for the support. Looking forward to tomorrow... not because it’s Xmas, but because I’ll be able to say i’ve Made it to day 2.

Posted on:
Sun, 24/12/2017 - 23:32

SEL87

Joined:
2017-10-18

Hi rich thanks for posting on my diary well done for getting to the point of realising that you have a big problem that needs addressed,the early weeks were hard for me not that I wanted to bet but just getting out of the depressing mind state after losing a lot of money,but after 3/4 weeks I was ok and started looking on the bright side of life away from gambling,I've convinced myself that money isn't everything and that I don't need to be a millionaire or well off to enjoy my life,what I've convinced myself of is that it's either gambling or my family,so it's a no brainier for me now if I get any urges I tend to fight them off with the thought of losing those closest to me,it has helped me for sure aswell along with this forum,keep reading people's diaries and get involved in chat as much as you can,I hope you can stop mate,happy xmas to you and your family 

Posted on:
Mon, 25/12/2017 - 10:02

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Merry Xmas to you and your family too. I’ve always been too focussed on money as my parents never had much ... need to follow your advice that it doesn’t really matter. My mum actually said ‘will be best money you ever spent if it stops you being so stressed and distracted at home’ (and it would take her years to earn what I lost in an hour). Thanks for the ray of light around the fog lifting, still feel shocking and haven’t slept but guess it’s only day 2, so looking forward to a few weeks down the line. Think hard bit will be getting over the regret, rather than actually wanting to do it again ... can’t recoup that kind of money without risking a load more, and have cut off my access to money. Happy Xmas to anyone who reads this. 

Posted on:
Tue, 26/12/2017 - 09:16

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

So day 3 and posting again ...sorry if i’m boring anyone but good to get things off my chest and will be good to look back when hopefully my mood lightens. Useful reading other diaries and realising that I can’t expect to feel better instantly. Started going through ODAAT’s diary again ... I notice in one of her early posts she says she has never tried to work out what she lost. I started going through all my old bank statements and then stopped as realised I was just looking for another way to beat myself up ... does it matter if it’s 50k, 100k, 200k etc?? I feel bad in that in some ways by situation isn’t that grim ... i’ve blown our savings but don’t have a mortgage or debts and I can still save each month. My partner says she isn’t bothered about the money as it doesn’t affect our lifestyle if we have another £40k in the bank, and she just wants me to be a better part of the family. I’m just thinking that we’ll have less money for a rainy day or retirement. What happens if it doesn’t rain and who cares about 30 years from now .. just shows where my head has been. Not even sure if i’ve had a gambling problem .. i’ve had a money problem and gambling has been a way of getting more money that I didn’t actually need as i’m really tight on myself and never buy anything, just try to increase my bank balance ... but why? Anyway, my partner is looking after all the money going forwards.  Sorry for anyone who is in a worse financial state as i’m sure my stress seems trivial. So how do I stop beating myself up and get on with life and enjoying all the family time I now have? Will time just heal it? (Read one of the diaries last night , apologies for forgetting which one, where they said 3 years later they were still beating themselves up .. maybe that’s good though as it helps stop a relapse .. winning 40k back would make me feel better, but I know it will never happen and next time I might end up losing the house. Do we convince ourselves it was just inevitable and couldn’t be stopped until we hit rock bottom? How do I stop having the dark thoughts i’m having as Xmas has stopped me doing anything daft as didn’t want the kids to associate Santa with a bad time ... but what happens next week? My partner wants me to go to the GP but don’t want to end up on medication. Anyway, sorry for boring everyone but i’ve found the honest diaries on here really useful, so just trying to put down how I feel. I feel awful and suicidal but not sure why ... I aren’t in a load of debt, my family are supportive ... maybe I am sad at the idea of never betting again but don’t think that’s it. Anyway, hopefully at some point down the line i’ll be able to put down the answers but don’t think it works like that. I do though see examples of people enjoying days without gambling and with the remorse drifting off into the background, so hope to get there in the end. 

Posted on:
Tue, 26/12/2017 - 11:11

Lethe

Joined:
2016-12-10

It's not a money issue. The uncontrolled gambling is an indication of underlying issues which you will need to identify and address. Counselling and attendance at GA are good places to start.

Is your partner aware of the progressive nature of an unaddressed addiction? It would be a good idea for her to do some reading up on what she's up against. At a minimum she really needs to consider cast iron protection for the household finances and ongoing regular monitoring of your credit reports.

Posted on:
Tue, 26/12/2017 - 11:40

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

 

Hi Lethe

You’re correct and i’m definitely going to try counselling. I have given my partner all the finances and one thing I have never done is take on any debt. When I did have occasional wins, I paid chunks off my mortgage rather than treat myself. I think though she’s a little bored already with me trying to talk things through .. she basically says i’ve let you off, everyone’s healthy (her dad died young, so she is opposite to me .. spend on living now rather than saving for retirement) so you’re right in that I need some external counselling as not fair to rely on family or people here to talk through my issues over and over again. Thanks for posting. 

Posted on:
Tue, 26/12/2017 - 21:00

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Realised i’ve been feeling too sorry for myself and boring everyone. One issue is that my bank balances still says £49k ... unfortunately I can see the £48k of pending withdrawals! Will feel better tomorrow when it all goes and I can crack on with slowly saving again. Thankful for the support of my family, for the fact I couldn’t access loans or overdrafts that night, and that gambling hasn’t cost me my home, family or job. So, no more moping and without a gambling free head I can achieve so much more at work and be a better dad and partner. I needed the big shock to stop, better than the gradual loss and gambling stress over years, so onwards and upwards ... no short cuts to getting well off, harder work from now and get a career and a life.  Will keep checking in though as nice to count the days and hopefully get some mutual support with others. Love to all. Richard 

Posted on:
Tue, 26/12/2017 - 22:02

Frozen

Joined:
2010-11-22

Forget about the money don't even think about it, from experience it will drag you back in.  Enjoy been gamble free and a stress free head.   Day at a time

Posted on:
Tue, 26/12/2017 - 22:10

Stephen55570

Joined:
2017-11-07

I defo wouldnt take advice from a kids film

Posted on:
Tue, 26/12/2017 - 23:38

ODAAT

Joined:
2014-11-10

You need support that your partner can’t give you...This is not about her ‘letting you off’ or otherwise but you need help to make sense of why you want her to punish you as well as you doing it.  It may feel like you should be able to pull up your big boy pants & get on with things but the reality is way harsher than that...Yes, life without gambling will be financially more stable but whether or not you can put your finger on the why @ the moment, there will be one (or many) for how you got here.  A good GP probably wouldn’t offer you meds in the 1st instance...Mine had a tear off pad for CBT counselling which may not be a bad start (GamCare also offer a free service).  Your partner doesn’t get it but she doesn’t need to because love you or hate you for what you’ve done, she can’t change it so although in an ideal world she’d respond in a different way, it looks like you need to get your mental support elsewhere.   Don’t worry about how much you do or don’t write here, if getting it down helps in anyway, write.  Time alone doesn’t heal but working on you & learning to forgive & love yourself will make your journey smoother.  If you continue to feel low & are not able to speak to your loved ones, please do call the Samaritans on 116123.  Addiction is a drug that numbs us to life...Abstaining is to feel again & you are very raw with no obvious outlet for your emotions so do find a meeting, go to your GP, maybe even try & confide in a friend but most importantly, stick around here.  Use the helpline, the Netline, the chatrooms...Anything you need to to that helps.

Not sure what I missed in relation to the kids film but I would take advice from anywhere if it is sound & supported & actually most kids films are pretty straightforward & keeping things simple really does make life more manageable!

Take care & hopefully hear from you soon - Kelly

Posted on:
Wed, 27/12/2017 - 08:53

Cynical wife

Joined:
2015-06-23

Echo Lethe when she says it’s not the money that’s the problem, it’s the compulsion to gamble. Money comes and money goes but lost self is irreplaceable. (Although if there are regular five figure withdrawals sooner or later that will cause it’s own consequences - how can it not?)

It sounds as if your partner is in denial or otherwise doesn’t recognise how dangerous your addiction is. It’s said that addiction is a family disease and I’ve found that to be so. One aspect is the emotional absence that your partner has commented on, what’s become normal for the family and how they relate to each other is actually very dysfunctional, whether or not the coffers are fully drained. The tension becomes normal, the parents become mother son and that becomes what’s known and familiar etc, the children get caught up in it and that’s what they grow up with. 

There is all sorts of help out there, I personally don’t think that any of it is a substitute for Twelve Step. Try GA for you and GamAnon or CoDA for her, they can teach a healthier way to live and to break the cycle of addiction.

 CW

Posted on:
Wed, 27/12/2017 - 09:07

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

 

Hi Kelly / Frozen / CW

 

 

Thanks for comments ... think the other one was making a joke about ‘Frozen’s’ username ... to me a while to get it and didn’t split my sides when I did! Yes, I think my partner doesn’t understand that it’s a deep seated psychological issue ... she thinks I was daft, she’s let me off and that’s it ... so I’ll definitely go for the external help.  Will speak to my sister ... she’s struggled with depression etc and her outlet was alcohol .. she seems to be making progress in her own recovery ... I’m worried about dragging her down so will have a think before contacting her.  Feeling gradually better each day ... 

Don’t think i’ll have too much issue not gambling again as have cut off my source of money, and don’t think i’d ever take a loan. Know I need to be careful though as I have quite a stressful job, and when it’s at its worst, that’s when I gamble the most ... i’m MD of a family business ... think they take it as a bit of a game ... they are very wealthy and it doesn’t really matter how the business does, so i’m Left worrying about paying wages, suppliers etc ... I think if I can get my self respect back i’ll have the confidence to look for a different job.

Kelly - really appreciate you getting back in touch as read your diary again yesterday and know the recovery hasn’t been easy for you. I definitely agree that learning to forgive and like myself again will be a big help. For some reason I actually think the gambling was a form of punishing myself ... my last hand of blackjack was £10k and I was desperate to lose so I could stop ... bizarre ... I could have just withdrawn the funds.  Anyway, day with the kids as partner at work ... at least I won’t be trying to sneak in some racing and blackjack.

Posted on:
Wed, 27/12/2017 - 10:41

Merry go round

Joined:
2017-06-08

Hi I'm just commenting on things that jumped out at me. If your partner thinks it's daft she needs to learn about addiction. Don't ignore it. The second is your mind is a powerful thing. Depression is also progressive. The more depressed you get the longer it takes to recover. There is no shame in getting help from your gp and if anyone is offered medication it is for a reason. Who cares if you take a tablet to get you through. Don't underestimate the power of addiction or the mind. Gambling is a self medicating behaviour for underlying problems. 

Posted on:
Wed, 27/12/2017 - 17:25

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

d a great

 

So, checking in and saying how glad I am to be on this forum and for the moral support from everyone. I know some people have nothing financially left so not trying to make anyone feel bad. On a couple of days i deposited large sums, lost a lot and ended up £13k in total ... so having spent two nights physically shaking and going to bed exhausted did I learn from this narrow escape .. of course not ... I was always going to lose in the end ... thought I was invincible and that if I went down, as long as I kept upping the stakes I would only need a couple of hands to get level ... until I lost 11 hands in a row and could gamble no more .... now here is the laughable bit ... firstly, after the second go I tried to close the account, but it said it would ‘cause potential issues with pending withdrawals’ ... in hindsight should have left the account open but made my maximum deposit £1.

The next day (a week ago) they took my stake out of my account. They have also taken the stake out for my night if shame.  I haven’t had any of the winnings back in ... I have called them and they are held up by unusual betting patterns eg I did a lot of doubling up and it’s now allowed ... now I know you can’t do this on roulette but never had that for blackjack. Now I am actually hoping they don’t pay me out and say my betting is invalid and am trying to get that in writing ... I can then legally claim it was also invalid when I lost.  Now I know they won’t be that daft and aren’t hoping for the money back, but just shows how bent they are ... they haven’t work out yet my losing night clearly, but we’re just looking at ways of getting out of wins. Obviously they will pay out, as they’ll work out what might happen if they don’t, but I just want to funds in so I can transfer to my partner as they are needed to pay for an extension we’ve had ... I check every hour .. what happens if they land some time and I’m no longer feeling like I never want to gamble again and decide it’s my one chance to get my losses back while I have a large stake?? (I won’t do this as would be terrible to my family and would leave us in large debt).  Secondly, when i did tell them I wanted to exclude when I got my funds back, they said I would also be excluded from another well known betting company who they must own ... i’m already excluded from them as joined and excluded every bookies I could think of earlier in the year!!  I asked what happens if they didn’t manage to exclude me by mistake ... they said it might void my betting ... ‘might’ ... I guess they mean if I lose it would be fine, but if I win it wouldn’t!!  Sorry for the ramble, but wanted to show how terrible the bookies are ... responsible gambling ... I deposited a six figure sum within 4 days of joining with no questions but they try and get out of the winning element.  The ‘cancel pending withdrawal’ function and creating issues if you try and close an account while waiting for funds is clearly designed to make you give it back if you manage to win by some fluke.

Anyway, I look forward to sharing with you that ideally they won’t pay me out, in which case i’ll see them in court to get my stake back, including losses. More realistically I can’t wait to hand them over to my partner ... I asked to get them sent to her but they said they had to go back to my method of deposit, ie my debit card. 

Other than the above, had a great day with kids and gradually getting fewer dark thoughts. Hope the above comes across as intended ... an example of how the industry is designed to work against the punter, particularly those of us with addiction problems ... they just won’t let you have a moment of awareness, take your funds out immediately and close your account ...

 

Posted on:
Wed, 27/12/2017 - 20:07

Lethe

Joined:
2016-12-10

No poor bookies for a reason.

Posted on:
Thu, 28/12/2017 - 00:17

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

 

 

 

Agreed. Funnily enough they’ve taken over £100k out of my account now and not deposited a penny of the funds i’m due back, even though I’m actually owed a withdrawal from 7 days before my last losing bet ... here’s hoping they’re claiming my betting is void ... clearly they won’t but making it hard to transfer funds to partner and move on. 

 

Posted on:
Thu, 28/12/2017 - 10:30

Muststop123

Joined:
2017-10-03

Hi RSmith39

Belated welcome to the forum. 

Just read through your diary and it seems that whilst the sums probably seem quite big to many of us, I would suggest you need to completely forget about the money. Whilst obviously you need to let the transactions run through to your bank account, once that is done, just put a line under it all and accept it is gone.

I just worry that a lot of your posts are focused on the money and the payments to/from the bookies/casinos and if you start thinking that some aspect of it was "unfair" you will try and recoup it somehow and that somehow will be one last attempt at winning it back. One of the biggest steps I took was to accept that the money was gone, never coming back and the online casinos had won. It was kind of liberating and whilst the sums involved for me were much smaller, I now almost look at the £6000 I lost as the cost of realising i had a gambling problem and can therefore never gamble again.

Good luck and keep posting. From my limited experience and reading on here, the amounts of money and personal circumstances actually make very little difference to how this affects you. Most people seem to go through similar periods of urges, self loathing, despair etc. Don't suffer in silence, there are many wise people on here - I would also highly recommend getting some counselling - I had never used any type of counselling before but found it hugely useful in understanding why I gambled and dispelling some of the negative thoughts I was having about myself.

 

Posted on:
Thu, 28/12/2017 - 10:45

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

 

 

Hi Muststop,

Thanks so much for checking in. Yes, I know I need to just draw a line under it, and at least I’m not in debt ... I know it was my fault and not a con (other than the way gambling always in). Think it will help once i’ve Had the funds back and given them to my partner as don’t want to be tempted at all when they land ... have occasional thoughts of not feeling any worse if I lose more, and can make myself better if I get it back, but I know that is stupid and definitely won’t do it.

I also agree that the amount is kind of irrelevant and we’re all in the same boat, whatever the personal circumstances. Just need to move on, forget about the money and never gamble again. I think it will help when i’m Back at work, rather than stewing at home. Thanks again, and appreciate all advice. Rich

Posted on:
Fri, 29/12/2017 - 10:29

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Just venting again.  Was feeling much better yesterday - basically starting to accept what I lost and just wanting to move on gamble free.  Read some interesting debates (arguments in some case) around whether gambling addiction is an illness.  Don't want to get into medical definitions, but do think when we are gambling compulsively we aren't in our right minds .... as such, we need to cut ourselves some slack.  The condition is that when we are thinking clearer, we do something to stop it happening again ... given I don't have the answers as to why I even did it, I can't say that those conditions wouldn't occur again.

So, I've joined this forum, excluded myself from various accounts, and handed over financial control to my partner, and told friends and family about the issue.

The one thing stopping me moving on at the moment is the online bookie where I lost all the money ... give you a clue, it was unfair betting that got me into this.  As explained earlier, I actually one a few times earlier in the week, before the big meltdown, so they owe me a significant 5 figure amount back (which is going straight to my partner to pay for some building work we have had done).  Initially they queried paying me it back due to "irregular betting" ie doubling up on blackjack, even though it doesn't say you can't and there is a "bet x 2" button on the game (it was this that was my downfall ... in half a dozen re-bet x2 presses without really thinking you have gone from £100 a hand to £6,400!).  Having clearly now worked out that I ultimately lost, they are now happy with my betting, but can't return the funds until they verify my ID!  They will happily take over £100k from your account without any knowledge of who you are, but won't pay a smaller amount of this back to you!

Great news though ... it might take a few days to sort this out, but in the meantime they will send the funds back to my account ... clearly promoting responsible gambling, given while I haven't shut the account (so I can sort this out), my max deposit is now £1 a month (I will shut as soon as I get my money).  Good job I'm in a slightly better place, as if I'd known this when I had my meltdown or the day after, I would have asked them to drop it back in to give me a chance to get my money back and feel better.

I guess I've passed a first test in telling them to stick it re reversing the withdrawal and just send me the money.  Now stuck at work in the snow on a day off, trying to get the scanner to work to send them various bits of ID ... then just need to go to hospital to get them the DNA sample they also require ....

 

 

 

Posted on:
Sat, 30/12/2017 - 09:58

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Day 7. Feels kind of weird looking back on a week ago, when I was on a high having had a couple of wins. Oh well, need to take the advice, forget the loss and move on ... seems to be getting slightly easier ... still waking up in the night, but at least i’m sleeping in the first place. Just looking forward to finally getting paid out and sending it to my partner. Proud I didn’t ask them to put the funds in my account yesterday ... will hopefully find the energy to report them to the Ombudsman, although won’t cause them any grief and will drag it up again for me, so not sure what good it would do. Anyway, went to see Lion, Witch and Wardrobe at theatre with family yesterday, which was great ... they did well to put on such a story on the stage.  Mind drifted off at various points, but only to be expected. Roll on 2018 and cracking on with the 2018 Challenge.

Posted on:
Mon, 01/01/2018 - 12:42

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Happy New Year everyone and best wishes and good luck to all for 2018.

Still gamble free ... not missing it. Went down to in laws in day yesterday and had nice time .. would normally have found excuse not to go and ended up bored and playing blackjack.

Given currently skint, stayed in with other half and managed to get through first series of Broadchurch ... really enjoyed it although a bit emotionally heavy. Something else I probably missed because I was gambling.

Slightly nervous about going back to work tomorrow, as the combination of stress and boredom there has partly led to the gambling. Still, will really focus on the business, and See if it can be saved (i’m the M.D, the owners don’t seem too bothered and just leave me to deal with it while they have dozens of holidays a year). If it can’t I’m not going to take personal responsibility for all the jobs there and will jump ship and get something else myself. Sounds selfish, but my own mental state and the well-being of my family is going to be the priority for 2018. Looking forward to year ahead and hopefully heading further away from my rock bottom. Will no doubt need some support along the way, and hope I can return the favour to others.

Posted on:
Mon, 01/01/2018 - 19:26

YorkshireLad

Joined:
2017-11-07

Hi Rsmith39

I've enjoyed reading your diary and watching your progress so far, so your first challenge of 2018 is tomorrow going back to work and reality, settling back into a routine and that routine up until now will have involved gambling so let's make sure you don't fall into the same trap. Sure your job might be very very stressful and you may see gambling as an outlet to this. But just remember if you do get any urges that your life could be a whole lot stressful with the stress of your job and more money down the drain. You've visited the inlaws,watched broadchurch been and seen the lion witch and the wardrobe (few friends went to that at the playhouse same night as you said it was excellent) These may all seem like small things but if you piece them together you will see that, this is what a gamble free life is all about. Keep your head high you've done well so far.

Posted on:
Mon, 01/01/2018 - 19:48

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

 

Thanks Yorkshirelad,

Appreciate the comments and time taken to read my diary. I’m getting out of the mental hole a day at a time. I’m really glad for you that you’ve come here while your hole is hopefully more of a divot! I’d definitely have a word with someone just so you have some protection for pay day ... it’s easy to be gamble free when you have no money to hand (as I’m finding) but need to be ready for next time temptation is at hand. Cheers. Richard

Posted on:
Wed, 03/01/2018 - 18:23

Scotto85g

Joined:
2018-01-01

Hi Richard. Thanks very much for the comments on my diary. I do sense a particular affinity with you in the sense of the huge amounts we have both lost. How has work been? Has it been boring and quiet as before? I go back to mine tomorrow. I think I will bury myself in work if possible as I will have plenty to do. Scott

Posted on:
Wed, 03/01/2018 - 19:04

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Hi Scott. Agreed that I think we’ve ended up in a very similar boat! Work a struggle ... the company I work for is struggling financially so always getting chased by suppliers etc ... I run the company, but the owners don’t seem to take it seriously (one currently in Florida, the other in New York for a few weeks!). I went with enthusiasm to get stuck in, but I just think I need another job! On a positive, a stressful day at work would normallly have led to a gamble, so glad I haven’t the ability to do that, as chances are it would make it worse.  As an aside, people can waste money on other things than gambling ... last year one of the owners racked up a £20k phone bill in 3 days in Barbados by watching films on his phone ... had a call today with a £12k bill in 2 days in New York ... he thought he’d connected to hotel WiFi but must have forgotten ...should have asked what film it was ... Richard 

Posted on:
Wed, 03/01/2018 - 21:26

Scotto85g

Joined:
2018-01-01

What a shocking amount of waste that is...waste that the company can ill afford it seems.

Posted on:
Thu, 04/01/2018 - 20:19

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

 

Still gamble free and no real urges.  Couldn’t if I wanted to, as no money! Still haven’t received funds yet for withdrawals on 18th and 19th Dec, despite them taking money out same day. Despite them saying it had been processed a week ago, they apparently now mean my ID has been processed and still with payment team to approve payment .... suspect of might have had it long ago if I hadn’t closed the account! They also refuse to provide a number or email for contact team ... ‘all we can do is raise a ticket and ask them to pay you’ ... at least they didn’t offer to put it back as chips in the meantime on this occasion ... outrageous and will report them to ombudsman once I have it back (can’t risk any delay by upsetting them as owe it to builders) ... good job I fesses up to wife as she’d have spotted gaping hole in joint account by now!!

Anyway, work was ok ... my ‘we’re going to have a great 2018’ presentation to whole company was a masterpiece of the kind (only if David Brent is your role model). Still, another day down ... must only be about 12 now, but seems like a different lifetime. Looking forward to first 2018 challenge sign in on weekend.

 

Posted on:
Thu, 04/01/2018 - 21:19

Scotto85g

Joined:
2018-01-01

How long have you been waiting for that withdrawal now? I agree it’s a good job it can’t go back on the site to be used for more potential gambling.

Posted on:
Thu, 04/01/2018 - 22:51

Frozen

Joined:
2010-11-22

Well done RSmith on another day done

Posted on:
Fri, 05/01/2018 - 09:38

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Thanks Frozen.

Scott - been waiting since 18th December and I seem to have gone backwards in the last week, from "the money is on the way", to "its with the payment team from approval".  Decided I'm not going to chase again ... to some extent the longer the better, as long as the builders are willing to wait a little longer (which they seem happy to do ... I know them quite well, and they know the score) .... the longer the take, the more trouble I can hopefully cause them subsequently.  If my account was still open, I'm sure I'd have it by now - the fact they know I can't regamble it with them has, I assume, led to this attitude.  Baffles me .... how on the one hand can they say they needed to verify the bank account with ID to put funds back in, but they can quite happily take out £50k in less than an hour, without any question about the source of the funds??  One of the many questions I will be asking them and the Ombudsman.  I don't blame them for my losses, entirely my fault, but shows how the industry works.  Ombudsman won't do anything either, as govt and the industry are too closely linked (which is why the whole FOBT maximum bet hasn't been resolved), and they won't do anything about making offshore betting companies pay tax, limit TV advertising etc.  Cheers.  Richard

 

Posted on:
Tue, 09/01/2018 - 19:14

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

 

 

 

So my last ever settled bet has happened and it summarises a glorious betting career .... hopefully an amusing anecdote to look back on ...just to clarify, this bet was placed in Nov, so I’m not resetting the counter!!

Had a silly accumulator on the Ashes .. Anderson top eng wicket taker, Smith top batsman, Aussies to win etc... all won before last night with 1 result still open ... needed Root to be top eng batsman to win £4380 for £100 bet ... Cook and Malan were ahead but out ... Root needed 62 to win and was 42 not out. So, switched radio on at to find out he was on his way back from hospital after dehydration, so he wasn’t starting the day but would bat later ...so Ali is out and he comes in and gets to 58 at lunch, has a relapse and didn’t come back out, so my last bet loses because someone gets the runs ... kind of symbolic!,,

 

 

Posted on:
Tue, 09/01/2018 - 19:38

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Oops ... sorry, just thought I’m probably not supposed to detail specific bets, so huge apologies if I’ve messed up on the etiquette ... hope at least the cricket fans had a smile at new and innovative ways in which gambling can fail to pay ... anyway, my recovery must be going sort of ok in that laughed rather than cried at it (or maybe I’ve just lost my marbles) ....

Posted on:
Wed, 10/01/2018 - 19:48

Scotto85g

Joined:
2018-01-01

Hopefully your final loss Richard. Did you get any further with the withdrawal this week? And how are you feeling in yourself lately. How’s work been? Scott

Posted on:
Wed, 10/01/2018 - 20:56

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Hi Scott,

Thanks a lot for asking.  Work been quite busy and stressful but kept the gambling thoughts away ... to be fair, had no desire whatsoever to gamble.  Still haven't had the money back ... finally got hold of a manager and they have acknowledged they messed up big time, and they still hadn't processed the withdrawal from 18th Dec!  They also asked me how much I would accept as compensation ... maybe I can ask for a few hundred thousand and we can both have our losses back!!  I've told them to make me an offer but ultimately I want to drag them to the Gambling Commission ... sure they would have paid me out long ago if I hadn't shut my account as I might have blown a load more ... I've raised a load of initial queries around their responsible gambling policies, money laudering checks etc so think I've put the wind up them ... genuinely want to understand why they operate the way they have done, rather than trying to get money out of them.  Hope you're feeling OK ... will check into your diary.  Cheers.  Rich

 

Posted on:
Wed, 10/01/2018 - 22:24

Stephen The Strong

Joined:
2017-05-10

Evening Scott. Thank you for posting on my diary. Sorry you have the flu and hope your soon on the mend.

It's brilliant that you enjoy your work and are happy in your employment. I know people who do nothing but moan about their job and I think that is very sad.

Congratulations on 41 days without a bet. An excellent start to your gamble free life.  It is very difficult for a compulsive gambler to stop gambling which is why so many fall by the wayside. But it can be done if we follow a simple set of guidelines and stay true to our cause. It's still not easy though and takes both courage and tenacity to succeed.

Wishing you well...stephen 

Sorry Richard that post was meant for Scott's diary. 

Posted on:
Wed, 10/01/2018 - 23:05

Bryan

Joined:
2017-12-24

Hi Rich . Just posted on your other thread but something I can telll you is this . The reasons casinos take a few days / weeks to pay you out is that they look for reasons not to. I know this is fact . They look for any duplicate accounts , betting patterns , exclusion from sister accounts, account of depositors, bonus abuse , value of bet percentage against bonus , stake amount , country you are logging in from , etc etc . Writing this I have been shafted by all of these reasons over the years and it simply is not a level playing field . Throw in the fact that we are compulsive gamblers and these bast**** also keep our winnings pending for up to 72 hours , it’s a miracle that you can actually manage to withdraw . Make sure you take the money and run and see it as a new start and closure of the old you . 

Posted on:
Thu, 11/01/2018 - 09:20

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Thanks Vulture, makes great sense ... I suspect that they were looking initially to not pay me out at all and void my betting, until I actually lost a load, at which point they couldn't void the wins, without voiding the bigger losses!  Since then, I just think they've been hanging onto the money as long as possible, knowing I had shut the account so they weren't getting it back.  I know what you mean about the "cancel pending withdrawal", sure it's hammered loads of people on this forum.  Thanks so much for the posts.  Rich

Posted on:
Thu, 11/01/2018 - 19:29

Stephen The Strong

Joined:
2017-05-10

Congratulations Richard. Nearing twenty days since you last had a bet. Stopping gambling is a monumental challenge but you have also had to contend with the bookies giving you the run around. I think it is a disgrace the way they have behaved towards you and I am appalled that they are allowed to get away with their shameful behaviour.

Wishing you well as you progress on your gamble free journey. As Tina Turner so rightly sang; "There's Got To Be Something Better Out There."

Take care...stephen 

Posted on:
Fri, 12/01/2018 - 18:47

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

So finally got paid out today, and transferred it straight to my partner ... genuinely not a thought of risking it to get my cash back ... so poor but stressed free. Getting much more done at work (although probably largely futile as feel like I’m sticking my finger in the ****(!) but at least I’m now doing my best). Boredom on evenings and weekend a bit of a struggle as not able to watch sport yet without getting an itch ... resorting to watching people convert horse boxes into rubbish caravans, and morons hiding from surveillance teams while ringing their mum (you’ll only get that if you watched C4 last night) ... on the last one, people had to hide out for 25 days to win £100k while being hunted by so called experts .. only rule was to stay in UK ... some people thought they could ring their mum every day, others thought they could stay at their uncle’s house .. would be like me thinking I could hide in the local bookies and no-one would think of looking for me there! (I might actually win now, as my behaviour would certainly not be on the trend of the last 10 years!). Anyway. Getting over the losses slowly each day, no desire to bet and enjoying being part of this community. Best wishes to all ....Rich

 

Posted on:
Fri, 12/01/2018 - 20:36

SEL87

Joined:
2017-10-18

Good man rich well done for handing over the finances it shows your seriously committed to stop gambling and I'm sure your partner sees that.As for not being able to watch the sport without getting the urges,for me they passed within a few weeks and I could watch it with ease and stress free and when I see a big upset happen I think to myself if I was still a gambling man I'd be down money today,thank god I don't have that stress anymore and glad that you don't either,best of luck on your journey rich hope you can overcome your gambling demons.

Posted on:
Fri, 12/01/2018 - 20:36

Bryan

Joined:
2017-12-24

Hi Rich great news you got some money back . See it as a fresh start and may I ask have you now closed your account down ? Forget loyalty points and any offers they may throw at you . Sorry to hear about the boredom , gambling is a big void to fill. Turn those binoculars the other way around and use them properly . There is so much more you can do than the dreaded G !

Posted on:
Tue, 16/01/2018 - 12:49

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Thought it was time for a quick update. Thanks SELB7 and Vulture for the posts. Yes, closed the account down as well ... I'm a little dubious about the point to some extent, as there are always other sites you can join.  The last time I had a binge, I actually joined and then banned myself from about a dozen sites (all the ones I thought I could trust to gamble with), but obviously missed a couple!  I know I could get blocking software, but we have 4 i-pads, a couple of laptops and a few phones at home, plus I have access to other PCs and laptops via work.  For me, not having the money to gamble is the safety net (as well as hopefully some willpower).  Given my strange relationship with money, I've never had any debt, and don't have a credit history .. had a nightmare getting a small mortgage on that basis ... so don't think I could rack up the loans even if I wanted to (and I'd have to go big to recoup my losses ... don't have an interest in betting the odd tenner).  Honestly had no temptation to gamble ... the odd fleeting thought about it, but no real urge.  Hopefully that will continue, but I also get a lot of motivation from being on here, the 2018 Challenge etc, and from reading other diaries.  My only problem with giving all my money to my partner is that she's a bit of a shopaholic and whenever I query anything now I get "you can't complain about what I spend, given your gambling" ... maybe correct, but still causes some stress.

Unfortunately we have very different views on money.  Despite the gambling, I'm a bit of a tight Yorkshireman (my parents both still work in their 70s as they've never earnt a lot ... and my dad does/did gamble), so I like to save for a rainy day.  Fortunately, despite the recent losses, it was money I'd been stashing away, so didn't go into debt or have an immediated impact on our quality of life.  My partner's dad unfortunately died young, so she's convinced she'll never make it much past 50, so just wants to enjoy life now.  I guess I used that to justify my gambling "if I don't use it, she'll just spend it, and at least I might win", but that's just an excuse.  At the end of the day, better we spend it on doing nice things / the house / an Imelda Marcos sized collection of women's shoes, than I gamble it. 

Had an offer of compensation from the company who withheld the return payment ... it was only around 0.25% of the funds they withheld.  Would still have been a night out paid for, but I want to go to arbitration .... not really about the money, just want to understand their business practices (responsible gambling, delaying payments, customer service once accounts have been closed etc).  Dubious about the outcome ... from the research I've done, the Gambling Commission seem to have little teeth and the arbitration service is linked to the industry, but we'll see.

Work still a struggle, and generally feeling a little down with life, but hopefully that's partly the weather / time of year.  Certainly a lot more time without the gambling, and amazing how little you can actually spend and still have a nice time.  My birthday today (not doing much, still not really in a celebratory mood) ... seems a bit sad wishing my life away, but already looking forward to next Xmas, and my next birthday, when hopefully I've rebuilt some savings, and the cloud of "guilt / if-onlys" has drifted away.  One of my presents was the Russell Brand book on addiction, which has had a few good write-ups on this forum so looking forward to that.  Actually have loads of books and magazines waiting to be read ... think my head has been so wrapped up in gambling (and then in not gambling) for the last few months, that I've not had the concentration span or clear head to actually focus on anything.

Still feel like all I can really do at the moment is get up, go to work, go to bed, but I guess that's not such a bad thing.

Apologies about the length of the post.  Best wishes to all.  Rich

 

Posted on:
Tue, 16/01/2018 - 18:57

Bryan

Joined:
2017-12-24

Everything will come good mate you are definitely doing the right thing . I believe in you keep going 

Posted on:
Tue, 16/01/2018 - 20:30

RSmith39

Joined:
2017-12-24

Thanks mate, much appreciated. Love the photo and the sentiment behind putting it on the site ... you’re offering great support to loads of people on here, and we all appreciate it. I’ll definitely keep going, and know you will too.

Posted on:
Tue, 16/01/2018 - 20:37

Bryan

Joined:
2017-12-24

Thanks mate . You can do this . We both can do this . For me I don’t want to go back to the misery of it . I can never win because I can never stop . You have proven that yourself . We both seem to get a lot out of offering advice on here and I am sure you like it when people offer encouragement too. 

Posted on:
Fri, 19/01/2018 - 19:30

Bryan

Joined:
2017-12-24

Hi Rich how are you getting on ?

Pages