I’m a 20 year old Male. I don’t earn a lot, but I do study part time and have been consistently saving for nearly a year (this comes into it later).
Now, I’ve always been terrible for a bit of a gamble, but I’d call it innocent gambling. Here, I wouldn’t spend a lot, but would have a good time doing it, hopefully snagging a profit in the process if I was lucky.
In recent times, ie the last 6 months, I’ve noticed that I’ve began to get worse.
In every pub, I’d gamble on the machines, every opportunity I had, I’d be in the casino, and I even began doing it online while I was at home. It was draining my entire pay check and it was starting to affect my life. Worst part is, I didn’t do a lot about it.
I suffered in silence, and nobody really knew the extent of it. I began using my savings as a fallback and losing that as well, ruining all my hard work.
Since COVID-19, I’ve began going online more and more and losing a lot of money. Increasing my stakes, losing more and chasing loses. Then it came, my last £5 and I somehow hit a £** win. Great I thought, so I carried on. Deposited again and got another £700, then lost it in less than an hour.
I still kept my £**, which I now have, but I’m incredibly anxious. Why was I such an idiot to spend that other £700, I could of used it for some much else!
Im living in constant fear that as soon as I get bored, I’ll snap and spend it.
Am I alone in this or do people my age still suffer from gambling addictions? If so, do they have any advice for someone like me?
Age isn't an indication of when you get an addiction! I started gambling when I was a 14 year old pot collector in my local working men's club. Just couldn't walk past the fruties!
The good thing about your situation is that you have recognised it's a problem, before it's become too late for you. Online gambling is an abyss that you won't get out of if you have the perfect recipe if time, access to funds, and a compulsion to gamble. You have ticked the boxes, so now is the time to stop.
I went down the rabbit hole with online. A win turned into a larger win, which turned Into new windows, a new bathroom and a happy wife.
Then I wanted to sustain the streak. Within 6 months and a few more wins I had spent all my winnings, all my savings and maxed out 6 credit cards totalling £30k+.
Please take my advise and STOP NOW!! sign up to GameStop and TALK TO SOMEONE, if you can.
Don't be like me, get out now.
All the very best.
I've been struggling with a gambling addiction for years and last year I lost my partner and my step daughter and I've lost that part of my life now forever i started to sort myself out and in December i got a big helping hand from my best friend. But last month i fell off i needed money for things I'd committed to later in the year so I started gambling I started with £1000 betting on 1 more goal in a football match I got right down to my last £xx so I switched to the slots played a game called pig wizard and got the bonus game with about £xx left won £xx then I went back to the football and I started losing again so I went back to the slots got the bonus game again and this time won £xx and then I switched to another game and won another £xx and then across some of the other games I won another £xx I drew most of it out paid off my loans cleared my overdraft and I thought great but as a gambling addict this was never gonna be a happy ending. I started to lose my money and I ended up losing every penny and I played the pig wizard and just thought if I can just get that bonus game, well I got the bonus game and I had it about 6 times and the wins ranged from £xx to £xx so the big wins had gone, and I lost everything and then I got myself back in debt. 2 weeks ago I had £xx in my bank today I have £0 in my bank and I owe £3000 on loans and have a £500 overdraft. So please dont lose the ££s that you have now stop the gambling and just try to be happy with where you are now and start planning what you can do with your money. Start writing down some installments of money you can save towards a holiday or something or a car and just try to work towards that, because honestly I've never felt so depressed and I just want to be debt free and everytime I fall off I just push that goal further and further away. If you need to talk theres always people to talk to anytime
My suggestion is to pick up the phone to the Gamcare adviser and talk. Just talk, get it off your chest. Then tell someone close to you, a family member or partner if you have one. Be honest.
The site can advise you to put various blocks in place and what you do can show how seriously you take this. Gamstop, Gamban and Gambloc are a few.
Come back on here and tell us what you've done and how you feel about it. There's no magic cure. It takes hard work and effort.
All the best to you.
You are certainly not alone in this. I first started gambling at the age of 13/14 years old, and I first went through the doors of Gamblers Anonymous at the age of 18. There are a lot of people who have been where you are, and at the age that you are, myself included. The best thing that ever happened to me was walking through the doors of GA and seeking the help of others.
At the time I didn't think I needed help, I couldn't see it. All I saw was that I kept losing money, and I wanted to stop losing money, I didn't see myself as having an addiction. I thought that it wasn't that bad as I only lost x amount, I hadn't gone quite down the rock bottom rabbit hole that is so easily done. Many meetings and years later something finally twigged, and I really understood it. The money was irrelevant, it only existed to facilitate me being able to gamble, winning and losing didn't really matter as much either, just being in the moment.
Recovery is not easy, I have gone periods of 18 months without a bet, and I recently had a relapse, but let me tell you it is worth all the hard work for those long periods without a bet. Those 18 months were truly great, and a few bad days won't ruin that. Yes I lost some money, but I have savings now, a flat hopefully next year, and a good job, none of that would be possible if I still gambled.
I echo what Chris has said above. What I would add is to take a look on the Gamblers Anonymous website, and under the literature have a read through of the Questions and Answers book. It will take you probably 30 minutes to read through, but that should really help open your mind to things you hadn't thought about before, and it will put things in a different light.
Your story voices a lot similar to my own, please update us on your progress and stay in touch. We are here to help you through this.
Take it one day at a time.
Thanks for all the advice and support here guys, it really means a lot.
I’ve spoken to a close family member and explained the situation, and I have now transferred over the remaining savings over to her to hold onto.
I’ve also applied for GamStop as well, but they still haven’t authorised my documents yet so need to wait on that.
Hopefully this is the start of something great!
Hi again everyone, back again it seems.
Another payday comes by with a couple of weeks of ZERO gambling, feeling a bit proud of myself for resisting so far.
Long story short, I f*****g blew it.
Just lost another considerable amount before I even realised what amounts I was spending. And I'm so annoyed with myself. It's getting to the point now where I'm feeling so low about this whole scenario I was legitimately considering harming myself.
The amount of cash I spent doesn't bother me too much, but I can't believe I can be so stupid time and time again and not learn from it. I don't want this to affect others, but I can feel my personality seeping away. I see the above stories and the last thing I want to happen is for it to affect my family or others.
The only thing I keep telling myself is that relapsing is a part of the recovery process, but at the same time, its been such a short time since I've actually quit that relapsing shouldn't happen this soon, at the first opportunity.
GAMBAN declined my documents for verification as well, and my bank statements are all digital now so I can't authenticate.
The only plus side is that I managed to pass ownership of my savings account to my mum, which means I can no longer withdraw money from it after depositing it.
Sorry to hear that. I probably did what you did every pay day for years. Every time I promised myself I wouldn't do it again and I meant it. My willpower was going to be enough and because I said it I meant it.
Unfortunately will power doesn't apply when you are addicted. When I was twenty though we didn't have the blocks like Gamstop or Gamban. The old way was giving over money and having wages paid into someone else's bank. I didn't really want to do that though and ultimately I carried on gambling.
It was only when I went to Gamblers Anonymous and had some kind of group therapy with others just like me that I was able to get through more than just a few days. Days became weeks and weeks became months and so on. I appreciate that the meetings aren't on at the moment but the Gamcare advisers are on the end of the phone. You're going to have to do more than rely on willpower or half hearted attempts to put blocks in place.
Im not being hard but I've been in exactly your position in all ways. I had trouble getting registered with Gamstop, something to follow with my previous addresses, but I spent day after day phoning and emailing until I was able to register. Ask yourself, how hard did you try?
Anyway, good luck to you as you start again, at least you have started again. One day at a time.
Typo there, meant to say GAMSTOP instead of GamBan.
Luckily now, GAMSTOP have fully verified me and I have now self excluded from the online casinos, which is a big plus!
I'm hoping that eventually when this all blows over I can prevent myself to go going to physical gambling areas, but at least its a step in the right direction.
@Chris I originally did give GAMSTOP a good try when I wanted to stop, but they refused to verify my documents and when I eventually called, they said that they couldn't verify my identity and basically said there was nothing you can do about it.
I reapplied after closing my GAMSTOP account and for some reason, with the same documents and questions, it worked fine? Not sure what happened but at least its sorted now.