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Fallen off the wagon


Hi all,

I last posted on the forum a little over 2 years ago, shortly after signing up to Gamstop. In Summer 2020 just after the first lockdown ended I signed up to MOSES to bar myself from the bookies. However, this summer when the year was I up I miraculously thought I would have gained some self-control and I decided not to renew my MOSES submission and removed myself from the list.

I went back in to the bookies - still looks exactly the same. Same faces behind the counter. Sames faces at the machines. I played the slots and did ok. Walked away up. This visit didnt scratch the itch and soon I was going back every Saturday to play the slots again. I cannot quite put my finger on what it is I "like" about the slots. I am the type of person to moan at my partner if we didnt use some food out of the fridge and had to throw it away - "that is £2 wasted" yet am quite content in feeding £20 note after note in FOBT's in the hope of winning some money back.

I got to the point where over the course of two weekends I was over £1k up. I thought I had a little system, but after going back in on Sunday and losing the majority of my winnings I have realised my "system" was in fact just random luck and that luck ran out.

Maybe if I won something like £10k (impossible on the bookies slots) but it doesnt seem to matter how much I win, nothing is enough. I just want more. If I was £300 up, I would want to be £500 and in the course of trying to get to £500 up I would more than likely lose and be £200 up. Then I would want to get back to £300 (even though that previously wasnt enough). And as you guess, in the route to get back to £300 I would end up losing more and more. Even if I walk away up, I am always back in wanting more.

However, I think I have had some sort of eureka moment in realising that no win is enough. I have today signed myself back up to MOSES and also to SENSE to stop myself using the casinos too. I still have another 2 years on the GAMSTOP.

I still dont really get it though, I dont get why I have no self-control, why I cannot just walk away, what I find intriguing, so addicitive about slots. I have no real desire for other type of gambling i.e. table games such as roulette or blackjack, no desire to bet on horses, dogs or sports. It is just the slots.

Anyway, just checking back in and I am finding it somewhat cathartic to write down my thoughts on to this post.



Topic starter Posted : 23rd November 2021 1:29 pm

Hello Trev and Welcome.

I can totally relate to that as many people can so you are not alone.

I could be very good with money and would feel chuffed making the perfect buy or saving money. I would feel very uneasy dropping money or being short changed which is a normal reaction.

However I was a chronic slots gambler and a total addict for them which is the split mind disorder of this addiction. 

When I analysed myself during recovery it became clearer over time that I had been very ill and driven by other forces more akin to a drug addiction. 

I could never have got my money back as its a random act I had no control over. I used to get tbe calculator out and think well its only £10 per day getting some back over a year which is as delusional as it looks written down. Theres nothing reliable about gambling or chasing. 

All my ill thinking cost me the price of a very nice house and cars over 40 years.... and more.... my self respect dignity.... two bankruptcies and even more importantly the time I could have spent leading a better life.

Im clear now how devious and indeed evil the slot machines are

The business model is based on addiction and repeat play. They are designed by psychologists to hook us fast so in essence its not all our fault. 

The business model is also based on blame the victim as Paul Merson and Jordan Peterson will tell you.

I cant believe I ever thought money would come my way. As you say I emptied my bank account trying to get an extra amount to round up the figure......crazy!

it makes no sense and I have to accept that I was out of my mind with cravings and out of my mind once gambling just like an alcoholic taking that first sip again

Theres a sensible, wholesome fun loving person in my soul and  got that person back when I banished the devil of addiction.

We have a lot to learn about addiction as a mental illness. Please reach out for all the help you can get

I respect my addiction which is how I can take control and never be complacent about it again for the rest of my life

Best wishes from everyone on the forum

This post was modified 6 months ago 2 times by Joydivider
Posted : 23rd November 2021 4:49 pm

Hi Trev,

Your story is very similar to mine and many others on here. I'm very careful with money day to day ensuring i get the best price when buying anything / on the best deals for energy and phones etc and dont spend lots.

However when it comes to slots as you say im feeding £20 note after note until I've maxed out my withdrawals and £500+down.

I've had enough again, and added up my losses for 2021 today and it's over 10k... Its a crazy sum of money and i feel guilty that i didn't spend it on my family or a holiday. My partner works nights and i work full time days and she also does crafts on the side for additional money.

I've registered on gam stop for full 5 years, done the sence ban for casions and the bookies ban. The only thing left was arcades and adult gaming centres so i went around 15 of the closest ones and self excluded. I went back in 2 months later nothing was said and i just started up gambling again. In 3 visits i was £1500 down.

Sorry ive started to talk more about myself than your story, but hopes it makes you feel better knowing your not the only one. There are many of us in this sinking boat, we just need to plug the holes with stops and restrictions.

Access to cash a big one for me so i only have a credit card in wallet now and given my debit card to the other half.

Stay strong


Posted : 23rd November 2021 10:44 pm

Good morning Trev

I can relate to your story so much thanks for sharing it.

I am good with money in general always looking for bargains and am very careful when I do my food shop.

But when it comes to slot machines it's like im playing with monopoly money as I pile the notes into the machine!

You are not alone it's an awful addiction

I went a year gamble free and all it took was one scratch card to start me off again!I then went on a 9 month downhill spiral on slots again.I had previously self excluded myself from all arcades but no one seemed to notice when I went in.

I have lost so much money and time during this 20 year addiction but am determined now to get better.I know I will never be cured but if I don't gamble each day I will be ok.Im currently 2 weeks gamble free today. .Wishing you and everyone one else on this forum well and to take one day at a time




Posted : 24th November 2021 10:27 am

Thanks for bringing up MOSES. Never heard of it before. Will sign up for sure. 

Wish you strengh 

Posted : 24th November 2021 8:10 pm
Posted by: absentee

Thanks for bringing up MOSES. Never heard of it before. Will sign up for sure. 

Wish you strengh 

No problem. I hope you got signed up to it. Not quite sure how it works, but the thought of how embarrassed I would be being asked to leave when I walked in is enough for me to believe in their system and not even try. 

Topic starter Posted : 7th January 2022 7:00 am

Thanks for the replies. I have so far stuck to it. Although with Gamban, MOSES and SENSE in place that helps. 

One thing that I am finding hard are all of the Facebook raffle pages. I have been sucked in a few times trying to “win” cash or a nice watch. With my gambling mentality I cannot do it just for fun i.e a 50p ticket here a £2 ticket there. I am more like £50 here £100 there. Of course winning nothing. And there I am essentially gambling and with no way of excluding other than closing accounts. Its like being back betting online. 

Topic starter Posted : 7th January 2022 7:03 am
Forum admin

Hello @trevs2019,

It sounds as though you've taken a lot of good steps to block yourself from online gambling but sadly have still found a way to gamble. Unfortunately the Facebook raffles are unregulated and as you've said, no way to exclude. This is where it can get tough but luckily there is support out there to help you change your mindset and give you the tools to help you resist temptations like these. If you haven't already, why not contact us on the Helpline to look at some options? We're available 24/7 on 0808 8020 133 or on livechat

Best wishes and keep posting,


Forum Admin


Posted : 7th January 2022 10:11 am
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