Thought I would put it out there and hope it does something for me or helps someone else in a similar situation.
I've gambled since I was 16 ultimately started light (national lottery) turned to micro stakes poker when I was 18 and did OK... Just about broke even. Where my problems started was at about 21 on slots online. For years I knew I gambled too much but I'd still get by - I didn't earn that much money so nobody questioned if I had no money.
Fast forward 8 years and my job's better I take home 2k a month with bills covering around 800 of that... I started playing slots more and won a lot - what was one of the best years of my life ultimately led to two of the worst... My biggest win was in one night from a real small amount of cash... Like a lot of others - I thought I could do it again and when I lost, I'd redeposit to try and double up and claw back those losses... Even if I on a rare occasion did get back my losses and double up in my mind I'd tell myself I was willing to lose the initial deposit - so I can keep playing down to the second... From there I ignore my mind and keep spinning until I hit 0 - the vicious cycle carries on with a new deposit fully knowing I'm not likely now to withdraw unless I hit real big.
Last year I spent xx in a month on gambling and struggled my way through... I made sure I couldn't do it again and installed gambling blocking software on my phone... Led to an increase in physical scratchcard buys but was worth it at least short term to limit the damage I was doing to myself.
The gambling software lasted about 6 months before I was finding ways around it so much I'd slowly let my problem resurface and after the year I let it expire. I've blocked myself from a tonne of sites - but there are so so many out there it just takes an advert on TV and a new site to get me registered and up again.
Fast forward to this month - I've ignored payday loan repayments I took out to hide the chunks of money gambling has cost me from my monthly pay and hit 0 in the bank 9 days after I was paid... I'm absolutely distraught and have been in tears for the best part of 3 days - almost felt angry on my last few deposits how can I keep losing but keep depositing?
This morning I texted my family to tell them about my problem... Couldn't do it face to face even typing it on my phone I was breaking down in tears... I have no idea what the next few months are gonna be like for me I don't even have money for food... Anyone who sees themselves in this I can't stress enough to stop now whilst you can.
Everyone puts this down to an addictive personality - but I've always believed that to be wrong... Slots in particular are like a drug... Essentially a random number generator gamble positioned in hundreds if not thousands of different ways in "fun" formats designed to get you hooked with adrenaline every time you hit a bonus round.
Casinos should do more to curb this behaviour as the companies profiting from this addiction and one day I hope there's much more choice in the "responsible gambling" sections of their sites (why cant you react to multiple deposits for example and decide not to take them? Why do I only get an email questioning my gambling the day after I've lost all my money)
Sorry this is an essay - just hope I get out of this OK.
Welcome to the forum and well done for posting.
Sounds like you are having a tough time at the moment but you will find a very supportive community of people on here who understand how you feel so do keep posting and letting us know how you are doing.
Please do give our helpline a call on 0808 8020 133 or contact us on the netline (link is on our website). Our advisers can offer practical advice on ways that you can get help to improve your situation and also provide emotional support. We can also refer you for one to one counselling if this is available in your area or online support if not.
All the best
A tip from me, a disgusting degenerate. I buy a giftcard each month from the supermarket and stick money on it to cover my food for the month. That way if I do anything daft I can at least eat. If you have no food or no where to turn, go to citizens advice and they will refer you to a food bank. Sounds like you're doing well in trying to help yourself.
All the best.
Hi you mention addictive personality and drugs, the more I read about the issue the more it is clear - all forms of gambling are addictions, it’s the level of addiction. Why would anyone do something that causes so much destruction and then want to do it again! I am reading the book by Allan Carr “the easy way to stop gambling”. This book unpeels the addiction side of gambling. It has helped me think in different way. Whether “easy” is correct!!! But when I get the “i need a gamble feeling” I think withdrawal symptoms.
Do whatever that works for you! Stopping is the key
It's too easy online, if I went to the bettting shop I would only take what would have been 2 deposits online, whereas online I would deposit 10x as much without a second thought until there was nothing left to take from my bank. Wayyyyy to easy online, deposit limits never worked for me as I'd cancel them, wait 7 days then go mad.
Shouldn't be allowed to advertise at all on TV or social media. Those little triggers are just another temptation we don't need.