For me the counselling worked in a lot of ways.
At first trust had to be worked on getting to know the counsellor and also for her to get to know me.
We talked everything out - finding out some of the reasons that I gambled.
At first I had a few sessions a week - sometimes in between writing e-mails about how I was feeling?
Most important that in no time I was admitting if I had a slip which I did twice during counselling. I had thought that why would I be honest about it but because of the relationship it was easy.
I probably haven't written everything here but on-line counselling was the thing for me.
Now I have different goals in life - every day has got easier until I now no longer spend every waking hour thinking about gambling.
I join in the forum and there is a chat facility where you can 'pop ' in and just talk about your day.
I've noticed that quite a few gamblers are quite lonely and locked up in their own worlds - me included.
I don't know if what I've written helps?
Your story offers up hope to a lot of people, myself included.
It's taken me a long time to admit to having a problem, but now I'm determined to do something about it - even though I'm finding it incredibly hard.
I am tense and stressed - partly because of work, but mainly because gambling has taken over my life - and I want the old 'me' back again.
It's years since I've been truly happy and even what should be lovely events such as my sister's wedding was a nightmare to get through - my mind was elsewhere.
You seem further on up the road I am on and I would appreciate any help or advice you can give me.
Many thanks, C x
Hi everyone, good to hear all your thoughts, and its encouraging to hear that whilst everyone is at differnet stages in getting their lives back on track everyone seems focussed and committed.
Lorr, you are without doubt a great example of how staying strong and getting good help can really make a difference. My congrats to you and thanks for your motivational words to others. Keep it up!
There are lots of different ways you can all get help to overcome your gambling problems. Whether that be over the phone, face to face or online counselling, or maybe attending meetings. A good place to start is the helpline on 0845 6000 133 where you can talk through options and ideas with a trained counsellor.
I wish everyone all the best and hope to see you all continuing to post messages here. Lets all work together, taking things one day at a time and remember that you don't have to feel alone.
Hello everyone my names Matthew and I have gambling problem. I've gambled on and off since I was 8 I'm 36 now. I've had a couple of periods where I gambled all my wages away 15 to 17 firstly then 19 to 21. I got real bad and got into trouble with the police twice such was the need for money. I over came this though and didn't gamble for 8 years or there abouts. Then in 2000 I started playing again, Fruit machines, Casinos, Dog, Horses, FOBT, Shares which way the train was coming at the level crossing anything. I've lost at least £75,000.00 over the last 5.5 years. I knew I had to stop, I'm into my third week of recovery, online counselling and chating on these forums has been a life saver. Go to www.gamblingtherapy there you can talk to people as well, there used to be a link from this site. We have all got along way to go but those first few steps give you the strenth to move on and go forward with your life. Stay Strong Mutley
Hi Mutley, thanks for sharing your story and posting.
The link to Gambling Therapy is still available on the site http://www.gamcare.org.uk/site.builder/counselling.html for anyone that might want to take a look.
Hi again - thanks for your stories.
Yes it was very hard at first - you know admitting the problem was too much for me to handle on my own. Once I got to that point and started my recovery things got easier.
Instead of the gut wrenching every time I thought about gambling - you know the feelings, excited, sick,nervous etc now I feel so much more at ease.
The thing is it isn't only the not gambling now but every day as I say just has a better feel to it.
I don't usually talk namby pamby but it has been a revelation to me.
I just see the best in a day now - it's positive and no longer that horrible negative......
Please get the help you deserve and make the change - with everyones help and support you'll see it can be done.
Take care all
Hi again Lorraine.
Just wanted to say how thanks for the words you put on this forum.
I can only say how much they help me, but I'm sure you're a great source of inspiration to many others too.
I know what you mean about all the sick feelings, but also the enjoying each and every day more stuff too.
I'm only eight days into my recovery, but this forum is helping me stay strong.
Keep the faith everyone.
I'm not sure why I gamble...I'm happy, new husband, new home, new job. I'm a runner (another yet addictive activity 🙂 ) I always "think" I can go in and come out...can't. We've recently moved to an area that has 5 casinos all within 25 minutes!! Never had a problem before because was never close to it. Now it just happens to be on the way home from work! go figure! I have to go "cold Turkey" haven't run into money $$ yet, but my husband is worried. I want to stop. I'm smart enough to stop..then why can't I?
I think that sometimes it isn't as easy as 'being smart enough'. It's like on the one hand your head is telling you that it makes no sense and on the other hand it's saying "go on give it another go" or "what harm can it do" or just "I want to". If you're keen to stop the first step can often be to just put barriers in your way - cancel your membership, asked to be excluded, find a different route home (even if it takes an extra twenty minutes) just to keep you away from temptation as much as possible. Then maybe think about talking to someone about what's behind it - call the helpline (0845 6000 133), see a counsellor. I have no doubt that you are smart but that doesn't make it any easier to walk away on your own - sometimes we all need a helpling hand.
All the best, Lorna
Hi, I'm with lorna on that one, gambling doesn't care who you are, where you come from whether you are white or from a BAME background your religion, if your smart or any of that stuff at all, it affects everyone from everywhere all the time, it has no boundaries. It is definitely a disease of the brain in my opinion because no right-minded person would carry on doing it again and again. You might have a go at some form of gambling and if you lost straight away you wouldn't go back, would you? Wrong you keep going and going and going....it's crazy but I don't think it's anything to do with intelligence. I suppose that is the very definition of addiction. Addiction can be very hard for some people to understand even though they might have an addiction of there own, maybe chocolate or running, anything can be addictive for some. If there where no such thing as addiction people wouldn't have such a hard time stopping those activities like smoking, drinking, gambling and drug-taking, you'd just stop and carry on as normal but you can't you are being driven by an enviable force. crazy as it is!