A quick intro, I've been s problem gambler for about s decade, the last 2-3 years have been on and off. My partner found out about 4 years ago. I made promises to change, I tried but fell back in to bad habits. Thought starting a family would help me stop but instead made my stress and anxiety worse . We have been renting for years and have decided to try buy a house. When everything moved quickly and credit checks were going to be done it all hit too much.
I broke down on the fone to my parents. So scared that my illness was going to be the reason we would get the house. Or that my partner would find out my credit card debt and take my son away from me. I've been too embarrassed, ashamed, angry and mostly scared to tell her or my parents about how I felt or what was going on. I can't believe how amazing my parents were especially understanding that I don't choose to do what I did but that it's an illness, a addiction as bad as drugs. They have helped me solve my financial problems which they shouldn't of had to or want to do but I'm so grateful they did, not having to hide a lie or worry how I'm going to pay of the debt etc has severally reduced my anxiety levels. A huge release too is my built up anger problems, anything and everything would wind me up.
I've been back to my doctor's to get help. I've cancelled and closed down my credit card and only have s joint account with my partner. Do I now have no access to tempt me to try gamble.
I wish I had done this year's ago and got the help and support of loved ones and got the life for my family they deserve. I hope any one who reads this may take encouragement that opening up to family, loved ones or friends is the hardest thing to do but it's worth it to help get your life back. We don't deserve to live in the dark depths of our own hatred and silence.
Hi Lindsay25 - congratulations on telling family, I know how hard that is.
I don't wish to be a naysayer but do wish to put my own view forward for you to consider, you state quite clearly that you don't choose to gamble, I couldn't disagree more.
We do make that choice, every time, every bet. It is not easy and we have every 'reason' under the sun at hand, ready to tell ourselves, every reason to justify our choice but it really is just that.
I am a compulsive gambler, I have had help and I need more help, I feel like I am still early on in my recovery and I still have worries and concerns about relapsing but after twenty plus years of battling my addiction I am 100% certain that I always had a choice. I made a lot of very bad choices, today is day 936 of choosing one day at a time to not gamble, I'm looking forward to making the same choice on day 937.
best wishes and please don't interpret this as me being righteous, I'm in no position to be that, just a fellow compulsive gambler, sharing my view.
well its the ill and dominant part of out brain thats making the choice. Yes nobody frogmarched me in and forced me but they didnt have to. They just did the work of hooking me...easy!
In that sense my own brain was leading me in but using a softly softly approach...soft soaping me that it was all going to be good and I deserve a nice feeling.
No rational part of the brain is making that decision so in that sense Lindsay is right. Its more complex with gambling because multi strands of thought take over the brain.
Its a split mind illness and this is why people are so devastated and confused by the mess it creates. Its not a healthy or rational choice to go and gamble. Its driven by other factors and it works just like a craving for alcohol or other drugs.
Chasing the money also forms part of it...You know just a little bit (or all of it) back please...its my lucky day and all that cloudy nonsense. This is often formed by the desperation of realising what has been lost.
The problem for an addicted gambler is that the money doesnt take priority...its more the feeling of playing...If they are honest they know the money will be going straight back in and no amount seems enough.
I know what you are saying though...its our minds and thats the confusing part. In recovery I felt Mugged...Robbed! of all that money...like a crime had been commited but I had walked in and done it all myself.
I didnt rationally choose to blow my money but I did it. Time and time again I gambled away VITAL money to extinction. Thats whats takes a long time to come to terms with as the mind heals.
Best wishes to everyone on the forum
I am so happy for you and well done on making the hardest step to tell your parents. I wish I could tell mine I am close to them but they always tell me addicts chose to do what they do. There is no understanding about it and they have fixed views on that. This means I can never tell them as they would never understand. I wish you well on your recovery and I hope you start to feel better very soon. You’re doing great