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Posted on:
Fri, 11/01/2019 - 09:43

Markman

Joined:
2011-12-14

So, I had what turns out to be a panic attack on 27th December 2018. No reason whatsoever, however these things can apparently turn up for no immediate reason and without any notice.

A sudden immense fear and intense anxiety came over me as I started worring about what 2019 might hold and whether any of my previous misguided and selfish actions would come back to haunt me. A cold sweat and my heart felt like it was going to explode.

Once this settled I was straight back into action as I desperately sought any way out. I spent the next three days immersed in the only way I known how to mentally escape. And then my current account hit zero and I was finally relieved of my burden.

So here I am, 11 days into 2019 and I am pleased to say that I am so far gamble free. Financially things are ok as I am still benefiting from about 18 months broken abstinence over the past two and a half years.

All of the blocks remain in place. Gamstop still has over 4 years to run and I have self-excluded from over 100 local shops - it is not easy to self exclude in London.

All excess money is still given Rosie so even if I do slip the final damage would not be catasrophic - but the emotional and mental damage would be.

I keep making the mistake of setting myself too large a goal and drive myself to the point of insanity with impatience and yearning for my goals to be reached.

It stands to reason that I mentally break down whenever I reach them, as per the last two summers and just this Christmas. Taking one day at a time is very cliche but I think that might be what is needed for me.

Everyday that I abstain from gambling is a small battle won and I should be content with this.

There are of course the underlying psycholgical issues which still need to be addressed.

An underlying depression and anxiety and general feeling of self-worthlessness, all no doubt stemming back to the domestic violence and emotional abuse I was subjected to as a child.

I am getting some counselling. Maybe 30 years too late. But it is clear that gambling is not the real problem, more of an expensive and painful symptom.

Today I have not gambled.

This morning I am close to what some might describe as inner peace, but with me that can end in a flash.

I am at my desk in a warm and cosy office. Soon I will be very bored (no doubt) but I must not forget that I am blessed with a job that some people would bite an arm off for.

Like the poor, homeless man who is currently mummified in a sleeping back on boxes in the undercroft car park literally beneath my feet. Charles Dickens could not have written it.

He is clearly suffring from his own broken world. He is rarely lucid. I am not sure whether drugs or alcohol. No judgement from me as I am no better than this wretched man.

I am just as big an addict as he is and it is but for the grace of God that our positions are not reversed. We bring him a cup of coffee from time to time. On Christmas Eve I tried to give him £20.00 for some food, but he was too intoxicated to realise, so I just left the money on his pillow. I hope he found some use for it and that it gave him a little comfort.

There is so much more to say but I suppose I had better get back to doing what I love!

People wonder why the legal process takes so long and I can confirm that it is becuase most lawyers are addicts in some form and are probably updating their "whatever" recovery diary on "whatever" recovery forum that happens to cater for their particular weakness.

At least I can make some people happy doing what I do; I can just never do enough.

Markman

 

Posted on:
Sat, 12/01/2019 - 00:12

duncanmac

Joined:
2012-01-26

Markman
Fella you write words that could have been written by any compulsive gambler who seeks recovery but can't let go of addiction and its hold.
The desire to empty all available funds, food for addiction because through doing so relief is found.
The desire to lose because winning would just prolong the agony.
Fella this for me became a turning point in life, addiction lost its hold, I knew that there was another way.
Abstinence awaits you fella and yes you will only be able to take each day as it comes and from that you will find a better way to live.
Go speak to your doctor about the depression it's nothing to be ashamed of, for me the only shame comes if help is not sought.
Second innings my friend, straight bat and leave those wide balls alone, its not 20/20 more a test match.
I wish you well.
Abstain and maintain
Duncs stepping forward never back.

Posted on:
Wed, 16/01/2019 - 16:12

Markman

Joined:
2011-12-14

4-4-6... to long on.

16*.

That is how 2019 has started.

16 days to the good and only 3 days given to addiction in the last 60 or so (looking at the bright side).

Back at the crease.

Straight bat.

Taking care to spot the wrong'uns.

Patient.

One 24 hour ball at a time.

 

Posted on:
Thu, 17/01/2019 - 09:30

Down and Out

Joined:
2015-01-30

Dear Mark

I feel like I’m back speaking to an old friend. Your last but one post was very poignant and I felt your battle. I was sad to hear about your past which I think you should write about (not to this forum but for your own benefit) as you     clearly have a talent for it and I am sure it will crystallise some of your thoughts.

As you can see I’m back again after a pretty bad episode after a period of abstinence. I understand the relief you refer to after getting down to zero. It means recovery can start again. I also understand the difficulty you have in accepting normality. When we pay off our debts and are finally in a tolerable financial position we then are faced with the proposition of facing normalacy which some of us find difficult. I’m a lawyer (working for a charity) so I laughed out loud about updating the recovery diary. Yes that’s what I’ll say to my clients next time they are demanding updates. “Sorry I’ll get back to you when I’ve updated my recovery diary!

So day 6 for me and like you back to the cliche - one day at a time 

 

 

 

Posted on:
Thu, 24/01/2019 - 08:27

Sean1

Joined:
2009-12-06

Hi Mark

You are back on the crease taking guard, I smell a long innings with some lovely cover drives, hooks and the occasional ramp shot.

A century in the making perhaps? I think so, YES.

SHAUN

Posted on:
Fri, 25/01/2019 - 10:36

Markman

Joined:
2011-12-14

Many thanks Sean!

I am now settled at the crease. My groove is dug and I am seeing the ball quite clearly, but the bat remans straight and I am not shy about letting a few balls whizz past.

There will be plenty of time for the big shots later!

Markman      25* (25)

Posted on:
Thu, 31/01/2019 - 11:37

Markman

Joined:
2011-12-14

Hammered over square leg! 6 runs.

31 and not out.

The gamble free year continues.

Tonight I am treating my Rosie to something special. A 3 course Champagne meal at the Ritz followed by front row seats at Les Miserables. Something I would never have dreamed of a couple of years ago.

This is her Christmas present for which I scrimped and saved (but for gambling I should never had needed to) and booked several months ago. Probably the most lavish present I have bought and only a fraction of what she deserves for putting up with me.

She did not have to take me. I told her to take her sister, best friend or her mother, but such is her dedication that she said it was not much fun if she could not share it with me and that is exactly how I feel.

So, just another hour and half in the office and I can pick up my boy from school and then proceed to doll myself up.

Markman 31*

Posted on:
Thu, 31/01/2019 - 19:34

duncanmac

Joined:
2012-01-26

Markman.
That raised a smile.
Fair play to you fella.
I would have to say that musicals are my worst nightmare lol, all that singing, well if you can call it that!!
Sarah loves them, so I will suffer them in silence.
I hope you have a ball.
Without doubt the results of your continued efforts to seek a life of abstinence.
One that will offer many more rewards.
Abstain and maintain
Duncs stepping forward never back.

Posted on:
Sun, 03/02/2019 - 21:09

Down and Out

Joined:
2015-01-30

Hey Markman 

Your average is going up day by day. Well done on the treat, although I think next time it should be a day out at Lords...

Hope you’re doing well.

 

Posted on:
Fri, 08/02/2019 - 12:38

Markman

Joined:
2011-12-14

Thanks Down and Out. Much appreciated words of support. As it happens I take my daughter to watch Middlesex play Surrey in  the T20 at Lords once a year. For the first 5 years we saw them lose to Surrey. Finally, two years ago, we saw them win. We had a break last year!

Unfortuntely my Rosie is seriously ill in hospital. Thankfully it is not life threatening but there is a strong possibility that the whole of her colon will need to be removed which would be life changing for her and our family. Praying hard that the steroids continue to do a good job. According to her Doctor, the Surgeon is one who likes to talk about his knives and in all seriousness, I am hoping that he is not simply bored. Rosie will get a second opinion before she consents to any surgery.

I do not think much else could have convinced me more that giving up gambling is so much for the best. I have been able to provide for Rosie in her time of need; pay for the extortionate hospital parking (£5 per hour) buy her essentials, keep the children fed and entertained. If I was gambling not sure what I would do right now as I would not have the means to even visit Rosie and I have certainly exhausted the support of my friends over the years.

My employer has been supportive as ever. I have been able to come and go as I please so as to look after my family but also keep work majorly up to date. I am suffering from a chest infection as well and can barely speak so I am really looking forward to the weekend and, but for the grace of god, can bring Rosie home in one piece.

"Cut away to deep square leg for four. Once bounce four at long off." Like a left-handed boss.

Markman 39DGF

Posted on:
Tue, 19/02/2019 - 13:46

Markman

Joined:
2011-12-14

Once again, with a defensive poise and a fully straight, bat I dab and nurdle my way to the half century.

I have received the gift of my Rosie coming home. Thankfully she has avoided the need for major surgical intervention for now but she will still have a good fews month of recovery.

I have suffered from a troublesome chest infection coupled with toothache these past couple of weeks which has made going to being a working husband and housewife all the more difficult. Rosie's stockings did afford some temporary comfort though!

But, in all seriousness, there is no basis for me to complain.

On Tuesday, we buried Rosie's poor nephew, who died at the age of 23 from Cystic Fibrosis. You may have read about his bravery in the newspapers.

On Thursday, I drove to Hitchin and we buried Alfie, our wonderful friend and Practice.

That was very diffucult, but on the way to the Alfie's funeral I received a call that Kenny, my "more of a brother than a cousin" suffered a cardiac arrest that morning.

On Friday, I listened as I was told the heartbreaking news that Kenny's life support machine was being turned off. He passed away later that day, before that became necessary.

These are all severe losses, but Kenny is the greatest thing taken from me by my gambling addiction.

You see, he lived 200 hundred miles away. I would see him every few weeks as child and as a young adult. Since additiction took over my life, I must have seen Kenny only a couple of times. I was either too absorbed in addiction or I had lost too much money and could not afford the petrol. I have missed countless hours of time with him and with his family and have missed so much. We had a hotel booked to finally visit him in April. By booking those tickets I was in part celebrating my liberation from addiction. But it was too late.

I am so grateful that I called Kenny on his birthday. By pure conicidence, just 36 hours before he died. I had not seen him since may father's funeral 5 years earlier. Once of the last things I said to him was that it would be nice to see him other than at someone's funeral. Little did I now how poignant that statement would turn out.

Markman 50DGF

Posted on:
Tue, 19/02/2019 - 23:04

Forum admin

Joined:
2010-11-01

Dear Markman,

sorry to read about your losses, it sounds like you are going through a very challenging time right now. Sometimes at times like these it is good to have some additional support around. Please contact the Helpline or the Netline if you'd like some 1-2-1 treatment support.

I would also like to mention Cruse Bereavment support, just in case. 

Wishing you lots of stregnth and all the best in this difficult time,

 

Eva

Forum Admin

Posted on:
Wed, 20/02/2019 - 00:12

ODAAT

Joined:
2014-11-10

Sending strength to you & all around you in these difficult times my friend x

Posted on:
Mon, 04/03/2019 - 14:25

Down and Out

Joined:
2015-01-30

Wow Mark you have really gone through the mill recently. So glad you haven’t escaped into gambling to divert from your sorrows. 

I have a cautious feeling that this is my time to really ditch this disastrous addiction. Hope it’s your time too. You will soon be smacking one over cow corner for a well deserved ton.

Posted on:
Mon, 11/03/2019 - 19:38

Markman

Joined:
2011-12-14

Thanks down and out.

Things have been very tough this year but I never forget my own blessings and will always have an open ear or a helping hand for others.

Today marks 70 days gamble free and I am at peace with my addiction.

Just don't say the C-word!

Markman

Posted on:
Mon, 11/03/2019 - 21:35

Forum admin

Joined:
2010-11-01

Dear Markman,

well done on 70 days gamble free, it is a huge achievement, considering what a challenging and difficult time you are going through at the moment.

Be proud of yourself and be kind to yourself. 

All the very best,

Eva

Forum Admin

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