Nice to hear from you tonight. Your post makes for sad reading however, I think we all understand how difficult and troubling life can be with gambling addiction and how this addiction can distort our minds. Certainly I can relate to your post because Ive made many mistakes and have many regrets all as a consequence of making a tiny, small decision to gamble which grew into a huge, massive error of judgment with horrendous outcomes.
I think one of the toughest challenges we all face is having the patience for recovery. Abstinence is difficult. It’s programming your mind to not do the thing that its always done in times of stress, anger, boredom, desperation etc. I suppose when I’ve struggled with lives problems I’ve gambled. Then I lose. Then I only focus on the fret and worry of the loss and all the original worries are ignored to the point they become insignificant. Then we repeat.
I think gambling abstinence is like breaking any bad habit. Its toughest point is at the start and it gets easier as time goes by. For any overweight person with terrible eating habits the initial change must be the toughest - once you change eating habits you lose weight. Once you lose weight you see progress. This progress encourages us to keep going and before you know it we’ve changed and things have gotten a whole lot better.
I read on your diary that you’re a runner so you’ll notice the difference in progression when following a regular, consistent running programme as opposed to a stop/start schedule where you run for a few weeks then dont go out for a month and start over. The former is tough at the start which gets progressively easier as you get fitter whereas that latter is a forever struggle with no noticeable improvement. You wont need me to tell you that that is where you are in your recovery which is constantly stuck at the hardest part. Ive been there more times than I wish to remember and its awful.
We all want to help. So what can be done next time to prevent recurrence of the same issue? Maybe you could commit to posting every hour of your next pay day. Sounds bizarre but I’ll reply to every message you send. Ill bore you to death with long winded messages like this to the point where you’ll be so mentally exhausted you’ll have no energy or desire to gamble. I can type all day you know.
On a serious note, you’ve quit for long periods before so you know you have this in you. You know you are capable of quitting. Some poor gambling souls cannot navigate through a single day. You’ve gotten through at least 29 days of every month without gambling since Ive joined which is post February. You might not realise it today but you are on the brink of quitting gambling forever. It starts today and you just need to get past the first real hard part. After that I suspect everything will get easier.
Take care buddy.
RR is so right - it's getting that momentum going in the first couple of months. It's inevitable, in my humble opinion, that you will achieve sobriety again, if you keep trying. This is why: the way I look at it is, we gamble because we don't have healthy behaviours, coping mechanisms, boundaries etc. The more we change the stuff about us that is a bit wonky - such as learning to say 'no' when you need to put self first - the better our chances of long-term sobriety is. Sometimes we can't see the upward curve because, for example, when we do the new, scary, thing a couple of times - such as saying 'no' - it gets easier to do it again, in the future but man, was it scary and stressful! So, at first, we might get overwhelmed and run away back into our addiction. So, how long it is since we last gambled, can sometimes be a poor indicator of the progress we are making in recovery.
Let's look at 2 scenarios.
1) Bill gambled yesterday, after a particularly bad day, where he unfortunately wasn't able to get in touch with his sponsor or get to a meeting. He had 3 years of sobriety under his belt before that. He has a lot of blocks in place, a support system and a GA sponsor he can call if he needs to. He knows his triggers and manages them well. He engages passionately in his hobbies and generally feels fulfilled in life. He is under unprecedented duress at present, emotionally, nursing his terminally ill father, whilst also dealing with his own health issues and workplace stress.
2) Bob hasn't gambled for 2 months. He is in a toxic relationship and is drinking heavily every night. He admits if he had any access to money, whatsoever, he'd immediately gamble. He's arguing more and more with his partner and feels like he's a pressure cooker about to explode.
It's not length of sobriety that shows how far into recovery work these two are. You get me? Hang in there.
Two penethworth - which is pretty appropriate for us gamblers.
You have very good values and ethics SA, two very important ingredients for fill rediscovery. Hence with that equation in place the reason why I know and I would say many others know that your well and truly on the rightful path, albeit a curvy one at that, a bit similar to mine !
I appreciate the comments folks. I will make sure I get more support when my next pay day comes around again. This cycle iv'e been stuck in for the last 3 and halve years is killing me. At the very least its robbing me of any quality of life. Iv'e become mentally ill with the things that I do to myself. Even today ive scolded myself for spending 10.64 on food when i'd only planned to spend 6 or 7 pounds... but just the other day i was quite prepared to put 3 figures into the machines. As iv'e been reading else where on the forum, its perfectly possible to be sensible with money in general and then gambling comes along and sensibleness just goes straight out the door.
A day off today, but ive just been offered a shift at another project which I am off course accepting. cos I need the money!... its not that I want the money.. I will need it to pay for priority stuff.
Right time to get myself organised. and RR I look forward to your messages in the run up to next pay day... middle of december... 🙂
ta ra for now x
Nice to hear from you. I can relate to so much of that post. I am sensible with money, I manage the finances of the house, mortgage etc. I will spend weeks researching the best mortgage rates, loan rates, negotiate car purchases etc. Every effort is made on a daily basis to get the best value for money however, I can do serious, long lasting harm to myself playing roulette in a bookies, casino or worse still online. I lost thousands in one stupid hour online where I completely lost control and lost track of how much I deposited only to find out when it was all over. I know to the penny every direct debit and standing order and the dates when each is taken yet I lost count of my deposits - unthinkable and unforgivable.
It only goes to prove that when in action something bad happens. We lose control. I stopped caring. I was hurting myself and I was aware of it and for that hour didnt care. But I care now. I care everyday. Now I’ll hurt myself in a different way. I’ll not spend, I wont accept invites to social occasions, I won’t buy clothes, I wont spend the little money on things that positively enhance our lives. I’ll kid myself that only I’ll suffer but everyone around me will suffer as my moods sky dive and plummet to the ground on a more than regular basis. I’ll do everything possible to pay off my debt as quickly as possible even although every piece of advice I’ve received suggests that this is not the correct way.
I’m like most people with addiction - great at giving advice and rubbish at receiving it.
Anyway, you got me thinking tonight so thanks for that.
What do you think? You think December will be your month. Wouldnt it be great sliding in to 2020 with the hardest part out of the way and some abstinence in the bank.
A question - ' offered another shift on another project, which I'm ofcourse accepting '
Can you not just switch off on this ?, it's not your project, so what I'm getting too, is that you go in, meet new people, stay in the periphery, give your best and take the money ! Not sure whether I articulated myself well and whether you get my point, but I see similarities there with myself !
I'm sure you've got wide shoulders but dont take the world upon them
Yes wise words. I did my over time shift and did as you suggested "anonymous" and the shift went fine. I now have the battle to actually get paid for it. Being on the bread line means that every penny counts and it seems that the company I work for isn't very good at paying whats due. It also requires the senior at the project i worked at to have actually entered my shift into the system, which probably won't have happened because I am nobodies priority.... At the end of the day if I had some savings it wouldn't really matter. Gambling addiction just f***s every aspect of life.
Same with my mate. He didn't get paid his first wage for his new employer, which means that he is literally going hungry. It turns out that whomever entered his bank details into the system put the wrong sort code. He now has to wait another 3 days to get paid. At the end of the day its his addiction that has led to his crisis.
Anyway am muddling along. No gambling. Just tired and moody and frustrated much of the time and idle
Thanks for listening
Anonymous is sometimes cool, so good on you.
Now I'm wondering whether your thoughts of ' I now have the battle to get actually paid for it ' are your thoughts or not or do they stem your from mate ?
Where I'm coming from is you do matter and quite often others are muddled in the chaos of what ever and forget about us minions ( said with tongue in cheek ) You'll get paid, but potentially a beach if there also muddled up.
Muddling along is also cool coupled with no gambling is doubley cool 😀
Well am back in the world of the living. Iv'e been in a dark place the last few days, barely able to function. Spent lots of time just lying in bed thinking about things I need to do and then not doing them. But today its like a switch has been flicked and am back in the world of the living. I got up, did some cleaning, tidying and hoovering, then I put the clippers to my head hair (whats left anyway), then i went for a run, then I made some calls and now am here writing this.
I will enjoy these feel good feelings while they last.
Thanks for listening.
Welcome back SA to the world of the living.
I know both worlds quite well, my friend describes it with me, welcome back to dry land after my time under water. I keep meaning to get a snorkel, for the next time it happens!
Thinking about your post, re - cleaning flat, clipping hair etc. It made me think of -
Love Order - Despise Chaos ! And that's how our minds work, ie when we let ourselves go and let chaos in to our lives, we slowly but surely start the cycle in eventually letting the ultimate chaos of addiction creep back in. Its akin to writing lists of things to do, it's worth transferring after a few days on to a new page and not let it over come us.
Not sure whether I made any sense there, but does suit a theory that works for me.
Enjoy the moment
I loved reading your post and it made me happy to learn that you are feeling better today.
Your post really got me thinking. My good days are when I’m busy and when I go for a run. Yet, most days I don’t go for a run. Sometimes I think the answer to feeling better is right there in front of us. It may take commitment and/or self discipline but doing more of what makes us feel happy and healthy as opposed to doing what makes us feel unhappy and unhealthy is the key.
Is a better life simply about making the effort to do well and the reward is to feel good.
Anyway, nice post to read. Keep them coming.
Thanks both... I will try another positive post with just a dash of negativity and sarcasm! 🙂
Am at that stage when am just starting to calm down "a bit" after my latest gambling disaster... and have a more realistic outlook on my situation. In other words "I will survive not going hungry until my next pay day".. which is about as good as it gets at the moment.... but it is better than "going hungry". There are always folks worse off.
Iv'e got my printer to work (sort of) after an enthralling time with a "cyber doctor bot" whom of course tried to sell me a bunch of s**t that I don't want and don't need and then told me off for not having proper ink cartridges. maybe I should go straight to prison, do not pass go and definitely do not collect £200 pounds!
Its black Friday isn't it! Am I suppose to buy loads of s**t today... but sorry folks it aint gonna happen. Am intending to spend no more than £1.33... ie milk and bread 🙂 Eat and stay alive 🙂
On a serious note... we do live in a bit of nightmare society don't you think, where you can't even watch a 10 minute YouTube clip with out it starting with an advert and being interrupted by another advert. Like good little citizens we must continue to buy s**t until we die... either that or gamble it all away! 🙁
I will go for another run today once the sunshine has got rid of the ice and frost. I keep doing healthy things. Walking and running is probably the reason am not riddled with cancer... its given me a good immune system... which is good cos I live in a state of constant low level stress, which isn't so good.
Anyway rambles over. No gambling.
Hey buddy, I hope your having a nice weekend.
Ive been out for 3 runs in the past 3 days in freezing conditions and its been great. Not necessarily the run but the feeling having completed the runs. When you get back in the house, have a hot shower and sit with a nice cup of coffee. Great therapy. Just getting out in the cold air for half an hour makes me appreciate the time spent inside with a beer and the telly.
Hope you’re well. Take care.