I don't know if this post will help anyone, I don't really know why the "Success Story" area of Gamcare even exists, is it to help those lost in the depths; or a sneering taunt to those who can't get over their CG?
Who knows! Who cares! I'm only posting here to give hope to those coming here in the depths of their own personal despair looking for hope, any chink of light, any step-ladder to be offered however many steps just to get a purchase on forgetting addiction.
All Compulisve Gambling is a direct mental health issue. Simple as that, in my opinion.
I've stopped my self-destructing roulette online/inline addiction since 2010. Had two slip ups since then when I felt I was 'deserved' something back. Proved wrong! (Looking back I'm actually perversely glad I didn't win, because if I had it would've lit an OCD fire under my a**e that I was correct!
My long-winded point, is that gambling is a mental health issue when it gets so severe that it self-medicates a need in us.
All of us know when that line is crossed. We can choose to ignore it, but we KNOW when. Therefore everything after that point is looking for excuses when we eventually hit suicide or rock-bottom. We all know that moment where we stopped doing it for fun and started doing it out of need. Why didn't we reach out in the moment we realised we crossed a line?
Because we are not rational people. If you were a diabetic you'd have to take insulin every day to stay alive. If you need to play "Starburst" "FOBT" "POKER" etc x 1000, to get a dopamine/serotonin/GABA hit to stop from harming - what's the difference? If both could potentially end in death, why should one be taken more seriously than another?
I don't gamble anymore.
I can actually say that with absolute honestly. I have no interest in it anymore because I realised that it was all just a symptom of a deeper mental illness in myself.
I was lucky enough to be able to pay for private therapy. Many people can't. So to save ££££££££££ in both therapy and CG binges - it's very simple - YOU/I don't/didn't gamble because we all thought we were James Bond flipping cards in Monaco being s**y, sticking a finger to 'the man'; YOU/I gambled because we are deeply unhappy as human beings.
Sort the reason for the unhappiness; the gambling stops.
Anyway as I said at the start (and I doubt anyone's read this far anyway) what do I know? It's only my personal experience. It's an experiece shared in this moment with honesty & love.
Tempted to agree in some ways, it's an interesting area.
There was something with rats, kept quite crowded and confined and given bowls of ordinary water and 'happy water' with a little something added to it, and the rats liked the happy water. BUT when the rats were less confined and given more space and more cage comforts, the rats weren't so stressed and they didn't bother with the happy water so much.
And another study (human) on the dopamine hit, showed up that the dopamine kicks in in the millisecond before you click spin on the slots, so I assume you could theoretically get the same effect from clicking on a safe area instead of on the actual spin button and save the cash. Don't know. Untested. And it won't be me that tests it because I quit already.
But yes. Just get happy and we won't need half the rubbish we sedate ourselves with. The happiest people in the world, the people newly in love, they don't go out hitting the slots, do they?
9 years is amazing. Definitely a success.
My unhealthy reactions to people life and situations indicated that I was in pain that I was living in fear and not being as productive as I could be.
The recovery program is a guide to healing and a healthy living.
Can I say that I had mental issues, not quite correct, was I emotionally vulnerable and had lost all faith and hope in myself, yes for sure.
For me the recovery program is a place where I and other people learn from our vulnerability, no longer lost, no longer living in the guilt of my past, with each of my healthy actions and each of my healthy word puts me in a healthier way each day.
It is only by exchanging unhealthy habits to healthy habits that I change from being bitter and twisted from the pains of my past to becoming the fearless inner child that I now I can be today.
It is the pains of my past that caused me to be lost confused and angry.
Each time I went back to gambling or any addiction or obsession was a lesson I could learn from, what were my emotional triggers, and how can change my unhealthy reactions to people life and situations.
The world and people in it were not going to change for me, but I could heal alter and grow so that I did not react in such unhealthy ways and hurt myself and others.
Being in the recovery program helped me understand that I was like a rat in a wheel going faster and faster getting no where healthy.
By me going faster and faster causing myself pains I would value myself less and less and value other people less and less.
Being in the recovery program was about healing the hurt inner child in me.
Being in the recovery program was about healing my emotional age and my physical age would become closer and closer.
For me the recovery program was about being the healthiest person I can be today.
For me the recovery program was about mixing with like minded people who wanted healthy more than any thing else in their life.
For me I did not have a mental health issue I was not able to heal my hurt inner child and I was emotionally vulnerable.
People thinking they have mental health issues indicates that we are not able to heal.
For me that is not so.
Please keep going to meetings, you will benefit from it in so many ways.
Love and peace to every one.
AKA Dave of Beckenham