I had got in to such an unhealthy habit of burying and suppressing my feelings and my emotions.
This is an unhealthy habit which started from a very early age.
I suffered all kinds of abuse, neglect and abandonment.
Walking in to the recovery program was not for myself.
I was not ready or willing to face myself.
Walking in to the recovery program was not for me but for fear of loosing my relationship with my wife.
I have been in recovery program since 1969.
Even though I am healthy today not enough so my wife says.
Why do I go to meetings if I have not gambled today, simply because I know I can become more healthier than I was yesterday.
I use to think that surrender was a sign of weakness.
I use to think that asking for help was a sign of weakness.
I use to think that being emotionally vulnerable was a sign of weakness.
I use to think that I loved gambling, that life was boring.
Today I am humbled to the honesty that I do not know all the answers.
Today I am humbled to the addictions and obsessions were a form of self abuse.
So by setting a boundary today I will not gamble is surrendering to the fact it is not healthy for me.
So by setting a boundary today I will be more productive with my time and my relationships indicates that my values have changed, that I have changed.
I understand that surrendering to the fact and being honest that I was a very unhealthy person, be being honest to myself I can do some thing about it.
No matter when my last bet was today is the most important day of my life.
By surrendering to the fact that the past can not be changed, I am focused on today only.
Writing down my needs, by writing down my wants, by writing down my goals I am even more accountable to myself.
I am surrendering to the fact that from day one in recovery feeling like Gambling controlled my life was incorrect.
My addictions and obsessions were a form of escaping of deviating facing myself and my feelings.
By surrendering to the fact I was very inept inadequate insecure lost person who did not know or understand what being healthy was like.
In surrendering to the fact that the recovery program is like minded healthy people who learn to nurture and encourage other people in to making healthy choices in every avenue of their life and relationships.
Even when I am alone I am not alone.
Why do people not use the telephone list, is it the fact hey feel they are not worthy, is it the fact they feel they can not trust other people with their vulnerability, is it the fact they do not value them self.
The recovery program is about healing the hurt inner child.
The recovery program is about not being angry, not reacting in so many unhealthy ways.
Am I a victim today, am I a perpetrator today, am I a rescuer today.
Am I a walker or a talker today.
Do my actions match my words today.
This last week I celebrated 26 years of recovery, the choice was all mine.
What people had to say about me was very healthy nurturing and encouraging.
Yet I would not be the person I am today with out you and all of those people in the rooms being honest in a healthy way towards me.
The recovery program helped me help myself.
The healthy people in the recovery program helped me help myself.
There was a person who said at a meeting he was very happy he was a compulsive gambler.
He explained that with our recovery program he would never have learned how unhealthy he was.
The way he felt that day was beyond belief.
Love and best wishes to every one.
What a fantastic, inspirational post. Thank you for taking the time to share that. I am 43, I too had a bad child hood that seems to have screwed up my life and my escape is self-abuse and self-destructive, gambling. I go through long periods when I don't gamble and then the wheels come off. I am in a very dark place right now, I feel that I have exhausted all avenues. I can honestly say I've tried everything to stop but right now life seems hopeless. I only go on for the sake of my family that I don't see anymore. To think I could go on feeling this way for another 20 or 30 years seems impossible. I pray for an early death because the only other escape is insanity of which I must be close to. Sorry for the self-pity. I will re-read your post, I'll print it out and put it on my wall. That gives me a bit of hope.
You say you had a painful child hood that seems to be where I came from.
By using the wording escape indicates we still live in fear and are still emotionally vulnerable.
Is self-abuse and self-destructive in any way healthy, it was some thing I needed to do for myself.
To set boundaries for myself.
You go through long periods when I don't gamble how much time do you spend writing and working on your recovery.
Have you been able to over come your fears and ask for help directly.
Step five is about learning more about emotional intimacy.
You say you are exhausted do you want to pick an alternative path in your life today.
Please go to meetings for your self, you will get so much from it for your self.
Have you handed over your finances as yet, that helped me.
You say you have felt this way for many years, while not heal your hurt inner child.
The most important things in my life today is relationships and time.
Before my recovery I did not show or express appreciation or gratitude.
I took every one and every thing for granted.
I did not care about myself and I did not care about other people.
In my recovery I found I had value in myself I just did not see or feel it.
Living in fear and living in the past stunts our growth.
Our anger is an unhealthy reaction to our unhealed pains our fears and our frustrations.
I use to wish my life away for me today it is unhealthy.
Escape is fear based, do you now feel that living in fear is unhealthy.
For me living the self pity indicated that I had not moved on from living my life being the victim.
To stop being the victim I needed to have a voice from a place of peace.
It is not healthy to talk to people of our past who are still dysfunctional.
Talking to a person who is emotionally detached from us helps us talk out about our past trauma.
Thank you very much for your sharing and your inner strength.
You have articulated your self to me in a very healthy way to me.
Your sharing has exposed your vulnerability and your trauma.
Thank you for your honesty
Thank you so much for your share, I love hearing your words! 🙂
I definitely didn't get the Love, approval, validation, nurturing and emotional skills that I needed to operate as a healthy functioning adult. Before my addiction took hold I was extremely insecure with some very distorted perceptions of myself. I had developed alot of "I am's" which developed during my formative years (I am unloveable, I am flawed, i am inadequate, I am inferior, I am ugly etc). My parents have self worth issues which are covered up by their narcissistic control traits. I believe it was this that caused my distorted beliefs about myself as I was controlled and criticised with next to no praise. I was constantly trying to get my parents to accept me and love me for who I am but I was never enough. At a young age I abandoned myself as inadequate and tried to get them to except me by trying to be perfect (This also didn't work because their needs were more important than mine apparently). Because I rejected myself as inadequate I became whoever anyone else wanted me to be providing they accepted and loved me. I was even in fear of being rejected which caused me to suffer massive amounts of fear and anxiety around other people. I was constantly mind reading what other people were thinking about me (which was always negative). I started to get into relationships but they were always toxic because I was always looking for what I was lacking in my childhood. I was an except me and love me aholic! It took me a long to realise that this emptiness I felt in my soul which addiction masked for so many years was abandonment of my inner child. I've been on the most incredible journey of grieving the loss of my childhood and re-parenting and nurturing my inner child and giving that little boy everything that he needed with love, compassion, unconditional acceptance and lots of time. After time rebuilding this relationship my addiction desire disappeared along with my unhealthy character defects. Whilst I was still detached from my inner child I was always searching for ways to prove my worth externally (bigger house, better wife, better car, better job etc). It was a relief to discover I was trying to fix an internal problem with a external solution and that the solution was far more easier than living the life I had been living.
Thank you again for your words of wisdom. X
Hi Thank you for your reply and relating to my recovery
Sadly my parents were unable to love them self or each other so they were unable to love me in an affectionate nurturing protecting way.
In my recovery learning to be nurturing protective and have emotional skills were difficult for me.
For me learning to be a healthy functioning adult took along time.
Long before my addiction and obsessions I was emotionally vulnerable and was living in fear and insecurity.
Yes low self worth low self esteem lack of confidence and not able to value myself.
I was unloveable because I had fear of emotional intimacy.
My parents emotional baggage was not mine.
For me control traits were very much fear based issues.
It was important for me to show gratitude and appreciation in so many ways.
They criticized because they were not content with in them self.
By looking at other people they are not facing them self.
Giving money and gifts was not love.
Giving money and gifts was not a healthy apology.
A person would never get a parents approval they did not how to.
Person pleasing was unhealthy for me.
Being inadequate is lack of confidence and self esteem.
Fear of being rejected was with me long before my addictions and my obsessions.
Fear of being rejected was also tied up to abandonment issues earlier in my life.
What you wanted from other people they could not give you.
What ever you wanted or needed from other people you needed to give to your self first of all.
The addiction and obsessions were a form of escape and deviating facing your self.
As you peel back the onion the tears will roll and your hurt inner child will come out.
To be giving to that little boy everything that he needed with love, compassion, unconditional acceptance and lots of time was a healthy path.
Once you are content with your self you will no longer need to prove your worth externally, you will content with your new journey of self discovery.
No thank you for your being so open strong and self aware, I can so relate to you and your journey.
AKA Dave of Beckenham.