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    • #29272
      charlster2
      Участник

      Hi everyone,

      This is my first post on this site. I hope it is not too long winded, but I have a lot to say, it’s been quite a journey.

      I have a serious gambling problem, one that has blighted my life on and off for the best part of 30 years. I made a conscious decision about a month ago to contact the Gordon Moody Association for help. I had just lost money that I couldn’t afford to lose on an online gaming site, it catapulted me into a state of depression and quite frankly I was and am desperate to address my problems. I’m very happy to report that I am now on the waiting list for their residential treatment.

      Receiving that news alone has made me feel that I have taken a giant stride on my road to recovery, even though I know it is only the beginning and that there is a lot of hard work ahead of me. It has given me something to work towards, something to build on and strive for on a day to day basis.

      As most of you know, there are so many downsides to gambling, it is multi faceted, with each facet presenting a negative, destructive impact on our lives. One of the worst for me is the feeling of isolation, the feeling that you have nowhere to turn for help. Over the years I have lost friends and family through my addiction, I have virtually created a secret World that only I live in. I have lied to those close to me so that I can access that secret World and live my secret life of gambling. I have lost the trust of people I care about and I have created a situation where I now find myself totally alone with literally no friend or family member to turn to.

      This site and the Gordon Moody Association have provided me with hope for the future and given me a lifeline that I didn’t think was out there. It’s very comforting and reassuring knowing that there’s a support network available to me now.

      All I’ve done to date is frustrate the people close to me and eventually I’ve ended up driving them way. I have lost a wife through gambling, a long term partner through gambling, my house through gambling, I haven’t been able to maintain a steady father daughter relationship through my addiction so have missed out massively there as she is now 22! I have no contact with any blood relations and have lost all of my friends through gambling. It has catapulted me into deep states of depression and I have over the year’s contemplated suicide, though thankfully not in the last 10 years or so.

      It’s got to the point where all I’ve got left to lose now is the rented flat that I’m living in and I seem to be doing my best to do exactly that! Just before contacting the Gordon Moody Association I had just gambled my rent money on an online gaming site playing Roulette and luckily had the presence of mind and the strength to take some sort of action to halt my slide into oblivion. I’m under no illusion, that if I continue in my current mode, I will eventually end up homeless and would have reached absolute rock bottom.

      I just feel that if I can control my gambling urges, preferably eradicate them completely, it will have a positive knock on effect in so many other areas of my life and I’ll be able to build my life up again from solid foundations. My mental health will improve, I’ll be able to have the security of a roof over my head, I’ll be able to build my career path again, I’ll have disposable income to do productive things with my money and I’ll be able to build bridges with the people I care about and who care about me, there really isn’t a downside to addressing my problems. There’s so much I want to do and gambling to date has just keeps me bogged down neck deep in quicksand and will engulf me completely if I don’t see my recovery through.

      This really is the start of the rest of my life!

      Charlster2

    • #29273
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      <

      Hello and thanks for starting a thread in the Gambling Therapy forums

      Here at Gambling Therapy we pride ourselves on being a caring and diverse online community who can help and support you with the difficulties you’re currently facing. We understand that this might be a tough time for you, particularly if you’re new to recovery, so come here as often as you need to and participate in the forums, access online groups and connect to the live advice helpline if you need one to one support. We’re in this together!

      Here on the forum you can share your experiences in a safe, supportive and accepting environment. The beauty of writing it all down is that you can take your time and you will be creating a record of your progress that you can look back on if it ever feels like you’re not moving forward. So, share as much or as little as you like but do try to stick to keeping just one thread in this forum so people know where to find you if they want to be updated on your progress or share something with you.

      And on that note….

      I’m going to hand you over to our community because I’m sure they will have some words of wisdom for you 🙂

      Take care

      The Gambling Therapy Team


      PS: Let me just remind you to take a look at our
      privacy policy and terms and conditions so you know how it all works!

    • #29274
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hi Charlester, fantastic post and great new about GMA. I am also on the waiting list, and that means I have to start taking action about my liabilities, such as the office I rent etc.

      I feel lucky in that my gambling has only gone on for 3 years (although I had gambled before that my prevoius compulsions were few and far between such as aged 20 for 6 months, 1 night at the age of 28 and then nothing until 3 years ago when it went mad).

      But like everyone, I have lost almost everything, most importantly my sanity. Everytime I gamble again I think „I’m gonna do it differently this time“ but as soon as I gamble and then stop (up or down) I only think about the next time I can gamble, and it makes me so unproductive in between I am desperate to gamble again.

      Please stay on the site, there are amazing people here. They have helped me so much. There is so much hurt here and yet so much humanity. It strikes me as quite weird the bond that CGs have for each other – it’s like a secret club, albeit one you wouldn’t want membership for , but membership we have and the dues are high.

      After almost 2 weeks since my last binge I am feeling better, though the last 2 weeks have been hard with my mind pummeling itself with retribtion of what could have been.

      You seem very much aware of your illness and the damage done. I hope you get on the course, and that you can put it behind you. You seem very smart so once you can get this under control you can do anything.

      Thanks for posting on my blog, what you wrote was amazing.

      See you around in a gamble-free world.

      Much love

    • #29275
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      I think it would be strange if you were not dwelling in the past at the moment. You are waiting to go on the GMA project and it is natural to feel frightened about what it entails.
      You have support now and it is here for as long as you want it, you are no longer standing alone, you are understood, you are not being judged and the battle ahead is not impossible, if it was I wouldn’t be posting to you.
      You know what you are facing but you will not be facing it without the tools to survive because the GMA programme will give you those tools. What you do with them will be up to you but with determination you can change your life and live gamble-free, if it wasn’t so, I wouldn’t be here.
      The urges are strong because your addiction knows you are preparing to fight it. It will be even more demanding because it doesn’t want to let go of you, so keep posting and focus your attention elsewhere.
      I hope you have picked yourself up a bit as the day wears on. Don’t be afraid of being afraid, just don’t let fear lessen your determination – you are doing the right thing
      My favourite quote is ‘success is not the result of spontaneous combustion; you must set yourself on fire first’. You have lit the fire Charlser – well done.
      Velvet

    • #29276
      butchugly
      Участник

      Hopefully your landlord will wait two weeks. so if you spend all the money on food now. you can’t gamble it. then when you get paid you can pay your rent. probably leaving you with less money. but less temptation to gamble. at least you’ll have a roof over your head and a full belly. which in turn will make you feel secure.. then safe, then more able to sleep and concentrate on getting better and building a new life. sounds like a lot more positives from not gambling don’t u think?

    • #29277
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      I start many posts by saying ‘I can’t tell you what to do’ – but with this post I am breaking my cardinal rule by saying – Do Not Gamble This Money, you will lose as sure as night follows day, you will not have the rent money and you will not have money for food.
      Go back and read every post you have written again – you have made giant strides in your recovery – you ‘can’ do this.
      As I said in my previous post to you, your urges will probably be stronger as you wait for the GMA programme Because you have the project in front of you, I suspect your addiction is chewing your insides to give it some leeway, after all the the programme will be a magic pill that will sort everything out. Your addiction thrives on situations like this – it doesn’t matter whether you gamble with a penny, £105, or a million pounds, your brain will be into gambling mode and that is a backward step, how much better to go to GMA with a roof still over your head and food in your stomach (even if you are a little hungry)
      There is a 4th scenario as I see it. Rather than saying you can’t pay your rent you can offer a substantial amount of it and live on beans and toast for 2 weeks – I know you can do it because I have seen it done before.
      Testing time indeed – I will watch your thread and look forward to seeing you come through.
      Velvet

    • #29278
      butchugly
      Участник

      So what do u plan on doing with the money you do have this week?

    • #29279
      butchugly
      Участник

      I hope you fill your fridge and cupboards. I hope it gives you some satisfaction that you have money to buy food. Let me know how you get on charles. I too have a little bit of money. Not much. I intend to order my shopping tonight. At the end of March I will be in credit and should stay in credit from there on. I’m aiming to reduce my overdraft allowance each month so I can’t impulsive spend anything.. Just because I deserve a treat( gambling, illogically is what I have called a treat for so long) my treat for the next two months will be.. Seeing my bank balance in credit. Through hard earned cash. Not desperate gambling ( winning my money back) which rarely happened anyway

    • #29280
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      You have sorted your immediate problem and you mind will be eased so watch out for that devil ‘complacency’ sitting on your shoulder.
      Leave the money in the bank unless it is to buy your basic food.
      Keep posting and thinking positively – you are doing well.
      Velvet

    • #29281
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hi Charslter,

      It sounds like you are doing ok. Im really please for you> I just had a meltdown last night that came out of the blue. Even now I am a little numb. For some reason I logged onto a casino site and started playing BlackJack. At one point I was massively up and I said to myself „Prove your not a CG and cashout now and go to bed and no one needs to know“. That didb’t happen. I cannot for the life of me understand why I didn’t cash out and chill, and spend my money on something nice. God knows I could have done iwth it. Instead I lost it all and then started depositing on my company card again. The full story is on my post. I just don’t know what happened. I at once poit I had despoited 4300 and I was down to the last 800 or so. And then it turned around and I cashed out exactly what I put in – and then I was caught.

      Stay away from the gamble mate, don’t do it to yourself. My wife now wants me to leave the house – even though I;ve not hurt anyone. I have to be honest, I cannot see the problem – no money was lost. But that’s not the point is it. I need help seeing the hurt I have caused.

      I need to get on the GMA course so badly – I hope we are there together. I dread to think what would have happened if I couldn’t win back my losses. I went into full on loss chasing mode, totally insane. I think I went mad last night, totally mad.

      Charlester, you can do it fella. I have so little urge to gamble right now, I am all gambled out.

      See you soon

      Mav

    • #29282
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hi Charslter,

      It sounds like you are doing ok. Im really please for you> I just had a meltdown last night that came out of the blue. Even now I am a little numb. For some reason I logged onto a casino site and started playing BlackJack. At one point I was massively up and I said to myself „Prove your not a CG and cashout now and go to bed and no one needs to know“. That didb’t happen. I cannot for the life of me understand why I didn’t cash out and chill, and spend my money on something nice. God knows I could have done iwth it. Instead I lost it all and then started depositing on my company card again. The full story is on my post. I just don’t know what happened. I at once poit I had despoited 4300 and I was down to the last 800 or so. And then it turned around and I cashed out exactly what I put in – and then I was caught.

      Stay away from the gamble mate, don’t do it to yourself. My wife now wants me to leave the house – even though I;ve not hurt anyone. I have to be honest, I cannot see the problem – no money was lost. But that’s not the point is it. I need help seeing the hurt I have caused.

      I need to get on the GMA course so badly – I hope we are there together. I dread to think what would have happened if I couldn’t win back my losses. I went into full on loss chasing mode, totally insane. I think I went mad last night, totally mad.

      Charlester, you can do it fella. I have so little urge to gamble right now, I am all gambled out.

      See you soon

      Mav

    • #29283
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster, thanks so much for posting on my post. I am starting to get some theories as to how last night happened. I can honestly say I had a truly out of body experience whch probably only people who have done psychadelic drugs or been CGs understand. My body was doing something and my head was somewhere else, focused on recovering the money.

      I am no longer in that place.

      I wish I could buy you a coffee and help you out in some way. You sound like a great person with tons of self awareness going through a difficult time. My heart is with you, and the time you are taking to post on my blog and reply means a huge amount to you.

      I am going to write a short piece on my blog now, and then nothing until I have achieved the tasks I need to do with regards my business so I can shut it down in as orderly an organised a fashion as possible.

      Much love, hang in there. Great news about the rent. I truly believe that as I go now without gambling my life will improve. I have finally found the moment to stop, because of what happened last night.

      Big love

      Mav

    • #29284
      monique
      Участник

      I have just been reading through your story and want to encourage you to stay strong as you move forward and get into rehab. You write with great clarity about the struggles you face and are able to receive and use good suggestions from others. (I thought you got some great ideas from Velvet, as well as Butchugly.)
      Keep using the support and you can look forward to better experiences in your future. I would just reiterate that gambling with any money you have will NOT solve anything. Keep resisting that old way of thinking and let your mind open more and more to different ways of meeting life’s challenges.
      All the best,

      Monique

    • #29285
      butchugly
      Участник

      That has really ensured me!

    • #29286
      jansdad
      Участник

      I just caught up with this thread. And I shiver. And it’s not because of all the horrors you’ve been through and all the daily difficulties you still face and live through.
      It’s the fact that you were 5 years gamble free at one time and then went back into it and it became even worse.
      It’s a cold nasty reminder, and something I tend to forget, that we’re never cured.
      I tend to believe (very naively) that once we go through all the effort and hardship and finally stop gambling, we’d then be OK.

      Anyway, great posts Charlster. A lot of formidable minds on this forum. How we got ourselves into this mess I don’t know.

      There can never be another bet. I remember, about 10 years ago I was winning at poker handsomely, but I was nevertheless aware of my gambling problem. Gambling used to absorb me. All I could think of is playing poker. I would go to the movies with my girlfriend and started fidgeting before the film even began. I couldn’t wait for it to end so I could go home and play poker online. We would not go for a drink after the move, I had to rush home. Once home, I would run to my computer, turn it on, and then and only then I would take off my jacket (while the computer booted), washed my hands etc. so I wouldn’t lose any time.
      I was still winning those years despite my addiction. The other players were so much worse.
      Anyway, I was well aware of the problem and I sought professional help. I made an appointment with this therapist and after listening to me he asked me what I wanted from him. Well, I thought it was obvious, I wanted to be able to play poker, but without the elements of gambling. I wanted to be able to enjoy life and the little things like before. 2 sessions later he told me he couldn’t help me unless I wanted to stop altogether. He said he may be able to help me stop completely, but he couldn’t do anything for me if I wanted to continue playing poker.
      I wasn’t ready to stop, I was making good money and I loved the game. I did realize back then that I have a problem and that I am addicted. And that addicted progressed over the years.
      I wish I had listened to him back then.

    • #29287
      jansdad
      Участник

      Another great post Charlster. One thing that particularly caught my attention is where you say you didn’t know you had a problem for a long, long time.
      I always knew I had a problem. Even during the years I was winning at poker year in year out I knew I had a problem. First time I banned myself from a casino was when I was 22. I asked Holland Casino in Amsterdam to ban me for a year and they did. I then used friend’s ID to get in.

      I didn’t take the problem lightly. I didn’t think like „ok, I have a problem and I will deal with it, just not yet“. I imposed all kind of obstacles, bans, deals with friends, had my money offshore where it would take days to get it etc. I think that’s the only reason I survived.
      What I didn’t know, and maybe you meant something similar, that I will always need support. I foolishly thought that once you get it out of your system, you get it out of your system and you’re done and over with it.
      I shiver every time I ready someone’s here been clean for 5 year or 14 months or whatever and then relapsed. I shiver when geordie who I look up to says he had a tough weekend and came close to gambling.

      It’s all too scary for me and makes me nervous and uncertain.

    • #29288
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      I don’t find your bucket list too long or too much to strive for. I think it is an admirable list for someone determining to take control of his life.
      I think journals are a splendid way to get things that are swirling around in your brain into some sort of order.
      You will always be able to read about lapses in the forum because it is a forum for those who are trying to change their lives and change is not easy but lapses are NOT compulsory, they are not a rite of passage. I have a friend who has 19 gamble-free years behind him and is living a life that encapsulates everything on your wish list and he is definitely not alone.
      I have no doubt that you can achieve everything on your list provided you want it enough. I really do know that it is tough but I believe you are doing to best thing for yourself by posting on here having been accepted by GMA.
      I’m glad you care about what happens to you because I do too and I hope you will keep posting when you have been through the programme so that I can know when you want to smile more.
      Velvet

    • #29289
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      I have cut and paste that quote. I know that to be true. Today I looked at the company account and saw that the money had been returned from betfair. Over 5 deposits I took out the same money I withdrew. Amazing. The scariest thing is that there is a part of my gambler brain that says if I played more carefully that could have been profit. But now I understand there is no profit – only more money to gamble with.

      I think I understand how pointless gambling is. All it does is feed itself, which is what addictions do.

      You are doing so well, it will crush me if you relapse, so i pray to whatever power is out there that you can do it. I do look at your story as you tell it and it fills me with fear. I do not have the have your story, in term sof your past. But together we can have a fantastic future full of life and hope and love. And perhaps, with the gambling behind us, we could actually say something positive came out of it. That is what I hope to be able to say.

      Stay strong and keep posting.

      All my love

    • #29290
      butchugly
      Участник

      The only escape seems to be willpower. And I really feel for the young generation. Because constant exposure almost normalises it!

    • #29291
      icandothis
      Участник

      I just wanted to pop in to say I just read your post to Maverick. It was very inspiring. Just what I needed to read today. That is what I love about this site. Here’s to many more positive, productive days!

    • #29292
      butchugly
      Участник

      You are doing so great!! And I’m pleased that you ordered your food!! I hope you eat and sleep well. You deserve to feel good and happy

    • #29293
      kpat
      Участник

      Your posts are very inspiring. I am rooting for you. Having written all this down will be a great thing for you to read again when you have a weak moment. Reading my older posts reminds me of where I never want to be again.
      Keep up the good thoughts. Stay strong and days eill get brighter.

    • #29294
      icandothis
      Участник

      I just read through your thread. I loved your list. I believe its more productive in recovery to focus on what you want instead of what you don’t want. From your posts, it sounds like you are working on your most important relationship…the one you have with YOU. Which is going to help with every other relationship you have. Especially with your daughter. Keep up the good work. I am confident that that perfect someone will come along when you are ready. She will fall in love with the real you because the real you will be beaming out at her because of the work you are doing now. I can tell by your posts you are a deep and very insightful person. I like reading them and can see so much progress already.

    • #29295
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      You are doing so well Charlster. YOu are totally in the zone, you are an inspiration. I need to change my mindset to one more like yours. I need to make a list of everything I have going on and get it out of my head, I just don’t know where to start and so I am overwhelmed. Keep posting the good news, it;s wonderful.

    • #29296
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster, you are doing amazing. I really wish I had found this site 3 years ago. I am so daunted by what I have done and how to get out of it. I feel like such an idiot for gambling my future away, for all the lies I have told. The person I have hurt the most is myself, and my wife and my son. And now I have pushed them away for good.

      I just cannot make sense, as I sit here, how I lost so much time gambling when I knew I was losing. Not just money, but time I did not have to complete our project. And now that money is gone.

      I am sorry to post on your site, but I see how well you are doing and if you can do it then I can.

      I am going to have to learn how to live on my own, I have to get a new job, I have to do so much.

      Keep up the good work, your posts are insirping.

    • #29297
      kpat
      Участник

      Hi Charlster
      I never noticed before I banned from the casino how many story lines on sitcoms revolve around gambling. I never noticed how focused as a society we are on winning stuff. Hard work is a forgotten ideal on tv.

    • #29298
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charles, I often find myself re-reading your posts as you come across as so mature and in control. You are doing so well, and I feel like I am doing so badly. I am panicking at everything. My wife threatened to go to COlombia next week and it destroyed me. I feel so helpless. I am an adult of 42 years old who cannot live on his own, yet I am the architect of my own misery. I simply do not know what to do.

      Keep posting, you are a hero. Knowing you are doing it keeps me strong. Had the most insane urges today to gamble not to win, but to lose. The self destructive part of me really took over and said that if MOnica goes, what do I have to live for? How can I cope. It’s so stupid, but my feelings are all over the place.

      Stay strong, you are in a great place and you have all my support. As I said, I love reading about your small victories.

    • #29299
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Great post. I am going to try that – not look further back than yesterday and no farther forward than tomorrow. And make tomorrow better than today, or today better than yesterday. That is so awesome.

      Nice one Charlster.

    • #29300
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Mate that is so awesome. I love reading about your story, at the moment you are the most amazing success. You’ve really got it clear in your head, while my head is still stuffy and confused. I would hate to say I;m jealous, but I really want some of what you have at the moment, so please keep posting.

      I think I may be ready next week to start to turn my mind towards the big stuff, breaking it down into bitesize chunks.

      Well done mate, my heart gives you a mexican wave. 😉

    • #29301
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      I can’t speak for anyone else but for me playing poker sneakily became an escape valve until I just could not stop playing, even though it was eating money slowly (playing on micro or medium sites) but ate all my time and ambition. I was utterly addicted to playing, even though it was destroying me from the inside. Being gamble free now for 11 days I have some perspective as this is my first forced abstinence for a long time. Normally I pretend to quit and then find ways to play in secret, as if it is my right. I find that part of the addiction hardest to square now. For me it was escape – even though I was escaping from my childhood dream of making films. We had a commission to make 7 short films – and instead Gambling had me in its grip and I knew it and did nothing about it. For some reason I couldn’t. It makes no sense to me. It is so irrational – but I think that is the disease. You do not think straight.

      If someone said to me I would have a 250K comission to make 7 short films which i could use to cement my reputation as an up and coming producer but that i would gamble it and not focus on it I would have laughed – that’s not me. And yet I did. I feel like such a fool when I think about what could have been.

      I can never gamble again, and there is still a part of my brain which s rejecting that. It says, give it a few months and then play poperly. Set time limits, cash out winning, make it a one off. But I know as soon as I play I will be hooked again, so no going back.

      Hope you are doing well Charlster, don’t let yourself down.

    • #29302
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      I was pleased to read your post concerning your decision to avoid a relationship too early in your recovery.
      It is my firm belief that you will be in a stronger position if you don’t enter a new relationship until you are focussed entirely on your gamble-free life and taking responsibility for yourself.
      I am not alone in having the greatest respect for those who have faced the addiction to gamble and taken control of it, so continue taking one day at a time and build your credibility – it works.
      Looking forward to an update
      Velvet

    • #29303
      vera
      Участник

      What a shock you’ve had , Charlster! Exactly what a CG in early recovery and with underlying anxiety does not need! Could you ask the police to get some assistance to de-brief with a counsellor? You really could do with a bit of „hurdle help“ here!
      There are two „positives“ though , if such a word would be appropriate at this time.
      1. You weren’t alone when that man’s body was found (RIP)
      2. You didn’t find him two weeks ago, when you were still „licking very raw wounds“.
      Don’t let this set you back Charlster. Easier said than done I know.
      On a slightly different note, I have become wary of counting days…I counted approx 390 in succession and exploded like a volcano. Maybe it works for some but I won’t be doing that again. It magnified gambling for me and gave it power over me that it really doesn’t have! I gave my power away by counting G free days. No judgement or criticism. Just sharing my experience.
      Explosions create a hell of a lot of toxic debris!
      And YES, I too gambled to escape but it was all done under the guise of fun/enjoyment/entertainment which all ended in bitter tears!
      Over and out!

    • #29304
      vera
      Участник

      Every „thrill“ brings a hangover, Charlster!

      If you are so inclined, have a listen to Anthony de Mello’s Wake up to Life Conference. I bought the CDs years ago but you can get if online for free these days, I would say. It’s a mixture of the teachings of World’s Greatest Religions. The speaker was a Jesuit priest and a psychotherapist. He debunks a lot of the conditioning we have been bombarded with all our lives and his delivery is laced with humour and wisdom. A great listen from an entertaining communicator! Give it a try! I found it enlightening!
      For me NOTHING replaces the buzz gambling gave but we can learn to live without it!

    • #29305
      jansdad
      Участник

      I had that too. Once you manage to refrain from gambling for a few weeks, you say to yourself „ok, this is fine, but WHAT NOW?“

      I hate giving personal advise, it’s almost always borderline pointless, but I’ll make an exception here. Why don’t you try and figure out a plan to regain your daughter’s trust? That should take you a while and the project won’t leave much room for error. Meaning no gambling.

    • #29306
      jansdad
      Участник

      Yes, that’s what I meant when I said „it will take you a while“.
      20 days and where you are in life right now is probably nowhere near enough to go and win your daughter back. But set a goal and work toward it. Being gamble free is just a prerequisite.

      I have a boy, he’s almost 8 and I try to be a really good dad. Probably because my father was never good.
      Anyway, my boy doesn’t know I’m gambling. I mean he’s seen me playing poker online, just like he’s seen my playing Starcraft 2 (a video game), but he’s not aware how dangerous gambling is for me.
      While I was on a gambling spree a couple of weeks ago I thought of a way to stop, I actively thought what could make me stop gamble. And then at one moment I vividly imagined my son telling me „but you promise you would not gamble any more“. That impression was so vivid and felt so real – it was scary.
      But I continued to gamble just the same.

    • #29307
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      The Void is well known to CGs in their early gamble-free life and has been discussed many times on this forum. Not being a CG I accept that it is hard to take my word that the void does get filled and that there will be many new experiences that will give you a tremendous buzz but I really have seen the evidence. .
      The following, written by a CG, appeared in ‘My Journal’ some time ago – I hope it helps
      „In Between

      Sometimes, to get from where we are to where we are going, we have to be willing to be in between.

      One of the hardest parts of recovery is the concept of letting go of what is old and familiar, but what we don’t want, and being willing to stand with our hands empty while we wait for God to fill them.

      This may apply to feelings. We may have been full of hurt and anger. In some ways, these feelings may have become comfortably familiar. When we finally face and relinquish our grief, we may feel empty for a time. We are in between pain and the joy of serenity and acceptance.

      Being in between can apply to relationships. To prepare ourselves for the new, we need to first let go of the old. This can be frightening. We may feel empty and lost for a time. We may feel all alone, wondering what is wrong with us for letting go of the proverbial bird in hand, when there is nothing in the bush.

      Being in between can apply to many areas of life and recovery. We can be in between jobs, careers, homes, or goals. We can be in between behaviours as we let go of the old and are not certain what we will replace it with. This can apply to behaviours that have protected and served us well all of our life, such as caretaking and controlling.

      We may have many feelings going on when we’re in between: spurts of grief about what we have let go of or lost, and feelings of anxiety, fear, and apprehension about what’s ahead. These are normal feelings for the in between place. Accept them. Feel them. Release them.

      Being in between isn’t fun, but it’s necessary. It will not last forever. It may feel like we’re standing still, but we’re not. We’re standing at the in between place. It’s how we get from here to there. It is not the destination.

      We are moving forward, even when we’re in between.

      Today, I will accept where I am as the ideal place for me to be. If I am in between, I will strive for the faith that this place is not without purpose, that it is moving me toward something good.“

      I completely agree that it will be far better to approach your daughter with evidence of a real determination to live gamble-free. Children can be the toughest critics of parents.
      Are there any hobbies or interests that you have put on one side because of your addiction? I recommend table-tennis, it doesn’t cost much, it can satisfy the competitive spirit, it bring others into your life without being intrusive and it means a good night’s sleep from exhaustion. I know, I play 5 times a week!
      Velvet

    • #29308
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      What a wonderful, insightful post Charlster. I do so enjoy reading your posts about your recovery. You have really fixed your mind in the right place. I am on day 5 – again – and this time I don’t feel like relapsing. Gambling has given me nothing but destruction. WOrse than losing money is the fact that if I gamble, even if I win, I’ll do more damage to my self esteem. I won on the weekend just gone, but it didn’t make me happy. I wonder how much I would need to win to do that – more than I could possibly win, and then I would probably put it back. The fact that I walked away with the profit last time is becuase the ride was so intense I threw up and had to close the computer. It was 3 hours of such mad intensity I could not handle it anymore.

      Thanks for being here and thanks for all the support you offer everyone, you are a real human being and your recovery is a thing to behold. I am sure we will all have flat days, but everyone has them. That’s not because you’re not gambling, it’s because you are human and no one can be happy all the time. Gambling makes us believe that we should be happy all the time, and the way to achieve that is gambling.

      Stay strong and have a great gamble free day

    • #29309
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hey Charlster,

      How you doing? No update for your yesterday for day 25. Are you ok? How are your plans coming on? I’m feeling better than I was this morning and treated myself and the family to a slap up lunch in Crytal Palace at a farmer’s market restaurant.

      Hope all is well with you, and that you’ve been too busy to post.

      All my thoughts.

    • #29310
      p
      Участник

      Well done on your gamble free time.. keep going just today dont gamble.. you have stopped now and can continue to do so by avoiding that first bet.. well done..

      P

    • #29311
      jansdad
      Участник

      You ok charlmeister? I love reading your posts, keep them coming 🙂

    • #29312
      jansdad
      Участник

      I’m rooting for you big time Charlster. I like your posts very much.

      I too decided to limit my spendings. I used to buy all kind of different gadgets that I didn’t really need. Last ones I wanted to buy was this new fitness bracelet and the new blackberry phone. I don’t do much sports and I have an excellent pedometer which does more than a good job for what I need it and I have 2 very good phones already. Why I wanted to buy new bracelet and a new phone has deep roots in my overall compulsive behavior I think.

      So I decided not to buy any gadgets till I have 10M steps on my pedometer. Right now the figure is about 7,800,000, so it will take me another 5-6 months. I really hope I stick to it.

      And the funny thing is since I resisted the initial urge to buy these things, the more time passes, the more I realize I don’t need them and the less I long for them.

      I’ve got so much soul searching to do, like most of us here.

    • #29313
      p
      Участник

      A month gamble free is wonderful.. well done, it is good you are on the recovery road, so much nicer than the hell we put ourselves through isnt it.. just a little caution on your savings, ive seen and done many times, the savings building and building and then a big relapse using those saved funds, so make sure they are safe somehow.. not being negative just realistic as cg’s we have to be extra careful as sometimes i thought i was saving and saving only to see it gone in a day.. wonderful you are doing it, that might not happen for you.. just be aware and make every day a safe one.. just for this day of course.. dont gamble.. well done charlster

      P

    • #29314
      vera
      Участник

      Great post Charlster!
      I do believe it is only by God’s Grace that we finally quit the chaos that we have created in our lives by compulsive gambling. Years of human destruction cannot be restored without intervention from a Higher Power. I think that is the underlying message of GA. Admit I am powerless. Surrender!
      Of course there are human elements running through every CG’s recovery, but I have asked myself over and over why one person fails and another succeeds? Why at one given time a person can resist gambling at at other times throw caution to the wind and undo all the effort? Why now? Why me? Why you? Why not? So much is outside our control. Humanly speaking, we can only do so much to help ourselves. I accept people here have differing viewpoints and very different experiences but when I read that you have survived „by God’s grace“ I can relate to that statement. Sometimes we seek recovery in the wrong places and at the wrong time.
      Staying focused on Survival is crucial !
      Congrats on your G free month! May it be the start of many, odaat!

    • #29315
      butchugly
      Участник

      I like your attitude. It has definitely helped me

    • #29316
      vera
      Участник

      The first word of advice I got here from Lee was
      „Postpone your next bet!“
      It works, Charlster!
      I often said „later“, „not now“ , „maybe in an hour“..
      Eventually we will be able to say, as P says, „I don’t gamble anymore!“

    • #29317
      butchugly
      Участник

      Please post on the being positive feed
      The reason I say this is once you post, you will get alerts from other people’s posts. Fritz posted early hours this morning and it was so nice to wake up.. Have a look at me emails and see others positive words/ thinking. I feel really good about today because of it. It may help you. It will certainly give you reasons not to gamble.

    • #29318
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster, you are doing so well mate. I take strength from what you have managed to do, which is resist the urge, understand, cope with it, reason with it even. I went to GA yesterday and many people mentioned the GN. Like Cheltenham, a massive trigger for those that enjoyed the nags.

      Well done, you are a inspiration. I hope you hear from GMA soon with a place. Call them if you have not heard anything yet. I have my 2 week assessment starting in 5 weeks, and I cannot wait though I have lots to do before I can attend, such as closing the office etc. It will be good to take a holiday from the company, espcially if I have put it to sleep calmy, with no suprises waiting. That means contacting all the creditors to let them now the score (maybe just that I have been decsribed as clinically depressed).

      I kind of hope we are there together, but I know it will be good for me. i am going to take this opportunity with both hands, as gambling is a sympton of a deeper malaise. I know that now. I gambled to escape feelings, emotions, actions – I certainly didn’t gamble to win. I might have done at some point, but towards the end I gambled to destroy myself for one reason or another. That’s the only explanation for doing what I did which was irrational.

      Keep safe mate, and keep posting.

    • #29319
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      You have done so awesomely well Charlster. Your entire attitude has been without fault. You have attacked your problem with maturity, understanding and most of all intelligence.

      Well done from me. You are an inspiration. Thank you for all your posts, they mean the world to me.

      Have a great gamble free day.

    • #29320
      vera
      Участник

      Just cling on to that lifeline Charlster and draw a line under your recent loss.
      I know the SICK feeling only too well.
      Time heals . But it takes longer every time.

      God help you!

    • #29321
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlester, You’ve done so well so far, which is great. You’ve been dead honest, which is awesome. you are an inspiration still, but you’re human. Great news about the job interviews, I hope they go well.

      Like all of us you have a disease, and if it was as easy as just stopping there would be no need for GT, GM House, GA etc etc.

      I am sure you have learned a HUGE amount through the last 51 days or so, which means that you can do 100 or more next time. I’ve noticed you never come to the group forums, I find they help me a lot. Do you do GA? There must be one near you. GA is wonderful, and it works if you want it to work.

      For me I am only on Day 18 and tomorrow is 19 – and I have never managed 19 days without a bet before except when on holiday in countries where online gambling is difficult.

      Stay posting, keep us informed of how you are doing. I am really proud of you, and for me you an still inspiring. I cannot imagine what it is like to deal with this addiction for 30 years of your life. The last 3 years have been hell, I want done with it.

      Have a great night, see you soon back on the forums.

      Onwards and upwards.

    • #29322
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hi Charlester,

      Good luck with the interview tomorrow. I hope you reconsider about posting on here, you have done so very well. Slips are to be expected when we have this illness.

      Best of luck Charlster, there isn’t much I can say except good luck and all my love.

    • #29323
      vera
      Участник

      Why not get on the Helpline and have a chat with admin, Charlster?
      You have put a lot of work into your recovery so far.
      Sometimes we need an extra bit of hurdle help!

    • #29324
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster, you are being too hard on yourself. So you slipped. We all do. I slipped after 18 days last time, and am now only on 19 days. You did 51, which is fantastic. If the job interviews don’t work out (and I hope they do) get back in touch with GMA. You still have 10-15 years working left, and lots more life. You are a smart bloke, very astute. I can see that from your posts. You have been really kind to me over the last few months, offering really good advice which I have taken on board. I would hate that you go now after one slip. That’s why you should stay, keep posting, continute building. You haven’t killed anyone. For some reason you decided to have a gamble, and it has badly affected you. You lost money but more importantly you are disappointed in yourself. But it isn’t the end of the world.

      You were inspiring BECAUSE you were honest. I would hate that you go, but that’s of course up to you.

      Good luck with the job interview, but more importantly I hope you can stop gambling. You know it does nothing for you, just adds to your misery. I get that now about my gambling – there is nothing positive in it at all.

      I really wish you the best, and I hope you will continue to try and give up gambling for good.

      Take care Charlster, I’m rooting for you too!

      Mav

    • #29325
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      Hey Charlster

      Each and every gambler will see something about themselves in other gamblers, yes were unique, good people… but were also complicated complex individuals who often need professional & peer support, a nudge and a bit of constructive criticism along the way.

      If you forced me I could remove your thread, but to what purpose, for whose benefit… Charlster; You, Mav, Vera, and every other member of this site has a divine right to be free from this addiction.. we have to make the right choices, the right sacrifices.. sure we may make a few wrong ones and learn but that is what recovery is about

      Id happily talk to you on the helpline or one of the groups, but I’d not be happy about removing your access to support
      Charlster, I guess your interview is some point tomorrow… but the truth is simple, have you increased you job prospects or just increased the hours you’re going to work to earn money to gamble… wouldn’t it be better to get your life back on track and then look for work knowing you stand a better chance of keeping what money you earn in the future in your pocket

      Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny

    • #29326
      velvet
      Модератор

      Dear Charlster
      I hope you will reconsider – maybe take a break but leave your thread to come back to when your determination to change kicks in again – and it will.
      You were laying the foundation for a gamble-free life but there is so much more for you to learn. Those who care for you want longer with you; those who can help you control your addiction need time to support you and give you the tools to achieve that which really is possible.
      I’m sorry you have struggled with being called a role model; I know it can be hard when you are muddling along with everybody else. Your terrific support for others seems to have blurred your own fight to live gamble-free – so forget talk of inspiration etc., stick with us as a fellow member, build on that which you have already achieved and grab all the help and support that you can.
      My words are not flowing and I apologise – you matter Charlster and I have not forgotten how much I wanted to know the time when you wanted to smile more. I was more than willing to wait for that smile because I knew it would take time. If I didn’t know that such a day would come I would not have bothered to write to you – I would not be writing now. I see the CG in my life smiling so I know your smile is achievable and it also means I know that you are wrong – the nightmare is not inevitable – you are not powerless, you are in need of more support and it is here and it is in GMA.
      Walk with us for the extra mile – I walked that extra mile for someone a few years ago and it was the best thing I ever did.
      My thoughts are with you
      Velvet

    • #29327
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hi Charlster

      I’m glad you have reconsidered and will speak to Velvet or someone. I have been speaking wit Janey and it has really helped, although I am in bits at the moment due to the stress I have caused by neglecting my company and leaving my family in a terribly precaurious situation. I would love to talk to you and gain some of your knowledge at some point, but I suspect the time is not right at the moment for either of us.

      I hope your interview goes well today, and that in time you will address your gambling and other issues and like all of us will enter a period of sustained recovery. I really do wish you all the best and thank you for all your words of support.

      I really need to start making my days better, one day at a time and I hope you can do the same. Get yourslef to GA and get blockers on your computer. That is something I should have done years ago. I should have stopped gambling last year and focused on the good things in my life. I hope you can do the same.

      take care and all the best

      Mav

    • #29328
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      Hi Charlrster

      Firstly I’m so glad you’ve decided to stay, it doesn’t matter why, what matters is your allowing yourself the support you deserve

      So much of what you have said most CG’s can relate to, I certainly can.

      Your line “ It’s impossible to address every problem I have all at once and I knew that other areas of my life would impact negatively and feed my gambling addiction .“

      In so many ways the same sentence has been used, this addiction causes chaos in our minds but allows us to see where others are making mistakes, we can still see our friends have issue, we can read what folks are doing and in some cases aren’t doing that would benefit them.

      Is it relevant that you’re not able at this moment in time to take your own advise … maybe subconsciously as time goes by the more you support the longer the seed in your gambling mind will grow allowing yourself to start to take the actions you need to take for you

      I like to look at the start of recovery in a few ways.

      Our thoughts, life impacts, our self produced gambling chaos has caused us to only see one thing when we look at us… One big confused picture, a picture that seem unfathomable, a picture that makes no sense, much like a jigsaw puzzle that’s been thrown in the air allowing the 1000 pieces to go where they want in our brain… Charlester this is in my onion a very common issue, if we can rebuild that jigsaw, turn all the pieces over slowly, find the edges, the corners we slowly start to rebuild from lots of small manageable pieces that we’ve spent time exploring and examining, This is why GMA, CBT, GA & counselling exists, it’s also why talking and being open is such a powerful tool, these allow us to start to see the corners and edges that make the whole picture clear again.. bit by bit

      Pop onto the helpline Charlester, Unfortunately Velvet doesn’t work on the helpline but were here for you 09:00 > 17:00 Monday to Friday, everything you say is 100% confidential, We won’t judge, we not easily shocked, some of us are gamblers (like myself whose an ex resident of GMA) some are counsellors.

      Come and chat, you’ve made a brilliant decision to stay on the forums, you’ve been brilliant at supporting others… now it’s time to let us support you

      Take Care, There’s lots of hope and ways forward.. you just need to take the step towards getting the corners straight

    • #29329
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Harry, as ever you make some wonderful points. Charlster I do hope you will continue your journey, I value the advice you have given me on my threads, the time you have taken to read the madness I have written, and your consideration in responses.

      I have huge respect for you, as I have for everyone on this site. GT are amazing, patient and knowledgable. They really want to help us.

      Take care, and all the best

      Mav

    • #29330
      Adam26
      Участник

      Good to hear that mate. Hope it pans out for you. You deserve a break.

    • #29331
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      Thank you for listening to me. First thing this morning, before I went out for the day, I looked to see if you had posted and your words made my day.
      Being called inspirational is obviously much nicer than being called a plonker but it can place a degree of responsibility on the person being so-called – and this is not the time for you to be taking responsibility for the lives of others. You are here because you realised that your addiction is ruining your life – it takes guts and determination to fight that addiction and you need all your energy to do so.
      You are not a fraud when you support others – it is good to share a tough time with those who are walking the same road as you. It doesn’t do you any harm provided you allow others to help you as well, especially the ones holding the light up so you can see the potholes.
      I will leave it there but suffice it to say I believe with my whole heart that you made the right decision and I couldn’t be more pleased. Of course there will be more ups and downs but together with the support of this community, the helpline and hopefully GMA we will be smiling together one day and I will wait patiently until that time.
      Velvet

    • #29332
      p
      Участник

      Well done on your interviews and i hope that you hear something and if not then there will be something else maybe just round the corner, but good on you for the effort.
      Well done.. keep up the good efforts in your recovery

      P

    • #29333
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Sounds really positive Charlster. Well done on the job interview – you’ve still got it mate. I’m sure you’ll get the job, and if you don’t you got close and that means you can get close to the next one.

      You seem to be in a much better place now, which is awesome. We will all have set backs – today I am in the office with my wife packing stuff up, backing stuff up. I have so many memories of this place, but it is the end of a chapter. It was also 3 weeks ago in here that I last gambled. My urges are lessening, but I will always be on my guard. I do get thoughts sometimes of finding a way to play live poker at a casino, but it would be such a mistake to do that right now. So just for today I will not gamble. Have you found a local GA you can go to?

      I’m so glad you’ve come back.

      Stick around, use this place as much as you need. I am often on the help line when things get though – this is an amazing site, truly. Join us on the chat in the support groups sometimes and meet everyone.

      take care and good luck at the doctors.

      Will the help of my higher power this is a new phase in my life. It is not going to be easy, but then nothing worth doing is.

    • #29334
      p
      Участник

      I always think its funny when people say i dont want to bump into anyone at GA.. they are there for the same reason.. if they are there they also are going through or have gone through the same thing. You might have got spotted at casinos too.
      its funny the reasons we can come up with not to get help but all the reasons in the world to gamble.. not having a go, just having a giggle, as the addiction speaks loud and clear.. when you find excuses not to get help its often the addiciton talking because it doesnt want you to find a way to stop it.
      it just ourselves against ourselves really its the biggest form of self deception.. I hope you do try GA.. its a wonderful help to be around those that are going through the same thing as you.. no one else quite understands it. How could they from the outsiders it must look completely ridiculous..
      Good on you for your gamble free efforts, you are doing the right things, i would just encourage you to try GA regardless of those thoughts.. but of course its up to you, not preaching, just wanting everyone to stay in recovery, i wouldnt wish gambling on anyone… keep posting, if i offend you im sorry not my intention, just want the best for everyone

      p

    • #29335
      Fritz
      Участник

      Glad to see you are going to stick with this motley crew, haha! I have had the same distraught feeling of letting myself and everyone else down by lapsing, and it really is the worst. But knowing so many understand and are willing to forgive is a very powerful force. Believe me, I understand and I don’t hold it against you a bit, in fact it gives me a great feeling just knowing that you haven’t thrown in the towel. I know you would do the same for me if I stumble. That’s how it is with us.

      Recovery truly is a process, it takes time. I don’t count it against anyone for slipping, because I have been trying and sometimes failing for the last 4+ years now. The key is I am still trying each day. I read from your posts that you are still trying too, and that’s what’s important.

      We are hard on ourselves, sometimes too hard. We desperately want to get well and there is a hopelessness that comes with a lapse. A fear that maybe we will never be well again. But time heals that pain, and time helps us reconsider those dark thoughts.

      Best of luck on the job opportunity. And I am so glad you chose to stay!

    • #29336
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster

      Great, honest post. I was at GA last night talking to people about recovery. SOmeone described recovery to me as a chronic state of relapse. I said to him that sounded negative and he explained that when someone who has a chronic gambling addiction makes the effort to stop, it is diffocult to stop all at once. People goes 2,3 maybe weeks, then gamble. Then hate themslves, but they gain knowledge of that. Their feelings, why they did it. Then they go longer and might, at some point, lapse again. There is more self knowledge now, and there are longer periods of absintance. Then there is another stopping – eventually the gaps get longer, we gain more knowlege, our brains return to normal.

      I am dealing with lots of conflicting emotions but now my wife is starting to feel things – pain, fear for her future our son. I have created a very negative situation in our lives because I couldn’t do something as simple as stopping gambling and getting my life in order to support her. My gambling ahs been papering over many cracks in my psyche I didn’t want to deal with. Now I know I want to deal with them, despite the pain. I am desperate for recovery and all that entails. I am only on day 22, but taking into account my last maps this would be day 40. I take great heart from that. Normally I pretend I have stopped gambling but I get better at gambling even more secretly – that plays havoc on my mental state. This time it’s true. I can’t say I will never gamble again but I know that today I will not gamble. That means I can focus on getting so much stuff done. I am not sure I have the time to do it, but I just need to make every day count.

      I can’t imagine what it is like to have lived with this for as long as you have. I have only been a CG for 3 years but I have damaged myself and my life for so long. If I stop now I have a chance of being in a much better place in 6 months, 1 year and onwards. I don’t want my son to grow up knowing his dad is a gambler and all that entails. I am learning from the experience of longer term gamblers on this site and how it affected their relationships and it makes my heart weep in sadness.

      I am so happy you have stayed because this last lapse of yours will give you more tools. The fact you talk about it here, express it, get feedback. That’s probably new for you. You’ll go to GA when you’re ready and you’ll wish you had gone sooner.

      Something I hear a lot at the moment. You are where you are meant to be. You have support here, people who love you though they don’t know you. People who genuinely want you to get better and lead a life without gambling. A life without the urge to gamble, or need to gamble, without that level of guilt, shame – the thought how how to get money just to live.

      I am ready to put this behind me because I see how much lower I could fall. I am nowhere near the actual rock bottom of my life, but I have hit several personal rock bottoms, sometimes one after another.

      Stick around, you have my love and support old bean. And don’t forget about GMA if all else fails.

      Have a great day. Just for today… I will not gamble.

    • #29337
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hi Charlster

      I feel the same as you, as if my head is exploding. Unlike you I am in the position of everything crumbling around me as I ‘get better’. I keep wanting to try and cancel the closing of the company, keep the office etc. But if I do I simply won’t get better. I have to let this go, and your decision has given me heart. If I do not get help for my addiction, if all I do is simply abstain from gambling, I will return to it. if I address what made me become a CG (access, time, money, hiding from my emotions and feelings etc etc) then i can avoid the next bet and become a better person.

      By getting treatment you can address those issues and in 3-6 months you will be stronger to deal with life. Abstaining is not recovery. Abstaining is simply not gambling, but also not dealing with the underlying issues. You lapsed because you convinced yourself this time would be diferent – it would be fun, just a small bet whatever was in your head. But that sent you on a small spiral which you managed to stop. This was the same as my slip 22 days ago. I learned so much from that.

      You are such a smart guy, so self aware and yet you are really fragile like me. If you are only 52 that gives you another 15 years of working – and if you are good at what you do then no matter what your age it will be noticed.

      I am so glad you have stayed on the site and stayed with us. Please use the helpline, speak with Harry and the others, come to the groups, find a GA. Please put blockers on your computer. K9 is free. Jansdad has a way of setting a password and then chucking it away. Block ALL access to online sites. I made a huge step forward yesterday. I was carrying my wife and my computers home but I was off to GA. I asked her if her computer was protected. She said yes. We checked and it wasn’t. IN the back of my mind I suspected this but didn’t want to be faced with temptation to use her computer. She we protected it and then gave it to her. If I hadn’t have done that I am sure I would have had a look and when I found out I could gamble I probably would have and then would not have gone to GA. WHo knows how much I could have won. Because even if I won a few bets I would soon lose it.

      My big problem has been online poker which as well as taking your money slowly, also takes your time. I am done with this. I simply cannot put myself through this any longer.

      Please Charlster for your sake get blockers on your laptop and computers so you cannot even access online gambling sites. Protect yourself. Ask you daughter to hold the password maybe.

      I am rooting for you mate, really. I am sure you learned something from this slip, we all do.

      Take care

      Mav

    • #29338
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlester, that is awesome. I so wish i had installed K9 much much earlier. I reliase that although I wanted to give up gambling for years, I didn;t really. Otherwise I would have done so.

      It sounds like things are going well for you with GMA. Do you have a date? We won’t meet as I am sure you will go to Beckenham. I am going to Dudley.

      Gotta wash my little monkey now, but really proud and inspired by how you have dealt with this. I really need to get a grip of my mind as I am still wallowing 22 days gamble free. I gotta take control of my mind.

      Take care and have a great night.

    • #29339
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      In my opinion that is the best and most positive post you have ever written – you are putting your health and happiness before everything else.
      Everything you do in life will be better when you have controlled your addiction so hearing you say you are going for it ‘hook line and sinker’ is brilliant – half measures will not do.
      You have it within your grasp to be the man you want to be – I believe you will like him very much – I know I will.
      Velvet

    • #29340
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster,

      I know everything you are saying. Last year in 2014 when I got caught again by my wife after a long sustaine dperiod of uncrontrolled gambling over christmas, including the days before and after my won was born and my wife was in hospital, I never thought of going to GA and getting help. Even though I knew I had a porblem. I took a week off and then started again, keeping it small. I argued to myself if I only make small bets, control the hours I play etc, what harm is it doing. Surely that is my right? Well, slowly that became more and more time, I started playing on higher sites and no matter when I won I soon lost it – then had to play as quickly as possible, depositing again, to win it back, but making terrible decisions.

      It slowly ate more and more of my head until Sept/Oct/Nov/Dev last ear when I was playing almost all of the time while I was mant to be working, really resenting when people were asking me questions. I was so deep into my addiction I could no longer see it, except for a small voice pleading with me to stop. The addiction beat that voice into a pulp. Until my wife caught me this year, when I started using company funds. then, once it was out, my fragile mental state of mind collapsed and I am only now beginning to feel ‘normal’.

      You wrote that instead of seeing clients you would sit in the car with you ipad. I got pulled over by the police while playing poker on my iPhone in 2012. 3 points and a fine. How mental. I am totally ashamed of that. And that was April 2012, 3 years ago. I never saw how addicted I was. The addicted prevented me from seeing it, and just now your addiction made you turn down GMA. But it seems you gained a huge amount from your slip. It wasn’t a relapse as you were able to stop – you didn’t fall back into a crazy destructive pattern.

      One of the reasons I look up to you is that you have great insight. You are 10 years older than me, but you haven’t given up. I have to accept I lost my business because of this addiction, but by the time I reach retirement age (70) in 28 years it will be 2043. My son will be 29 years old, almost 30. Younger than I am now. Everyone tells me I am young enough to start again, and so are you. 20 years is enough time if you have you health.

      That is my focus now.

      You take care, have a great day, and well done.

    • #29341
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster, I have just caught up on your thread. I think I missed out on it because you started it just as I started a relapse!
      Your thread is very powerful. I was pleased to read about your landlord treating you to lasagne .. It’s nice that there are some kind people out there.. I feel such immense shame about this addiction. Maybe I don’t give people the opportunity to be kind.

      I read with interest about why you are not attending GA. snap!!
      I live in a similar place . If I was seen in a casino i would be seen having a night out… If I was seen at GA ,I would become a person who could kiss goodbye to my Career..after trying to explain this so many times, I was relieved to see someone else who had a similar dilemma!

      I hope you are feeling upbeat and looking forward to your residential treatment and a whole new life

    • #29342
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      Break this down, say that you have issues that you cant discuss in a open population area and ask if this can be talked about in a private room.

      I cant believe your be the first or last to make such a request

    • #29343
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster, I am telling everyone about my gambling addiction and the fact that I am going into rehab, from my accountants to HMRC to everyone. I realise the only way for me to rid myself of this is to be open to everyone. I need everyone’s support. inclduing HMRC, so they need to know I am going into rehab as I am trying to keep the company going.

      I know how you are feeling, truly I do. At the moment I am struggling to work out where I stand, where the copmany stands, making my wife redundant. I have simply left everything to the last minute. I could have avoided all of this by stopping gambling last year and focusing on the business and building it up, taking pride in it – instead the gambling took over, leading to depression, leading to more gambling and so on.

      I am never ever gambling again, it has brought me nothing but misery. I have probably stopped too late to save the business, we’ll see, but one way or the other I have to get thorugh this. Time marches on, we have to deal with the shit we have created. But it is hard – if someone had been able to show me this future I know I would not have gambled. But strangely I did see it – I saw it in the faces and stories of other people from GA. But I thought I was different, I could handle it. I’ve learned now what a powerful addiction this is, how it takes over your mind and soul. And it does – it stopped me thinking straight on so many things – and now I cannot think straight at all.

      I know now I will never be cured. I have pushed it too far. Maybe if I had stopped last year and stay stopped – but I would probably always have fallen into gambling again. As i would never had looked at the root cause of the gambling – unhappiness. And also I am probably the type of person that can’t stop until I hit rock bottom. BUt I have hit so many rock bottoms.

      You can do it Charlster. This is our make or break moments. The moment we turn our lives around.

      You have my love and support mate. I do hope one day we get the chance to meet once we have gamble free time behind us and more importantly a good future without gambling ahead of us.

      take care.

    • #29344
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      I know what you are saying and I agree. The truth is, do we want to be free of this addiction and move on in our lives. I have wreaked so much damage in just 3 years. It has taken over my life to such an extent that I cannot wait to be free of all of this and be at GMA where I can come to terms with what I have done. I am now in a race against time to make this happen. Is my company insolvent or can I fix it? Will the creditors give me time? Is it worth fixing? Will I win this contract again? Will my head ever be clear and free of this mess? Not until I clean up the mess one way or another and the same is true of you. You need to clean your mess up so that when you go to GMA you can make the most of it.

      I really urge you to go to GA. I have made many friends there and I can text them their advice, especially people who have been free of gambling for many years. I know a guy who wrecked his company as well as he has been offering advice, especially when it comes to the mental state of things.

      I have been walllowing in self pity for so long it has become a default mode – why did I do this, why didn’t I do that etc etc These are questions I will answer, and more in treatment. What are my failings – laziness, leaving things to chance, not planning.

      You take care

      Mav

    • #29345
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      How are you feeling today Charlster? I have a tough day with putting my office stuff into storage, but I know it is for the best. I have to prep for GMA – without GMA the rest of my life will be the same as it has been. I need a break more than anything, time for me. I have spent so much time for other people, the only me time I ever got was gambling and that led nowehere. I am more than a compuslive gambler, but all I have really done is gamble for 3.5 years. I cannot allow this addiction to take any more of my life – I have to take lessons from this and I hope youc an too.

      You’ve done so well after your lapse, despite the initial despair I think you are stronger and you are ready for recovery, as am I.

      have a great gamble free day, let us know how you are doing.

      Mav

    • #29346
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      Hey Charlester
      Well done for what you did this morning that took courage, commitment and honesty, its true when you open up people will help. Unfortunately the benefits hear so much BS they often ignore what’s being said… but when someone is clearly being open and honest the human side of these guys does come out thus leading you to be treated as a human. Hopefully they have made it clearer for you to see a way forward
      What I think is important is your doing what you need to do, you’ve told the benefits of your situation, can you not ask the benefits to talk to your letting agent… these guys are also human.
      I’m not qualified to comment on aspects of benefits or how your letting agents think… but im just going to apply my logic, I may be well off
      Letting agents know that housing pay in arrears, they know your unemployed. They also know that to have you removed is a costly time consuming process, kicking you out may leave a property unoccupied costing the landlord money, treat them like humans and see what reactions you get, it makes sense for them to work with you not against you… remember this is only my logic I’m not telling you what to do this isn’t my field
      Tell them the truth, hiding will only make them think their being ignored… Charlester you’re on your way to giving yourself the best change by going through rehab, you’re doing everything in the right way, continue in that fashion.

    • #29347
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlester, I feel so much of your pain is my pain too. I cannot begin to understand the complexity of the sitiuation you are in, but you are doing the right things. Get yourself ready for GMA. Do you have a start date yet? I know that I could conceivably keep the office going, but it would require me to be 100% which I am not. When I am on a full tank I am charming, funny, good at what I do, I listen carefully etc etc. At the moment I would come across as desperate to any potential new clients, I would be scrabbling around in the dark, feeling the same pressures with the business.

      We just took a van load of stuff to the storage space and have one left to do. I’ve had this opffice for nearly 6 years – it was my second home. It was also a place I came to gamble – prentending to work. On weekend, late evening. There are so many memories here but I know I have to move on if I am to fulfil my porntial.

      I am an addict, there are no 2 ways about it – as are you. Addiction brings depression, self esteem issues, low confidence. Without treating the cause of our depression – gambling and what it has done – we can’t move on. As you say, we would only be papering over the cracks.

      Harry makes some good points – talk to people, let them know the truth. WHo cares what they think. I am telling everyone I have a gambling problem but that I am addresssing it. Almost everyone I tell tells me they know someone who has or had a problem too. It is more common than you think. We are lucky that we are doing something about it. I never want to feel like this again – I am still coming to terms with the reality, but I must as must you.

      All my thoughts are with you.

      Take care and don’t gamble, it won’t solve anything at all.

    • #29348
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      Hey Charlster

      I read your post to Mav, a few points hit home… this paragraph says so much “ Why should I even expect a Civil Servant to understand my problems? So I usually end up condensing everything and the watered down version never quite has the impact I need to get the help I need. I’m never quite able to express myself and get my full message across.

      The reality of your line above, they don’t need to understand addiction but hey do need to understand „You“ and if that means bearing
      your soul to give yourself a life you deserve do it, you don’t need to tell them about the issues that should be addressed with a counsellor, but if you give a watered down version whilst wearing happy smiley false facade then you have to ask, did you give them the chance to help

      Charlester, you also said „I’m also taking a massive gamble at the moment in the hope that I will get the help I need.I have no idea whether my stay with the GMA will be 2 weeks or 14 weeks yet“

      Why would you believe that you wouldn’t be accepted onto the programme?

    • #29349
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      Fabulous post… so far every time you’ve been honest, stopped hiding its worked in your favour… humanity does exist

      Your „suppose“ on the 2 week assessment is spot on, the reason you do an application, the reason they do telephone interviews is to be as confident as confident as can be that the people they accept will fit but also that they can help… stop worrying its using up energy you could put to more positive uses

    • #29350
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster,
      Can’t offer you any advice about rent or GMA but hope everything works out..

      You are such an honest person you deserve all good things

    • #29351
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      I think you shone at your interview because at last you have stopped in your tracks and taken an inventory of your life. It looked pretty ghastly but instead of indulging in that which you had always done you have chosen a different route, you are seeking another way.
      I cannot believe that anybody going on the GMA programme would not be afraid of the unknown and I don’t think anyone can allay that fear completely for you– but GMA exists to give CGs the chance to live in control of their addiction and you want to live in control of your addiction – I cannot see that as a gamble.
      I am not a CG Charlster and I know you are not low life. It will be so much easier to put confused and baffled people straight once you have fought and won your battle, I would like to see someone find a pigeon-hole that you will fit into then.
      You will not spend the rest of your life telling everybody that you have a gambling addiction – at the moment it is better that those who affect your life and whose lives you affect, do know – some will try and understand, some will not. Forget the ones that will not, they are probably worrying about something else in their own lives – you know what you are doing and that is all that matters.
      I know I haven’t been in your shoes but I really do appreciate how hard it must be to put yourself on the line when the sheer nature of your addiction is to be secret. It must feel demeaning and I salute you for all you are doing. You will possibly have things thrown back at you again in your life but it will be easier to ride the storm when you are in control of your life.
      Believe me there are many people prepared to listen – you just haven’t met us all yet
      Velvet

    • #29352
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      That’s a great post Charlster old boy. You;ve come so far since your lapse a few weeks ago. Don’t forget the serenity prayer

      God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and wisdom to know the difference.

      You can’t change how your landlord will react, but you can charge how you approach it.

      Do you have a date yet for GMA for your initial assessment?

      take care, and I wish you a positive gamble free day.

    • #29353
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      Sure you’ve been here before, and yes its uncertain what’s going to happen… your going in with open arms, with honesty and the knowledge that you have this time shown huge commitment..

      Sure he may take some convincing, it’s his business after all… but to me courage and honesty have prevailed so far. You’ve made adaptations to ensure he now get his money direct and you’re self refereed to a Rehabilitation Centre says so much about you knowing you need help and not being forced into receiving help, has he seen this side of you before, the committed honest courageous side… I hope all goes well

      Just remember, make any agreement feasible, he’ll appreciate that your thinking this through logically and not making false promises….

      On the „Oh before I go, one other thing, do you know if you’re still able to blog when in therapy?“ you wont have access and too be totally honest, you wont have time your be too bust working on you

    • #29354
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Wow Charlster, what a superb post. Truly inspirational. I had to read it 3 times. I too have had a lovely day today with my young son. I am trying to get as much time with him as possible before I go to GMA.

      I am slowly working through my tick list too. This just goes to show that there is human kindness out there. People listen and can understand. You sound as if you are through the worst of it in terms of the depression after your lapse, and that you are now thinking more clearly. Well done, it is such a pleasure to see the switch in mood in you.

      Maybe see you at 7 on the support group?

      Take care mate

      Mav

    • #29355
      monique
      Участник

      What great news! It is so lovely to hear about someone being so kind and understanding, going ‘the extra mile’ for you, when he might have been quite the opposite. It is good you have shared your experience here – not everyone will be so willing to help, but it is an encouragement to see that it can happen like this. You did all you could with complete honesty and have been rewarded. Wonderful!

      Monique

    • #29356
      p
      Участник

      Well done.. that is a wonderful post and i love that you are looking at the possibilities ahead.. day by day your recovery will build and you are doing things now to make that possible.. just not gambling today will get you up that ladder of time..
      just today that is all, dont gamble for this day only.. well done on your progress, it is progress its wonderful to watch

      P

    • #29357
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster, I just wanted to thank you on your thread for the support you have offered me this week on my thread. It means a lot. I am so heartened by the way you came through your lapse, and have taken the bull by the horns. You have expressed your thoughts here with clarity and more importantly taken advice in the right frame of mind and you have achieved some great successes, so that you can focus on your time at GMA.

      The work you have done with the job people, housing people, letting agents. By letting people in, even though you don;t know them, they have been able to show sympathy and help. I have been finding that. By being honest with people, it means they have a better understanding of where my head is. That means they can offer better adbive.

      I have 9 days to go and that is not much time. I still have a lot to do, but if I focus (which I have not been able to do for a long time) I can get as much done as possible.

      I really respect your attitude. Keep posting.

      Have a great weekend

      Mav

    • #29358
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Thanks mate. I think that’s what makes this site so special, is that people who are strangers bonded by one addiction can reach out and help others. I would give my back teeth to have found this site back in 2012, and to have take recovery seriously. However, this way I keep my teeth and take recovery seriously now. It’s never too late to live a good life.

      Your daughter is a young adult, have you been in touch with her to let her know how you are progressing? I don’t know what kind of relationship you have with her, but have you let her know how much effort you are putting into your recovery?

      Have a great weekend mate. You take care.

    • #29359
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Thanks Charlster, I take what you say very seriously. I am sorry about the fact you have no relationship with your daughter. I hope I can have a good relationship with my son going forwards, even if his mum and I are not together. I need to put my reocvery above everything else because without my recovery, I have nothing else.

    • #29360
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster,

      Did you ever want to do something but think I’ll wait until I lose that stone, or have that course behind me . I do that all the time. I put my life on hold until I’m good enough to do the things I want.

      Then a decade later I look back in the photos and I think if Ii had known I looked so well then I would have done more…

      I think like some people (me) hide behind their weight, perhaps we hide behind out gambling .
      I don’t know but I can identify with what you wrote on my thread- it is with me all the time. I spend my whole time juggling numbers and hiding my shame.

      I think that’s kinda what you are saying. If we could believe in ourselves now , look how much we could achieve .

      So for today , let’s do that Charles..let’s believe we can do whatever we want …

    • #29361
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Charlster, you write with such clarity and insight

      I kinda found myself agreeing … I too struggle to beat this alone ( with the exception of this site)
      I am scared of people finding out .
      And yet I guess the sooner I reach out for help , the sooner I can start building that happy life..

      Any of the people close to me who could help are all compulsive gamblers themselves ….

      Your posts are so powerful!

    • #29362
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charleter,

      Hope you have a lovely day and enjoy your walk !
      Thank you for your advice

    • #29363
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      That’s a wonderful post Charlster. At the moment I am swinging wildly between wanting to go to GMA and now really regretting it. I am convinced that my gambling addiction is not as bad as everyone else, but if that was the case how come I spent so much time last year when I should have been working, gambling. And how did it make me so depressed.

      I am regretting so much that i am now almost rgertting the last 10 mins of my life – I am a total mess.

      I have so much respect for the way you approach things. You are very mature, you think things through. I am still flailing. I still have mountains of work to do before going to GMA and I keep putting it off, putting it off – unable to focus. I am so scared. So scared.

      I have to see my accountants now about the business.

      You take care mate, you be strong. You are strong – I need some of your strength. I love your posts, they really help me.

    • #29364
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Thanks Charlster. I think you have hit the nail on the head. I need to keep my feelings more to myself and actually pull thr cloak across me and be strong. Fake it till I make it, it you will. I have been so srong in th epast I have come through so many things – but this is the hardest yet. I have neber lost so much and I do not mean money. The loss of my wife, son, business – everything. I feel I am beings tripped back, laid bare. Perhaps this is what I need – perhaps I need this time to regroup, get strong again and see what happens.

      I am very childish for a man of my age, I feel I have never grown up. That’s not necesrrily a bad thing, but my immaturity led me to ignore the most important things – wife, son, business, work, and most importantly me. I have not taken care of myself for sl long, all I do is put myself down. I have been hiding in addictions for too long. How I feel is how I feel.

      As ever thank you for the advice, I will try and remember it.

      Do you have a date yet?

      Take care

    • #29365
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hi Charlster

      Many thanks for your words. I have poured my heart out on this blog (yours, mine others) in a way that is hard to do in real life. But I know I will never be judged, that everyone here understand what this illness has done/ does/ can do to us left unchecked. I believe I am in the early stages of my addiction and that left untreated will get worse – it’s gotten worse every day for 3 years, so certainly won’t get better.

      I do have chinks of hope, but the depression keeps pushing them away from me. I must try harder to focus on them and try and turn the neative thoughts around. The truth is I am not going to prison (yet), I have not committed a crime. I have been addicted and that has made me act in a way that is totally alien to me. But I think this is a new chapter for me. I think I am destined to learn what I have to learn at GMA and every day after that. I want to be a good person, a smart person, a person who thinks things through, who doesn’t need cructhes or escapes, who can focus on his work, learn new skills, grow a, bring up my son well, be there for him as he goes through the struggle of life.

      My life isn’t so bad and all my owes are self inflicted, but posting on here and getting responses such as yours mean so much. I do hope that I can meet you one day when we are clean, Charlster, and getting on with out lives as happy, productive normal non-gambling people, who can put this behind us as yet another learning curve. I feel you and I have so much in common, I am starting to think of you as a sort of older brother (don’t be offended).

      I have seen you grow and learn through your posts, how you dealt with the lapse was nothing short of brilliant. You are a deep person as you say, I think you know yourself well. I do not know myself well, it seems. I am interested to see who I am when I am in therapy and working through the issues. What made me gamble so ferociously, what made me desire that above all else, especially as I was achieving my dream of owning my own production copmany. Maybe this is meant to happen, maybe, if there is a God, this is his plan. I cannot say. I must simply now trust in the love of this site and those around me. SO that I can give back.

      I am going to do as you say, and be strong so that my wife can see me making an effort.

      You take care and thank you for your time.

      Mav

    • #29366
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster , I know your last few posts were directed at Mav, but I have got so much from them.
      The thing is i have been so lucky in life in many ways . I have a job I love which is week paid . I have the right amount of responsibility so that I feel I have worked my way up a little but not so much responsibility that I am stressed out .

      A big promotion opportunity had come up and in not sure I want I go for it .. I am trying to decide if its because I have learned to value other things, because I have gambled any extra money I got anyway or if I feel unworthy.
      If I’m honest I think I just don’t want to see others passing me out . Is that really silly?.. I suppose through all of this mess I have managed to do well at my job.

      Reading about u giving up the job makes me think why do I feel the need I drive myself toward further stress.

      Reading how u said to Mav that u can start again makes me think I don’t have to chase every opportunity .

      Reading what you say about motivation had made me want to go tackle the biggest bind I have in my life besides gambling … It sounds so trivial but my untidy house stops me living the life I want ..

      So all your posts today I have taken something from.
      Have to go now … I’m tidying my room .. Lol

    • #29368
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Well done Chatlster , you have been busy. You so made the right decision to defer job hunting . You will walk out if GMA a new man.

      You have great inner strength to achieve all that you do , and you are decisive which a lot of us gamblers aren’t .

      Well done again !

    • #29370
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster , thank you for your post on my thread . I wish when God had been handing out the compulsions he had added cleaning to my list !! Lol seems I got gambling and eating.!

      You are an organised person. I rarely get to the end of a to do list . I am starting to understand why people are queuing up to hire you .

      Organised , clean and tidy, intelligent , kind, and oh so much empathy !!

      Thank u for ur kindness .. It’s much appreciated !

    • #29371
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster,
      You are right . We all deserve and should grab some happiness. It is difficult to focus on anything when our minds are obsessed with counting and recounting money .
      Adding and subtracting and wondering if we will make it .

      Your positivity is infectious . I read your posts and I think I can do this . I feel like the coach has got me all revved up before a game!
      You can do this Charlster and you will do this !!

    • #29373
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Haha Charlster, u are funny !!
      Thank you for your post on my thread . You have a way of straight talking in a way that gets the message home while at the same time building a person up.
      Well done on your two weeks !
      You have given me lots of food for thought !
      Much appreciated!

    • #29374
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Chatlster , you are giving so much support to others, I hope u are getting the support YOU need.

      You advice is brilliant , intelligent and insightful!
      Be mice to meet u in some of the groups ..

    • #29375
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster, how was your day ? Are you looking forward to your counselling tomorrow ?

    • #29376
      velvet
      Модератор

      Dear Charlster
      Please talk to the helpline. I know that they will be in complete agreement with what this counsellor has said but it might help for you to hear more reasons why. I would also push past them your idea to begin a course of anti-depressants at this juncture.
      I can hear your frustration – I know that waiting is hard and even more so for someone waiting to go into GMA, so please keep posting and use ‘all’ the support we can give – that is the first thing, I think, is worth a try.
      Velvet

    • #29377
      monique
      Участник

      I must have been writing at same time as Velvet. My thoughts were very similar. I was writing on my phone, rather than the usual lap top and the message ‘disappeared’! So now you have had V’s post and set other things going, I will just say I admire your determination and maturity and, although it’s frustrating, you see the logic and I’m sure you will keep the long term goal of a stable recovery firmly in place. It is never a quick journey, but such a worth while one, as you know.
      Keep on posting. I wish you much strength and courage as you continue.
      Monique

    • #29378
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster, I can really understand your disappointment . It is like you have to keep waiting for things to happen and when at last they were about to start the plug was pulled .

      I hope the medication helps Chatlster . I really dont hav any experience beyond a few beta blockers when my child was unwell( my first big trauma !) I have heard people say they bring you down before the bring you up … But that might not be true. Just do what feels right for you.

      You will soon be at GMA . Thank you for your post .. I did wonder if I could go to GMA for the residential… The time out sounds so blissful… And to receive therapy on top of that would be wonderful..

    • #29379
      LostitallAgain
      Участник

      ove just read ur first original post here and one or two of the most recent ones.

      Your story really helps me, so thank you for sharing.

      I think getting mood under control is a big factor. I’m on antidepressants, anripsychotics and mood stabiliser attempting to do this. There’s no shame in needing a little extra to help out. If it works and helps then great!
      Sorry u have been feeling a bit deflated I hope that passes soon.

      Hugs. LostitallAgain.

    • #29380
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Well down Charlster . As a result of your good decision you still have £20 to live on and your bills will be a paid .

      I am wondering if there is a food bank anywhere near you? Why not ? We have all paid our taxes . Take whatever help you need right now . You are on the verge of a great new life!!

      I am so glad you didn’t gamble . Mentally that would have set you back. I had a similar experience this week with k9. I would like to say I had your will power … I signed up but my phone didnt have the apps to play the games . After torturing myself with It for about two days I self excluded. I really dont know where I would be if I had t!!

      Keep strong Charlster… It’s hard.. But you are doing great!!

    • #29383
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Chatlster, Well done , you are doing really well. That is great run of gamble free days

      I never hear before that anti depressants suppress compulsive urges. How do u know if u are depressed and need them. I am kinda like you in that I don’t like medicines much but I think I would take anything that would keep me gamble free.

      We are all familiar with blowing out wages and struggling for the month.. But at the moment you are taking time out to make sure that when you next have money you can hold on to it and that has to be a good thing Charlster .

      You are not only doing amazingly well in your own recovery, you are providing outstanding support to others on here . It is so obvious that you are a very intelligent person with astounding insight .
      You are just right to take the tablets … Throw everything at your recovery .. You deserve it

    • #29386
      p
      Участник

      Thanks for writing those thats wonderful.. i love hearing those sort of sayings because they stick with me and i find myself thinking of them at all different times and i think how good to think of those positive little sayings as opposed to all the negative ones..

      P

    • #29387
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster, I hope your health check went well.
      I love your list for peaceful living . I echo what Sybil say about your high intelligence .. In fact it is apparent that Sybil falls into this category herself .
      Earlier I was reading some posts and it occurred to me now that you two could easily write several books : blogs together . I love reading both your posts .. It is my my fix of daily wisdom!! Now there’s a title for you!!!

      Thank you for your kind posts on my thread .
      I will look up the depression link but I honestly think you hit the nail on the head on my thread … I lack a strategy, I lack a plan … I drift ..
      It is fabulous that you are urge free. Is this as a result of the new prescription ? I once tried NAC, but I think it made my tummy ill… It was amazing as it didn’t stop thoughts but it stopped them hold and becoming urges. It also helped with some „ladies “ issues which I am not going to write about here lol..

      All this talk of brain plasticity has really filled me with such hope ..
      We can all change! Our thoughts and urges can change !!

    • #29388
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Yahoo Charlster!!
      Brilliant news . We will miss you on here but will look forward to you coming back to us with your wisdom and telling us all you have learned !!
      June 1st… Thank that makes u a Gemini?

    • #29389
      vera
      Участник

      The best birthday present you will ever get, Charlster!
      Well worth waiting for and very well deserved!
      Exciting!

    • #29390
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlester.
      Keep calm and gamble-free, just as you have been doing and you will be fine.
      I cannot think of a better way to spend your birthday.
      My thoughts are with you
      Velvet

    • #29391
      lauren05
      Участник

      Charlster, that is so good to hear that you’ve bought your ticket. I’m sure this week will be very busy with all that is required while you’re away but so good to hear you’re nearly there and on track.

      I received my letter from GMA on Friday and have come to terms with it so looking forward to it now but have loads to do and need to get support, hopefully from my neighbour, to look after my 2 cats. Fortunately, the new program for women is for a 4 day stay only and one overnight at the end of 12 weeks, so I can manage it. I would not have been able to do it if it were a 12 week residential program so I can only admire you for your commitment and lengths you’ve gone to be supported and keep your flat while you’re away.

      Thanks for your support and postings. It has encouraged and helped many of us here with the time you’ve taken to go out your way to support others. God bless.

      Lauren

    • #29392
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster,,
      I hope the health issues are not serious. The cholesterol if its not too high can besotted with diet. I may besting but I understand that doctors get paid for meeting targets for cholesterol and therefore are quick to hand out pills which you then can never get off… Maybe some of the medical experts on here could advise..

      It is a huge step going to GMA, but such a positive one . Even removing yourself from normal life for twelve weeks will do amazing things for you brain plasticity.

      I’m not sure what u can do about your flat.. It’s a hard one…. B

      Really wishing you all the best and know you are going to beat this!

    • #29393
      kpat
      Участник

      Hi Charlster, I spent some time reading your thread and am amazed how strong you are. Your determination to change your life is inspiring. Your posts to others show such thoughtfulness and kindness. I am thrilled for you to get to go for treatment at GM. I hope you will share some of the advice and tools you learn there.
      I wish all the best in your recovery and that your family might be reconnected with you in a way that will give you joy. Your outlook is so very positive; it is contagious:)

    • #29394
      vera
      Участник

      If I were to use one word to sum up my impression of you, Charlster, I would say „CALM“!
      Yet you have written that you suffer(ed?) from stress, anxiety and depression .
      Your resilience and determination have lead to to where you are today and to the future road to recovery.
      Good luck with your GP visit. I hope it’s just routine. Personally, I go by my body but the best advice is probably to follow what your GP says!!!?? So they tell me!
      On a practical level, can you get the Post Office to hold on to, or divert your mail while you are away ?
      I’m sure GMA have dealt with clients who have similar concerns. Can you you ask them in advance if you can use their online facilities to pay utility bills or inquire in your local CAB or Social Welfare office to find out what services are available?
      Strange how these things never seemed to bother us when we were in the throes of gambling.
      I need to go to my GP tomorrow for a medical report for insurance purposes following a car crash. I feel like a criminal. Yet, I had no bother arranging HUGE loans to gamble.
      Life is strange ! We only see the reality when we throw down our crutches!
      Keep fighting the good fight!

    • #29395
      Анонимен
      Гост

      charlster,as well as being calm, you are an incredibly organised person. When I am going away it is chaos, yet here you are and you seem to be thinking of everything!

      I sincerely hope you get everything you deserve from this residential. You deserve a good life where you can use your many gifts and talents.

      I find myself wondering how you are feeling about it all. I think the dominant feeling must be hope .
      If I can give you one bit of advice– just something I have learned about you through reading you posts on here..

      You spend a lot of time helping others and that is a great quality. I find myself thinking it would be so great to be in a residential group with someone like you. Why? Selfishly I’m thinking of the support you would be to me!!
      My advice( for what it worth) is please, for this residential put Charlster first. As Charles says, fit your own oxygen mask first before helping others. This is your big chance!! This is charlsters time . Just be aware if anyone is hindering your progress, draining your resources with their neediness!
      I can’t wait to read your thread after you come out

      Ps I am toying with the idea of the women’s residential .. If I could get accepted, thanks to you

      Thank u for all ur support Charlser! It is much appreciated!!

    • #29396
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Thank u … Very silly of me !!!

    • #29397
      vera
      Участник

      I hate when things like that happen Charlster. Makes me feel like a worm.
      A blow to the Pride! Also maddening that people are sitting around in offices and not doing their job.
      Waiting is hard.

    • #29398
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      hey fella. How you doing? I’m out – long story which I will post on my blog. Just wanted to check you’re ok. I haven’t read up all the posts I missed yet, but just wanted to say how much good GMA will do you. turns out I wasn’t right for it and at my assesment they let me know they didn’t think they could help me. They are all lovely though, and I am sure it will work for you. I will put the info on my post.

      Speak soon mate and take care – gonna read all your posts now and get updated. ALthough I left on Thursday of last week I have stayed away from all computers until now.

    • #29399
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Well done on avoiding that near miss. I am so strident now about not gambling, that I am almost compuslive in being a non-gambler. I was quite fearful of coming out and finding some of my good friends here had relapsed. I believe that the forums here are very powerful, and they certainly helped for me. 54 days since my last lapse, April 2nd.

      Gonna write up my blog now. Good luck and stay safe.,

    • #29400
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster, have you left for GMA yet?
      Kinda have lost track of exactly when you go?

      Thank you for your comprehensive reply on my thread. I hope GMA is a huge turning point for you.. We will miss you here but be happy that you are getting the support you deserve.

    • #29401
      vera
      Участник

      Glad to hear your Blood results/ tests are within the normal range, Charlster. We worry about things that sometimes never happen and when we least expect it everything can go bellyup!
      Health is wealth, I do believe
      and
      Life is sweet!
      Bet you’re packing your case neatly!

    • #29402
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster that is awesome. I know that GMA is perfect for you and that you will fit right in. Do you know which site you’re going to? Dudley or beckenham?

      I went to GA last night and the guy leading the group has been to the Beckenham site. We chatted about my experience and although he had not heard of many people not making it through the assessment he did explain that most of the people who go there had lost everything over decades of gambling, and that I shouldn’t feel bad that I wasn’t a good fit. We agreed that my higher power decided I needed to be out of there to do other things. What those things are I don’t know, but i am open minded to see what happens on a day by day basis.

      You will do very little apart from settle for the first 2 weeks – the hard work starts after that and I understand it is hard but it works.

      I’m rooting for you fella. You have been a huge source of support for me on these blogs over the last 3 to 4 months, and I hope to one day catch up and buy you a coffee when you are out and clean.

      onwards and upwards.

      M

    • #29403
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      It’s so ironic, I was so looking forward to meeting you. you’ll do well there. Obviously people in their 20s can’t have been gambling for decades, but if you started at 16 and go in at 25-28 that around 10 years – much more than me. My gambling was to do with tendency to escape through addictions – gambling is not my primary issue. They thought that and I know that. Gambling is a diversion for me working out what is going on in my head. I think I have underlying mental health issues which go back to my childhood – that’s what they thought and it’s what I believe now. But I cannot change that, I can only learn and grow from where I am.

      The guys there are lovely. Please say hi to them from me, and tell them that I still plan on sending them some DVDs of the films I made. I wonder which house you’ll be in. There are some cracking people there and you’ll get a lot from it.

      See you soon and good luck

      Mav

    • #29405
      vera
      Участник

      I think it is normal to feel apprehensive when we are asked to leave our Comfort Zone, Charlster.
      Stripping your life bare and hoping for a good outcome is not an easy thing to do. It took a lot of courage, trust and hope on your part to get to where you are today. I think most CGs feel shaky and nervous when we discard the gambling crutch. It is like Rip van Winkle wakening from a hundred year sleep and seeing Life all over again.
      The only alternative for you would be to throw in the towel Charlster and after all your intense preparation, that would be totally futile. Just try to fix your mind on today only. One hour at a time. None of us can tell what the future holds but knowing you have set your feet in the right direction means there is no turning back now. Everybody here will be rooting/praying for you Charlster. My guess is you’ll be a future facilitator on GT.
      I will tell you a story (just to add to your fear!!) I remember packing a case for my son to go on a summer camp when he was 8 years old, A clean rig out for every day rom the skin out. Everything matching. He was rigidly counting the pairs of socks to make sure he had enough for every day…Long story short , on his arrival, the older boys shook the contents of his case into a swamp and pushed him in after it. I don’t know how the child every recovered from such a dreadful ordeal but to this day it breaks my heart to think I sent him away thinking he would be safe!
      Lock your case and keep you key hidden Charlster!!!

    • #29406
      monique
      Участник

      I follow your posts, Charlster, and I am impressed by all you are able to do and to share. It is really inspiring. And now you are off to Dudley! I wish you well. I hope the programme will be truly helpful and you will reap the benefits of taking part in the months and years to come. Feelings of trepidation are, I believe, very normal in this kind of situation. And things may well feel strange and complex at times, but I know you will put your all into it and will therefore find huge help and guidance, that will improve your future life in ways you can’t yet imagine.

      Very best wishes and look forward to hearing your news when you come back.

      Monique

    • #29407
      velvet
      Модератор

      Hi Charlster
      If you were not a very shaky, nervous Charlster I would be worried! You appreciate the challenge without being blasé. You have put a tremendous effort in since you arrived on the site three months ago and now you are going the extra mile. I walked the extra mile with my CG a few years ago and it was the best walk in the world – I will be walking it again with you, in my thoughts, on Monday.
      You have been a pleasure to support
      Velvet

    • #29408
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Charlster,

      This may be my last opportunity to post on your blog before you go. I wanted to wish you the best and I KNOW that that place will be perfect for you. I can tell you it will be HARD. The other guys explained to me what happens after the assessment period. The different parts of the treatment are hard work, but I know how hard you will work, how seriously you will take it. You are very mature in many ways and yet, like all of us compulsive gamblers, you are very immature in many ways. The guys there will take care of you.

      You wrote something on my blog a few days ago after I wrote my new posts after returning home. You said you were sorry you were ‘taking my place“. I have to be honest I was hoping we were going to be there at the same time. And I think me leaving did clear up a place more quickly. This is good and the way it is meant to be. The last 2/3 days for me have been tremendous and I am now filled with a hope I have not had for a long time. I had an AWESOME day with my son yesterday, went back to my usual GA and did 2 meetings and was welcomed with open arms, I saw a mate in the evening and stayed at his overnight, and then today I had a really surprisingly positive day when things just fell into place. Once of those magical days. I am now writing this from Starbucks just for the M23 heading to Brighton to see my closest friend in the world and his family. Normally I would come to a Starbucks like this to use the free wifi to gamble. No more. I am still gamble free. I will write more on my blog.

      I wanted to say how pleased I am that me leaving meant you could get there quicker, as I know there the next people to leave would have been in 4 or 5 weeks. So you are taking my place.

      IN deeper reflected that place was not for me, the treatment was wrong. My gambling is different from the people they treat. My gambling is not a lifelong problem, but rather the latest in a long line of compulsive and addictive behaviours I have engaged in and they are not set up to deal with that.

      When I referred myself to GMA I also referred to the National Problem Gambling Clinic in Feb of this year. Although I did the CBT there 3 years ago I was not ready to quit then, and did not accept how bad or what my problem was. I am clear on that. But last October I went to an open day led by one of the lead clinicians, Neal, and he mentioned a new serivce there starting, Psychodynanic Psychotherapy. Dealing with people and looking into their past, childhood, self image etc etc and how that leads to gambling and other addictive behaviours. At the time I thought I want that but they said you need at least 80-90 days gamble free time as you need a clear head. Although no one knew I was gambling as I was lying about it, I had gambled just before going there. When I went to GMA I did not cancel the referral to the clinic. I got a call from them today – I have my assessment on 22 June, by which point I will be 78 or 79 day s gamble free. They are happy to discuss this new treatment with me. I qualify for the new Psychodynamic treatment, where I can explore my deeper mental health issues that led to my terrible gambling addiction. This is the treatment I ALWAYS wanted to I will fight for that, as I know that will help me more than anything. I am enough of a gambler for them, as I have had so many other mental health issues. And it means I can continue with GA which is working so well for me.

      Please make a note of my website address so you can get my email from there. http://www.neathfilms.com Please drop me a line when you get out.

      Charlster, fear is natural. BUt know this – that place was meant for you. I got my chance there, I needed the 11 days out – without that I would not be where I am, and things are going so well for me – so positive. But I cannot be complacent – I need to work and focus.

      You will find respite there – the staff are great, the other guys in treatment are great. You will play darts and pool, you will cook, clean and chill. You will find like minded people. Please say hi to them from me, and thank them from me for all they did for me. Tell them I will never forget them and that in a few weeks I will send a DVD of my favourite films I have produced.

      You go and get better Charlster. Go for it, take it seriously, do the hard work, but relax and know that you are in the right place. I wish I could give you a big man hug, so take an ehug. I want to hear from you in no less than 14 weeks, as you continue your life long journey into recovery.

      Take care, we all love you and we all be thinking of you and you start this amazing new phase to your life.

      ALl the best big man

      Mav

    • #29409
      Dunc
      Отговорник

      You may not get this until you’ve completed your journey of discovery, a journey that with an open mind can transform your life…

      I’m so aware of the struggles you’ve endured to get to GMA I’m so impressed with your commitment to a life without gambling, now is the time to continue with the positive outlook

      Welcome to the university of life

      Whilst at times this journey can be an emotional roller coater, there is an end.. an end where you feet are on the ground facing the right direction along a pathway that before was a dream… this pathway is real, enjoy it and make the most of every second your here

      Take Care
      H

    • #29410
      vera
      Участник

      HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHARLSTER

    • #29411
      lauren05
      Участник

      Wishing you the best on your journey, Charlster.
      This is about you now and changing your life and you for the better without the destruction of gambling.

      Well done !

      Embrace every moment…it won’t be easy but there is no pain without gain.
      Look forward to hearing from you when you get out.
      I would have also completed mine by then.

      God bless you.

      Take care,
      Lauren

    • #29414
      p
      Участник

      Sounds like you have really learnt a lot so far on your journey. You’re really doing great. You are very supportive to others too. Lots more learning coming your way and sounds like you are going to be a sponge and soak it all in. Exciting what may lie ahead.

      P

    • #29415
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Hi Charlster, we’re all rooting for u.. Keep strong!

    • #29416
      p
      Участник

      That is fantastic news.. I look forward to hearing about relapse therapy, any tips??? Also i look forward do reading more posts… wonderful to see the effort and the gamble free life

    • #29417
      kpat
      Участник

      So happy for you! It is wonderful to read about your renewed relationship with your daughter. God Bless!

    • #29418
      vera
      Участник

      I have read your „Return to GT“post over and over, Charlster. One of the best I’ve ever read on GT.
      I cannot post right now . Just want you to know that what you have written had a profound effect on this wayward CG.
      Welcome back!

    • #29419
      Анонимен
      Гост

      yes, i agree with Vera. you seem to have a new and refreshing perspective on things and it is so helpful to read. Please keep posting!

    • #29420
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Welcome home mate. Just caught with your posts. I was thinking just the other day how I would have left GMA back on Aug 14th, and that led me to think you are coming out soon. And so you write to me.

      Well proud of you son. Well proud. Since I came out all has been good, and I have been posting every so often. But I am rebuilding. I now go to 3 or 4 GAs a week and now NA (Narcotics Anonymous) as well to deal with that.

      I will post more on my blog, but you’ve pulled me back to GMA.

      Welcome home. I;m glad the course worked for you – me leaving was the best thing as it gave a space to you.

      Stay in touch.

    • #29421
      Simon15
      Участник

      Hi, I’ve been catching up with your story and just wanted to say well done for how clearly you’re thinking through everything now. It’s obvious you’ve made great steps forwards and are leaving the past behind more and more with each passing day. Courage is the thing we all need to escape from our weakness, and you obviously have a lot of courage which inspires us all to find the same. Keep at it and best wishes for the future. Exciting times!

    • #29422
      vera
      Участник

      I’m going through my Thank You Posts to all who posted on my thread . You are next on the list Charlster.
      I think deep inside every CG there is a Restitution List. It was part of our training, growing up to send a Thank you note for gifts received. Every post here is a Gift but we don’t always show appreciation for the time and effort behind those posts. It can sometimes be difficult to offer support or show gratitude especially when we are floating in excrement and barely keeping our own airways clear. But strangely we always seem to get there . CGs are survivors. Saying thanks seems to be gone out with the high bike these days but old habits die hard.
      It meant a lot to me to see those supportive posts when I „fessed“ up.I’m too long at this game now to be STILL slipping up but every CG is in the same boat in many ways We all have the potential to self destruct. I suppose people do get fed up of reading the same ol same . Sadly, we become desensitized to disasters not only here on this Forum but worldwide.
      I am glad you did the GMA course Charlster. It sure has helped you to turn your life around.
      You must feel proud and humble all in one.
      Keep posting.

    • #29423
      Анонимен
      Гост

      Great post Charslter. It’s just what i needed to read! Thank you.

    • #29424
      charles
      Модератор

      Great post Charlster, we were 100% addicted to gambling, now we need to also give 100% to our recovery.

    • #29425
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      Hi Charlster, how you doing. Just wanted to drop you a line to make sure you’re ok and that the relapse prevention is going well. I hit 6 months Friday just gone, and feel ready to keep doing this one day at a time.

      Once again I want to thank you for all your kinds words (and everyone else of course) while I went through hell earlier.

      take care

      Mav

    • #29426
      I_Maverick
      Участник

      How are you doing me old mucker? How is the relapse prevention going. My love to you,

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