2019 Review

I have been accessing my situation since I returned to my Old Ways six months ago.

The secret life during these last months, which I lived (existed) under the sinister shadow of gambling has caused me to lose precious time and far more money than I can afford or bear to admit.

I never mention figures on GT for obvious reasons.

My gambling has been funded by savings, earning and illicit loans.

Suffice to say, I lost all.

Despite the financial devastation , which by now is causing severe stress and affecting my day to day living, the biggest fallout has been the exacerbation of underlying health and the looming realization that Time is running out.

I have decided to call it a day. AGAIN!

Over the last few days/nights I lost and won. And lost. I prayed to God , in true CG desperation to "let me get something back" .

Long story,short, I have a fairly decent 3 figure sum "pending". Crumbs from the Rich Man's table of course but sufficient to cover last week's loss and to get me through Christmas.

My binge is over.

I made my peace with my Maker.

I am once again drawing the proverbial line under the Love/Hate Addiction that has stolen too much from me.

Today, I am taking back my life.

By God's Grace , I will not gamble, today.

Reading recent posts here on GT has rekindled my desire for freedom.

OVER AND OUT!


A great post Vera -you show great strength of character and stamina. The biggest lesson I learned on the residential is to have compassion for myself - for that person inside who wants to do the right thing , who never chose this addiction but who carries the pain , shame and stress it has caused.


An exercise I found really helpful was writing a compassionate letter to myself - it had to be kind and it had to be gentle. When I read it aloud some time later I realised it was the first time I had ever shown myself compassion, kindness or gentleness.


You will beat this Vera. Do all the things that worked for you before and then maybe add a few extra. A good extra I have added is to order a new bank card and get someone else to open the envelope and scratch off last three numbers before I had a chance to see it .


Keep strong. You have got this!


I know that was not an easy post to write. I have been in the "I will never gamble again" situation so many times - each time wondering how can I do without my prop.


You are now taking back your life - life as a non-gambler which can be challenging but at least the roller-coaster of emotions and the financial trouble that gambling causes will not add to any difficulties you might face.


Get as much support for yourself as you can. Use this site and others - see if counselling is a possibility for you. As i-did-it says, do all the things that worked for you and more. You are worth it.


You are so strong for writing this post. I really feel your pain in it yet I really feel your determination as well, and I believe that out weighs the pain. I think you have had enough and you will have a gamble free 2020. I just want to say thank you for being with me through my journey, always giving me support and motivation, always putting others before yourself, you are a class act and a very selfless person, and that is hard to come by these days. I’m praying for you through this hard time, and I’m praying for you to conquer and beat this demon once and for all, you truly deserve it. I remember so many times I would pray on my way to the casino, “please dear god let me win my losses back and I promise I’ll stop forever” unfortunately it never Happened. However I did pray for god to help me accept the things that I cannot change (my losses) and I did pray for the strength to live a gamble free life. There is a life outside of gambling and we have both experienced it, we know what it feels like.. it’s wonderful. Take care Vera , you have helped me and others on here more than you will ever know.

Have a great Christmas and a happy New Years.


So good to hear from you and thank you for the post on my thread. I only post once a week or so or when I have the desire to. I used to pray a lot for a win and for God to get me out of trouble when gambling. It was almost like a test. I think it was you who said it was misplaced faith. And It is. nuff said.

As you know gambling really affected my health which athough much better, I am still grappling with. I don’t know why our health spirals downwards, or maybe I do, but I think gambling addiction takes everything from us, like cancer.

You can do this and I know you will. Gambling really sucks.


Thanks, IDI, Steve, Murrs and Monica.


Yes, Stephen, I need to accept the things I cannot change. Refusal to do so has driven me to gambling on many occasions. When I encounter issues outside my control, I lean towards something I think I can control i.e. slot machines and of course when I do, everything spins totally out of control and I feel as if I'm driving a car at high speed with brake failure.


I had a surprise/shock on Friday last. Something that I have no control over and cannot change. If I hadn't already set December 1st as my new D Day, I would be gambling like billyo now but that won't happen.


I actually tipped into a casino today on my walk from the car park to the dentist's "to spend a penny". It was the only toilet available in the area. I wasn't testing or tempting myself. When I'm in the "non gambling mode", I feel no urge to gamble. As I have always said it's "all in the mindset".


Steve, taking life back is not a walk in the park, but I guess we re discover ways of rolling with the punches.


Yes, Monica , gambling eats away at us , life a cancer but fortunately we can shake it off and avoid the terrible stress that it brings.


I hear you about showing compassion to ourselves, IDI, but in my case that needs to come in the form of "tough love". I need to give myself a good kick up the khyber. I have been far too easy on myself and expected my hubby to bail me out too many times.


On a happy note my "win" has been cleared and arrived in my bank account tonight.


Time to start my Christmas shopping ( which I said I wasn't doing this year but I will keep it very simple).


This week will be spent cleaning the house from top to bottom.


Next week will be spent putting up the decorations, visiting, inviting friends , attending church and going to the theatre to see "A Christmas Carol" -things I would not ever plan to do if my mind was set on gambling.


I might even muster up the courage to go to a GA meeting.


Watch this space!


Hi Vera, I am so glad to read that you are walking out of a 6 months gambling experience. I had a 1 month similar experience in November - I did not lose my money this time which is rare but I have lost myself mentally, spiritually and emotionally. It was not a nice space to live in now and taking a lot of effort for me to return life back to normal. Taking one day at a time and marching forward one baby step at a time. Wishing you a happy holiday season ahead!


Hi Vera,

You have great energy - I wouldn’t know when I did a huge house clean last.

I am so pleased you are back and I hope you enjoy the show .

Xx


Vera your post sounds very optimistic. I know you can do it since you have done it before.


That is true for all of us who want to stop gambling, SJ.

Gambling is an illusion.

A Lie.

Knowing that, will save us from ourselves.

The Truth sets us free.

Thanks for posting to remind me that I do not need/want gambling in my life.

'Hope to meet you in a group soon.


 Amen



Took my eye off the proverbial ball and the effluent hit the air conditioner......

The moral of the story , CGs Cannot gamble, nor can we (I/myself/me)keep promises.


I am thankful that you came on the chat and you revealed your honesty. You are making that step to start fresh. Yes I have relapse, been in your shoes, many times where i lost money at the bar and casinos. August 2019  I Took out loans to cover my expense but went with that same loan money to the casino and lost it.  I know now and I am being aware of my thoughts and what words are said about myself. Now i have rediscover myself. Yes i am being more positive about kickiing this addiction out of this world into another galaxy. forming a new addiction which my self worth and recovery. Addicted to saving my money and see a better future for my son and family. I have cause too much damage to my family finances. Yes i am gonna start being honest to my wife. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. 


Hi Vera

Sorry to read this .


Hope u are ok


Xx


Hi Vera,


Thank you for your honest sharing.


I hope that you are alright and could stop the gambling before it turn into "gambling against your will".


No one can guarantee that they will never make a mistake. There will be slips here and there in life but the most important thing is to pick ourselves up whenever we fall,  and carry on with the journey.


We are here to seek progress in recovery, not perfection.


We are here to support one another in good times and bad times.


Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, we can only focus on today. We only need to stop gambling today.


Thank you for all your wise words and encouragements. They made a difference.


 I really appreciate your presence here with us.


Hi Vera,

Please kindly update wellbeing.


Thanks for your kind consideration and thoughtfulness, Kin.

I am stopped gambling.

In a bit of a daze still.

My head is frazzled.My sleep is shot. Health below par. My bank account is in a total mess.

But ALL IS WELL!

The house is decorated on the downstairs level.

Still need to clear the upper areas.

One day at a time

I think it's over a week since my last gambling escapade.

It is like a different world really.

Thank you too, IDI

and Seanraj.

I will catch up on other threads sometime.

Just for today I will act normally sorting out presents/cards/baking/shopping.

Just for today I will not gamble.


Hello vera 


Thank you for updating. You are gonna be free from it and you will be living your best life now. Continue on your pathway of self worth. Do enjoy your day. Have wonderful moments always with a positive outlook.


Hi Vera,

I was glad to read your post on other thread. It is good to know that you have the drive and motivation to express your thought, feeling and emotion here. Soon everything will fall into place and return to normal.


You can do It! We must accept what we can't change. You know what to do to stay gamble free! I hope that you have a great Christmas. Be kind to yourself. I know that's a hard one for me to do. Take care of yourself.


Thanks, Sean, Kin , Lizbeth.

I feel calmer. Less overwhelmed. I'm dealing with the foreboding that haunted me for weeks.The fog is clearing.

I'm re entering reality slowly and beginning to connect with people again.

Being self excluded means I am less inclined to be tempted to "try my luck".

There are of course lots of "First World" issues that would be nice to escape from. A few hours in the G zone has been my escape in the past , but the issues would be magnified, not solved, by gambling.

I need to keep a clear head. I'm making lists. The countdown to Christmas starts tomorrow-shopping lists, final presents to be wrapped, cards written, baking, cooking, preparing food in advance. All the things "normal" people do at Christmas and most importantly for me is the Spiritual preparation, which is the real reason for all the hustle and bustle.

I never have time to gamble at Christmas so the message is when we are busily focused on other things , gambling won't enter our minds.

Today was a proactive day.

I have every day planned from now until Christmas.

No plans to gamble.

Standing at the check out in shops is less scary when you know your card won't be declined.

I never again want to put myself through the hell I lived through for the last six months.

It is never worth risking life and limb "just for kicks".

I pray that I have outgrown this addiction.

I can't bear to waste another minute of my life performing acts of self torture .

I'm tired!


Yes i agree once your mind is distracted gambling is a stranger in the mind. So keep on focusing on your positive outlook of life. U are doing pretty good thus far. You are an amazing person. Do have an awesome xmas. Stay connected. Be strong each moment you are doing well.


Hi Vera

Great post .

I hope you have a really great Christmas.

Xx


Thank for your post on my thread Vera.

I so agree with your dream analysis - that’s another thing thing we have in common - people always ask me to interpret their dreams!

I think the dream was motivated (is that the correct word ?) by my impending Christmas visit to my family. You know it’s always really difficult for me to resist the urge to go gambling with them and they make it even more difficult.


You also Have flicked the switch and I hope that you are looking forward to a gamble free Christmas x


And a happy gf 2020.


CHRISTMAS GREETINGS TO ALL GT STAFF AND MEMBERS


Many thanks for all your support throughout the years.

Christmas will be a G free season for me.

Thank God!

For me, Christmas without Christ would have very little meaning.

It is difficult to avoid getting sucked up in the consumerism which surrounds us where some people have too much while others have too little.

"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change".


Hi vera we are here to support encourage guide and most importantly uplift you in times when things are you know... thank you for that wonderful greeting.


Many thanks to you too my friend.


you are an amazing person and part of this community and knowing you helped myself and many many others is commended. 2020 will be gamble free for us, I already know that.


wishing You a merry Christmas, and happy g free New Years. I hope you spend some quality time with your loved ones. This is a time of year I like to have a lot of gratitude... a lot of people less fortunate out there with nobody around them at Christmas. I don't have many people in my life right now except for my family and well, all of you amazing people here that I consider my second family.


god bless you Vera 


Vera ,

Thank you for your post on my thread.

Will you be in the ten o clock group?

See you there

Xx


Thanks Sean, Murrs, IDI.

I haven't been on GT very much lately.

Had one "blip" at the end of 2019. I will just kiss that year goodbye and move on to say

No gambling today.

No gambling this week

No gambling this month

No gambling this year.

No gambling this decade, so far.

The play I wanted to see in the theatre is sold out so instead I'm watching my favourite Shakespeare play .

Good to have a Plan B.

Happy 2020 to one and all!


Vera

A huge part of recovery is letting go of the past so you are well on your way. Your friends on here will support you all the way and delight in your success.

Onwards and upwards Vera !


Is it only two months since I lasted posted? Seems like much longer. (Thanks for your post IDI) I haven't been reading much lately. My eyes seem to be programmed to see selected only symbols and 0000 bank balances lately; my ears, to hear nothing but repetitive jingle/jangle shrieks; my sleep is induced and my first sensation on wakening feels like a sharp thump in the solar plexus sent as a message from my fuzzy brain to announce another day of doom and danger and the "Yes I really did it again" realization.


Does my life have to be like this? The flashbacks, the cold sweats, the frantic need to find yet another loan.The cover ups/bluffs/secrets/isolation. Even pressing buttons on a keyboard feels like a bad omen. I want to press the delete button right now but perhaps pressing "Save" might be of more benefit ...if there any benefits left to sending words through cyber space, written under a stage name, words that most likely will never be read. Then I remind myself that every word I write , I write for me. If any else reads it, fine. If not, well that's ok too because gambling has taken me to a stage where I no longer give a damn!


Hi Vera,


what a nightmare those emotions you are feeling are and the way in which you described them was very raw and real.


I have read to date all you posts ( on other peoples postings too)



the power is within us to start or stop . What I know is the more you feed the addiction the stronger it gets and dominates us. I have not gambled since I last stopped and have continued to come here to read


havd faith in yourself and please do care. There are so many people that care about you and really wish you well. gambling is destructive and ruins everything in its path. It will cloud your judgement and damage your self esteem.


you seem like a lovely person and deserve better. Every single person here deserves a life free of gambling. 



please do keep writing and sharing. 



Vera I am rushing out to work but I just wanted to let you know that I read this and am delighted to see you back here - recovery is within the reach of every one of us and we all deserve it including you.


Hope I see you in group later xx


Good to have you back here. And yes, your words are read, mine often aren’t! I have been wondering what u were up to but as we know, absence from here for a while generally means one thing.

How long were you gf for? The old advice of we must tune into support still stands. I still read every day even if I dont post or go to groups as much. Hope to catch u in group.

And no, your life doesn’t have to be like that. But we have to want it even more than we want to gamble. And it is progressive, each lapse worse than the last. But I don’t need to tell u any of that cos u already know. Have you looked at your triggers Vera?


Hi Vera, you stopped before and you can stop again.


On another thread you have written:


"As from today I say we are defenseless without God's Help.


Without Him, I can do nothing."


Sorry but that is a cop out. If there is a God then he gave us choice. You are not powerless. You can choose to get back to the things that worked for you before. We are responsible for our own actions when we are gambling - we should also take responsibility for our recovery.


Again, if there is a God, he is sending you a very personal message every time you lose your money. Don't ignore him/her.


Hi Vera

Thank you for posting on my thread.

I recognise everything you describe in your post.

Being stuck in the cycle is horrible and that feeling that the cycle has become permanent for us is soul destroying.


Of course the cycle is not permanent for any of us - it ends when we choose. We choose to end it by taking the really uncomfortable actions - and those actions are probably different for each of us.


For some of us a visit to GA is a turning point where we bare our soul to a roomful of strangers.

For others telling a partner how we have messed up and losing/ giving up control of our finances is a huge step.

Some people, like me, need really intensive support with long term counselling to change those faulty brain connections which have built up over a life time .


You too will have that action which will turn things around - it is probably the action which the addiction tries to convince you most is not for you.


You know you can stop Vera - you have done it before.

You know there is a way forward for you .

Remember our old friend P on here who always said - “whatever you have tried in the past- add something new in”.


You have a community of people on here, many of whom you have hugely helped in the past . We are here for you now.

You are ready for recovery - Grab it with both hands and never look back .xx


Thanks, Monica, Charles, I-D-I.

So far so good.

Too soon to say anything else.

Keeping it simple.


Just hang in there Vera !


Every minute makes a difference

Xx


I took some time now to read your journal and I must write that you got pretty close friends on this forum who are pouring words of encouragement and support.

Wow I am thankful for this it's a wonderful feeling to share positive thoughts with others who are going to win back their life their health and family.

Vera you are going to start each moment each day with a renew mindset that allows you to only focus on the moment now where you observe your thoughts and what you are allowing yourself to do say or respond.

I am Rooting for you as well you are going to start living your best life now. Congrats on making the best decision at this moment moving forward.

Be positive


Thank you for your post on my thread Vera.

I sense something new in you - I’m not sure I can quite name it, but perhaps an understanding that we all deserve a little compassion from ourselves and from others.


Let go of the people who are an effort, who blow hot and cold, who let you or put you down.


We deserve peace and the best life we can live for as long as we are here x.


Hello Vera,



Thank you for your message on my thread. Ahhh the “C” word on everyone’s mind and plastered all over the TV and social media. It is worrying and fortunately last night my boss text me to tell me to stay home for the next few weeks until further notice. 



After Boris J’s speech yesterday about pregnant women, accompanied by a lack of clear direction as to what to do to protect these women, I was left feeling quite fearful about my situation. My baby keeps me going and appreciative of each day right now. She is doing well, thank you for remembering her. 



I appreciate how you keep fighting the fight against G and how much time and updates you give to all the members on this platform. That moment of my erratic emotions following wins and losses in a short space of time is terrifying and a reminder for me of how bad things can get. How out of character gambling makes me. How bleak and dark the aftermath of gambling and losses is.



I recently deposited money into hubby’s account and tried depositing it to a casino online. He found out (fortunately) and stopped the transaction. I am certain I would have lost all 3k of that money. this is a relapse and it has happened after my last bet last year summertime.



I am a compulsive gambler and I have no control over gambling. I have learnt that I have to stay vigilant all the time no matter how much GF time I have under my belt.



I am hopeful that we can make the right choices and stay GF. Gambling never brings anything positive to our lives Vera, it only takes and takes. 



Please keep writing and sharing. We are all on the other end listening and rooting for you.


I was so excited to see you posting. I hope you're still managing to stay away from the evil online slots. Ugh!!! I hate them!


I've finally been able to reach Day 47 and I am SO grateful because I had the WORST time stopping this time. Last year I managed three straight months clean, but after I relapsed, it took me almost 8 months to get this bit of time. If I had not done it V, we would have been in a bad place now. Things are not great, but it would have been 10 times worse.


Are the blockers not working for you? I know some people are so tech savvy they can remove then. Not I, thankfully. I have a free blocker on my laptop. Still no blocker on my phone, but my screen is so cracked it's not worth playing on, LOL!!!


I plan to open a new thread this weekend. Hope I'll hear from you soon.


Love and hugs,


RG


"Stop the self-destructive behavior" one day at a time. It is always the same every time, that is all we can do and after a while, they all add up and life become more manageable again.

I am just glad to see you posting. I have faith in you.


Thanks,IDI, Sean, Monica Charles, Megna, RG, Kin et al.


I will get round to posting soon. I'm in a decline but not in total isolation. Preoccupied with more important issues. Isolation for a CG would be either Paradise or Hell. Using the Safe Distance advice would free us up to "do our own thing" for hours/days unending. Paradise (until the gates of Hell opened up when the money runs out) In my case, I have too little money to deposit on a gambling site and since I am banned from those sites pro tem. I cannot gamble.I'm guessing that the land based casinos are closed but in these circumstances, I would be too proud to be caught on camera in one of them and perhaps even being approached my the police and escorted out.( legislation is being passed to give the police and army "special powers") What a headline that would make on the newspapers. This is a serious virus. I worked through quite a lot of viral outbreaks, which we were warned could put everyone at risk.Nobody died then but sadly many lives have been lost this time.


HAND WASHING SAVES LIVES . This is the best instruction in my experience. Talk of a Big Lockdown creates what I now call "Coronaphobia" I'm checking on main stream media as little as possible. I feel they could be playing with peoples' minds. My immediate concern is that my "time out"on one gambling site expires at the end of the month. The banks are offering 3 months leeway on debt repayments. That could leave me with a tidy sum to play with but I won't be tempted to fall into that trap even though my husband suggested we could/should! How little he knows about the mind of a CG. I have to tighten up before the end of the month, ignore any special offers and continue paying my debts , otherwise I will be destroyed. Over and out!


Hi Vera

There is a strength in your post and I know you will not be tempted. Email the casino involved and tell them you want a permanent ban - they have to comply I think.


I think Ireland has had a great response to this crisis unlike the U.K. government who seems to have been promoting some type of hers immunity - which I think could otherwise be described as a cull !


Yes if your husband really understood the addiction the three months would be a great opportunity to get on your feet - however in the circumstances you are making the right decision. Could you skip the bank payment and make extra payments elsewhere ?


You are doing well Vera - just keep doing everything that you are doing . Little by little things will improve - you have so many good things to look forward to.


To be strong and stay strong at this time. You got this I appreciate your positive response in this fight to keep on living a great life.

You got this you have before and you are going to keep on the path of self recovery and healing.

Stay focused

Be safe

Thank you for your positive progress


Thank you for posting, IDI and Sean.

Income arrived in my bank account this morning. I withdrew it pronto.

More due in tomorrow and on the 31st. I will leave enough there to meet direct debits which are due to go out at the end of the month.

I will use cash to pay the credit union and to buy food. I'm sure the land based casinos are in lockdown

I am self excluded until October in one online casino but and due to have a "Time Out" lifted early in April in another one.

I'm making sure and certain that I have no funds in my bank account in case I'm tempted before I get a chance to extend that time out to upgrade it to self exclusion.


Thank you for posting, IDI and Sean.I'm keeping a safe distance from gambling.


Income arrived in my bank account this morning. I withdrew it pronto. More due in tomorrow and on the 31st. I will leave enough there to meet direct debits which are due to go out at the end of the month. I will use cash to pay the credit union and to buy food.


I'm sure the land based casinos are in lockdown so cash won't tempt me.


I am self excluded until October in one online casino but am due to have a "Time Out" lifted early in April in another one.


I'm making sure and certain that I have no funds in my bank account in case I'm tempted before I get a chance to extend that" time out " . I will upgrade it to self exclusion.


I love this post Vera!

You are forward planning and staying steps ahead of the addiction. It probably really annoyed right now !


Well done xx


I need to write about this because it is playing on my mind.

Most online gamblers will be familiar with "Time Out"

Mine commenced six weeks ago and is due to expire next week.

The reasonable area of my brain has prompted me to clear out my account to ensure my safety. Money comes and goes and this safety net will not remain for long. In the meantime I have been trying to extend my "timeout" but this can't be done without logging in and when a customer is on timeout we can't log in so the trap is set in advance.

Somewhere in my mind this thought is rumbling

"Just try a SMALL deposit. Double your money and run".

For now it is just a thought.


Vera ,

When did u last take the money and run- and I don’t mean for a little time ?

Shut down those cards before your exclusion is up.

I am the queen of tiny doors open .

I know how the addiction manipulates us.


I am also the person who learned the very hard way - you are more intelligent than that.


You have got by with no money before .

Throw those cards in the fire tonight.

You would cope if ur bag was snatched.

You will get by without those card for a few days .

It will it you to pay interest even if u miss a payment!

Get real!


And shut down those accounts forever !


Hi V: Years and years ago, I used to play slots online. I never really liked them, because I thought most of them were bogus, but I played and lost money anyway. Then, I tired of them and returned to land-based. For years, I didn't play online again, and then, last fall, I started playing them again. Lost money I didn't have again, but then finally, I'd had enough and I put Bet Blocker, a free blocking software, on my laptop for five years.


It has worked tremendously well. Why don't you try it? It will give you that time to get out of the fog again. Time-outs are dumb because they allow us the option to start again. I did it and then always went back.


Gambling needs a HARD stop. Softer steps, like time outs, have had no effects for me. I'm banned at all land-based as well ... again. There are a couple of tiny crevices that still need closing, such as my cell phone. However, I've had difficulty getting Bet Blocker to work on my phone. I will get these sorted out shortly.


Forget about the small bet and doubling your money V. You and I both know, that while you may double your money, you'll never walk away. You (and I) will always want to see whether we can double it again and then walk away empty-handed and in further debt.


Each day is precious ... let's not give any more of our precious time to the casino industry.


RG


Hi Vera, you could give all funds to your husband, you could report your credit/debt cards lost the day before so that they are frozen. New ones will have new security numbers on, you could ask your husband or someone else to scratch those off for you before you see them. The blocking software that others have mentioned is another option as well.


There are lots of things you can do to keep yourself safe. Now all you have to do is choose to do them.


Stay safe, in every sense of the word.


Hi Vera,

I saw your statement about doubling and running.

That reminded me of a quote that i once saw ( ironically I saw it in an online casino)


“The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it in your back pocket.”


It helps me whenever I have those toughts.


Hi Vera,


How are you? I miss your wise words.


Hi Vera,

How are you?...has been thinking of you.


what are u up to Vera? Miss you on here.


Thanks, IDI, RG, Charles, Monica, Kin, Joerdj.

I'm back on track, just for today.

My mindset has changed once again. All for the better.

Been through a rough patch. I didn't fold my money in two, Joerdj. Some fat cat did that on my behalf, laughing all the way to the bank but that's in the past now.

RG, I will consider a blocker. For now I have taken "time out" from the hellholes. I actually blame myself for your recent online venture.I hope and pray you have called a halt?

Monica, I'm following your thread with interest. Like you, I quite enjoy solitude but I also treasure my freedom.

Charles, I got a new bank card. Instantly memorized the number that can be scratched off. (Old habits die hard!) I can't relinquish that card. I use it for other online business.

Kin, I am ever grateful for your constant support.You are a faithful friend.

IDI, I am so glad you have come through this insanity unscathed. (Well, intact might be a better description) You and I have had close shaves. Better times ahead!

Today , my mind is clear.

I walked approx 7 miles last night. (I tend to do a mental extension on this 2km restriction, due to my rural existence)

I taxed my car online tonight using yet another loan, which is safe due to recent prudence and delayed approval, which allowed me time to think straight and set up a block on online sites BEFORE the money hit my bank account. Otherwise I could be ploughing through it right now. 'Doesn't bear thinking about.

I am free for another while.

God is good!


Well done Vera

It’s great to have you back !

About the card - I decided I didn’t need help when I ordered my new card and like you my addicted brain instantly logged the number. Next time hubby opened the envelope and scratched it. A few things we need help with!


Glad you got your car sorted. My huge body and worn out looking face would indicate that I actually wasn’t unscathed! Lol!


Keep strong Vera

Get that stupid blocker - takes a few minutes and keeps you safe for years ! Well safer !


Thanks for your post, IDI. No gambling since my last post. No blocker either. I know that for me, the only real barrier is a MENTAL Barrier.


Sometimes, it just seems to erect itself. It usually kicks in when I take measures to make gambling impossible, which is what I have done for now. For me, gambling is like a virus. I comes from nowhere (China??) ravishes every area of life and subsides just as fast as it first appeared.


How we cope with/react to these "viruses"is crucial to our well being and survival.


Yes I agree with all you have said Vera!

My virus was a particularly virulent strain.

It was resistant to many treatments but eventually I found one that would make it dormant !


I am so happy you are getting a break from it all- you deserve it Vera ! You know best what works for you.

My mental barriers need a lot of reinforcement! Lol!


Keep safe x


The present quandary I find myself in, leaves me feeling perplexed so for what it's worth, I will put it on record here.

I am on a 6 week "Time Out" from hell. No need to elaborate!

I have about two weeks to go before I can be re instated.

All my funds have been removed from my bank account to ensure their safety and my sanity.

Of course between now and my time out end date, more income will arrive in my account.

The G part of my brain is telling me to "just deposit XXX , build it up to xxxx, withdraw, then self exclude".

Sounds so easy and satisfying. I'm even practising my skills on Free slots to build up control.

The Non- G area of my brain is telling me of course that my alter voice is talking shite...

Any takers???


Dear Vera,


I can remember very clearly what you would tell everyone.


1. do not place the first bet


2. compulsive gambler never win.


Hope this help.


But I expect you know what I am going to say! At some point in my recovery - I think when I was going to GA again and again with another story of relapse, I was told I was acting like the gambling equivalent of a "dry-drunk." I didn't know what it meant at the time ... but looking back I can see that even when I was not physically gambling - it still filled my thoughts. I was still scheming ways in which I could "keep my hand in."


I remember one time I thought I could get my fix by just watching other people playing. I think that lasted maybe 2 or 3 days. Inevitably someone left the machine after a run of bad luck and my thought was "it's bound to pay-out soon" so off I trot to the ATM and ... well you can guess the rest.


There wasn't one answer for me. It was a combination of keeping myself busy, trying to work out what was going on for me (through counselling and self-help groups) and remembering that I was "in recovery" - so that even thinking about gambling was a no-no. I became someone who is in recovery - and thought that person does not try and hone skills, (are there any skills in playing slots?) I knew that the person in recovery does not visit gambling places for any reason, so instead I put my focus firmly on things I needed to do to get myself well again.


Listen to the part of the brain that wants an end to all this suffering you are going through. Do what is healing and what will take you away from this madness. Keep to your recovery strategy and stay well.


Hi Vera

That’s a very honest post.

The addicted part of our brain has told me a million times that I could play a little and withdraw my winnings- if I did manage to get my balance up a bit then it told me I am on a winning streak and I continued.

On the rare occasion (not in recent years even once) when I have managed to withdraw, the addiction in my brain has told me I can do it again.

We all know where this ends - with me in dire straights obsessing about getting enough money to survive - and even when I do I’m tempted to win back.


You know the drill Vera - you have been through the cycle too often.

Come to the groups tonight and let’s talk all this through.


Could you do me a small favour?

Could you outline how your finances might be for the next month or even year if you don’t gamble.

This could be the basis of a new plan for you.


You need to get a PLAN into place! A Plan works for you - it gives you structure and a goal.


By the way no one ever grows weary of you.

You have been on this site for a long time and many rush to answer you when you post and if good wishes and goodwill made a recovery, you would never be out of it.


Keep strong - make the wise decision-send a message to that hateful addiction that you have seen through it and time of destroying your life is over - gambling addiction is the most toxic friend you will ever have - always coaxing you to do things - pretending it will help you . We all know how deceptive it is!


Keep strong and well done on your six weeks Vera xx


Thanks Kin, Steev, IDI.


My slow response was partly due to the fact I have been busy with family issues. (A great distraction from gambling)


Kin, I still believe that placing the first bet is the first step to disaster and that compulsive gamblers can never win, but of course these realizations can be circumvented when we want to indulge our base instincts. Addiction, which goes hand in hand with avarice and desire for instant gratification, has the ability to blind us to truth, despite past experiences which lend evidence to the contrary.


Steev-I agree totally with the "dry drunk" analogy. In 2010, I "white -knuckled" through the whole year and when I relaxed my grip in 2011, all hell broke lose. I stayed G free for 27 months (up until last April) and realized the difference between abstinence and recovery.

I need to get back to the "non gambler"persona , where not even a thought would suggest I ever enjoyed that life style.


IDI-thanks for saying no one ever grows weary of me! I grow weary of myself though. Perhaps I grow weary of gambling. All the more reason not to identify as a gambler any longer, as Steev rightly suggests.

As for the PLAN, you know how your idea of a plan helped me-actually SAVED me in 2015.

Five years on that plan (fund) has been demolished but it's never too late to start again.

I have in fact kick started it already and I am running a savings scheme, parallel to my debt repayment scheme but of course in my distorted mind I sometimes get the brain wave that I can fast forward the scheme and win enough to pay off my (rather large) debts and double or treble my savings.

My track record proves the opposite will always occur.

So I still sit with my original dilemma. My "Time out" i.e. six week exclusion ends on May 22nd. My income will hit my account on the same date.I need to extend my self exclusion. The only way I can do that is by logging into the gambling site that I'm excluded from, so for a very brief moment I will have to decide between making a deposit to "play and have some fun , with the hope of a few wins" or quickly scrolling to the small print that allows a player to extend a "Time Out"period.

A tip from GA is proving helpful.

"Never tempt or test yourself".

The non gambler in me is planning to give my lap top to somebody overnight on that date. Go to the ATM the next morning. Remove all available cash. Retrieve my laptop. Log into the same said sit and extend the exclusion.

Fingers crossed I will do the right thing.

In the meantime, the best I can do is BE ACCOUNTABLE by writing about it here BEFORE the effluent hits the air conditioner and not wait 'til AFTER.

That's it in a nutshell!


...or you could someone you trust your log in details and get them to self exclude u permanently!


I will borrow a laptop and do it for u!


Or you could ask your husband to sit next to you when you log in and ban yourself. :) What happens on the 22nd largely depends on what you choose to do or not do now.


Gambling is a choice, so is recovery.


Alternatively connect to the Helpline. Ask to speak to one of the advisors who isn't themselves a compulsive gambler. Then you can give them the site details you want to ban from , they can then google/find you the email address you need to do so. Simples.


Thanks IDI and Charles.

I think I would be in breach of GT terms and conditions to ask another member to log in to a gambling site on my behalf, IDI but thanks for the offer.

You are right Charles.

It's all down to personal choice but as you know, addiction clouds judgement.


You haven’t asked ! I offered !


just keep safe Vera !


Thanks IDI but I don't wanted to be booted off GT....YET!


Then look at what you CAN do Vera. Your husband, the helpline


P- Pause and think

L- Lock-down access to gambling

A- Act to stay safe

N-No regrets


A new plan for you Vera !


How about not logging in at all on that date


Your plan of :


‘The non gambler in me is planning to give my lap top to somebody overnight on that date. Go to the ATM the next morning. Remove all available cash.‘


Make that decision Vera and stick to it. It’s when you look at option C or D that the complications arise


I don’t go to land based casinos (pre lockdown) so have that cash in my hand would deter me from G


Good luck


Thanks for that, IDI.

Thanks Charles.

Megna, you read my mind.

I HOPE not to log in on that date. Hope and pray!

If I can psyche myself up and stick to that, I will be ok.

Fingers, toes and everything else crossed.

If I fall again, I may not be able to get up.

I can't bear to face another set back. I'm putting nails in my own coffin.

WHY?


Vera you will be the one in pain and suffering if you gamble.

Removing the laptop for one night has never worked in past.

Put a gambling blocker on your laptop and be done with it .

I can’t bear to think of you losing your few quid and suffering the pain after .

Take a long term approach - you are an incredibly intelligent woman - make a good decision.

No more half closed doors. No more slight gaps.

Close it all down !


So, let me get this straight. All the options to permanently exclude that you have and your 'plan' is to remove your laptop for one night? To then have this dilemma every month? And to justify that you are mis using quotes from GA and Ts and Cs here?

You had 27 months of success Vera, you are currently choosing the same actions you were choosing in the 10 not so successful years prior to that.


Today’s the day Vera!

Make a smart choice.

You know what needs to be done.


I am still happy to log in and shut down that account.

Problem is we never really want to stop gambling so we convince ourselves we are taking action, when all we are doing is putting gambling off for a short while.


During this time because we know it is still available, we are tortured with urges until they become unbearable.


You can do what many others have done and get a gambling blocker for your computer.


I don’t want to stop gambling - my addicted mind adores gambling. The non-addicted part of my mind wants a happy life where my money is spent on me and my family - not on some millionaire who can have £1000 bottles of champagne while I search for the cheapest orange juice in the bargain shops.


You say it’s all about mindset- I agree .

You are either in the mindset to take every action you can to stop or you are in the mindset to leave doors open.


I hope you are in the mindset to stop!


Hi V: I noted on another's thread you wished them well in case you weren't around to do so later. As you and I know, planning to gamble is a powerful thing. Once that thought is in your head, it's like a runaway train. My recent lapse gave me a bit of distraction for about 30 minutes. For the hours afterwards, it wasn't good. Why bother going there? I pray that you are planning to stop instead of the other planning. My thoughts are with you.


RG


Hi Vera,


Your kind words really uplifted me and I felt the exact sentiments for you Vera. You deserve so much better. We all do.


You have a blessed life and only you can make it better by stopping G properly.


Get rid of the choice of either gambling or not. Keep barriers in place to prevent you from G (lose access to that money) withdraw your pay. Do whatever it takes to make your life better and bring back the peace of mind you once enjoyed.


Life is hard enough and with the current circumstances with the world economy, you really need your salary for worthwhile things.


Please give us some news on how you are doing.


Hope all is good with you Vera.