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Andrea, sounds like you have a very good support structure with your bf and your story is so similar to mine, including my son. My ex-bf who stood by me and helped me out and kicked me out, sent me a mail yesterday to attend his doctorate graduation next month.

We also got to the stage where no one said I love you anymore, yet the solid pillar of strength stood by me without any emotion. Beneath he does still love you but like you, I can’t get over the incident last year when he kicked me out of his house and became abusive after I was forced to move in with him. It got to that stage and I was arrogant but still didn’t feel he should control me just because of my gambling and since I was living in his house. I never did that him when he came to stay with me and enjoyed the lovely wooded garden and space.

He knew I had nowhere to go and would end up still staying with him but he wanted to shock me to show me he was not going to support me anymore and where gambling had got me to. But he never reckoned on me accepting defeat and the embarrassment of telling my sister who had come up for my Master’s graduation and paid to move all my things out immediately and stay with her in England. With her husband, they purchased boxes and we moved my things over 3 days to their hotel room when no one was about and took them downstairs again when the couriers came.

It would be good if you could tell your son. My son is 22 with a lovely girlfriend too and when he was stuck for money after a terrible accident, he mentioned that he was thinking about going to the casino. I tried to explain that it was not a good choice as he knew I used to go and it could get addictive but he laughed and said no, he’ll just play with £500 and leave if that is lost…About a week ago I did tell him about the severity of my problem and let him know I’m going for treatment. He just listened and was stunned but then offered me all the support and love which broke my heart. He is a very caring child. He even said he would love us to go on holiday together to Hawaii. I couldn’t believe that cos when he got up with rebellious public boys here, he refused to go on holiday with me anymore and sulked on holiday when he was forced to go.

I am so pleased you got into GMA, Andrea. I am also booked in next week. It threw my world upside down when I received the confirmation and I was in a stressed, anxious and sick state. It was a shock to my system as this was serious and meant I had to give up my ‘longtime’ friend for good and wasn’t sure I was ready for that.

I still worried and thought I was strong enough to hold onto my salary this (last month, now:) month for the first time. I was stone broke for the whole month as I gambled last month’s salary the day I got paid, too. The day before I got paid this month, Vera challenged me to self exclude for LIFE while I was broke to secure my salary. She got me at the right moment and I asked myself, yes why not, something I refused to do no matter who I tried to control my gambling.

I went online and did it. The immense relief, ecstatic and triumphant feeling I had was second to none. I felt so good that I knew 100% of my salary was safe for the first time. I’m broke again but at least I know that my money has gone out on bills and not on gambling. So, I’m one step closer to my summit……

Your beautiful, loving, kind nature is still there inside you, Andrea. It’s covered by dearth, undergrowth and piles of debris from the years of gambling. And you will become you again. I find that I have no strength, power or control over my gambling addition. Nothing or no one can stop me or stand in my way. I am an online slots addict who gambled every day all night long till my money ran out, winnings the lot.

I didn’t have any inner strength. That’s when I turned to God and asked for His help as He made me and knows how I am wired and asked Him to undo this ugly me I’d become. I felt a new kind of strength. I didn’t have the guilt and remorse feeling hanging over me and I felt loved the morning after. But I still didn’t give it up and used to pray for Him to turn my luck around and bring a big win again and then I’ll stop. But that never happened cos I could not stop, win or no win. That’s what Vera had told me.

I prayed but still didn’t go back to church. I couldn’t face those people who saw the facade of a confident, strong independent person who had it all together. I did go yesterday, 45 minutes into the service, so I missed the worship but was there for the preaching. It was meant for me and I heard how God does a supernatural change in us when we surrender all to him and immediately removes the guilt, strongholds and addictions supernaturally. I knew that and heard it all before but it strike a chord then. I am a Christian and I always accepted my salvation through God’s grace and it is nothing we can do in our own efforts to please Him or become worthy. He accepts us just as we are with all our warts and gives us back a new, prosperous and successful future and a new beautiful person.

But yesterday was a revelation and changed my thinking. I now know that it is about speaking and getting to know God everyday, spending time with Him and not focusing on the situation and consequences. He knows all about that and longs for us to be happy and free from bondage and when we turn to Him, He takes care of the rest. You probably know this verse well…. ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of heaven and all these things will be added unto you.’

I am always reminded that Peter could walk on the water as long as he looked at Jesus but when he looked around him at the storm, the winds and the waves crashing in, he fell into the water. That’s what we tend to do. We focus on all the consequences and negatives of where we are and what gambling has done to us and forget about God or allow Him to take over, rather than try to make amends and do things or what we think we need to do, to make it work with our efforts. If only we had this or that amount of money to pay arrears on bills, we could come right. But we overlook the deep rooted problems we have and try to get rid of the symptom instead of the cause. God has a bigger, much better plan for us to give us a good, happy life and what we look at is nothing in the bigger scheme of things.

Hang in there, Andrea. Stay strong and focus. Yes, you will have loads of mixed feelings and negativity that comes your way when you go to GMA; all natural feelings, fights against the pricks and mind games to steer you away and doubt yourself cos you’re taking action now. You’re fighting the ‘troll’ as Sybil puts and he is not going to take this sitting down without a big fight. You’re his main game player. But you will become that lovely beautiful person your bf fell in love with and who you really are, once the gunge is sucked out.

Hope to see you there next week. 🙂

Take care,