I have sent you the ‘official’ welcome; now a more individual word or two.
You sound really exhausted and frustrated by what has happened in your son’s life. But, you have reached out and started to share what it’s like for you. I hope you will gradually find your way around this site and get a lot from it. I’m sure you would find it useful to use the groups, particularly the ones dedicated to family members and friends of cgs (compulsive gamblers). (Click on Support Groups at the top of the page to find when they are on.) Also, start reading the stories on the Forum and write more about your experiences and feelings – people will respond with their thoughts and ideas and, most of all, offer you support.
I note that you think that if you had remained ‘hard’ towards your son, he might have been different. In that there might be a sense of you feeling you did something wrong that caused the addiction. But all sorts of people from all sorts of families can become addicted – no one knows which person will find themselves overwhelmed and giving in to the urges that lead them to do things which threaten their chances of a good life and cause such grief to all around them. Your son may not show his feelings, but it is very likely that he, too, hates what he’s done. But only he can resolve to turn around and start his own tough journey to recovery. You cannot do it for him, but you can begin to look after yourself and make a better life for you, even in the here and now, with no sign of progress in your son’s life. This site is here to help you in your own life. I’m sure you will soon hear from other good people here, too.
Very best wishes,