It is very hard when a person with an addiction has experience in counselling because they think they know everything but seem unable to apply that knowledge to their own life. Your husband has faced his alcoholism and that took great courage but it appears that he feels he hasn’t got enough courage to go through the pain of withdrawal again from another debilitating addiction – possibly even with all his experience he doesn’t know how to start.
You don’t say if you were married to him when he was an active alcoholic so I don’t know if you are aware of the things you can do to help yourself. I don’t want to treat you as someone who lacks knowledge if you have already been through this.
Your sanity and happiness is indeed very important – I would never suggest to anyone that they leave or stay in a toxic relationship but in my opinion when there is indecision it is best to stand still and share with those who understand until the right decision becomes clear.
I am glad that you have a sister and parents to support you but it is important that they do not financially enable your husband by paying his gambling debts – I do realise how difficult this is in a marriage when the spouse struggles because of the addiction of the CG (compulsive gambler). I cannot tell you what to do because all decisions must be yours but if it was me I would put money in an account where he could not get his hands on it – in what way does he bully you to get money?
The addiction to gamble is not about money although it always seems like that to the loved one who is struggling to make sense of the senseless and is feeling the loss of financial stability. The addiction is all about the ‘gamble’ which distorts the CG brain and drastically alters their reality to fit their personal perception. It is this distortion that turns the gently man into a bully and it is this distortion for which he needs the right support. You cannot save your husband, you cannot stop him gambling but you can do many things to help yourself and in doing so help him. Your husband didn’t ask for or want this addiction – he didn’t know when he first gambled that addiction was waiting for him.
I wouldn’t be writing on here if I didn’t know that the addiction to gamble can be controlled. We have terrific support for your husband on this site – CG groups, the helpline and the ‘My Journal’ forum where he will be understood without judgement.
You have made a brave move towards your future by writing your first post – the first post is always the hardest and you have done well to write it.
I have a Friends and Family only group tonight, nothing said in that group appears on the forum. It is 22.00-23.00 hours UK time – if I have done my homework properly that will be 5pm your time. I would love to ‘meet’ you in that group where we can communicate in real time and you can ask any questions and get an immediate response.
You imply in your post you have made your decision about your future but your post title implies you are unsure. Whichever your feelings are and whatever your outcome is there will never be any judgement here – only understanding.