Hi Melany
You may well be young but your attitude is mature, Starting a thread and writing your first post, which is always the hardest, will hopefully give you a head start on your partner’s behaviour.
Everything you are doing is right, protecting your password and handling the finances is great. However, CGs do have a knack of finding money so watch what comes in the post and keep checking your accounts for any odd movement. Knowledge of his addiction and its capabilities will give you power over it.
Your partner is the naïve one, believing that all he has to do is not gamble because unfortunately abstinence is not recovery. It is quite common for CGs not to turn up at GA or counselling meetings because they are afraid of what they will hear and what they may be called upon to do. Although your partner appears to be accepting he has an addiction, it seems to me that he is keeping the door open just enough to give him space to manoeuvre, in the hope that things will settle down so his addiction can go on its own sweet way.
It takes a lot of courage and determination to control the addiction to gamble. It is a secretive, divisive and all consuming addiction and your partner is lucky to have you and your strength on his side, although, unfortunately he will almost certainly not appreciate how lucky he is at the moment.
In this first post I will confine myself to telling you the most important thing you can do – and that is to look after ‘you’ which ultimately is also the finest thing you can do for your partner. However much an active CG loves someone, they are unable to accept responsibility for that relationship while their addiction dominates their minds 24 hours a day. Looking after you therefore will help to protect your relationship.
The addiction to gamble has nothing to do with money and that is something that all those who love CGs spend a lot of time trying to understand. I cannot tell you what to do but I recommend you do not try to make sense of the senseless, as it will wear you out and not help you at all. The addiction is all about the gamble – money is a means to an end and giving money to a CG is like giving a drink to an alcoholic.
Why is looking after you so important? When you devote your time and energy into a CG who is not controlling his/her addiction, it is easy to lose yourself. It is easy to spend 24 hours a day worrying until gradually your own personality is sucked up and the addiction claims a second victim. Your self-esteem and confidence can be destroyed with nothing gained for you or your loved one. Keep your other friendships alive, don’t give up on hobbies and interests and make sure that every day you spend time without gambling at the forefront of your mind. However much time you spend worrying, it will change nothing.
Keep posting, there is so much more to say but I remember trying to take it all in myself and I know it is easier in small doses. Ask all the questions you want to ask. Do you have family to support you? I appreciate that unless you have lived with this addiction if it almost impossible to understand what it is like and often friends and family do say all the wrong things through ignorance. However, with non-judgemental understanding here and loving support on the ground I hope you will find the strength you need.