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Hi Northerner
Well done writing your first post, I know how hard it is but there are certainly ears here listening and understanding, so you can know you are not alone.
I understand your fear that this is the tip of the iceberg – sadly along with the gambling problem usually comes deceit and lies and it is common not to know exactly where the truth lies.
I am pleased to hear that your son has asked for help – try and keep communication open with him because he will probably fluctuate between asking for help and telling you that he is in control. Communication is best kept light because as I said the truth is difficult if not impossible to know so asking him direct questions about his gambling will probably result in him closing down.
I have brought my thread entitled ‘The F&F Cycle’ up for you to let you have some idea of the way your son is probably thinking.
Support doesn’t run out when there is a slip or a relapse – your son has a recognised problem, which sadly is still not out in the open enough. It takes courage and determination to control what is an addiction and often courage fades but nobody turns their back on a trier.
I liked the fact you said ‘we’ tried to offer support because it means you are not alone. It is important to be united against the problem your son possesses because the addiction to gamble does divide parents, siblings and children.
Do you have other children? The reason I ask is that often a child will feel his/her siblings are achieving greater things. There is no need to answer this but it helps to flesh out what maybe is going on with your son.
I am going to leave my first reply to you there and get it off quickly so that you can know you are being heard. It would be great if you could join the Friends and Family group on Thursday evening between 8 and 9pm where we can communicate in real time and where nothing that is said appears on the forums. In the meantime keep posting.