I don’t think you can learn how to deal with a CG, you can ever only really deal with yourself. As things stand your CG doesn’t have a problem to deal with (in his opinion) the one who has a problem with the addiction is you.
I feel that there is a temptation to pussy foot around and creep about on eggshells, picking the right moment (there isn’t one ! except the odd one born out of loss of too much money) Agonising over trying to find the best words, to get it right, not to make things worse, not to make him gamble – it all sounds like very hard work to me, in fact I know it is as I have done it myself.
So what he’s got an addiction ! doesn’t give him the right to be abusive or unkind towards you, or spend and demand your money, or to sit there on his backside deciding whether to gamble the family funds or pay the bills while you knock yourself out holding it together.
I am not going to suggest that you issue a set of ultimatums which you are not prepared to carry through as yet but would ask you to consider why you are allowing him to treat you in such an unacceptable way. He will do what you allow him to do until you stop it.
Why should you have to worry about what to say to him if he decides to sit there gambling in front of you, he’s not worried as Vera pointed out a discussion about it can only give him reason to continue.
I think some thought around your boundaries are needed, what is and what is not acceptable to you – never mind him. Is it acceptable for him to behave like this in front of you and your children ? Is it acceptable that he gambles in front of you and your children ?
You cannot control him and his addiction already knows you inside out and back to front, it knows exactly how you will react, what happens in between and the end result and most importantly for him is he will continue to gamble, until he decides he has a problem.
Don’t let this addiction change you, don’t waste your time agonising over the right and wrong thing to do, if you have something to say then say it in a way that is right for you, anyone who has lived with this addiction knows that it is virtually impossible to remain calm when faced with adverse circumstances. If it was me I think I would have trouble not opening the door and throwing his computer down the garden or if it was a lap top, trying it on him as a pair of tight fitting winter ear muffs – so I get your frustration !
Looking after you is finding ways of making sure that his addiction is not the total focus of your life, not depending on the recovery of another in order to feel happy understanding that you are important and that your place is not to be second fiddle to an addiction.
Snub the addiction whenever possible by not rising to its ocaision not by way of an act but because you have better and more interesting things to do and talk about, if you do not then try and find something that means that you do, visit friends pick up the phone , anything that is a more fruitful use of your time.
I would urge you to better protect your finances if you possibly can, its not likely that he will have a sudden change of heart over night and decide to pay the bills – take control of the finances if he won’t agree then again it will come back down to .. are you prepared to carry on living like that.