I was on the Advice Line talking about my fashioning my post to be less controversial. I find myself keeping some things to myself that in themselves do not cause me harm or temp me to digress, but these actions and thoughts do veer away from the true Gambling Free creed. Yes, I am still gambling free, my last bet still being Aug 13, 2009, but I do find myself disregarding some of the restraints placed before me. I do not disagree with or challenge their validity, I only find that I can function better at this stage of my recovery without them.
I admire members like G (working at it,female g) who is completely open with her disagreement to the "Stopping-Not-Controlling" mandate –not her practicing it, but her openness about it –, and to tell the truth, or to be open, I believe that it just might work with a few, but know that I am not one and would not recommend it for anyone, and as in the case with G, try to discourage it; and, I also admire Shakey with his "Comment Meeting Type" Addicted to internet poker and need help" topic open for general discussion and his "No Comment Type" (VERY) Dear Diary private one, where he speaks of matters that may go against the tide or seem off base and ask for no replies.
My actions go against GA’s guideline for members, in fact each of by deviations are contrary to this section: The Yellow Combo Book pg 17, par 3, Don’t test or tempt yourself. Don’t associate with acquaintances who gamble. Don’t go in or near gambling establishments…
Well now for my withheld comments:
First I would like to say that one of the casinos that I was addicted to has put in place another barrier toward temptation for me. I have been visiting them during my Gambling Free Journey to collect on cash back rewards and meal coupons. Today I had my last "free" meal and withdrew the last funds in my account. I am still doing this at two other casinos, but they will soon put an end to their temptations also.
I will still visit for their buffets (my paying directly now) but they are separated from the action and desiring to gamble after eating has not been a problem, at least for now and if it ever is I will stop. I do have to go into the casino to collect my money (and I do consider these funds, around $1500 during the past few months, mine; The money that I gambled went into a variety of places, casino profit, overhead and operations, payouts, and very lastly, my account – percentages in that order, but the casinos do somehow claim that around 98.8% is paid out in winnings.) but I do not find any draw for me to gamble. I do have my player cards attached to my GA keyring for a reminder, but there is no struggle for me to walk in, withdraw my funds, and walk out – in the past I would gamble about 10 times as much in addition to this amount.
In addition to collecting my cash back amounts and dining, I still go to a casino once a week to be picked up by my daughter. This is something that I will not stop either. I also still see friends who gamble, but they are considerate of my position; I even know a GA person who is a dealer at a casino — but I also have friends who are AA and tend bar.
These are my secrets, they are not bad in my eyes, but withholding them has been bothering me.
My other worry is that I am doing too well, I have no desire to gamble, even while being in the fiery furnace I feel protected. This seems to me as my being boastful, but I am only being grateful. Without my 3 G’s, God, GT, and GA, and the individual members, I would not be at this stage. To counter my feeling on this I keep one of Ken L’s offerings handy:
Today I Pray
God, please tell me if I am banging my shins on my own pride. Luckily for me, the Gamblers Anonymous Program has its own built-in check for flaws like this – the clear-eyed vision of the group, which sees in me what I sometimes cannot see myself. May I know that any kind of success has always gone straight to my head, and be watching for it as I begin to reconstruct my confidence.
Today I Will Remember
Smug "success" can become a setback.
Well, that’s my story and I will be back.
"Day Two Is Another Day Away" – With the help of a Higher Power, My 3G’s – God, GA, and GT, I will not have to relive a Day 2.
— 11/6/2009 3:30:40 PM: post edited by paul315.