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#16644
paul315
Participant

Originally posted by sad98

My name is Cindi and I have been a gambling addict for about 10 years. Five years ago, I sought help through GA because I had embezzled money from my job and was very near to suicide.
… I attended meetings weekly and managed to stay gambling free for over a year … I thought that I had this "problem" licked. I thought that I could do this on my own. … I stayed away from gambling for another year on my own. Then I went back to it occassionaly while thinking that "hey, I can gamble like normal people!"… 
… This was the biggest mistake I could make! …
 I am at my ropes-end and hanging on by my fingernails! I am no longer able to attend meetings as I have started my own business and work schedule makes it impossible for me to attend meetings. …

Good morning Cindi, welcome to GT. My name is Larry and I am a compulsive gambler, my last bet was August 13, 2009.
In reply to your post I would like to start by taking this opportunity to speak about my attending GA meetings. I too have attended weekly GA meetings for a year now and have managed to stay gambling free during this time. Last night after my customary introduction of myself and listening to the applause of the others, I realized that this recognition by them, although seemly a routine gesture, still gave me a good feeling of accomplishment and an increased desire to continue. Now, after reading about your year’s efforts and subsequent abandonment with a following return to gambling and it’s devastation, I find even more reason and encouragement to continue my going to meetings; if you recall, they do say "Meetings Make It". Your being here offers much help to us in this regard; you, and other newcomers like you, let us know that things have not only not changed in the gambling world, but has also not changed in the need for continuing daily work in recovery, in going to meetings and visiting sites like GT. Your report refreshes my knowledge of this without me having to venture back into that abyss for a look or test. Thank you for the help that the sharing of your story has provided.  And also, thanks for the opportunity for me to vent, journaling is a good form of therapy.
Now back to my welcome, in being here you will feel a sincere welcome from the members; your will find the strength, courage and support that is desperately needed in ones recovery. You are not alone. Read through the topics of others, search out the way that have helped them, learn fro them and accept the knowledge, guidance, and advice they share.
Something that I have learned from another site that may relate to you is that "after a period of sobriety a compulsive gambler is understandably excited. They begin to believe they now "hold the key" to their recovery. However, this is where the seed for relapse is planted. They begin to believe more in themselves than in the process they have been following. Without the pain as a daily reminder, they tend to forget about what it took for them to embrace recovery. Denial rears its ugly head and they minimize how devastating their addiction really was and that they have a disease that requires attention on a daily basis. Relapse prevention becomes an afterthought as the person becomes defiant and rebellious regarding suggestions contrary to their desires. And even without actual gambling, the individual in recovery is one step away from relapse. Remember, relapse is not an event, it is a process".
Now you are here for guidance and help, and while you will find it here, I do not think of GT as a place for an easy way out, one that more conveniently fits in with schedules, especially self established ones; rather I see GT as a supplement to other efforts and work, an addition to taking the time to attend meetings  — as another members states it, "We must come to recovery, recovery isn’t going to magically come to us. We must work recovery, recovery isn’t going to succeed by us sitting on the couch".
In closing, my advice would be for you to schedule time to attend meetings, don’t repeat your biggest mistake.
God’s speed, use your Higher Power to guide and strengthen you.
p.s. I don’t know what area of New York you live in, but this GA site list the available meeting for the state; one should fit into your schedule (if I am not mistaken, you found time to gamble). http://www.gamblersanonymous.org/mtgdirNY.html 
Larry

"Day Two Is Another Day Behind" – With the help of a Higher Power, My 3G’s – God, GA, and GT, I will continue to be  gambling free.
 — 8/31/2010 3:34:25 PM: post edited by paul315.