5 February 2017 at 12:49 am #5481White TaraParticipant
I’m not sure why I’m writing this here now….I was in an 11 year relationship with a gambler who became a pathological gambler with the help of my money. (When he left I had £20 left in my account and no savings!!! If I’d never met him I would probably have a decent pension and £100,000 in savings, paid off mortgage) I became his enabler but the money ( my cash, payday loans, bank loans) was mostly coerced out of me via verbal abuse, damage to property, threats, fear etc I walked on eggshells most of the time, could not use the living room when he was in a gambling cycle, so when I was at home, spent most of the time in my bedroom. To cut a long story short, it came to the point where my mental health was deteriorating and affecting my work. Earlier in the year I thought the only way out of this relationship was’ one of us is going to die’ and that’s not what I wanted to happen. I’d been dissociating for the last year or so as being in a toxic gambling environment (online) So I had to call a domestic abuse helpline and explained my full situation. My case was referred to various organisations as it was a high risk domestic abuse situation. Everything came to a head and I made a police report. I finally realised two things: my enabling and not being able to stand up to him when he wanted money was making him worse and keeping him in a depressive spiral; If I wanted a future, I had to protect myself and protect him from me. He has been gone for a month now. I still can’t believe he’s not here. There’s no shouting, screaming, slamming doors, no racing, football on tv…I’m in therapy now and hope he is too. Obviously there is much more to this story. I felt like a traitor going to the police but it was probably the best decision I made for the both of us.
Gambling does not have sentiment or human emotion, it just needs to be constantly fed, it does not hear no, it does not care if you can’t pay the mortgage, can’t get to work, can’t eat, can’t go the dentist, can’t go to the optician, wear the same clothes for 10 years,
It doesn’t help either when your own psychological make up is one of the rescuer!!
One thing I’m interested in is how prevalent is domestic abuse (you do not need to be hit) – verbal abuse, mental abuse, psychological abuse in other families / partnerships where gambling is the addiction. Has anyone else experienced domestic abuse directly connected to gambling?6 February 2017 at 12:10 pm #5482DuncKeymaster
Thanks for starting a thread in the Gambling Therapy friends and family forum. This forum will provide you with warmth and understanding from your peers.
Feel free to use the friends and family group, you’ll find the times for these if you click on the “Group times” box on our Home page. Now that you have introduced yourself you’ll find that many of the people you meet here have already read your initial introduction and they’ll welcome you in like an old friend 🙂
If you’re the friend or family member of someone who is either in, or has been through, the GMA residential programme please take extra care to make sure that nothing you say in groups, or on our forums, inadvertently identifies that person. Even if your loved one isn’t connected with GMA, please don’t identify them either directly or indirectly just in case they decide to use the site themselves.
You’ll find a lot of advice on this site, some of which you’ll follow, some you won’t…but that’s ok because only you fully understand your
situation and what’s best for you and the people you love. So, take the support you need and leave the advice you don’t because it all comes from a caring, nurturing place 🙂
We look forward to hearing all about you!
The Gambling Therapy Team6 February 2017 at 1:26 pm #5483lilyParticipant
Hi again Tara, I now you read my thread so you now I had relationships with two CG’s at different times and they could not be more different. Just because someone has an addiction they don’t all have the same traits although they may have similar habits to mask the addiction. My first CG (in denial) partner was emotionally abusive in the extreme and though he never hit me would make me think he was about to so I had that implied threat hanging over me. He would disappear for days, chuck me out, make me do emotional tests to see if I was worthy. He was cold, insulting and very manipulative not just about the gambling but in every way.
My second partner told me from day one he was a CG and was reluctant to get involved due to this. Although he lied to me many times in the past about his gambling and could not be trust around money he has always been kind, supportive and loving. He would never put me down or raise a hand to me and even in his worst states would still wish to protect me and keep me safe. His history of gambling has got him in to far more trouble than my first partner so it is not the severity of the gambling that has made this difference, it is the underlying personality of the person, at least that is what I believe.
Well done for doing such a brave thing and putting yourself first. It is not about what is the cause of the behavior really though, it is about what you are prepared and able to take before you take a step back. Once you have taken that step back it is a lot easier to see the wood from the trees and whether or not there is a way forward (ie will things change if he gets treatment or will the problems still be there, is there a way I can protect myself from aspects of his behavior or are they a part of his personality that are not good for me).
No addiction in my view is an excuse for actively abusing another person although that is not to say people do not get hurt emotionally or financially as a result of CG because they do.
Hope this helps clear things up for you a bit, Lilly x
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