Get practical support with your gambling problem Forum Friends and Family Balancing trust issues with an ongoing life

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    I have found out that my husband has been a gambling addict for the past 2 years of our marriage.
    I have been completely oblivious to this – did not know or even remotely suspect him of having gambling issues.
    We had our good and bad days, like all couples do within reasonable sense: both working good full-time jobs and sometimes getting cranky after long hours, working out,
    getting each other’s favourite groceries, visiting family christmas dinners and friends’ weddings, throwing parties, getting annoyed of leaving dirty cups/socks around, traveling, taking care of our two cats, ect. Doesn’t that sound normal? I was sure we were completely happy newlyweds getting settled into our forever-after routine.

    One day he sat me down in our dining room and gave me a letter/contract that started with a plain paragraph saying how he needs help because he is a gambling addict, how broken he is
    in his heart, how he never imagined one could be so destructed. The letter also stated that he doesn’t know anymore if he deservded my love and if
    I decide No on this one, he will let me divorce him. Suicide was mentioned because he considered to pay off our debts with his work life insurance.
    That concluded the ‘letter’ part and led into ‘contract’ section where he printed the total debt he took from our wedding present, two hundred thousand dollars, promising to pay my parents, who actually gave us the money.

    At first I thought that was joke. He was actually supposed to be investing those 200K through direct inverstment tools and he was sendig out financial reports every month to me and my father about the performance of those investments. We discussed how we want to use those money all the time – for a condo, or a house, or open our little business.
    Then I saw a little jar on the table with all his credit cards cut up into small pieces and I felt like a new reality creeps on me.

    I feel betrayed and lied to, but i also know he must be feeling worse. I feel like I did not even got a chance to be mad at him! He wrote an apologizing letter, took action to cut his cards, came clean about
    all the debts, promised to pay them with a signed statement and then he called around and set up group and individual counselling sessions. He has done all the actions just like by the book!

    I am the only person he told it to and he asked me to keep it that way until he sees the counselor and has a plan of addressing the issue set up for him.

    Now the trigger for him to come out may be the fact that recently we have been considering a business opportunity which looks attractive and promising. We have done our due diligence – we have done all researches, went to all expos and forums and informational sessions, build own financial models and predictions to verify everything verifiable. Perhaps he sesnsed a realistic possibility we will go and pull out those 200K and he wouldn’t be able to cover it anymore.

    Moreover, my husband tells me he does not want me to loose this business opportunity (because it was supposed to be a studio primarily run by me) because of his mistakes. He wants to keep going with our market research and not dismiss it to focus on his gambling problems. From one side, I am very tempted to trust him because he reached a point where he was honest and I was very tempted by this chance of owning a studio too. It also would give us both a chace to be extremely busy and focus on the business instead of boiling in this gambling issue.

    On the other side, It would involve taking on loans and accumulating more debt with banks (opposed to family). Some moments I feel common sense tells me it is a worst idea ever to get into this business adventure with a gambling addict as your main partner and support.

    I am torn and every evening I hope when I wake up it all will go away.

    I would like to know if there are happy stories out there in the world? Can I trust my husband and have hope it will work out because it had been so for someone else?



    Hello Antonie

    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.

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    Hi Antoine

    In my opinion, at the present time your husband is dealing in words and not actions and it is actions that make the difference.

    The plans you have described would offer your husband access to money and it is ‘possible’ that your husband sees such plans as a way out of his debts but until he has concrete plans in play and is following a recognised treatment to recovery, I believe you would be unwise to trust him.

    The addiction to gamble is extremely manipulative. Your husband has seemingly given you a lot of what looks like evidence of his determination. The letter and his plan to see a counsellor implies he is trying but until he actually seeks help and until you see a change in his behaviour, I think it would be best to keep the plans for the future, which include him, on ice.

    I appreciate that a compulsive gambler who wants to change his life and therefore puts forward a scheme to achieve that end, would be hoping that those who love him would fall in behind him – I can see why you are tempted to trust him.

    Unfortunately, there is not a crystal ball to tell you how he will proceed or where you will be in five years time.

    I tend to agree with you that at the moment common sense should tell you that it is the worst idea to go into a business adventure with your husband – but – given time, given dedication and given proof of a decent length of gamble-free life, I would not rule it out for ever. I would add, though, that in my opinion, the finances should be in your name and he should not have access to cash, A compulsive gambler who accepts his addiction, faces his demons and learns about his addiction should be able to understand that he is not going to be considered safe with cash.

    The addiction to gamble cannot be cured but it can be controlled. I think it would be good for you to to gain as much knowledge as possible of your husband’s  addiction so that you know the difficulties of early recovery recover – such as complacently.

    The addiction to gamble can be controlled and fantastic lives lived as a result but it does take time.

    Just a thought, would it be possible for you to take on the business yourself and maybe seek legal advice to safeguard your finance?



    Hello, I have just read your story and can’t imagine what you are going through.

    I myself am going through a similar situation as your husband and I plan on telling my father tomorrow, I really hope he is going to be as understanding as you seem to be.

    I only joined this site this evening looking for advice myself however I would like to say to you, it took a lot of courage for your husband to tell you what he has done.

    I know my secrets have been eating and eating away at me for months, I only last week was considering suicide as my life insurance will cover my debts, very similar to your husband.

    Regarding the business loan, I wouldn’t like to tell you what to do as only you can make that decision as you know deep Down that this could end very badly for you however, if he is honestly holding his hands up and really wants to be done with it, you take control of the money. Don’t let him have access and that way, you are going ahead with what you wanted and you know the funds will be safe. I am sure he would see this as reasonable.

    I wish you the best of luck with everything.

    I really feel for you, you must feel so betrayed but remember gambling doesn’t make you a bad person, the just made bad choices.


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