22 March 2022 at 12:35 pm #151222
I thank you for taking the time to read about my story and help me along the way because, as we all know, this addiction cannot be defeated alone.
I’m not new to this site, in fact, I’ve been here many times over with each time being my “last.” As I sit here and type that out, I wonder what will it take? What needs to happen for me to quit this addiction? Do I need to lose everything? Do I need to lose my family? Do I need to lose my house? Become homeless? Do I need to lose myself? Well, actually I already lost myself many years ago and I contribute that to gambling. After I closed my online gambling account ( I sports bet) I said to myself, wow it feels great to be free. To have energy, to have conversations with people, to interact with people, all those things I was not doing because all I cared about was the next wager. My life is crumbling out of control. Everything I do is a result of my addiction. I work multiple jobs, I work many hours a week and that is all because of the financial debt I have placed upon myself and my family. Every waking moment the next bet was all I wanted to do. Spend time with family? Naw, I need to check the scores. Driving to work? Ok, perfect time to place a tennis wager. At work? Perfect time to spend hours upon hours on my phone making bets and following the action. It’s become so much, I just can’t anymore. It’s overwhelming and it’s not the life I want to live.
As I mentioned, this is not my first go around with my gambling addiction. The feelings are very similar each and every time. With today being my first day without making a wager, I feel good. I feel relieved. I feel alive. In a couple days it will be depression. Missing the wagers. Having so much time on my hands that I become bored because I’m not occupied with a game/match. I know that’s normal for us all, and those emotions will pass.
Right around the 30 day mark seems to be when I usually give up on my gambling free life. My mind tricks me into thinking I can control it, and that’s a lie. After my first bet is placed, I’m out of control and my life, once again, starts to spiral out of control.
Speaking of days, in the past I would come here and say I’m on day 1 or day 2; like I’m counting the days because once I get to some magical number this addiction will be over, but I know that to be a lie. This addiction will always be within me, I just can’t feed it. For 11 years of my life, I was addicted to chewing tobacco. Similar to gambling, it controlled me. Then one day, I was able to stop because I had enough. That day was over 6 years ago. I know I’m still an addict to dip, I just haven’t fed the beast in many years; and hardly, think about it. I know the addiction will fade overtime but instead of counting those days, I’m going to enjoy the moment. Enjoy the struggle, enjoy the small victories and enjoy life because I know without gambling in my life; better days are ahead.
Thank you all for reading. I look forward to reading of your stories and supporting one another.
24 March 2022 at 12:16 pm #151326
Craigmac6, you are in good company. Many of us have been on before. Many of us have had other addictions that we have been able to kick and by the grace of God, never pick back up again. I was a smoker of 20 years by the time I became pregnant and gave it up because I couldn’t stand the smell anymore. I’ve never gone back and although I have thought about it from time to time, I’ve never had the urge to try. I am on here for my second time. I am also working 2 jobs to try to make up the mess I’ve made. I enjoy my time gamble free as well and i will admit that the only reason i havent started again is the blocks I have in place on my devices wont let me. That is what matters though, isnt it? That I haven’t gambled in 14 days. It’s no different than an addiction to drugs or alcohol is it? In the beginning of treatment from any addiction the key is to keep the addict away from the source of the addiction, one way or another. I will be able to resist more as the pathways in my brain are rerouted, as the urges begin to dissipate. The same goes for you and if you know about your 30 day mark being the big hurdle, put blocks in place so that your brain doesnt trip you up. I welcome hearing your day to day triumphs and that you are making your way to a better place. The only alternative is that you will be working 2 or 3 jobs for the rest of your life so that you dont lose all that you have. Doesnt sound good, does it? Keep up the fight and we are all here.
21 April 2022 at 4:43 pm #153013
Obviously I didn’t last more than a day before I went back to gambling. I don’t have all the answers, and to be real, I’m just scared. Scared if I can do this. Just broken but at the same time, I know I can’t live this way. The impact gambling has on me is far more than just financially. I’m so much better of a person and more productive without it in my life. As with most of us, the addiction has just gotten worse and worse with each year until it’s spiraling out of control. I have a plan of action to help me and I have steps I’m going to take when the addiction comes calling because I know it will. It’s easy to get through the days when I’m broke, it’s hard to say no when it’s payday or I get some “extra” money. I’m going to keep fighting. Thanks for the support all.
22 April 2022 at 3:48 pm #153094
Thanks for the comment, Kin. Today has been a little difficult but I am here to make my pledge to not gamble today. Who knows what the future holds but for today, for this moment, I know I do not want to go down the gambling road. It’s not worth it.
Embrace the struggle! It will build character!!
22 April 2022 at 5:48 pm #153097
We all know the struggle intimately and can feel your pain and frustration. I know that I had 3 days “off” from work during easter and relapsed on the first one. I am now 10 days in and busy as a bee on purpose. You need to find ways out of the trap that keeps you going back. You need to block access any way you can. You need to give yourself as much help as possible. There is no magic answer for any of us but the best advice is to make sure that you CANT gamble by any means possible until you can stop by choice ( if that ever happens for us) . Keep trying and keep posting.
25 April 2022 at 12:46 pm #153103katajaParticipant
I turn 61 tomorrow. At my end. Added up my losses this last couple of weeks. 170k unsecured credit card. Family doesn’t know. Went to treatment once. Had a year. Life got better. I’ve read the posts. My spiritual advisor told me the actual odds of recovery for some one like me. That pole along side the road is looking like my friend. Can’t sleep. Can’t eat.
I made it yesterday. Today I’m reaching out. Will read the posts. They told me before I’m only alone if I choose to be.
How to get hope?
25 April 2022 at 12:47 pm #153101mpk88Participant
here goes, sorry i randomly clicked this section and ive read through all your forums and comments since monday morning which honestly have helped realise it isnt just me (my last bet was sunday 17th april) this is the 3rd time ive been caught shall we say gambling and with big debts yet this time i was drunk and admitted to my fiance, dad and mam.
ive never commented on one of these but i feel different this time to beat this illness and thats the 1st time ive called it an illness by the way. in my younger days i brushed it off as oh every does it, its only money blah blah i had debt in those days and i stopped and bought a house with my fiancee. im 34 now n i dont why i started again and to bigger extremes, because i realise ive already won the lottery i have a house a beautiful 1 year old and fantastic family. but i did and ive accumulated £31k debt again i feel lucky i have a good job which covers my bills and childcare. im left with little per week but enough to feed my family and ive given my partner all my financial details to control which honestly helped so please try this if your struggling. i was so low bottle of beer in hand afraid and ashamed to tell any1 for a 3rd time but the relief when i did was needed or i dont know where id be. again ive never commented on one of these before so feel im just banging on but im 5 days no betting and ill never say thats it cos it controls my mind i watch football even last night and think i would of won there if i put that on and thts my struggle at this point fighting the what ifs.but im tired of lying and hurting everyone important to me
thanks for reading
26 April 2022 at 4:04 pm #153301
Thanks to everyone who has posted and took time to lend a little encouragement or help. I’m still doing ok. My mind a few moments the other day where I was trying to rationalize gambling to allow for a bet. I can control the bet. If I just do one a day, I’ll be okay. I can win. Blah blah blah. It’s all a lie. You see I’m a sports bettor. That’s my addiction. Sports wagering has cost me so much money. Bankruptcy twice. Loss of trust from my wife. Not only the money but the time. The moments away from my family just to get my fix. The mood swings- the high when I win, the misery when I lose. The constantly checking of my phone to get a score. Spending my last dollar even though my family needs food or I need gas. All of those tough times have been a direct result of my gambling. So when my mind tried to rationalize making a sports wager, I really had to tell myself, if I could truly win and I could control my gambling why haven’t I done so? What would change this time? The answer is nothing. If I place that bet I’ll be right back at square one because I’m powerless over gambling. That’s the truth. I’m happy with that decision to not place the wager but I know there is still a lot of temptation ahead. Especially on payday. I know I need to stay closer to this site and lean on others for support, and vise versa.
Kataja- thanks for posting. I’m sorry to hear of your story but despite the tough situation you are in; you can still bounce back. You can still make life worth it again. Gambling will make it worse. Each day we gamble we set ourselves back. You can do this! Lets not gamble today! We will worry about tomorrow, tomorrow!
27 April 2022 at 3:21 pm #153371
Here I am checking in today, making my promise to not make any bets today. I can’t lie, I have thought a lot about gambling lately. I know it’s that little voice in my head telling me it will be okay to bet, but I know deep down it will not be okay to place a bet because it controls me. It’s an addiction. Of course the addiction wants me back. I know things will get better with every passing day. Today, no gambling! Be well all!
29 April 2022 at 1:18 pm #153576
Craig, it gets easier with time. It’s no lie, when your brain pathways stop the learned behavior and they start to reroute and fix themselves, the thoughts of gambling get weaker and fewer so that it is easier to resist. They say 30 days or more to stop a fixed behavior or habit. I went 33 then relapsed, and in those 33 days I had thought about it a lot. Tried to find ways to beat my blocks all of the time. After those 33 days and the relapse I thought about it less and less. I rarely have an urge to even think about games anymore and I seldom hear the bonus music in my head anymore. ( yeah, I would hear the bonus theme music from my fave slots in my head calling me like a siren song). I guess it’s TRUE, that once you start to disengage your brain for a long enough time from gambling, the effects start to dissipate and it becomes easier to avoid the urges and thoughts. Just keep trying to put the days behind you. There is no other way to do it except time and self healing. Good luck today.
29 April 2022 at 1:25 pm #153578
Katana, you should start your own thread so that we can respond to you directly. I hear your pain. I am 57 soon and in a mound of trouble myself but it is never too late to heal. Giving up is an option to those who dont want to heal, but you came on looking for help and we are here. We have all been in the situation where it looks grim, but there are so many that have been here, posting over the years, that have risen above this addiction. Did you know that there are over 50 million addicts world wide ( reported ones) so know that there is strength in numbers. All is not lost. Take one day to clearly mark your direction, make a plan and start again. Please start a thread on your own so that we can all follow you.
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.