Get practical support with your gambling problem Forum Friends and Family First steps to talk to my boyfriend

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  • #6120
    Southern Partner

    Hi, I’m really concerned for my boyfriend and after a few events over the past few months I’ve realised if I don’t speak up I’m going to keep enabling him. It’s really starting to upset me so any advice would be great.

    We’ve been together nearly three years. Middle of last year we decided to buy a house together & also try for a baby. We both owned houses so put them on the market. We found a lovely house so were keen to sell ours. We got the joint mortgage agreed no problem.
    Mine sold within a few months. We were living in his house and a few months after accepting an offer the buyers pulled out. It was at this time I became aware of the true extent of his gambling.

    We decided the best option was to convert his house to a buy to let. As part of the application process our mortgage broker raised concerns that many lenders would say no to his application because of his gambling transactions. I knew he gambled regularly on his phone but never really questioned the amounts as it had never impacted our life, at this point our finances were very separate. I feel bad but I looked at the email which showed the bank statements. Over a three month period he had lost £6k! There were loads of transactions from a few different sites/Apps & I totalled them up. Over the next three month period he was up £2k.

    I feel like this is starting to sound like a sob story. I fell pregnant quickly so we knew we were expecting last August. Baby is due in April & is healthy 🙂 It was October time when I saw the statements.

    I spoke to him at the time but didn’t admit to seeing the stats. I told him what the broker said and he got defensive saying it’s his money and why do the banks care. I spoke to him
    About setting limits on the gambling sites and he said he’s done that in the past when he’s had less money but since lifted them. He said he never gets in debt (pretty sure this is true as he has no credit cards) and he only spends his spare money. He earns a good wage about £4K a month, he pays his half of billls so does really have quite a lot spare at the moment but I realise now he spends it all on gambling. I’ve said what will you do when the baby arrives and he said he’ll cut it down.

    Main things I’m worried about is that once baby comes along I will have to begin to rely on him for money. I never have had to before as I do have a good job and earn about the same as him. Maybe he will be able to cut it down but he is gambling large amounts and it worries me.

    I worry about his wellbeing too. He gets very moody and low for no apparent reason & we did have a bad day where he said i’d Lost him money as we were sitting in together he was having a few drinks & we played a game that i’d Bought us & he couldn’t go on his phone to deal with his bets & I guess he lost money. He apologised the next day.

    I really welcome some ideas for first steps of what to say to him. I know I need to bring it all to a head now. Sorry this was so long it’s just built up over a few months.
    Thank you


    Hello SP

    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 SP
    Well I didn’t hear a sob story but what I did hear was a caring person who is worried sick.
    It is difficult when a CG (compulsive gambler) earns a lot of money which seems to make their gambling outlay (to them) seem small. I understand from your post, when you write about his moods and the fact that he blames you for a so-called loss when you were supposed to be enjoying each other’s company, that his gambling has become addictive. It seems to me that your boyfriend is either unaware, or in denial, of his behaviour and I’m afraid the next-day apology does not negate the problem.
    It is impossible for me to tell you how to bring the problem to a head. If your boyfriend doesn’t want to listen then he will, I believe,l choose lies and deception over truth, in the hope that you stop asking questions because that is the way an active CG copes.
    A way that many of us have used when we have dealt with a CG in the early days is to Imagine the addiction as a slavering beast in the corner of the room. When you try and bring his addiction to a head the beast comes between you and all you will hear is his addiction speaking.
    I think it is important that you are aware that you are stronger than his addiction and that with knowledge you will have power over it- F&F enable when they allow the addiction to control their thoughts.
    Active CGs generally do not trust those who seek to support them – they see help as someone trying to take away their reason for living and they believe it impossible for those without the addiction to understand how they feel.
    By taking yourself out of any argument in which an active addiction will seek to blame you, you give yourself time to look after yourself and you are very important in all this. If you crumble then you cannot help yourself or him.
    I suggest you keep posting and hopefully pop into an F&F group – the next one is Tuesday 30th between 22.00 -23.00 hours UK time. It is great to ‘talk’ in real time and nothing said in the group ever appears on the forum so it is private.

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