Get practical support with your gambling problem Forum Friends and Family I just found out my husband is a CG

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    I just found out my husband of 35 yrs has been lying to me for over a year about his gambling and all of his debt. I probably would still be ignorant of it if my son-in-law hadn’t of told me.

    I found out that he had been borrowing money from my grown kids and telling them not to tell me. He even stole money out of my son’s account. 

    He tells me that he knows he has a problem and that he will get help if I stay with him. It’s been 2 weeks and he has done nothing yet. I started my own checking account and making sure that our bills are taken care of.

    Everyday I am finding out about loans he has taken out and even learned that he refinanced my car that was payed off.

    I’m so angry at him and my first impulse was to leave but he has spent every penny we had and totally ruined my credit.

    I love my husband and some days I think we can get through this. Other days I’m outraged and just don’t want to be around him. I don’t know if I can ever forgive him for all of the deceit and lies.

    I am still so terribly hurt that my own kids didn’t tell me what he was doing. They knew for a whole year! I’m so hurt and confused.


    This is my first time in the forum or any type of help group so I don’t have any answers. I’m in the same boat you are only I discovered that he was pulling money out of his 401k retirement 2 years ago. I was foolish enough to believe that once he had come clean and I knew about it he would stop. He said he only kept gambling trying to win it back so I wouldn’t have to find out. Since then he has lied every time I have asked if he has been back to a casino and has now lost over 3/4 of our retirement to gambling and early withdrawal penalties. It all seems so crazy it’s hard for me to let it soak in and face the reality. We were supposed to retire in 2 years. I no longer trust anything he says and worry when I don’t know where he is thinking he’s probably at the casino. He gets so angry when I ask , I just don’t know how to cope anymore. He’s so sad and angry with himself but still won’t stop. Treats me like I’m the bad guy if I want to talk about it because I’m reminding him and ruining his mood. Until the gambling problem started we had a wonderful marriage and almost never fought.


    Hi. I found out from a third party about 4months ago. Luckily my husband only ruined his credit but he did gamble away over a year’s wages over a period of 18months. I know how hurt and angry you are, I still am although the feelings have dulled some. It’s so crazy hard. We’ve been together 20yrs.

    I believe he has quit  he seems relieved he was caught   He has been trying to make it up to me on some level  but I still feel distant -undecided- hurt- etc. He has done everything I’ve asked or I think I would have ended it  He is scared I will   

    Best I can do is recommend you take care of YOURSELF, focus on yourself. Hopefully you can find yourselves each a gambling counsellor. I just finished a book “Behind the Eight Ball” recommendable for families of gamblers. I ordered it on line; found it helpful. Wishing you all the best….


    Thank you for commenting. It has truly helped me to hear your stories. I’ve been feeling so alone. Unless you’ve been through this you really don’t know how gutwrenching it is. I’ve been so embarrassed to talk to anyone about it and it just felt good putting it out there.


    Hello Angie

    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

    Read about the friends and Family Online Groups

    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 🙂

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    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!

    Take care

    The Gambling Therapy Team

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    Hi Angie

    I would imagine that you are wondering if you ever knew who you were married to. I understand you must be feeling hurt, confused and even frightened so I am so pleased you have started a thread to help you cope – and cope you will.

    Leave behind any hurt you have about your family not telling you that they knew your husband had a problem because the addiction to gamble is divisive; it is better for your family to unite now.  We have many posts that ask ‘should I tell?’ and they get mixed replies. I believe it is better to tell ‘but’ and it is a big but – I have been dealing with the addiction to gamble for a long time and so I have tons of hindsight. 

    The addiction to gamble starts as a bit of fun, a leisure activity and a short lived escape from reality without any thought that addiction could be a consequence; your husband does not want his addiction in his life anymore than you do. Your husband was almost certainly completely sucked in to his problem when he realised he was unable to control his gambling, by which time he had stolen and lied to cover for his behaviour. He has probably spun so many lies by then that the lines between truth and dishonesty have become blurred.

    A CG (compulsive gambler) who steals to feed an addiction will not steal when he has controlled his addiction. A thief who becomes a CG will probably still be a thief when he has controlled his addiction.

    It takes great courage to face an addiction and greater courage to do something about it but I wouldn’t be writing to you if I didn’t know that your husband can control his addiction and be the man he wants to be. It might well be that he doesn’t know where to begin to change his life and he is probably afraid to try. Maybe you could direct him to GA meetings in your locality or encourage him to communicate with our Helpline which is anonymous and one-to-one.

    I appreciate your feeling of anger but anger will not help your husband, neither will threats or pleading.

    A long time ago another member posted this about forgiveness and I have quoted it many times since

    • Forgiveness isn’t condoning the behaviour. • Forgiveness isn’t forgetting what happened. • Forgiveness isn’t restoring trust. • Forgiveness isn’t synonymous with reconciliation. • Forgiveness doesn’t mean doing the other person a favour. • Forgiveness isn’t easy.

    Give yourself time and forget forgiveness and trust for now – they can come later and I know this to be true.

    Nothing you have written surprises me but equally I have heard so may others, with similar stories, who have gone on to have wonderful lives.

    Please keep posting, you cannot make your husband stop gambling but you can support him in his desire to live a gamble-free life. Maybe you could do things with him that please you both and which do not include gambling; allow him to see that life can be good again if he determines to take steps to seek his recovery.

    Speak soon


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