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    My husband and I have been married for 7 years and together for 13 years. We have 2 children, aged 5 and 1.

    Gambling has been a problem for a long time. My husband has a failed business due to his gambling. When our first daughter was a new baby, I was pretty much all on my own all day every day – I thought my husband was working but he was gambling. Sometimes he goes a few months without gambling, but then he spends a lot in a short amount of time. The most recent was $4500 in one month. I thought he hadn’t been paid so we were living off our savings (with the promise to pay it back once he got paid). I am not working at the moment as I’m home raising our 2 children.

    He has said he wants to see a psychologist. He knows he gambles when he’s depressed. He blames me for his depression, but that’s a whole other story. He has asked for help before and I’ve arranged counseling for him but he never showed up. He told me a week ago he wants to see a psychologist and even has a list of psychologists the doctor gave him a few months ago, but he hasn’t bothered to call anyone and make an appointment. I asked if he was willing to give me his pay each week and he agreed, but when I asked this week he made excuses not to give it to me.

    I love him, and I want us to be happy, but I’m doubting his commitment to change and I want better than this for me and our children. At what point do you decide to leave?

    I want


    Hello Emkae

    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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    We look forward to hearing all about you!

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    The Gambling Therapy Team

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    Hi Emkae
    At no time will anybody here ever tell you to stay or to leave – such a decision must be yours but decisions are best made when they are informed, so I am pleased you have started your thread – knowledge of your husband’s addiction will help you cope.
    Waving appointments with psychologists and doctors around is not actually doing anything towards seeking help and it seems to me that your husband is procrastinating in the hope that you will stop questioning him, leaving him free to indulge his addiction.
    Your post certainly suggests that your husband is not committed to change but this is probably because he is afraid of what will happen if he seeks help.
    I don’t know what has happened in your lives but it is common for active CGs to blame those who love them because it deflects responsibility for their poor behaviour. It is almost certain that his addiction causes his depression and you are to blame. He lives with failure because his addiction means he will always lose.
    I think it is important that you don’t threaten to leave your husband unless you are absolutely positive that you have the means and the determination to carry your threat through. Every time a threat is not carried out, the words become meaningless and an active CG will feel safe to gamble without consequences. You still love your husband so I am thinking that leaving him is not at the forefront of your mind.
    Maybe you could download the Gamblers Anonymous 20-questions from their website and leave them for your husband to see. I don’t suggest handing them to him because it could cause an argument but if he sees them, then it might show him that not only are you seeking support but that there is support for him too.
    I am sorry that he rejected your offer to handle the finances – many CGs who want to change their lives do hand them over willingly.
    Do you have family to support you? I know it is difficult asking for support from people who do not understand what it is like to live with the addiction to gamble – I think the most common reaction is to say ‘leave’ and I don’t think that is what you want. In my onion it is good to ask for support but to say that you don’t want opinions on your relationship as you are getting support for that elsewhere.
    I hope you will keep posting, please ask any questions and I will do my best to answer them. We have a brilliant Helpline here too if either you or your husband want to communicate one-to-one. Everything on this site is anonymous and you are welcome to take all the support we offer.


    Thank you for your response. What other options do I have if he won’t get help? The only options i can see are stay and be miserable, or leave? I don’t have an income at the moment because I’m home to raise our children. If he left, I could get government assistance to stay home until they’re both at school.


    Hi Emkae
    Options are limited when an active CG will not get help.
    You feel that if you stay you will be miserable and yet you love him – have you downloaded the 20-questions for him and if so what was his reaction? Did you mention our anonymous Helpline which he can contact without making the effort to go and see someone?
    If you wanted to suggest that he comes on this site and you are worried that he will see your thread then you can always ask our helpline to make your thread invisible – it doesn’t go away. If this is your decision, I hope you will use the groups so that you can get continued support.
    Are you strong enough to ask him to leave and do you have family support if this is what you decide to do?
    If your husband does not get help then your future is in your hands and I cannot tell you what to do – only you can make such decisions. I know he can change but he has to want to do so. In my opinion, he should prove to you that he is committed by making positive moves towards support because words are not enough.
    Please keep posting; having appeared in this forum you are in the thoughts of all those who are facing similar decisions; sharing and reading their posts will give you the strength to do whatever you decide to do.

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