Viewing 15 posts - 31 through 45 (of 45 total)
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  • #1760
    Anonymous
    Guest

    As of this past Tuesday it had been 32 days since my husband had gambled. Unfortunately he gave in and went to an internet cafe on Wednesday. For the first time I actually felt bad for him because he was so disgusted with himself. I know there is a cycle but it is starting to become a little different. After he gambles he usually is very apologetic towards me and I think is more upset because he feels like he let me down. This time he was upset because he broke 32 days of hard work…of feeling proud of himself. He is starting again with a new clean date. I am hoping even though we have a long road to go that we are both finally on the road to recovery.
    Along with limiting money I am trying to limit his stress level. I am honest with him as to where we are at financially and how his dad is doing (his Dad has Alzheimer’s), however I try to buffer things. I know I can not do this forever, but stress is a trigger for him. Until he can better get a handle on himself and the gambling, this is the way it has to be.
    I am more stressed because of that and it is affecting me. I am more short of temper especially at work but I am going to start running again that seems to help for whatever reason. That statement makes it sound like it’s easy but unfortunately I struggle and am trying to take everything a piece at a time. I keep focused on five(?) years down the road when we are a happy, “normal”, loving couple again.
    I am afraid of becoming hard. I know Velvet touched on that a while ago, but more and more it is a worry of mine. I feel like I have to shut a portion of myself down in order to make it through the day. Don’t get me wrong things are getting better but some things are getting worse. The main thing is I feel I have less compassion. I hear someone complain and I just get impatient.
    Bottom line…we are slowly working towards where we want to be. I am hoping the way he felt this past Wednesday will be a huge deterrent to gamble. Progress…we’re turtles…slow but sure.

    #1761
    velvet
    Moderator

    Hi BB
    I haven’t got long tonight but I just wanted to comment on the worry you expressed about becoming hard.
    I think that unless a person shuts down a large part of themselves when they change from old behaviour to new then they will struggle to cope.   Life is scarily difficult during this period and building up resistance takes all your energy.   Five years down the line, or even a lot less, you will feel compassion for others again because you were compassionate before although maybe it will show itself differently? 
    I feel compassion every time I read another new post but I never cry for members as I might have done a few years ago.   I know now that the addiction to gamble can be controlled but more importantly, I believe that every member of this forum can move on and live a life without the addiction wrecking it – not only that, they can if they allow it, take the experience and make it into something of value.  
    I get a far greater boost out of people overcoming difficulties in their lives than I ever did before.  I feel it is easier to praise to people than I did before.   I think that crying with others, although done compassionately, didn’t really help them.  I think being strong, not hard, helps others and that to me is compassion.  
    Do I get impatient?   Yes of course it can happen – I want things to change sometimes before people are ready but then I remember how long I took and realise that I should be the last one to judge..
    I am concerned that you are feeling more stressed because you are acting as a buffer for your CG.    I do understand and I cannot tell you what to do but he does have to learn to cope with some stress without using it as an excuse to gamble.  I am sure you are very aware of what I am saying though.   
     
     
     
    V
     

    #1762
    velvet
    Moderator

    Hi BB
    I have just read a post dated 12th August in ‘My Journal’ the thread ‘Day Two is Still a Day Away’, written by Paul 315 where he talks about ‘shouting’ a strong yes because he read in question 19 or the Gamblers anonymous 20 questions ‘did you ever have an urge to gamble to celebrate good fortune by a few hours of gambling’.   He had made his decision to live gamble free and he was so enthused by it he gambled.   It happens.  
    Complacency is the greatest danger to the CG in recovery.   Accepting that they will always be CGs but that they must control this addiction for life is tough.   Personally I think it is tougher than any decision most non-CGs will ever take and we cannot know how we would cope.  Your husband has tested his addiction because he stopped believing he was a CG but slips do not have to be negative, working through a slip can make a CG stronger for the future
    Your husband should put his disappointment behind him.   For 32 days he has enjoyed the freedom of being gamble-free even if they were not the easiest days.   He has let himself down and I am pleased he knows it but a clean date is there for him.   I wish him well.

     

    #1763
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Thanks for your responses Velvet. The last two weeks for many reasons, I’m not going to list them all the reason themselves are not important, have been very difficult….stressful. We had been getting along relatively well and about a week ago the arguing started again. I have to say the initial arguing started on my side. Irritable with him for seeming to being doing well while I felt like I was coming unglued. Ironic isn’t it when all I have wanted is him to be doing well? Everything came to a head yesterday…he played golf with a friend then went to his counselling session. He said it went well. Then texted me to see if it was ok to go out to lunch with the guy he played golf with. I didn’t have a problem with it…next text wanted to know if it was ok if they stuck around for a couple beers. I wasn’t please about it but I thought choosing between beers with buddies or gambling, beers were preferable. Unfortunately they ended up getting drunk, he was not able to go to GA and by the time I got back from Gam anon he was gone again. Came home drunk and belligerent. We argued, he left and never came home. I left a message asking him to please just let me know that he was ok and he couldn’t even do that. I feel like I am so out of my league…I do not know what to do or how to respond to this. Part of me wants to walk away…a large part. It’s funny how easy it is to slip back in to a pattern of coddling and wanting to help and protect the CG, which I have done.
    Between my CG and the past two weeks my confidence has been just shredded and I let it happen. I really need to go back to just worrying about myself. I have been sitting her while I work wondering what to do and I guess that is the answer. Back to just taking care of me and the kids. Why is it so easy to slip back to trying to take care of the CG and not placing ourselves first?
    It is a lonely place to be. I wish for him to be his old self again because I want a companion. **** I would settle for a friend. If he has not trash talked me to our friends, I have shut the rest out…so there are not alot left to choose from. This sucks.

    #1764
    adele
    Participant

    Dear BB,
    Once again our struggles are leap-frogging. I don’t have much time, but I wanted to post this for you now.   
    Do not allow your spirit to die BB … I think I recognize that tone in your words …
    Remember:   The addiction to gamble ****** on us not knowing how to cope with it.   Break the cycle – you know how to do it!  If something isn’t working, do something different.   Stop running after the addiction and confront it head on without words.   Confuse and thwart its manipulation.   Bare your teeth and growl at it BB.
    I posted this on your thread back in June:  “What I do know is that you are amazing. I have witnessed you building up your self-esteem and confidence these last weeks. You have taken your own inventory and begun the difficult process of letting go of your anger and pain. You have redirected your energies and gotten busy doing things around your house – things you enjoy – things that are visible proof of your improving mental and emotional health.  These are the things that Velvet has told us will make a difference in how we cope with our husband’s bad behavior.”
    You are so much stronger than you feel right now – and how you feel is so much more important than comfort for the addiction.
    Our recovery must be kept foremost in our lives. We must focus our thoughts and energies on things that have nothing to do with the addiction so we can experience peace and fulfillment and thus regain our confidence and self-esteem.  This will allow us to not be part of the wreckage our CGs must deal with – and that is the best way we can support them in their recovery.
    Put your interests first. Call those friends you think you have shut out:   We all go through rough ***** – they’ll understand without needing to hear an explanation.
    Accepting the truth has been the hardest thing for me, but I believe doing so has cleared the path to my recovery.   If I may:    Stand back … quiet yourself … and let go BB.
    Your friend,
    Adele
     — 8/13/2013 8:11:32 PM: post edited by adele.

    #1765
    velvet
    Moderator

    Dear BB

    I have brought this thread up because I am not sure whether all your posts have moved across in the transfer of the site and I don’t want to lose you. It might be that you just haven’t posted since August in which case an update would be brilliant.

    I wont write more at the moment but I will wait in the hope that I hear from you soon.

    To post a reply in our new forum, please start by clicking on the purple box ‘reply’ in the last post you have received, it might be this one, another page will appear with only the last post showing. Write your post in the Comment box and click on ‘save’.

    Thinking about you

    V

    #1766
    velvet
    Moderator

    Dear BB

    I know you are in the thoughts of others, as well as me and I do hope we hear from you again.

    If you are having any problems adapting to the new site please either contact the helpline or read the topic at the top of this page entitled ‘groups’. The site is better and the groups are great but it is hard I know when you have got used to the old way sometimes to change.

    Just reply in the ‘comment’ box below and click save. We miss you.

    Velvet

    #1767
    adele
    Participant

    Hey BB,

    How are you? I have no doubt you are still working on your recovery, but I don’t have any idea how to support you right now, and I suspect you still need that – I know I certainly do.

    I hope you are still reading here and that you let us hear from you soon. Never forget that you are not alone and that we care about you.

    Adele

    #1768
    velvet
    Moderator

    Dear BB

    If you are still reading, please update. Like so many others I wonder how you are

    V

    #1769
    Anonymous
    Guest

    It has been a long time since I have updated…very long. Alot has happened…alot good…and some not so good.

    I will start with the good. My daughter is in her senior year and has been accepted into a great school and offered a partial scholarship, which will help with the costs. So we have been very busy with senior year activities. She is truly a lovely person and I know she will succeed at whatever she tackles. I am a very proud Mama. Also my financial mess is starting to work itself out. Through alot of faith and determination on my part I have finally gotten everyone (banks and mortgage company) to play nice and have a financial plan in place. It allows me to pay everyone off, and help with my daughter’s college expenses and live comfortably. That is a huge weight off of my shoulders. I did not realize how much of a weight it was until it was gone.

    My personal recovery is progressing well. I am not sure what “clicked” or what my turning point was, but I feel good about myself again and feel more like the old me maybe even a little better. I no longer allow his hurtful and negative attitude to drag me down. It is still very sad and hurtful, but no longer impacts how I feel about myself. Which is huge for me. I used to think, if the person who is supposed to be my partner and love me above all others, thinks that poorly of me what good am I. This thought process was a downward spiral that made me think more than once about my lack of self worth and suicide. Again I can not tell you what the turning point was, but his attitude towards me is a reflection of himself not me. So I have grown stronger personally and am much better equipped for whatever the future holds.

    Mr. BB has stopped gambling, I believe. The signs that used to be there are no longer present. Money is not disappearing and no one has shown up looking for payment. He could be getting more creative, but my instincts are telling me he’s not gambling. He has not gambled in 101 days . We should be proud of that.

    The bad…recovery for Mr. BB has not been all unicorns, rainbows and roses. Actually I can not even say he is in a full blown recovery. He may not be gambling, but he changes his addiction from one thing to the next. He can not do anything in moderation. He is now drinking and lying to me about it.

    He is not going to GA, he says it made him think more about gambling instead of how to deal with it. I don’t know. I am not an addict and I have no idea if there is any truth to that statement.

    I do know I am done babysitting him. I caught him in a lie Saturday about drinking and was saddened by it more than anything. I told him he needs to decide how he want s to live his life. I need someone I can depend up, trust and respect. And unless he can tell me what steps he is going to take to make that happen I see no future with him. His irresponsible and selfish nature is going to cause serious harm to someone and I will not allow that to be my children.

    He has, successfully, in the past made me feel responsible in someway, or turned the argument around on me. Not anymore, because there is no more arguing. He either takes steps to embrace a healthy and responsible lifestyle or he cannot be part of this family. Typing it sounds harsh, but it is not fair to the kids or to myself to continue this kind of chaos.

    I also now recognize I can not make him better. I can not force it. I can not wish it. I can not hold his hand and point him the right direction. If a full recovery is to be had, it has to be him who finds it and initiates it or something else will crop up to take the latest addictions place, until he comes full circle or self-destructs. I pray he finds the strength to get better for himself, so he can be the man I know he wants to be. It is very difficult to let go but the only way we have any chance of being a family is to let go now so he has to find his own way.

    I have not posted in some time because I was running from this disease as well, I was also in some state of denial. I thought once the gambling stopped it was over, but that is not the case. And that has been a painful discovery. I even stopped going to GA for awhile because I yearned for the feeling of normalcy and thought hiding could grant that. I was tired of the fight to keep him on the straight and narrow. Realizing that fight is not mine was huge; now the process of letting go is my battle and road to recovery.

    I think I can say my recovery is doing well. I have alot of growth and relearning to do about myself. I am not the same person I was three years ago….stronger in some respects and more fragile in others. But there is hope.

    #1770
    jenny46
    Participant

    I cannot believe the amount of ‘light bulb’ moments that you have had and what a benefit they will be to you and to him for that matter.

    The day we realise that there is no more we can do and in fact we have done to much to our own detriment. The day we truly believe that other people have to sort themselves and it is not for us to be responsible for the actions of others allows us to let go of so much.

    It is one thing to be told that it is not our fight, our fault or that there is nothing wrong with us and to know it. It is quite another for us to truly believe it ! It is definitely another to really feel it.

    Well done BB now you will look at your life with fresh and sharper eyes. The smoke screens of the addiction will have a difficult job on their hands.

    I for one am looking forward to seeing you get stronger and yes 101 days is quite an achievement.

    To me BB his current behaviour just high lights the need for his on going support of one form or another instead of resorting to other destructive ways of coping but – you can lead a horse to water and all that.

    Jenny x

    #1771
    velvet
    Moderator

    Dear BB
    You lit up my room when I read your post.
    Once F&F enter a true and healthy recovery there is no need to look back apart from for ‘reference only’. I believe you will go on to use your experience in all walks of your life and I am so happy for you.
    You are no longer wreckage from your husband’s gambling addiction and I am sure that will give you the strength to cope with his drinking and to make informed decisions now that ‘your’ mind is not clouded by his addiction. I certainly believe your strength will help him.
    I think all F&F who love CGs pray for the gambling to stop believing that, that is an end in itself and in a way it is – the gambling has to stop to allow the distortions to be tipped out of a brain clouded by addiction. It is important that the massive void that must occur is filled with things that are good but sadly that is not always the case.
    Your husband has hopefully been enjoying a gamble-free time and that freedom is something that he can bring to mind when he next reflects on his behaviour. For you – the freedom you have felt as the responsibility of his addiction has dropped from your shoulders will not be forgotten by you and that is what will drive you on. Everything that you have said is right for the right reasons. You are a tower of strength.
    I am not the same person I was 7 years ago and I will not be that person again. The relearning is fun and the light bulb moments take away the shadows in the fragile areas. I am still growing and learning and I will never cease to be childlike in my joy at reading another member pass through that dark tunnel.
    It is possible to ‘accept’ and feel normal – it is right and proper that you do.
    I am so pleased you returned to update – I salute your courage and wish you well.
    Post for as long as you want to do so – you will always be heard.
    V

    #1772
    Anonymous
    Guest

    I think GA for F&F and this forum is still important for me. It provides the reminder and encouragement after an upset or disappointment, and keeps my head out of the sand and in reality. Like I said in the prior post, I am relearning.

    After a discouraging argument/discussion last night, I have to remind myself to let go and let him go his way. There is equal freedom in this for me. I have every right to set ground rules around the kids and he has every right to make the wrong decisions for himself. I also have the right to make decisions for me that benefit me. Not worrying about how a decision will affect him is kind of nice. I am no longer keeping a limited amount of money on his card. I told him I did not like being responsible for his money and repayment of his bills so I was no longer doing it. I am only taking an agreed upon portion from his account to help pay for the house, utilities, groceries etc and he is responsible for how he spends the rest including the debts he owes. This ensures everything that is relative to me and the kids is taken care of; and he is in charge of his own mess. I am curious to see how he will handle it; this is a new change within this past week.

    He is also taking a trip to see his sister this weekend and I was informed with or without me. I will admit his attitude bothers me, but I will not be intimidated into doing something that is not good timing for me. So I told him I would love to go to spend the time with him, but I had to see how much progress I made on the house and projects this week. I am having a graduation party for my daughter and there are a ton of things which have been let go around the house and I am now tackling. I do have the tendency to be too work oriented, but this is important to me, therefore a huge priority.

    I am not a person that puts herself first. So this different thought process of what do I want is new to me and a little uncomfortable. And oddly enough, Mr. BB, whether he knows it or not, is responsible for instigating my new putting me first attitude. If he can do it, why can’t I?

    My progress this is week is continuing to move forward without him, even though I have looked backward a couple times. It does feel good to cut out the stress that he can bring.

    #1773
    Anonymous
    Guest

    Also…I am trying to catch up on how everyone has been doing. I have missed the sharing.

    #1774
    alicyat824
    Participant

    Hi BB

    I have recently joined the gambling therapy community and I have caught myself up on your story and I have to say I am so proud of your accomplishments. It is so easy to see how strong you have been and how far you have come through your ordeal, I am glad to hear how well you are doing with your last update and I hope myself to be at the same level of confidence of my decisions related to my CG as you are.

    God bless and keep pushing through!
    Ali

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