2 October 2012 at 12:36 am #2255emmyParticipant
Almost four years ago, when my husband and I were just married, I knew that he had a “hobby” of betting on sports games. Now that we were in the same financial boat, and struggling with mortgage payments and looking for jobs, I told him I thought it was unfair for him to be gambling under these circumstances. He agreed completely and said that he would stop and we could revisit the topic later on when we were more financially stable. I have gambled a few times and enjoyed it so I thought that was reasonable. Well, a few months later I found out he had not stopped. I got extremely upset, and so did he. He apologized profusely and vowed to never place another bet. At the time, I had no idea that gambling addiction was an illness. I thought he was just being stupid and selfish, and therefore it should be no problem for him to quit. He is a reasonable person, and smart.
Four years later, we have a baby girl and I have just left my job. He is planning to leave his job to start his own private equity firm (basically people give him their money to invest- fantastic career for a CG, no?). I have access to all of our bank accounts and check them frequently and really had no reason to believe he was gambling. But this weekend, his cousin made some comment about a bet they both had. I got physically ill at the thought, and later that night I went through his cell phone. I could tell he’d been very careful to delete emails and texts, but found a couple of things suggesting sports bets. I woke him up at 5:00 am and confronted him. It took a while but he finally confessed to gambling these past four years. He has taken out two loans for a total of $20,000. That money is now gone and he owes an additional $5000 to his current bookie.
At first I was irate, I told him he did not deserve what he has, a loving wife and beautiful daughter, a nice home and family and friends. I said a lot of terrible things. Then I thought for a while and did some reading and I knew that he had to be sick. He is smart enough to invest money and get good returns, he would scoff at someone paying 12% interest on lost money. The irrationality of gambling alone makes it something he would not do if he wasn’t sick. He just doesn’t do things that don’t make financial sense. I also really believe he would never choose to hurt me or our daughter. I don’t think he had any choice. He said when she was born, he was able to quit for six months but then relapsed.
He is going to a GA meeting tomorrow and a family therapist specializing in addiction on Wednesday. He seems open to getting the help he needs.
I just don’t know if I can be optimistic. I am so scared for myself and our daughter. All I have ever wanted was a family in which we all feel safe, despite what goes on in the outside world. We no longer have that and never will. I wanted another child but now know that it’s not smart to bring another life into the world with an addict parent, not to mention increasing our financial burden. If I stay married to him and support his recovery and he relapses 5 or 10 years down the road, which would undoubtedly devastate our family, I would never ever forgive myself for putting my child(ren) through that. But if I get out now, I will be depriving my daughter of a life with her dad.
Further, I’ve now quit my job and my husband will only have his through December. Then he was planning to start investing money for others. Clearly that can’t happen now and he will have to find a totally different job, and I will too.
I feel absolutely devastated. This is the worst thing that has ever happened to me and my life hasn’t been a walk in the park. I don’t know how to have hope to even get through my day to day tasks (as I mentioned in my other thread).
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