Get practical support with your gambling problem Forum Friends and Family New member – Wife of a CG for 15 years

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    I’m married to a cg 15 years. My husband is 58 and I am 10 yrs younger, so 48. No children (luckily ? or unluckily?).
    What a nightmare! I thought it was me not having enough patience or not being a “good wife” and etc. Also my girl friends didn’t helped me either cause they kept saying ‘oh he is such a good man…he is always working for his family…’ yeah right! His family? He was not caring for his family. He had a real relationship with his preferred slot mashine! This is the truth! I was always lonely. I live for away from home. In any case no family support either. I am alone! This is my reality. Many bad years. It was a real nightmare. What a disaster!
    First years of our marriage were amazing then something happened and it became a nightmare. I tried to talk to my cg and ask what was going on but he just answered he was tired. Always tired..! I work for my cg at home. Always home and always alone. Never a week end somewhere nice, NEVER anything nice. Just loneliness and abuses. I knew something was very wrong in our marriage, but did not know what it was. Lately my cg started to come home always later and later and there was always an excuse for that. So one day I decided to follow him after work and see what was going on. I asked a girl friend of mine help and so we were sitting in my girl friends’s car and we saw him enter tha casino. My girl friend followed my cg inside the casino and there was my cg sitting at the slot throwing coins after coins in this mashine. When she returned to the car where I was sitting she told me and all was clear to me! It was the END for me. I was devastated and I finally knew what was going on. Now I understood why we always had to struggle with money.
    I didn’t said one word at his return. The next morning I checked in the waste and guess what I found a playing receipt. Yes! And guess what? The next day I found another playing receipt. These receipt were hidden in the waste. He was hiding the receipt in dog’s can or in cookies papers…and so on!
    I was in choc. I cried 24/7 – then I started to look for support. This is all I could do.

    Fyi last 4 or 5 years no vacations just work. All of a sudden I remembered my cg saying ‘I took your jewels to my friend who will put them all in the Bank so it will be safe..’. There was no need nor dis I ask hom to, but ok. This happened about 4 years ago. As soon as he got back home I started to ask my cg about my jewels and that I wanted to have them back…: GONE ! Alk if them are was gone. I got a nerve breakdown. What a nightmare, a real nightmare. I really was devastated and didn’t know what to do. (Even my grandma’s jewels). Soooooooosorry for this!

    I started to read and read and read until I read about psychiatric therapy and psycology therapy and groups therapy so I talked with my cg saying that there was a problem in our family and in order to help our family WE NEED HELP and this help consisted in having some therapy. Miracle my cg agreed . My cg agreed to follow up with these meetings. In the meantime I started GamAnon.
    For 6 months he didn’t wanted to come to GA meetings as he said he preferred ‘doctors’ that follow him (I think he knew how very sick he was/is). And after this 6 months he started to follow me and started to participate GA meetings as well. Nowit is a month a half or two he is having GA meeting once a one psychiatric meeting every two or three weeks and 2 psycologyst meetings per week. Pretty good I guess.
    Forgot to tell you that after three month I found out about his addiction Iasked him to leave the house which is mine, only mine already before we got married, as he started to be aggressive and he cried while packing his stuff. It may sound cruel, but I was insane.
    (You know, never a nice word, never any kind of warmth, never ever! No love at all, no kindness JUST EVIL.

    Well, it was the BEST decision I ever took in my whole life! Day by day I was feeling better and better also due to GamAnon meetings, twice a week for me.
    I never called my cg. At the beginning it took him 2 weeks before calling me and to see me. I never refused to see him. He use to excuse to see my dog. By the way, I always asked him to have a dog and for 11 years he said NO ! I could not have, wish nor want anything. One day I just bought the most adorable dog and we share the most wonderful love for each other (dog).
    I still live alone after almost 7 months and it feels so good to be HOME alone. No bad stuff, no abuses no aggressiveness. Sorry: IT FEELS SO GOOD. I can walk through all the rooms without fears. Before I was locked in my bedroom most of the times, cause as soon as my cg entered the house there was a fight and bad words and all these thing so I locked myself in the room so at least I WAS SAFE.

    Reading your posts, answers and comments help me a lot. It is great to have help available anytime.
    When I will see improvements from my cg’s side I will eventually ask him to return home. Not now though, it is too early! I guess I am not ready yet. We are not there yet. It will take time.
    Sorry for my looong post 🙂
    Hope to hear from you.
    We are strong! Wow. Very strong.
    It will take time. It helps to know we both are on the right track.

    Ps: excuse my errors




    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. 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 🙂

    If you’re the friend or family member of someone who is either in, or has been through, the GMA residential programme please take extra care to make sure that nothing you say in groups, or on our forums, inadvertently identifies that person. Even if your loved one isn’t connected with GMA, please don’t identify them either directly or indirectly just in case they decide to use the site themselves.

    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

    PS: Let me just remind you to take a look at our

    privacy policy and terms and conditions so you know how it all works!


    Hello Annabelle,

    It was good to meet you in the group and I hope we talk again soon. There is a “New Members” group currently open and tomorrow there is a group for friends and family where you can talk real time to others in your position.

    Reading your first post i can see that you ahve already made some tough decisions. You are clearly going to have to make future tough decisions whe you decide if and when you allow him back into your home. Using support will make you stronger and in a better position to make those decisions. Keep posting here, keep going to your Gamanon meetings. I look foward to reading about your progress here and to speaking to you again in a group soon.


    Hi Ab
    I am glad you have found this site and found your way into one of Charles’ groups. As he said there is an F&F group tomorrow 20.00-21.00 hour UK time – it would be good to ‘meet’ you there.
    You have already armed yourself with information and make decisions based on that information. I am pleased that you are feeling the relief you deserve from living in the shadow of the addiction to gamble, however, I am aware that this is early days and you have said that there is a possibility your marriage will be rekindled so I am pleased to be able to walk with you at this time.
    I would not be writing here if I didn’t know that the addiction to gamble can be controlled and wonderful lives lived, possibly even more wonderful ‘because’ of the addiction and the courage it takes to face it so I know that your husband can change.
    Is your husband still attending GA and as he shown any signs of improvement?
    The dog is a wonderful ice-breaker for you, it give you a chance to see for yourself any change without putting any pressure on you to discuss his gambling.
    I am going to leave my first post there AB – I just wanted to let you know I had heard you and understood all that you had said.


    Dear Velvet,
    first of all I want to tell you that I read all your comments and I felt great relief.
    Thank you for your timely response.
    Now to your questions:
    – Did my husband show any improvement ? R: Well, at Christmas my cg showed up with flowers. My cg calls me more often. Twice he brought me sweets 🙂 . As soon as he enters my home he asks me if I want him to repair things and he does repairs and helps. Lately (last 2 months) he also wired money to me and sent picture of receipt.
    Yes, my cg is attending GA meetings weekly once.
    My cg is living in a bed and breakfast for the last 4/5 months.
    I am also happy I have found this site.
    I think that my cg is trying really hard.
    I know my husband is a good man. It is the monster in him that is ugly and horrible!
    i noticed that I am much more sensible and emotional thn before (before I found out). I think I was worn out, exhausted and just empty of all.
    My little dog is a God’s gift. I adore my cutie, she makes me smile even in the most darkest days.
    “Unfortunately” tonightI ha ve a GamAnon meeting from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm so I won’t be able to meet you at the F&F group. I have GamAnon meeting Tues and Thurs (8:00pm to 10pm). Too bad I cannot read what has been said in the F&F later on :(.
    It is okay through.
    Again, thank you for taking your time to anwer me.
    Wish you a nice day.


    Hello again.
    Sorry I couldn’t join your F&F group.
    It is weird. Sometimes I feel okay and sometimes I don’t. Maybe I am thinking too much.
    My cg asked me if he can come with me and our dog to the park for a walk and so this morning we went for 2 hours to the park. It was nice. We talked a bit and we laughed too. I do not know, but sometimes he seems sad.
    I do not know which steps forward I have to take. I am waiting to see facts and not just words.
    I do not know what to do for now and I won’t do anything unless I am sure what I am doing is more thn right. I probably made already too many mistakes and I do not want to make more of them.
    So any suggestion you can give me I would be happy to get some advice and help.
    Thank you in advance for any help you can give me.
    Kind regatds,


    Hi Ab
    Your feelings are not weird; I think the F&F recovery is often underestimated. Fortunately I didn’t give up on getting support for me after I was told by a counsellor that because my CG had changed his life – I didn’t need support anymore. To me it stood to reason that after years of emotional abuse from the addiction to gamble I did need support to recover in a healthy way.
    I admire your stance that you won’t do anything until you are sure of what you want to do. With knowledge comes understanding that is lacking during the gambling years and that knowledge makes it possible to make informed decisions. I firmly believe that it is best to stand still when one doesn’t know what to do.
    I do know that the addiction to gamble can be controlled but I also know how much courage and determination it takes. Sadly many do fall by the wayside but those I have had the pleasure to know who have fought the battle and won have been truly special people. The problem for both CG and F&F is that we learn that there is no cure and that can be extremely daunting – does it mean that for the rest of the F&F life you will be analysing every move of the CG?
    Unfortunately, we can’t even be sure when a true recovery is taking place and this is true of CG and F&F, so how can you ever trust again? I trust that my CG will protect his hard won gamble-free life and I no longer analyse him.
    It was good to hear that you both laughed and talked when you went for your walk and my suggestion would be to just let such times happen, maybe encourage them, continue to enjoy each other without expecting anything too deep to occur. The strangest thing for me when my CG left rehab was to realise that he needed to trust me and that trust only came with time, talking, laughing and being normal.
    I fully expect your CG is sad, early recovery is a time to look back and see the wreckage the addiction has caused and that is very hard because your CG didn’t ask or want his addiction any more than you did. I suspect when he first gambled he thought it would be a pleasant break from day- to- day activities as it is with most people – unfortunately for him addiction was waiting and he would have been in too deep by the time he realised he had a problem.
    I believe the way to ‘see’ a gamble-free life is in the CG’s behaviour, in seeing the things that had disappeared as a result of the addiction. For instance, did he do repairs willingly when he was actively gambling; did he bring you flowers; did you laugh and talk while walking the dog?
    As time goes on you will be less exhausted and hopefully have picked up on the things that maybe you stopped doing as a result of the addiction, for instance, seeing friends, going for a meal, relaxing without worrying. Your recovery is so important both for you and your CG – if he sees you happy and enjoying your life it will be easier for him to cope with his guilt and it is important that he does cope with his guilt because guilt holds people back.
    I hope some of this helps
    Keep posting


    Hello again.
    I read and re read your last post many times Velvet ! Thank you so much, it really helps a lot.
    Some things happened and I wish to talk with you about these things.
    1) my cg tells me to be aware when I go to my gamanon meetings as some people are weird…and pay attention and bla bla bla..! This is silly. I started to go to these meetings because of my cg not really sure why I needed help when HE the addicted. But I did with no questions every week twice and slowly I started to feel better. Actually, I started to sleep all night through again and it was magic. And now my cg tries to scare me? Do you think he is jealous that I feel good again? There is no one chance that I will stop going my meetings!! This will definitely NOT happen. I disn’t said anything to his words. I was quiet and I left. He noticed. After 45 minutes he called asking me if he may come over for dinner. I said yes. No words about it after.
    2. Saturday I had a meeting with a girl friend of mine and he wanted to see me. I told him I am not home sorry. He asked me how long I will be with this friend and I told him I did not know for how long so he asked me if he could stay with the dog?? I said OK. There was a problem with the house keys as he has no house keys anymore so I gave him his keys (that I had took away from him) so that he could enter the house. I got back almost three hours later all was well. We had dinner together and then he left.
    3. Sunday he arrived home at 8.30 am, he said he had a free Sunday and he arrived with some sweets 🙂 and we went to walk the dog. Spring has arrived, it was wonderful. While we were at the park he received a phone call from work and they asked him if he could help and he said yes in a half an hour I will be there !!!! Well, weren’t we supposed to have a nice Sunday all together??? Same old same. In one minute the whole magic was gone. He said he was all for us for the day and then half an hour later all what he said was vanished!?!. You know what? I think he is a workaholic and a cg, too!
    Yesterday I read all about it in the net and yes he is a workaholic, too!
    So I guess there will be more loneliness in my life :((
    Some weeks ago I had asked him if he wanted to sleep with us for the night and he looked happy (it was poring) and he said YES. Just sleeping. That night I woke up about 4 times, bad memories.
    About one week ago he acted as if he wished to sleep with us again so I asked him again if he wished to sleep with us and he said NO. Last night he said he was sooooo tired and was falling asleep so I asked him again ‘do you wish to sleep with us…?’He said NO. Ok, from now on I never ask him again if he wants to sleep with us. Is he playing?
    Sometimes it is really difficult to stay calm.
    I do not know if it was a mistake to ask him to sleep with us ?
    Maybe as you suggested I should not expect something deep from him. Is this the case? Yes? 🙂
    Does it make sense workaholic and a cg together? Both addictions?
    What do I have to do? How do I have to deal with him?
    Please help.
    Any suggestion you can give me I would appreciate it very much.
    Thank you in advance for your time.
    Very kind regards,


    HI Annabelle
    I can see that you have already dismissed the suggestion by your husband that Gamanon members are weird! Gamanon groups are closed meetings so I am not sure how he is making his assessment but I wonder if it is because he is a little afraid that you are learning too much. I remember my CG told me that he thought I should go to Gamanon but when I did he regretted it for a time. Your response (or lack of it) was terrific; you didn’t enter a pointless possible argument – well done.
    A really positive move in your next paragraph – you put seeing your girlfriend first and of course the added bonus was that the dog got company.
    Then paragraph 3 and concern bubbles up but for work not gambling. CGs are often very keen to work because they need the money to gamble; do you feel he chose work over you or is he in a profession that demands its employees are on call? I know in this modern world that more people are expected to jump to the employer’s tune but what was your feeling on this?
    I am really not in a position to answer whether or not he is playing in regard to staying the night but I do agree with you that if it was me I wouldn’t ask him again – I feel it might give him the impression that he is still pulling the strings and that is not what you want. Put yourself back in the driving seat, determine your journey and do what you want to do first.
    Keep posting – it is an uphill battle I know but bit by bit you will know what is right for you.
    Kind Regards

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