4 September 2022 at 12:18 pm #162673andyroo71Participant
I am a first time poster, at the age of 51, and have had a problem for 37 years, I have tried on several occasions to quit gambling, but always failed. I never seeked advice as I was ashamed, embarrassed and always believed the next time would be successful……but it never materialised.
I started on fruit machines when I was 14, there were issues at home and I used it as an escape from reality, it felt good I was in control. Paper round money spent, cigarette money gone, but there was always next week.
For the next 37 years I tried all sorts of gambling, poker, roulette, football and horse racing. The buzz of hitting that elusive win was always there. But I didn’t do it for that, I did it to escape from reality, in those few minutes, I was somewhere else and not in a bad situation or hating myself. The feeling was the same win, lose or draw, elation when I won and hate towards myself when I lost, both similar emotions.
I knew someone who self harmed and I could not understand why they did it, it was explained that when they bled it was like a release, I understood immediately, that is how I felt when I lost.
So when times were good, did I stop, no, and the reason being is it is now a habit, yes the gambling was more measured and controlled, but I have never liked myself.
As time went on, the denial, the abject failure I felt for relapsing over and over, but there’s always tomorrow to give up for good, right?
Further and further in the hole, embarrassed, ashamed have to keep it secret and tell no one, a vicious circle, full of self loathing.
Mood swings, impatience, snapping at those you love and care about you and not considering the abuse you are putting those people through.
Everytime there is a struggle or issue in your life, gambling whispers in your ears, I am here, I can take you from your reality, and you follow that voice.
At times I broke free and put cooling off periods on, but we’re always off for the following Saturday or lowered deposit limits that were soon increased.
Being out with loved ones, but checking the result of the 7:40 at Kemptpn, or who scored the first goal in the late premiership match, those results will dictate your mood for the remainder of the night.
Then my world come crashing around my ears, the most prized person to ever frequent my life, my wife told me it was over last Friday, because of my behaviour. Not only £20k in debt, not all gambling but no soulmate, no love of my life.
It took me another 6 days to admit my problem and whilst it was really hard to do, it was the best admission of my life, no I have not got her back, but she has promised to help me kick the habit. I know it’s the start of a scary and frightening journey, and I feel different, I feel free and feel with the right support I will get there.
I will always have to live with the fact I chose a website over the most precious person I have ever known.
4 September 2022 at 12:18 pm #162779DuncKeymaster
Hello and thanks for starting a thread in the Gambling Therapy forums
Here at Gambling Therapy we pride ourselves on being a caring and diverse online community who can help and support you with the difficulties you’re currently facing. We understand that this might be a tough time for you, particularly if you’re new to recovery, so come here as often as you need to and participate in the forums, access online groups and connect to the live advice helpline if you need one to one support. We’re in this together!
Here on the forum you can share your experiences in a safe, supportive and accepting environment. The beauty of writing it all down is that you can take your time and you will be creating a record of your progress that you can look back on if it ever feels like you’re not moving forward. So, share as much or as little as you like but do try to stick to keeping just one thread in this forum so people know where to find you if they want to be updated on your progress or share something with you.
As well as the forums New Members are invited to join Charles in the New Members Practical Advice Group On Mondays at 21:00 (UK) and Thursday at 19:00(UK)
And on that note….
I’m going to hand you over to our community because I’m sure they will have some words of wisdom for you 🙂
The Gambling Therapy Team
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