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    I’ve been with my husband for 25 years. He has always liked to have a punt and take risks but he has always adored me and our children  We never really have had enough money, and looking back on it now I was always in denial. We used to fight alot and he would drink alot but he was always so charming and people seem to gravitate towards him. I too was caught up in his charm. Then he started drinking more, gambling more. Becoming more distant and then when he was with me he was never really there. His charm turned to sneers, then insults leaving me sitting in the bedroom room crying wondering why he didn’t love me as he once did. I knew I was no longer the fun loving young person that I once was, but when did it go so wrong? His gambling was becoming more and more of strain with me providing for everything from food to bills and essentials for the children. I was falling apart. I gave him an ultimatum and I meant it  he promised to start counselling and gave me a portion of his pay cheque to ensure he was contributing. I saw changes but he has been slipping and he hasn’t been to see a counsellor. He went to the race track and couldn’t control his excitement as he but bragged about backing the winner in the big race. He then snapped at me, with insults. I am at my wits end, and I know that it’s not easy for him but I think that I have to leave. 


    Hello Naysa

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    Hi Naysa
    I’m afraid that ultimatums do not change compulsive gamblers unless they have reached rock bottom with their addiction and really want to live gamble-free. Your husband probably meant his promise to you when he made it but his addiction proved too powerful and he doesn’t appear to have the courage as yet to take it on and conquer it.
    You say that you think you have to leave but is this what you really want to do? I would never suggest that you stay or leave; such a decision must be yours but good decisions are best made with knowledge and knowledge of your husband’s addiction is here for you.
    You didn’t do anything wrong, you are not to blame for your husband’s addiction and nor is he – he doesn’t want to hurt you but at some time he placed a bet and addiction was the consequence of that bet – he could not have foreseen the misery his betting would cause until it was too late by which time he has caused untold damage with his poor behaviour.
    There is support for your husband but he has to want it. I can’t tell you what to do but in my opinion it would be good to tell your husband that you have sought help for you because you want to support him in the right way. Maybe you could download the 20-questions from the Gamblers Anonymous website and leave them for him to find – I don’t suggest you hand them to him as it would probably end up with a senseless row in which he would seek to blame you.
    I am not surprised you felt like you were falling apart; it is sadly too easy for the addiction to gamble to bring those who love the CG down to terrible depths. When we are crushed and confused we cannot cope which is why It is so important that you care for yourself by keeping up with friends, family, hobbies, and interests, anything that distract you from your husband’s addiction and give your mind breathing space and energy to re-find the fun loving girl you were because she is still there.
    Please keep posting, you did well writing this first post which couldn’t have been easy to write. I hope it will help you to know that I wouldn’t be writing to you if I didn’t know that your husband can control his addiction and be the man you know him to be.


    Thank you for your words Velvet, I have read the 20 questions and I will print them out as you suggested and leave them somewhere for him to find. I just feel so resentful at the moment and I am trying to change my behaviour as I understand that I am unable to change his. He has to want to change as you have said in your comments. I was going to talk to him this evening but with my current state of mind it would probably end up in an argument which is not going to be productive at all. I am also not sure what I want, if I have the energy to keep trying to make things work. I will have to keep reading more and educating myself about gambling addiction. I feel like I am not so alone now that I have reached out to this website. It’s a journey but first I need to decide what I want.

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