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  • in reply to: New here #191180
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Hi Kin those are all really good questions to ask ourselves. I’m glad to hear your looking at the things that can help you stay on the right path. Recovery is alot of constant research and learning. Even people with 20+ years are constantly learning new things and those people inspire me the most because they always have new ways or important messages to share. I was in a meeting last night where the focus was on blame. I needed to hear that we tend to focus alot on our external world for why we act as we do. When really it comes down to us making the choices we are. We can grown up in alot of trauma and disfunction but at the end of the day we choose to use our negative vices to cope. Nobody puts a gun to our head to Gamble, or use substances, or practice other bad behaviors. We addicts do that ourselves and make the choice to. I always had a reason for why I was doing what I was. Like if only I didn’t have these bad things happen, or these people didn’t hurt me the way they did or blah blah blah (insert victim mentality here). The only person to blame for anything that happens to me for the most part is me. Some things I can’t control like how others behavior or actions are but I chose how I handle those senerios at the end of the day. Do I use my addictions at it or do I chose to go about my life in recovery and face my emotions and feelings dead on.

    in reply to: stay focus on today #190976
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Sounds like you’ve done alot of research to learn about these topics. That’s awesome, it’s not easy to look at these things at all. It takes alot of willingness to dive into this part of recovery and its certainly not comfortable. But self awareness is the most important part of becoming a healthy version of ourselves. I admire your willingness and courage to never give up and you also have the ability to hear other people. One of the most stubborn parts of being an addict sometimes is the self centered approach to not listening to others but you seem to take in the things that you no are going to help you. You may have had set backs like many of us have. But you have more integrity than alot of people I’ve met in recovery and that’s admirable.

    in reply to: stay focus on today #190752
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Hi Kin I feel for you with what you just experienced. I no how hard it is to feel that defeat giving in to our addictive tendencies. But just no your not alone in this struggle. We can get up and try again that’s the best part. You wrote on my feed about having to process something regarding what I mentioned about what causes a dry drunk episode. Is there anything I can help explain to make it easier to process? Or is there some form of support that we fellow Gambling addicts can help you with to smooth this journey for you? I notice your very active on these pages helping and supporting others. So thats why I’m asking what is it that you need from others to?

    in reply to: New here #190358
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Hey kin ya those are definitely some key points to causing it. Id say the most prevelant thing is some form of emotional dysregulated state. Basically things that cause a distress to the deep rooted unhealed parts of ourselves. Disconnection is a huge one to. People that pull away from recovery and try to just do it without any form of help. But really it all comes down to the emotional part of our brains. That’s why there’s a huge component talked about in recovery about maintaining your emotional sobriety. People can be abstinent but there not really recovering. That’s why healing past traumas,learning to cope with difficult emotions, and learning to connect with humans is so vital for a healthy recovery. It’s hard we instinctively want to escape and not be hurt by others. The majority of people I’ve met in recovery have had extreme trust issues and have been so severely hurt by other people they’ve just learned to be on there own as a survival mechanism. But we need others.

    in reply to: New here #190245
    jvr3419
    Participant

    I feel like one thing that doesn’t get discussed alot is that every addict I’ve ever known has distinct personality changes. The Dr.jeckel Mr hyde syndrome. It doesn’t just change once you stop your addiction either alot of times it actually gets worse. There is a term used called dry drunk syndrome which can be applied to any type of addict. It’s really hard to watch it occurring with others the worse is when it happens to yourself. Because ive been in a dry drunk state before I can speak on it. When I started gambling thats when I became this other demon version of myself. I had 10 years clean and sober when I switched into this other person. It’s scary and it’s from not dealing with deep rooted psychological and emotional distress. Alot of people white knuckle recovery. And that’s when the addict person is the most dangerous. The superiority,controlling, aggression, anger,entitlement, self centeredness is at its highest at these times. Its usually like watching an adolescent try to deal with life. People around you will tell you that your harming them but you won’t listen because your stuck in this F everyone mindset. It’s terrifying to be that person because you think your fine when your really out of your mind and should be in a looney bin. I’ve been on both sides of the equation my whole life. I’ve been abused by dry drunks but also I’ve been one myself. The only thing I’ve ever seen actually keep people from switching between the demon and the good side of themselves is doing extremely thorough emotional work on themselves. Usually what I’ve seen help the most is therapy and 12 stepwork combined. Learning emotional regulation is so important to having a healthy recovery.

    in reply to: New here #189902
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Today was a tough day of emotions. A man on my site had decided to climb up to the 5th floor of the building I work on and jump off. He was a fellow construction worker. My entire site shyt down and was in shock flooded with cops. I had a really tough time as the man dropped a few feet away outside the suite I was working in. It brought up alot of stuff for me. Mostly the empathy I have to someone being in that much pain and despair. I no when I was in my addiction and even times during my sobriety I’ve felt that low. It gave me a huge jolt today and reminded that those dark times one can go through can really destroy others around us. I literally saw over a 100 men go somber over this man jumping. I had a few hugging me for comfort being the only female around they didn’t no how to handle the sadness of seeing someone get to that point in life. I tried to comfort people but I was frozen in shock. Us addicts get to a point of just not wanting to go through pain anymore it’s why we use whatever addiction it is we have. I hate knowing that others suffer like this man. There is a way to make life more barable that I do no. Today definitely make me see I need to push harder to be positive even when I feel shitty. I don’t want anyone to ever have to take that energy of pain in for me like we all had to do today for that man. For anyone reading this there is so much help out there to never have to get to the point of what happened today.

    in reply to: New here #189708
    jvr3419
    Participant

    That’s great to hear Kin. I find it’s the only thing that seems to keep me in check. If I feel myself mentally slipping I no its time to start putting pen to paper. Meetings are a bandaid for me. I find that they don’t really have the affect they did when I was first starting recovery. But the stepwork helps me alot. It’s the getting out the stuff spinning in my head and finding solutions for it. The same thing therapy does more a less. Only I think that its the actual writing it out that makes it feel more released and resolved for me. I can talk till I’m blue in the face about my issues but they’re still there. I’ve had to sometimes put the same issues again on stepwork because they still manifest into my life again and that’s fine to me as long as I’m facing it.

    in reply to: New here #189034
    jvr3419
    Participant

    The other day my sponsor called me to ask if I wanted to start another step group so I agreeded. We had started one last year but never finished it do to a death in my sponsors family. She asked me if I was willing to take a cake for my 12 years of sobriety and I said I didn’t want to. I haven’t taken one since I gambled those few years ago. She told me I still haven’t forgiven myself obviously for the behavior relapse I had during that time I started gambling. I told her I guess not because even attending meetings where my ex husband and all the people I no makes me want to run for the hills. He had told most of the people we new in the recovery community what I had done. That made it so I felt really uncomfortable in most meetings in our town. My sponsor tried to tell me that over her 20 years she’s seen so many people mess up in many different ways and that I’m not the first to fall into gambling even with long term sobriety. She hopes that doing a new full set of steps will help me to fully forgive myself. I thought I had as best I could but if I’m being really honest with myself I still hate what happened everyday. The pushing myself every single day in a job thats literally killing my body when I could of used my momey I used gambling to change careers or even travel more eats at me. I try so hard to stay positive and push past the feels of anger at myself but it seems to creep back from time to time. I don’t no if the shame ever fully goes away but I no that I manage to pull myself through better. Inam rebuilding what I lost and it’s slow as hell but at least I have savings today. I’ve been saving since the day I quit gambking and every month it grows a little bit. I haven’t touched it once in 2 years. I guess that’s the part that makes me sad sometimes is to see what was once financial freedom become me desperately trying to repair that again. I hope that doing the steps again will help me fix that broken part in me.

    in reply to: New here #188522
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Hey kin thanks for the last post those are good reminders.

    I’ve been doing really well. I’ve changed my diet a bit which has helped me alot lately. I’m already a vegetarian and eat pretty clean but during the winter holidays I ate a ton of sugar and it really made me feel frumpy and not so energetic. I’ve cut processed sugars out of my diet and I’ve increased my energy by 100%. I’ve been hiking an hour before work every morning. Which sometimes I regret because I work in a highly physical job but it’s worth it to feel better. The weekends I usually spend a full day exploring a new place, we have a ton of waterfalls where I live so I’ve been trying to make a goal of seeing something I haven’t on my days off. My partner is doing really well to so that part of my life is more positive which helps me alot. I started paying more debt down in the last 2 months so that’s helped me feel more confident as well. After hitting the couple year mark it’s about maintaining recovery so I no I have to be diligent and follow a healthy regime to keep me from becoming depressed and complacent. Tommorrow is my 12 years of being drug and alcohol free so im feeling a bit emotional to that but im proud ive been able to obstain this long even through my gambling mishap.

    I do need to work more on finding more positive people in my life which is a struggle sometimes. But I’m doing ok.

    in reply to: New here !! #188521
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Hi justed wanted to congratulate you on taking your first steps to being gamble free. It’s not an easy road at all but it does get easier over time. The obsession does begin to lift and life becomes more easy to navigate. Having an addiction is an extremely distressing time but with support and understanding of why its occurring it can be removed. I hope that you keep posting and feel free to reach out anytime.

    in reply to: New here #187684
    jvr3419
    Participant

    A few weekends ago I had a session with my tattoo artist. I sat for 5 1/2 hours so to take my mind off the pain I downloaded candy crush onto my phone. I’m not a gamer type, I don’t have the patience for it usually. I kept playing though for a week after. I started to see that my brain was becoming hooked on this stupid game. I even bought like 20 dollars worth of stuff on it to keep playing. I realized I had to delete it right away because it was starting to become like how I was with gambling. My obsession with winning and getting the next reward was almost instant when I started playing. They purposely designed it so you have to spend money. Luckily I caught on pretty fast to see how I was starting to act. I’m mentioning this because I could see how fast these stupid games could trigger someone to want to gamble again. I didn’t luckily feel that urge but I definitely saw the pattern of how fast that high was playing. Those games are certainly designed very similar to how online slots and stuff work. I’m not beating myself up about getting hooked on candy crush for a week because even non addicts get hooked on those games. But I’m proud of myself for quitting it as soon as I saw it was consuming me to much.

    in reply to: Day 0 – Looking for some accountability support #186910
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Hi Emma8 I’m glad that you decided to come back to this site. Having a relapse is super hard for us because the shame and guilt creep in. But one thing I’ve learned that sometimes it has to happen to give us a good kick in the head to show where we need to improve on ourselves. As discouraging as it is you now no you need help, you can’t just do it alone. Recovery is alot of work and its something that has to be done everyday. The reason 12 step groups work is because we are constantly reminded to stay in the solution. Unfortunately us addicts don’t have a cure for the obsessions to use whatever are addiction of choices are. We have to be reminded constantly how to keep our brain from resorting to old patterns. Sitting in meetings, talking to a sponsor,or other recovering addicts is the only thing I no that works for me. I’ve been addicted to a million things to escape from the issues in my head. I’m not saying my way is the only way but I no that it works. Therapy helps to get to the route of core problems that trigger us. However triggers, and emotional discomfort still happen even with alot of clean time. Because we’re human and shit happens new traumas or things that stress us out occur. Because we’re hard wired to avoid discomfort are brain tends to reach into quick thinking and wants to numb as quick as possible. That’s why having a routine of meetings and regular recovery helps people avoid relapse. You made the right decision writing here because your brain remembered the support helps so thats awesome. Some people don’t find there way back so you should be proud of that. I hope you keep writing, and quickly get the supports you need from counseling,meetings or whatever you no cab keep you on track.

    in reply to: New here #186590
    jvr3419
    Participant

    So far this year hasn’t been exactly kind to me. I try to however see the positives or learning experience I’m supposed to take from every thing I go through though. As I’ve written about before that I am with another recovering addict. Which if anyone else has experienced can be really complicated at times. My partner did something really messed up around money that I had to kick him out for. It brought up alot of moments of when I was gambling and hiding the behaviors from my ex husband. What he did was forge a receipt that I submit to my benefits so that he could get back extra money. I didn’t notice it till I looked at it closely and it resembled the last receipt he submitted which was written in ink from the Healthcare provider. He lied and denied what he did and yelled at me till I got him calm enough to admit he did in fact forge the receipt. He’s not a gambler but he has issues around being the cheapest person alive. It’s a form of ocd and fear of spending money actually so the opposite of what us gamblers do. He will put people in harms way to not spend money and this is him getting to a severity of it that is addict behavior. I’m writing about my partner because it’s a prime example of what people can do when there not working a program of recovery. We may me abstinent from physical addictions but the behaviors of an addict can manifest in other ways like what he has done. That’s one thing alot of people in recovery don’t understand. You can take away the addiction but the mental crisis in your head is still there. That’s why recovery rates fail so fast because people will not work on that insanity in there head. The majority is from trauma, childhood conditioning, unlearned ways to deal with emotional regulating ect. To be decent humans it takes alot of work and growth to correct the stuff that makes us act in these insane ways. I’ve had 12 years of practice of messing up over and over again. How I was able to get my partner to admit what he did was I explained how I had to sit my ex down and tell him I had a gambling problem. Once I did that I got help and things started getting better in myself maybe not my external world so much but at least I’ve mentally got better. Honesty is the hardest thing to do when your filled with shame,guilt anger all those fun emotions we addicts can carry. I believe in forgiveness because ive had to give it to myself however I also have boundaries today. I won’t tolerate people that don’t try to help themselves I remove anyone that comes in contact with me that lives in a lower frequency. Because the saying you are what you hang with is vitally important for me to remeber. My partner has made alot of effort in his recovery this year but he’s obviously slipping which could cause me to do so if I allow him to continue his abusive behaviors to me. So for the time being I’ve removed him from my life I did it in a way that was loving and commpassionate and not just saying f you your a horrible human ect. I did it with self respect knowing that he has the ability to make the right choice like I’ve had to learn for myself on my own recovery journey. As I no about myself things don’t change if I don’t change. And that applies to anyone in my life that I surround myself with. I’ve been around negativity, and trauma bonded relationships my whole life that I’m learning to break that cycle for myself.

    in reply to: New here #186589
    jvr3419
    Participant

    Hi fasterguitar glad you’ve joined this site. Recovery from any addiction is a very hard process so the fact that your ready to get started is a huge first step. Because your new ill explain that we make our own threads on here for ourselves. This one is mine so it works alot like a journal that people can interact with you on. You’ll have more success starting your own journal so you can write there and people can help you along your journey.

    in reply to: New here #186266
    jvr3419
    Participant

    The holidays can be a huge trigger for people and it definitely is a big test for me in my recovery. The more work I’ve done on myself, the more observent I am of behaviors in others that I don’t want to be like. I spent most of my holidays with my partners family and seeing how controlling, rude, and egotistical they all were to each other made me extremely sad. I grew up with that same dynamic and it makes me sick to my stomach. I hate that humans can be so self centered. I no I had times in active addiction where my self centeredness came into play so I guess that’s why seeing the mirror of who I used to be is so upsetting to me. I can’t fallom ever wanting to go back to being that person. No amount of despair within myself makes me want to treat another human like I’m better than, or always right, or that someone else isn’t good enough. There’s this sickness in humanity that just eats at me and it’s partially why I’m so careful who I let in my life. I don’t no if it’s the world we live in now that we all are striving for some kind of sense of meaning or self actualization to an intensity that means running others over but something just feels off to me. I don’t no anyone who’s not down and out and feels depressed,anxious,or not good enough. My brain is constantly scanning the world around me which is why I tried to shut it off alot with addictions because I feel things alot, especially other people’s emotions. This I guess you can say is what happens when your not blocking yourself out with addictions or distractions. Your forced to feel every emotion, see everything around you. When we’re using distractions like being on our phones, over eating, or substances, gambling, relationships, anything really we are like a radio shut off. However when your radio attentenas sky high in the air you pick up every frequency around you it’s intense and overwhelming. But what I’m realizing is that its actually a good thing because there’s not alot of woke people anymore. There’s just alot of self centered me,me,me people walking around. If we all get lost who’s going to help others be found again is how I’m seeing it. At christmas I messaged so many people to check on them. Not one person reached out to me first. That’s how I no that the importance of me not going backwards in my recovery is crucial. There’s not enough people who live outside themselves anymore.

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