Gambling Therapy logo
Viewing 146 reply threads
  • Author
    • #51221

      Stopping is the easy part, staying stop is the difficult part.

      I wanted to start this thread in an attempt to keep a vigilant watch over my blind spots.

      6 months has pass, and today was the first day of the second half of the year.

      This is an attempt to improve my chances of staying stop.

      During good times when I have money, I gamble and during bad time, when I don’t have enough money, I also gamble.

      I cannot say I have the strength and courage until I could resist the temptation to gamble in a crisis.

      I cannot say I have the serenity and wisdom unless I can resist and walk away from the temptation to gamble when I have the money, time and place.  

      I cannot stop in gambling if I still have greed and cannot give up winning completely.

      I was guilty and ashamed to admit that I was not able to stop in all conditions and staying stop regardless of condition.

      I was guilty of losing my belief, trust, faith, loyalty, confident and obedient in a crisis.

      It is not going to work for me unless I have unconditional obedient and staying stop regardless of conditions.

      I need to start practicing and flee from temptation daily because:

      I always thought that I would be fine when I am not.

      I thought I would be fine because I have no intent to gamble

      I thought I was in control, and able to resist what is right in front of me or beside me.

      I thought I have a strong finance and was mentally strong enough

      I thought the same thing would never happen again, there is no way I can lose everything all over again.

    • #51222

      After the meeting at 9 pm, I was standing on the roadside. To my right and left, neon light signs flashing, the places to act out are everywhere, I have free time and money on me. I suddenly froze and time stood still, after a while I develop the thought to drink / gamble and it become uncomfortable.

      I immediately flag a cab and get myself away from this place.

      I can still be vulnerable to temptations.

    • #51223

      The weather is so hot and uncomfortable today, I wanted to change my mind. I wanted to give up going to the church to attend service.

      The mind is telling me to meet up with friends at the NA meeting.

      I wanted to meet up with those friends but I took a cab to go to the church to do the next right thing.

      I can still be vulnerable to slip into old ways.


    • #51224

      It will be too late for me when my mind get hijack, it can go into auto pilot mode and self- destruct !!!

      The price to pay is too heavy, you will know what it was like if you have been there before.

    • #51225

      Greedy Thought

      I was home, the weather is hot, the bed is uncomfortable., I pick up my phone and looked at the sporting odds online. There are a few matches tonight, I have choices to pick one. I knew where I had money. I am slipping into old ways.

      The temptation is here in the middle my practicing how to flee from my temptation everyday. I am ready today. I am willing to give up winning.

      I can walk away from a place but how can I run away from my own thought? I cannot.

      Some say just treat it like a passing cloud. Do not grab the cloud, let it come and go away.

      Some say treat it like a passing train, do not get on it, it will come and go.

      I am not feeding my greedy thought tonight.

      I did not change my attire and leave home for the betting house immediately.

      Instead I switch on the air con, this is not my natural instinct. In the past, I would leave home and press the self destructive button.

      I did not gamble but I am still an addict. I can still develop gambling thoughts.

    • #51226

      1 Peter 5:8

      Be of sober spirit, be on the alert

      Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.

      1 Corinthians 16:13

      Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.

      Matthew 26:41

      “Keep watching and praying that you may not enter into temptation;

      the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

      Proverbs 4:23

      Watch over your heart with all diligence,

      For from it flow the springs of life.

    • #51227

      Nobody likes to admit to being wrong. But it is absolutely necessary to maintain spiritual progress in recovery.

      Step 10

      “Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

      Step 10, recommend that you do daily and periodic reviews. Were you resentful, dishonest or afraid? What could you do better tomorrow?

      While carrying out your daily review, be careful to avoid slipping into worry, remorse or fear. It is not about beating yourself up.

      Step 10 is about being aware of your actions and their consequences.

      This review is basically taking stock of where you are and what you need to do to ensure you stay on the path to recovery.

    • #51228

      It was about 11 am in the office. I was thinking about the opportunity to punt on sport today, I have the access to money, the time to walk to the nearby betting house. I was slipping into old ways.

      I want to win but I knew I may lose.I remember to give up winning today.

      In the evening after a 12 steps workshop and dinner around 9pm, I was on the bus looking at the matches available tonight. The gambling thought come and go.

      I was still this close to gambling.

      This is the least stressful thread I have ever started in Gambling Therapy. I only need to be honest and admit my mistake when I slip into old ways.

      Of cos I need to be alert and watch out for the temptation. I am suppose to flee from the temptation.

      This is only the 5th day since I started this exercise, and I have already counted 5 temptation to slip into old ways.

      Each one of them can lead to a slip or serious relapse if I had allowed them to happen.

    • #51229

      1 John 1:8

      If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

      Proverbs 28:26 ESV

      Whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool, but he who walks in wisdom will be delivered.

      James 1:12 ESV

      Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial,

      for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life,

      which God has promised to those who love him

    • #51230

      The thought to act out are there everyday. It was like thinking of sinning.

      I have not sin, but I am concern.

    • #51231

      I have live to act out my self-destructive desire and act out my self-destructive desire to live.
      Now I need to learn how to live my life without the self destructive desire.

    • #51232

      Stopping is not the problem. Everyone has stopped many times. The real problem is that we cannot stay stopped.

      We have a mind which deprives us of the ability to manage a decision to never take another gamble even after we have firmly made that vital decision.  A mind that produces the insidious insanity that causes us to gamble against our own will.

      We does not have sufficient willpower to manage the decision to stay stopped; that produces the “insanity” that leads to the first gamble. Lacking willpower to manage a decision to not take the first gamble.

    • #51233

      I am no more a slave to gambling. I have regained my freedom to choose not to gamble, one day at a time.

      Since 29 June 2019, I have started a new journal here where I wrote about the temptation that I notice every day and how I can go into auto pilot and unconsciously slip into old ways. One week has passed, it has made me realize that I face temptations every day. Every day I need to made choices to  act out or not to act out my desire.

      I like to rewire or recondition my mind, I hope to develop a habit of making the right choice not to act out my self destructive thought.

    • #51234

      Good job. I think we can rewire our brains to break the gambling. Stay strong and make healthy choices. You can do it!!

    • #51235

      Saturday and Sunday is my off day from my regular work. I took part time work on Saturday, it starts at 8 pm and end at 8 am on the next morning.

      There are places to go, people to meet, and things to do on Saturday and I need to sacrifice these activities. On Sunday, I am usually too tired that I did not want to do anything  that include going to church to get closer to God, and I should not sacrifice this activity.

      I need to give up those unimportant things on Saturday, and give myself enough rest for the work at night.

      I need to attend church on Sunday unconditionally! I need to get closer to God regardless of the condition! 

      This is the same as not placing my first gamble regardless of condition.

      My old ways is the opposite, go meet up friends for fun on Saturday, go work after that. On Sunday I will be too tired and I choose to give up going to Church.

    • #51236

      We are not responsible for the disease but we are responsible for the effort.

    • #51237

      Part of my routine was reading about and researching sporting events throughout the wee hours of the night to find a “edge.” This habit usually led me to plan my day around how and when I was going to place my next bet. It is the start of the self destructive gambling process. Instead tonight I will write and read other material that are not about odds and matches. Sports gambling has consumed me. I need to break these bad habits and routines before things spiral out of control. Instead of finding sporting events and ways to gamble on them. I will do the opposite. I find ways to stay away from these things. I will read about other hobbies and events. Then I will map out my day to avoid gambling. I will create a concrete to help me avoid triggers, temptations, and urges. I hope this game plan can help me win my first day gamble free.

    • #51238

      Hi Bndet99,

      Thank you for the professional sharing. You are so spot on what goes inside the mind of a sport punter. We are always looking for the edge or advantage in sport betting, my work and my life revolves around it. When I find one in a deal, it become a great temptation to act or place a bet on it and take immediate action or plan my next gamble, everything go into auto pilot, the chances to slip into old ways increase for me.

      Unless our stopping is unconditional. Unless we stop irregardless of the conditions, otherwise when the next opportunity appears, it will turn into a perfect condition to take action or place the next gamble.

    • #51239

      Thank you for responding as I’ve already encountered urges to look up odds and matchups. It is very hard to avoid as I usually did this as soon as I woke up each morning. Instead, I chose to pickup a book and read. it helped me shutdown the thoughts. I continue to remind myself that betting is a losing habit And not something worth my time. Thank you for the support as this has not been an easy topic for me to discuss with family members. 

    • #51240

      Are you willing and ready to give up gambling unconditionally?

      Are you willing to accept that you need to “stop gambling irregardless of the condition” to stay stop?

    • #51241

      I am willing to accept that I need to give up gambling; however, I have said this before and have gone back to my old ways of betting on sports.

    • #51242

      Many were aware of the difference between right and wrong.
      Many were convinced that they were right and the world was wrong, and used this belief to justify their self-destructive behavior – Gambling.

    • #51243

      I completed my 12 hours graveyard shift work, I only slept for 4 hours and had to wake up for the church service. I am not a saint, I was really tired, and lazy, I do not wish to go church.

      I need to made a choice; I choose to do it. I need to attend church service unconditionally. I need to attend church service regardless of the conditions.

      I am only one arm length away and still very near to the next gamble or drink. Today was no exception, the gambling and drinking thought come and go. I think I will still struggle to give up gambling unconditionally and not gamble in all condition.

      I experienced fatigue and exhaustion physically and mentally today, I also experience happiness and excitement. In the past, these emotions make me gamble or drink to relax and entertain myself.

      I am going to rest and sleep after this post.

    • #51244

      We realized that gambling has enslave us instead of setting us free.

      We were prisoners in our own mind, condemned to slow execution by our own sense of guilt. We had all but given up on ever getting help.

      Our previous attempts to stay gamble free had always failed causing us many years of pain and misery.

      Our futures appeared hopeless until we found gamble free addicts who were willing to share. In the Fellowship, the desire to stop gambling was all that we needed in the beginning.

      Our recovery began with our first admission that we needed help.

      Denial of our addiction is what kept us sick

      Honest admission of our addiction enabled us to stop gambling.

      We were able to open up and ask for help by attending meetings. We went to meetings and heard people sharing their feelings and realized that we had felt those feelings ourselves. We were no longer alone. People told us they were addicts and that they were recovering. If they could do it, so could we.

    • #51245

      Temptation – the desire to do something, especially something wrong or unwise

      Urge – a strong desire or impulse / driving force

    • #51246

      Our whole life and thinking was centered in gambling, getting money to gamble, and finding ways and means to get more money.
      We gamble to live and live to gamble. Very simply an addict is a man or woman whose life is controlled by gambling.
      The gambler may not be aware that a problem exists until
      1. they keep gambling but start to notice if they try to stop, that they are unable
      2. when gambling they have lost control over the amount.
      3. they run out of money and still have the strong urge to gamble (withdrawal)
      We admitted that we gamble, but many of us did not think we had a problem.
      Part of ourselves could see what was happening; another part would not accept it.
      We were caught in an illusion of “what if,” “if only,” and “just one more try.”
      We did not see ourselves as being addicted, as long as we could stop gambling for a day, a week, or even a month or more. We looked at the stopping, not the gambling.
      We remember going through a lot of pain and despair before considering the possible connection between gambling and our misery.
      Many of us had reached the point where we asked ourselves, “Could it be the gambling?”
      Something inside said, “No more.”
      We had begun to have silent thoughts that the gambling was killing us.
      We realized that gambling were enslaving us instead of setting us free. We were prisoners in our own mind, condemned to a slow execution.
      Our previous attempts to stay gamble free had always failed causing us many years of pain and misery.

    • #51247

      Many personal adjustments have failed to bring about my recovery. I thought a new suitable job, a new relationship, a new exercise regime, a new committment to attend support group meetings could be the answer to my gambling dilemma, unfortunately my addiction, in its progression, has cause me to fail, consuming me with anger and fear. Higher mental and emotional functions, such as my conscience and love, were badly affected by the gambling.

      Have I forgotten how I gamble irregardless of the consequences?

      Am I willing to stay gamble free irregardless of the consequences?

      Have I decided to go to any length to stay gamble free?

      I pray for strength and direction to stay gamble free regardless of the consequences

    • #51248

      I cannot change my spot so I move my spot

    • #51249

      Today, I slipped up and went to the casino and placed a bet. I didn’t even watch the game as I truly felt sick about it. Of course it lost. It’s not even fun anymore but yet I still get lured in hook, line, and sinker. I felt pretty depressed afterward as well. A little exercise helped kick the depression. I also got attacked by bird today which was really odd. I need to stay on track. I had a few days in a row without betting. Not even sure what changed today. Boredom, impulse, a new idea. I am going to need to post on here each day. Also, I am going to actually be creating blueprint game plans to help me avoid impulses and triggers. I’ll prolly start my own thread. I really want to kick this but it keeps coming back. Live well.

    • #51250

      My first mentor ever told me:

      A leopard cannot change its spot but it can move its spot.

      I would have gamble last night if I have not shifted my spot away from the betting house. The temptation come from spotting a familiar situation, a familiar team, familiar odds, past experiences and my understanding is pointing to one result.   

      I would have betted with money available to me on this day. I would have won if I had gambled last night. I would have won the equivalent of half a month my salary. I could have reduced my debt with this money.

      I have manage to stay gamble free on this day, regardless of the opportunity to win, regardless of all the wonderful consequences and good things that comes with winning.

      I manage to stay gamble free yesterday by the mercy and grace of a power greater than me.

      How do I convince myself not to gamble?

      I would have fail on my strength. I am fallible.

    • #51251

      If I had lost the money, I will have to start from zero and repay my debt all over again. This is more pain and misery, I will blame myself. I will feel guilty and ashamed. I will lose my peace. I will be financially very cash tight every day. I will be very stress on most day and I will be fearful that I can never finish repaying my debt.

      I will be trap and enslave by gambling again. I will be thinking about gambling all the time, hoping to return to gamble to win back some to reduce the debt.

      Today I did not win and I did not lose because I didn’t gamble.

      Keeping my peace and calm was my biggest reward.

    • #51252

      Addiction is a contradiction to living.

      It convinces us that gambling are necessary to maintain our sense of well-being.

      All throughout our life, we kept telling ourselves, “I can handle it.” Maybe this was true in the beginning, but not now.

      Peace of mind was non-existent. We had a distinct desire to gamble. We could not live normally with or without gambling. Our gambling defied all rules of common sense. We had an abnormal craving for gambling and give in to it at the worst possible times. We do not have the common sense not to place the first bet.

      We went through stages of dark despair because of gambling and were sure that there was something wrong with us. Other times, we were under the illusion that we had gambling under our control.

      We are like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. We may be one of the nicest person around when we are not gambling.

      We are often perfectly sensible and well-balanced concerning everything except gambling, we often possess special abilities, skills, and aptitudes, and have a promising future ahead and then we pull everything down by gambling.

      We puzzle ourselves, especially in our lack of control. We do absurd, incredible crazy and tragic things while gambling.

      The things we had to tolerate to support our gambling reflected our desperation and total disgust. We sank to the depths of borrowing, cheating, stealing, lying. We manipulated and control people and conditions to gamble.

      We hated ourselves for all the trouble, disappointment, frustration, suffering, and pain that we have brought to our families and others as a result of our gambling.

      The mental aspect of addiction comes with our inability to deal with life on its own terms.

      We, in the grip of a compulsion, were often forced to survive in any way we could, at all costs.

      We could not handle any mind-changing or mood- altering behavior such as gambling.

    • #51253

      Recovery from addiction is like walking up a down escalator. It is impossible to stand still. When you stop moving forward, you find yourself moving backward.
      Sobriety is like going up the down escalator. There is no standing still in recovery. You are either working on your sobriety or feeding your disease.

    • #51254

      The thought to gamble, drink, eat or sex are there every day. I am no saint. It made me realize that I can get temptation every day.

      I remain an imperfect person in recovery and can still be triggered by something I see outside or something inside me, it can be a feeling or a thought.

      On some days, it can be difficult when the urge is strong. It was my intention not to let the urge grow in strength until it is out of control.

      Yesterday was difficult, I was feeling unwell and very tired. I was so tired that I could fall asleep on the bus and went to sleep very quickly on my bed in the night.

      After work, I was on the bus to no-where, yes to no-where, I did not want to stay where I am, the heat outside is killing me and I was impatient. I just hop onto the next air-conditioned bus that comes along. Transport in Singapore is very convenient and efficient, I can always change a bus home along the way. This bus pass by a familiar place, I was thinking to myself, if I drop off the bus now, I will surely gamble in the nearby betting house. I must not get off the bus there and so, I stayed on the bus and fall asleep.

      Let me be honest for this time, what was keeping me away from the alcohol, gambling and sex on this day was not me or my strength , it was the memories of the recent meetings, the recent recovery book that I read, the Sunday services that I attended recently and the biblical scripture that I read recently.

      The recent memory was still so strong on my mind, my mind was like a bowl of salad, there are many stuffs not to gamble and drink in there together with the other stuff telling me to gamble and drink. One is more than the others.

      Guess the meeting and reading recently kept me safe on this day, if I did not do any of those, the thought to drink, gamble, eat and sex surely will be filling up all my mind, if that is all I had, there is nothing to stop me.

      I am so vulnerable when I was tired, sick or in desperate need for money. I can slip into my old ways.

      I actually slipped into the old habits of deceiving myself to take alcohol. Not gambling become my excuse to do other wrong yesterday. I have the money, I can afford it,  I had the time, I lied to myself that taking alcohol is harmless because I long to get the numb and high from alcohol intoxication.

      I was gamble and alcohol free yesterday. Today is a brand new day, I can make myself very sick by attending the Saturday afternoon recovery meeting in the afternoon, do my 12 hours graveyard shift part time work in the night and attend the Sunday Service next day after work. I did not give myself any room for sleep and rest. This is a perfect way for me to relapse.

      I am not going to attend the Saturday afternoon recovery support group meeting. I will made rest a priority, and go do my part time work later.

      I shall attend Sunday Service unconditionally regardless of the consequences.

      2 weeks has passed, I experience temptation almost everyday but only 2 urges to gamble worth mentioning.

    • #51255

      I am no exception, if I have time, money and place to gamble at my disposal, I can easily be tempted and slip into my old ways.

      I am setting myself up to fail one day unless I remove the temptations.

      I get complacent after a while and thought I do not need the barrier anymore.

    • #51256

      Charles shared, “Doing the things your adiction is giving you lots of reasons not to do”.

      It was like doing all the things that the devil do not want me to do.

    • #51257

      Gambling is for the people with the spending power and the money to lose. I like to pretend and spend like them and be able to do thing like them.

      I was really a fool because I do not know my limitation. Gambling is not for people like me. I do not have the spending power or have any money to lose.

    • #51258

      darkenergy0138 shared: “your brain is now burning, you have part of it is pushing you to gamble and the other part is pushing you not to gamble….I was fighting the urge for 10 days, my brain was on fire for 10 days and it ends up by relapse.” The mental relapse has already happen in the mind before the physical relapse take place.

    • #51259

      Stay calm and be patient. Trust God.

    • #51260

      If you want to feel rich,

      Just c.o.u.n.t. the things you have that money cannot buy

    • #51261

      Instead of loving money and using people

      Start using money to love people

    • #51262

      People respect the money, not the person.

      People respect the power of authority, not the person.

      People like good looks, not the good thoughts

    • #51263

      Two things define you
      “Your patience” when you have nothing & “Your attitude” when you have everything.

    • #51264

      Don’t check the matches available on the day

      Don’t look at the odds

      Don’t watch the game

      Don’t check the results after the match.

    • #51265

      The barriers is working.

      On some days I do not have the money.

      On some days there is no gambling opportunity

      On some days I do not have the time.

      I want to gamble today but cannot, I need to do my part time work, I do not have time to gamble. 

      As I am writting, I can see that I dont need to gamble

      The devil want me to gamble and this is how I normally got myself into trouble.

      I only need to be obedient and not place the first bet. 

      This is a simple program,

    • #51266

      I was reading other threads and Granfalloom reminded me:

      No Gambling no debts.

      No Alcohol no uncontrolled angers and physical violent behaviors.

      No Drugs no days behind bar.

      No Overeating no sick feeling.

      If I did not act out, I will not do foolish and stupid thing.

      I have multiple addictions. I suffer from a sickness that cannot stop me from doing harm to myself and sabotage to my recovery.

      I can feel the hardship, pain and suffering of other struggling addicts. I knew how and what it feels like.

    • #51267

      Steev reminded me of my old ways. I am capable of not caring enough. I can bet everything I had in a single bet regardless of the consequences.

      There was a time I do not care about my life and the life of others anymore and betted my whole life in the gamble.

      I lost all gamble in the end.

    • #51268

      George Carlin’s quote:

      Just because you got the monkey off your back, it doesn’t mean the circus left town.

      When I stop gambling, I continue to exhibit the same terrible behavior because I still have the same problems. It is call dry drunk in AA.

      It means that an addict is never recovered. They’re always recovering. You hear an addict say things like “I have been in recovery for 25 years.” They’re not recovered. They’re still recovering. They always will be. It is not finished, always work in progress.

      The monkey on your back refers to withdrawal. Once the person gets past the painful withdrawal, the monkey is off their back, but being in the presence of the drug will cause them to relapse.

      Just because the monkey is off their back, doesn’t mean the circus left town. Addict is still an addict even if they haven’t used for years.

      Even if the monkey is not on one’s back at the moment, they are still an addict. The circus is still in town.

    • #51269

      Hi Kin
      Thank you for your post on my thread – replies are scarce nowadays
      You are doing really well and I can see you are addressing other issues as well as gambling. Keep strong Kin and thank you for thinking of me .

    • #51270

      A weak-willed person knows what is right or wrong when he is not overcome by his appetite, desire, or emotion. But his knowledge about what is the best thing to do is absent or defective or dysfunctional when strong desires or emotions are present.

      weakwilled person is easily influenced to change their decisions, opinions, or plans. 

      Weak, and not determined

    • #51271

      How have you been doing Kin??

    • #51272

      Thank you for asking. I feel grateful, contented and hopeful.

    • #51273

      Good to hear! Always in my thoughts and prayers!

    • #51274

      Gbabyh reminded me to think of food as fuel rather than pleasure.

      Seeking pleasure was my top priority when I act out in slot machines, football bettings, alcohol, sex and food. I always want more.

    • #51275

      I was doing my part time work in the early hour of Sunday morning, It was an innocent thought, I was mentally adding the little money in a few accounts to see whether I had enough to pay the next bill.

      This action is enough to trigger my mind to tell me I have money and can win some more money. I was thinking to myself, what is wrong with me!!!

      After I finish work, I read some recovery material before I went to sleep. This crazy thought and feeling I had is normal, it was a euphoric recall.

      I just woke up after a good sleep and rest. The crazy thought was gone and has disappear. This is crazy.

      I could be in trouble if I had listen to the lies and distorted thinking I had.

    • #51276

      I like to take this opportunity to thank the participants here. I was reading your posts. Your message can be such a powerful reminder to me.

      You reminded me of SMART RECOVERY AND CELEBRATE RECOVERY. At some point of time in my recovery, I spend a lot of time reading them but have forgotten much.

      Recently, I had been having a lot of fun and enjoyment reading the scriptures behind the 12 steps recovery program, I was focusing on Jesus Christ and the 12 steps but did not notice I was doing celebrate recovery which is a faith base recovery program that I pick up from a book.

      Something inside me prompted me to go back to study Smart Recovery. The timing was perfect, as I discover that I have a different level of understanding now and I was able to recognize and describe my feeling better in words with the help of reading material found online. My post on euphoric recall was a result of this.

      Thank you Jen, I did it, lizbeth4 .

    • #51277

      I answer all the 4 questions and wrote it down this week and it kept me strong and safe for a few days but I can feel that it is fading now…

      I am slipping into the old ways where I can remember only these 2 questions about what can gambling do for me? and what is the disadvantages of stopping gambling? 

      I have forgotten completely about what can gambling do to me? and what is the advantages of stopping gambling?

      Recovery can be likened to walking up a down escalator. Every child knows the trick to walking up one is to climb faster than the escalator is pulling you back. You could climb so far up the escalator, but the moment your climbing effort is less than the downward pull of the escalator, you begin moving back towards that bottom. That’s what relapse is like.

      Relapse is a process, not an event. The last thing that happens in a relapse process is gambling. Depending on the effort you made to progress up the escalator of recovery, your relapse process could take a longer time to happen.

      This can be a message of hope and not hopelessness. If your relapse process takes months or years to lead you back to active gambling, then you have months or even years to recognize the problem and prevent it from getting any worse.

      I feel lazy and tired, but have gratitude contentment today. 

    • #51278

      I have just finished another grave yard shift at work. I am now physically and mentally exhausted. Compare to last week this day, I knew I was stronger today. Last Sunday, I remember having gambling thought.

      Somehow the written exercise I did in the week has given me a clear mind and awareness to made the right choice.

      1. What can gambling do for me?

      2. What can gambling do to me?

      3. What is the advantage of stopping gambling?

      4. What is the disadvantages of stopping gambling?

      I can feel the big difference, I was more firm, decisive and quicker in choosing to be gamble free.

      My blind spots for many years has been not remembering what is the disadvantages of stopping gambling and what gambling can do to me in critical moment.

      One remind me of the trigger and always to be “alert, ready and prepared what to do” while the other remind me of the heavy consequences and not to do it. Remembering both gave me the ability to stay stop. 

      This is so important to me when my mind get hijack. I can experience a euphoric recall and slip into a mental relapse mode. I will go into a automatic mode, I can only recall the disadvantages of staying stop and what gambling can do for me.

      These thoughts promote gambling and keep me addicted to gambling. My thought get distorted and I lose my discipline and self control.

      What I did was to revisit the questions and read my answers again. It helps to strengthen my fading memory. I did that a few times this week.

    • #51279

      Just woke up after a good sleep and it is 3.10 pm here.

      Gone are the days where I can go without sleep and still can function normally. When I am feeling tired, weak, and exhausted at age 53, it is common for me to have gambling thoughts.

      After working the grave yard shift, I need to let myself sleep otherwise the harm and damage done is great.

    • #51280

      agrees with Monica and Steev

    • #51281

      If it did not happen to me now, the answer is not yet.

    • #51282

      The devil / addiction want me to gamble.

      It want me to continue gambling.

      It want me to feel ashame and embarrass, sink into self pity and self beating mode. It does not want me to pick myself up.

      It did not want me to return to the flock of sheep / recovering people where I belong because I am more vulnerable and easier to be attack when I am alone.

      It will attack my pride and ego, my pride and ego would tell me big lies saying; I know what I am doing; I am strong enough; I am in full control; I am very careful; I do not need them; I am invinsible and powerful; It want me to walk away from the recovery community, recovery places and recovery support group meetings.

      It has come to steal, kill and destroy.

      It did not want to see me get healed, cured, improved, better and recovered.

    • #51283

      I was accuse of something I did not do at work and it trigger flashback of all the things I did not do but was accuse of committing by people in my work over the year.

      I was normally discipline, mature and professional in my work and do not allow them to affect me in my practice but not this time. I thought I could shake it off during lunchtime but it didn’t. I was trigger and badly affected emotionally.

      Step 1 of Emotional Anonymous

      We admitted we were powerless over our emotions, that our lives had become unmanageable.

      I decided to apply half day leave in the afternoon to let the matter pass. I went to attend the NA meeting in the evening. I was not ashamed to share that I was accused of cheating, of cause I did not cheat.

      I know customer can say any irresponsible things they like but It still hurts very bad when I strive to be honest and hardworking.

      I place priority on my recovery over work. After a few hours away from work. I was feeling charge up again. Time heal everything.

      Yes, if I lose this job, my repayment plan will be in trouble. But if I need to lose this job to safeguard my recovery, I would do it.

      I read this message today.

      We need to always keep in mind that what we need is not always what we want. God knows our needs even if we do not. And he will fullfill our needs through Christ to show His glory, not to fullfill our personal desires.

      I thought this walk would be easy but it is turning into a spiritual warfare.

      In the past, this was a perfect excuse to turn to alcohol or gambling, now I turn to a support group meeting to cope with my sick feeling.

      No one believe me today. My face was bloody red due to my eczema outbreak, a recovery center director question me why my face is red, maybe she thought I was drinking….haha…what a bad day.

      This too shall pass.

    • #51284

      Step 1 of Emotional Anonymous We admitted we were powerless over our emotions, that our lives had become unmanageable.

      Thank God, I feel normal today after a good night sleep. I am not affected by what happen yesterday. I have gambling thoughts but did not gamble yesterday.

      I receive my salary yesterday and going to pay every bill via internet now. Not making the same mistake of holding on to these money.

    • #51285

      Had a long day. Feeling tired. Sleep is the best cure. Not alcohol not gambling.

    • #51286

      You don’t have to do anything.

      Stop gambling,

      but continue to live your life the way you always have.

      Your disease will do the rest.

      It will trigger a series of automatic and habitual reactions to life’s problems

      Problem that will create so much pain and discomfort

      A return to gambling will seem like a positive option

      Doctor Terence T. Gorski.

    • #51287

      The relapse process does not only involve the act of gambling.

      It is a progression that creates the overwhelming need for gambling.

      Relapse does not happen when the addict takes the first gamble.

      Relapse is a process, not an event.

      Relapse begins long before the addict returns to gambling.

    • #51288

      it has a set of phases and characteristics that — when taken together — accurately predict how close a recovering person is to taking that first gamble.

    • #51289

      What are the steps a person goes through to get to the actual relapse?

      Terrence Gorski developed the Relapse Syndrome and Relapse Progression lists itemizing the steps a person goes through to get to the actual relapse.

      These phases involve all three elements of a relapse: internal dysfunction, external dysfunction, and loss of control.

      Since understanding and being able to spot the phases and warning signs of relapse are critical to long-term sobriety, we who are in recovery would do well to pay close attention.

      The relapse process in and of itself causes the addict to feel pain and discomfort when not gambling. 

      This pain and discomfort can become so bad that the addict becomes unable to live normally.

      In Alcoholics Anonymous this is called a dry drunk but the syndrome is recognized in all areas of addiction and is in essence, abstinence without recovery.

    • #51290

      The state of living in abstinence without “a suitable substitute” causes discomfort and a terrible psychological pressure
      It can be so bad that the addict feels gambling can’t be any worse than the pain of staying gamble free.

    • #51291

      People in recovery from addiction need to identify the problems that caused relapse.

      There is seldom just one warning sign. Usually a series of warning signs build one on the other to create relapse. It’s the cumulative effect that wears them down.

      The final warning sign is simply the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

      Unfortunately many of relapsers think it’s the last warning sign that did it.

      They never look for the earlier and more subtle warning signs that set the stage for the final disaster.

    • #51293

      I have kept myself occupied with activities since last Friday after I was accused by a customer of cheating…of cos I did not do that.

      It was just another irresponsible accusation by a customer. It can happen to anyone and is normal but when it happen to me on the last day of the work week, I was very tired, I get triggered. I was badly affected emotionally.

      I fear losing this job, if I lose this job, my repayment plans will be in deep trouble and I was angry to be accuse of something I try very hard not to do.

      Step 1 of Emotional Anonymous:

      We admitted we were powerless over our emotions, that our lives had become unmanageable.

      Imagine what could have happen when such thing happen on Friday morning? What could have happen to me on Friday after work, Saturday or Sunday? I could be checking my damage on Monday. I was glad this did not happen.

      On Monday, I received the good news that the company is renewing my employment contract for another year. 

      By the power, mercy and grace of God in the name of Jesus Christ, I was saved! 

    • #51292

      I enjoy reading your posts. They help. You seem to be doing well and working hard at staying g free. I remind myself daily that “I rather struggle with not gambling than struggle with the aftermath of giving in”

    • #51294

      Working recovery in Gambling Therapy – My Journal Forum can be so fun especially when I do the question and answer found in some recovery program here.

      I can always go back to the same question to edit and add some more whenever the answer to that question come to my thought, feeling and emotion. I can answer those question slowly and carefully; Easy does it.

      This really help a problem gambler like me with incredible short memory and so many blind spots to be mindful of slipping into old ways.

      I revisit these questions and answers whenever I need.

      Thank God for the power, mercy, grace, guidance and direction in Jesus Christ almighty name.

      Thank you Gambling Therapy and everyone in the My Journal forum.

    • #51295

      Step 1 of Emotional Anonymous:

      We admitted we were powerless over our emotions, that our lives had become unmanageable.

      I feel very lousy and experience anger, resentment, fear, helplessness, anxiety on Friday. Instead of gambling and alcohol use when I feel pain and discomfort, I replace it with reading recovery books, listening to newcomer sharing and share in meetings.

      I was relieve that I did not do anything stupid this time, 12 midnite on Friday, I receive my salary, I resisted the temptation of holding on to the money and paid all my bills. 

      I have failed countless time in the past but I did not self-destruct on Friday, Saturday or Sunday. From feeling fear and insecurity on the job on Friday to stability and certainty on Monday…I survive this storm.

      Thank God and the recovery program.

    • #51296

      When I believe that gambling can solve my problems and forget what gambling can do to me, I am in real trouble.

      Thinking about past winning experience from chasing losses and the painful, pressuring, discomfort feeling from stopping gambling can trigger me and keep me trap in gambling.

      They promote gambling and made staying stop in gambling difficult.

    • #51297

      It seem like everytime such and such a thing happen, this will happen.

      If I have something to pay and I do not have enough money, I need to win the money, I would gamble.

      “It was going to be $2800 to fix. Normally, I’d instantly think I needed to win the money – this time, I paid for it when I got paid. It set me back about 10 days in my plan, but that’s life.” ~ Hambone

      Thank you Hambone for showing me that I have a choice and do not need to gamble.

    • #51298

      Have I truly admit my powerlessness over my gambling?

      Have I honestly surrender to gambling?

      Do I really think I can control gambling?

      Do I really think I can beat gambling?

      What has cheating in recovery done for me?

      What has cheating in recovery done to me?

    • #51299

      Hi Kin
      Thank you for your post on my thread .
      It was also nice to meet you in chat.
      Keep strong kin- look at how much you your life has changed for the better .

    • #51300

      It seem like every time such and such a thing happen, this will happen.

      Every time I feel mentally exhausted or stress after work, I will gamble.

      I must not sit and do nothing. I must replace gambling with something else.

      Since I am tired, I will sleep. This is my plan.

      Step 1 of Emotional Anonymous:

      We admitted we were powerless over our emotions, that our lives had become unmanageable.

      Everything is ok and I am ok tonight unlike last friday when everything was not ok but I was ok.

    • #51301

      I just woke up. The fatigue and exhaustion I had yesterday is gone, the thought to eat, drink, gamble or go for a massage has disappear completely.

    • #51302

      Our gambling addiction will trigger a series of automatic and habitual reactions to life’s problems.

      Problem that will create so much pain and discomfort that a return to gambling will seem like the best option. What are you going to do about it?


      When the pain of not gambling; pain from life ‘s problem become more painful than the pain of gambling. Is this the breaking point?

    • #51303

      It depends how honest you want to be.

      You cannot gamble anymore. You will only make it worse.

      Put the remaining money away to settle debts and keep the rest.

      This isn’t a life sentence.

      It is not too late for you to stop gambling now.

      If you try to gamble, you’ll cause yourself more hardship.

      I was reading hambone post, I copy and paste it here to remind myself to be careful.

      very short, very true, very real.

    • #51304

      I have forgotten the feeling and struggle of denying my strongest desire.
      When I deny myself carbohydrates and sugar today, the day become uneasy and I have to struggle. It was a more mental and less physical torment.
      I don’t know what to expect in the days to come.
      Taking one day at a time
      ~ 2 September 2019 ~

    • #51305

      I have not given everything I had and my best to the family. I have given everything and my best to feed my addiction.

      Ecclesiasticus 3:26

      “A stubborn heart shall fare evil at the last; and he that loveth danger shall perish therein.”

      It was another friday again, I usually have a lower tolerant for stress from work on this day as I become tired, and careless. I did not notice but can only guess that the stress from the eczema is making it more difficult, the eczema on the face was only obvious on Satruday and Sunday, it was too late for me.

      I place one bet that I did not need on an international football match on the same night. I still need the “danger and reward” thrill that numb my pain from living life for the next 3 hours. I could not sleep and the hope I get for 3 hours feels good…

      After the bet, I pass by a pair of busker musicians at the mall and stood there to listen to their beautiful singing. I enjoy my time and experience there and straight away, I knew I make a mistake. I would not have place the bet if I have done this earlier plus one beautiful song lyric reminded me that I have not given my everything and my best to my love ones. 

      It is not to late for me to give my everything and my best to my love ones now.   

      I was concern that I may carry on punting. Thank God, I have not lost all control, I could stop. I am still very worried about what gambling can do to me and aware of the disadvantages of not gambling when I was stress in crsis and feel threaten in situations.

      I do not know the consequences of this single bet but I can safely say that after 2 days,  it has rob me of peace and freedom, gambling thought imprison and trap me, it is a burden. I dont need this burden in my life anymore.  

      I slipped into my old ways of placing my feelings, and my work over trusting God and loving my family. I was afraid of losing my current job.

      Trusting God and loving my family should be my first priority and it has always kept me safe.

      I am not a lazy person, I am willing to do any job available to me…I should not be threaten and live in fear of losing my job. I have change job to keep my recovery and life has improved!

      Dear Heavenly Father, I pray for your wisdom and courage to help me do the right thing in Jesus almighty name.Amen.

    • #51306

      I have met people in real life who can put down everything, give up everything or in another words; let go of everything.

      Why can’t I be like them, why must I be different, why must I be special?

    • #51307

      Be it depression or physical ailments, I need to deal with it without gambling.

      I took many years and I have recovered from depression completely, just when I think it is going to be easier now, I have to deal with other new physical ailments which is causing me discomfort and stress. Well, just like how I deal with depression and gambling altogether, I have a lifetime to deal with it one baby step at a time.

      I have develop a new understanding and empathy for someone like me. If it is tough for a normal person to deal with addicition, it is toughter for someone with mental, physical, emotional, spiritual, financial health problem to deal with the same thing..

    • #51308

      I made the decision to take medical leave from work today.
      Suddenly, I could see very clearly I have slipped into old ways, I realized that I have stop saying The Lord’s Prayer every day.
      I cannot remember when I stop doing that.

    • #51309

      I went to a local GA meeting to share openly that I place a bet on Friday. I knew that I need to work my recovery program. I didn’t care how others look at me. I just want my recovery.

      I did not want to fall into the devil ‘s trap of sinking further into shame and guilt as a result of one bet.

      I admited my mistake and realize another blind spot. How do I prepare for something like the stress, discomfort and anxiety from physical ailments in the future.

      What should I do to replace the gambling? I cannot sleep so that cannot help. I cannot take alcohol so that is out too.

      As I aged, I will only have more physical ailments and other conditions.

      I came across scripture Luke 22:42…Pray

      “Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”

    • #51310

      The Lord’s Prayer is the prayer that Jesus taught his disciples, when they asked him how they should pray.

      Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,

      your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.

      Give us today our daily bread.

      Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.

      Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.

      For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and for ever. Amen.

    • #51311

      My first recovery mentor shared this with me

      “Love God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and love others as God have love you.”

      He was such a careful person, I did not realize that he was sharing with me the first and second commandment in the bible.

    • #51312

      Thank you for this. 

    • #51313

      I needed to hear this. Thanks 

    • #51314

      It seem like everytime such and such a thing happen, this will happen. If I have something to pay and I do not have enough money, I need to win the money, I would gamble.

      I had a heart medical examination today and it wipeout almost all the money I had with me. I never expected them to be this costly.

      I need to check myself and not go into auto pilot to gamble.

      Today I need to tell myself that I cannot gamble anymore. I will only make it worse. I need to put the remaining money away to settle debts and keep the rest.

      I was prepared and ready for this reservation and knew what to do.

      I am already home relaxing now, I replace gambling with entertainment online before I sleep. 

    • #51315

      Dear God,
      May Your will be done, not mine in Jesus Christ Almighty name Amen.

    • #51316

      Yesterday was another tricky Friday, this time it was made worst by a cold, I was now tired due to work and unwell.

      The new way of life is in place but I felt like returning to the old familiar and predictable way of life last night. I have not drank since last Christmas and only gamble once this month, what is wrong with drinking or gambling for this one time.

      Why did I want to do it? I have this stupid idea that it could make me feel better.

      It seem like every time such and such a thing happen, this will happen. If I am not feeling well, I would gamble.

      If I stay out last night, I am very sure the drinking or gambling will take place. I return home instead, took some cold medication and slept last night, hoping for the best on the next day.

      I woke up this morning feeling totally different, I would not want to pick up another drink today but I still need to try and stay gamble free today.

    • #51317

      Someone posted this here many years ago.

      All you can do is “do the best with the hand you’re dealt.”

      What you can do is “make the most of what you still have.”

      What you still have to offer to this world.

      I’m certain you can “make a positive impact on not only yourself but those around you.”

      The same person also wrote to me:

      Never forget your value to this world and

      don’t let gambling be the answer to any stresses you face in life.

      I had to learn this the hard way as well.

      The addiction is your self-destructive side wanting to make a negative situation in your life 10x worse.

      It’s the escape mentality, not wanting to face reality.

      You can do it kin. You know this addiction well and you know what triggers you.


    • #51318

      Hi Kin
      You are so right Kin – we need to make good choices about all types of things to make sure we avoid the things which we are addicted to – that might mean skipping nights out and other events. We need to plan our lives so that we avoid temptation as we have already proved to ourselves that we are not good at resisting it.
      Keep strong Kin.

    • #51319

      In 2016, I wrote in my journal here;

      I have stop attending support group meetings at We Care Community Services and the hospital, Blessed Grace Church and One Hope Center for 2 months and I had my first setback on 9 April 2016, I return to drinking and I was suddenly struggling with alcohol, slot machine, sport betting, pornography and food etc.

      In Mathew 12:43-45
      An Unclean Spirit Returns
        43 When an unclean spirit comes out of a man, it passes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it.

      44 Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’

      On its arrival, it finds the house vacant, swept clean and put in order.

      45 Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they go in and dwell there; and the final plight of that man is worse than the first.

      My turning point in recovery start after I learn the teaching below

      In Mathew 16:24
      Take Up Your Cross
        23 But Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me. For you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”

      24 Then Jesus told His disciples, “If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me.

      25 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.

      One baby step at a time, I start to deny my selfish, self-centered, self-seeking ways. It was difficult in the beginning, but slowly and surely, my life really begin to see changes.

      It was unbelievable to me, it was  exciting to uncover the truth and find out that the reading of the promises in all the meeting was true.

      The first promise says that If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are halfway through.

      This promise states that people who works the 12 steps recovery program and make a sincere effort will begin to see changes in their lives even before they are halfway done.

      It is already middle September 2019, I attend alcohol, gambling and narcotic support group meetings here in Singapore but I really do not have a burning desire to go to one.

      If I did not read my old journal, it is only a matter of time that I will attend less and less support group meeting until I stop going completely. My last relapse will always be a lesson and teacher. Let this be a warning to me!

      Thank you God, GT, the group and everyone here.

    • #51320

      I thought gambling can made me feel better but …

      Gambling threaten to made my problem 10 times worst!

    • #51321

      I may sound very unfilial but it is the truth. It seem like every time such and such a thing happen, this will happen.

      When my mum say or do such and such a thing, I will walk out of the house and drink or gamble. My sis choose to stay inside her room.

      I learn to replace the drinking and gambling with something else like praying for wisdom and strength, stay inside my room, spend some time away from home at the nearest café over a cup of hot coffee or window shopping in the nearest mall until I calm my emotional down and find peace.

      Recovery is an action plan, it is not about how much I know or how much experience I have, it is all about what I do in difficult times instead of self-destructing.

      It is like every time such and such a thing happen, I will do something else instead of self-destructing. No more pressing the self-destructive button.

      To be successful, I need to uncover all my hidden reservation or blind spot to self-destruct.

      I need to know what they are (trigger) and plan what to do when they happen. I need to write down every single reservation. I need to know my hidden agenda and excuses to self-destruct.

    • #51322

      Slowly and Carefully

      May God’s will be done, not mine

    • #51323

      If such a thing and a such a thing happen, this will happen.

      If my mind tells me not to gamble but my feeling tells me to gamble, I will gamble.

      Tonight, my mind told me I should not place the bet on a football match, but my feeling is telling me to go ahead to gamble between 6.30 pm to 8pm.

      I postpone the bet a few times until the feeling goes away and I was not interested to gamble anymore at 8 pm.

      I survive today. Another gamble free day

    • #51324

      What does the disease of addiction mean to me?

      It means that when I start the first gamble, I want to continue, even when it is doing harm to myself, I could not stop and want more.

    • #51325

      Has my disease been active recently? In what way?

      Has been binging on food recently.

    • #51326

      What is it like when I am obsessed with something? Does my thinking follow a pattern? Describe.

      When I am obsessed with gambling, I cannot stop thinking about going back to gamble, I lose control of my thought. My mind is on the subject all the time and lost interest in other things. Pattern: Weekend, midweek, payday.

    • #51327

      When a thought occurs to me, do I immediately act on it without considering the consequences? In what other ways do I behave compulsively?

      When a gambling thought occur to me, I thought about what gambling can do for me and what gambling can do to me and still proceed to gamble despite the consequences. I will continue to gamble until I have no more money to gamble win or lose.

    • #51328

      How does the self-centered part of my disease affect my life and the lives of those around me?

      I lose away all my earning to feed my gambling habit and borrow from those around me so I can continue gambling. I become heavily in debt and cause those around me great stress,they become my hostage, I leave them no choice.

    • #51329

      How has my disease affected me physically? Mentally? Spiritually? Emotionally? Financially?
      I do not have proper rest or sleep because I will be staying up until very late into the next morning with my gambling.
      I lose all my peace if I do not gamble, I will become anxious and restless.
      I have no spirituality because I was using the money to gamble instead of feeding the family. When I win ten of thousands of dollars, they remain my capital for further gambling and not for the family.
      Emotionally it can be a roller coaster because the results can be so unpredictable and full of up and down.
      Financially I become heavily indebted and a bankrupt.

    • #51330

      What is the specific way in which my addiction has been manifesting itself most recently?
      Binge eating and surfing internet

    • #51331

      Have I been obsessed with a person, place or thing? If so, how has that gotten in the way of my relationships with others? How else have I been affected mentally, spiritually, and emotionally by this obsession?

    • #51332

      Have I given plausible but untrue reasons for my behavior? What have they been?

      I feel that gambling is a good way to make fast money and I do not plan to gamble everything I have; I shall not be greedy and be careful this time, I will never lose every single cent.

      This gamble is an opportunity I cannot miss. Law of probability is on my side. I feel that my chances are high.

      My false confident never feel that the chances of a loss is high here. I still think that my decision to gamble correct.

      If I lost the bet, it is alright, because it is a one-time thing, I can afford it when I really cannot.

      I will not lose myself and go out of control. I can stop if things are not going well.

      I can go ahead to gamble because I was not using borrowed money to gamble. If I lost the bet, there was nothing wrong.

      I feel that there is nothing wrong to gamble if I lost the bet. I feel that I can afford the loss when I really cannot.

    • #51333

      Have I compulsively acted on an obsession, and then acted as if I had actually planned to act that way? When were those times?
      I made trips to the casino and binge gamble on the slot and table games. I lost everything and feel normal. I left the place feeling there was nothing wrong.

    • #51334

      How have I blamed other people for my behavior?
      I have blame my mum, my creditor, my boss, my girlfriend for my behavior.
      mum or girlfriend upset me and I left the house to gamble.
      boss was unjust and unfair to me, I felt victimize and gamble to made myself feel better.
      creditor chase me for my debt and I do not have enough money and was stress so I gamble.

    • #51335

      How have I compared my addiction with other’s addiction? Is my addiction “bad enough” if I don’t compare it to anyone else‘s?

      It was easy to lose focus in my recovery and tempting to compare our addiction especially after I hear others talk about becoming homeless, family breaking up, jobless, heavy borrowing from loan sharks, indebted much more than me, committing suicide, suffering from mental illnesses, ending up in jail, and still cannot stop their self-destructive gambling. It made my addiction look less serious and maybe I can gamble.

      I have hit rock bottom as a result of my addiction, I have become bankrupt mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically and financially. It was bad enough for me.

      Those were the darkest and most painful period in my life.

    • #51336

      Am I comparing a current manifestation of my addiction to the way my life was before I got clean? Am I plagued by the idea that I should know better?

      I only place a bet.I lost the money, I was able to stop. I only drank once in almost a year and over-spend on that fateful night. I eat for pleasure, not for fuel and put on a lot of weight. I spend too much time on internet surfing and giving myself less time to rest and sleep.

      It was no consolation that the damage and destruction is not bigger than before. I was still haunted by my foolish and stupidity act in allowing them to happen, I can still feel the heartache and pain, regrets and guilt.

      I should not allow them to happen

    • #51337

      Have I been thinking that I have enough information about addiction and recovery to get my behavior under control before it gets out of hand?
      I thought I know enough about my addiction, but I did not know about my blind spots and have not uncover all my reservation to gamble. I did not have an immediate plan to replace gambling with something else when each reservation happened. I was not prepared on what to do when I want to gamble.
      I thought I can be more careful this time. I thought I can keep my gambling under control by restricting the type of gamble choosing lower risk, limiting the amount I gamble and no more all or nothing bet.
      I thought I could stop and walk away when I lose control, thought I will not be impulsive, compulsive and obsessive anymore.
      I thought my saving will be safe from my gambling and I would not withdraw every single cent for gambling.
      They never fail to get out of hand every time. The ending has been the same all the time.

    • #51338

      Am I avoiding action because I am afraid, I will be ashamed when I face the results of my addiction? Am I avoiding action because I am worried about what others will think?

      I avoided action because I was afraid that I cannot do something I love/gamble anymore.

      I was ashamed to let my family know the reason was a simple and honest one because of my continue gambling.

      I did not seek help because I did not want to lose my career and I was afraid of losing my job if the company knew I have unmanageable gambling debt and seeking help.

      I never thought I will lose my family and get kick out of the house but it nearly happen.

    • #51339

      What crisis brought me to recovery?
      I have tried to do recovery and stop drinking and gambling on my own between 1998 to 2005, I realize that I could not stay stop. I would continue to drink and gamble, I continue to get into debts and losing every single cent and more.
      I have killed my career and I was on the brink of losing my family.

    • #51340

      What situation led me to formally work Step One?
      When I accepted that I have lost control of my situation and I needed help, I can no longer manage this on my own. It is getting from bad to worst.
      I accepted that I am powerless over alcohol and slot machines, football punting, horse punting, casino table games and that my life have become unmanageable as a result.

    • #51341

      When did I first recognize my gambling as a problem? Did I try to correct it? If so how? If not, why not?

      It happen more than 30 years ago, I thought I could gamble, or drink and stop like a normal person so I didn’t seek help. I didn’t know I needed help.

      I didn’t know I had an addiction to alcohol and slot or that I was a problem gambler.

      I did not understand and didn’t know anything about impulsive, obsessive and compulsive disorder and addiction.

    • #51342

      Over what, exactly am I powerless?

      My emotions, alcohol, people, slot machines, football punting, casino table games and horse racing.

    • #51343

      What have I done (I have done things) while acting out my gambling that I would never do when focusing on recovery. What were they?
      Drinking after using the slot, using the slot after drinking, and heavy borrowing.

    • #51344

      What things have I done to maintain my gambling that went completely against my beliefs and values?
      The lying to hide my heavy gambling and debts, the womanizing and sex after heavy drinking, the borrowing, cheating and stealing to get more money to feed my habits.

    • #51345

      How does my personality change when I am acting out my gambling? (Do I become arrogant? Self- centered? Mean-tempered? Passive to the point where I can protect myself? Manipulative? Whiny? – complaining a lot or protest in a childish or annoying fashion, especially in a high pitched sound and sad voice)

      How I feel become top priority, I become selfish, self-centered, self-seeking and less loving. I feel that I need to continue drinking and gambling to fix the problem.

      I love to be in control of the situation. I justified, rationalize and reason to self and others; I convince and manipulate those around me that what I was doing is the right thing.

      I complain and blame my luck and misfortune for what has happen to me and not others.

      My tolerance for others was very bad. I become impatient and angry.

    • #51346

      Do I manipulate other people to maintain my gambling? How?

      I never tell them I was actively gambling and incur new debts all these times.

      I lied to them that I needed to service my old debt and do not have enough money.

      They wanted to help and lend me the money in the end.

    • #51347

      Have I tried to quit gambling and found that I couldn’t? Have I quit gambling on my own and found that my life was so painful without gambling that my abstinence didn’t last very long? What were those times like?

      I have tried to stop alcohol and gambling and failed many times.

      Each time the reality of living life hit me, I learn that many bad things can happen to me in recovery and they can be painful and hard.

      I do not have the wisdom to understand that bad things can also happen to good people and bad things can happen even when we try to do good or do the correct thing.

      I only feel that the discomfort, stress and pain from not drinking alcohol and gambling in those difficult situations was worst and more painful.

      I was foolish, and desperate to escape the pain. I wish the pain to go away, I was stupid and willing to risk everything to self-medicate to feel better.

      I knew the consequences of taking alcohol or gambling was bad, but I have already become so selfish, dishonest and irresponsible and do not care anymore.

      When I was stress and anxious, I remember what alcohol and gambling can do for me, it offers me an escape and solution to my problem.

      Many times, slot was used when I need to find a relief from anxiety, loneliness and stress. Same reason I use alcohol.

      Alcohol and gambling were a familiar and predictable way for me to numb the pain and suffering in my life.

    • #51348

      How has my gambling caused me to hurt myself and others?

      I became helpless and hopeless in the end, nothing I do can stop me from gambling and losing everything.

      I have killed my career that I work so hard to build over so many years. I also lose my family, friends and clients. I get into so much debt that I cannot see a future. I was so broken that I was living in misery and depression. I trIed to kill myself unsuccessfully 2 times.

      I borrow money from people who trusted me, they become my victims when I did not return them a single cent. They could have used these monies for their retirement, medical fee and children educational fee beside living expenses like food and transport.

      Closer to me, I was a constant reminder of the hurt and harm I gave to my family members when they see me.

      I gave them a promise, betray their trust and killed their hope in me. I was so mean,  heartless, wicked and cruel to do these to them.

      They dont deserve it, they are paying the price for my mistakes.

    • #51349

      What does unmanageability mean to me?

      There was so much stress and no peace in my life. I struggle with work, finance and my relationship with my family and other people.

      I cannot keep a job for more than a year.

      I cannot completely simple task like paying my phone bill.

      My family members, girlfriend and friends don’t trust me and don’t want to have anything to do with me.

      There was no stability in life. Every areas of my life is out of control.

    • #51350

      27. Have I ever been arrested or had legal trouble as a result of my gambling? Have I ever done anything I could have been arrested for if only I were caught? What have those things been?
      Bankruptcy proceeding. Cheating and stealing…
      28. What trouble have I had at work or school because of my gambling?
      Borrowing or taking time off from work using mc.
      29. What trouble have I had with my family as a result of my gambling?
      There is no trust, they are held hostage by our relationship, they threaten to kick me out of the house.
      30. What trouble have I had with my friends as a result of my gambling?
      Fight due to alcohol use. Friendships are discontinued.
      31. Do I insist on having my own way? What effect has my insistence had on my relationships?
      Yes, I am always busy when I was gambling, I will not be there for my family and girlfriend, they don’t get the time, love and attention they so needed and deserve.
      32. Do I consider the needs of others? What effect has my lack of consideration had on my relationships?
      They don’t feel secure as a result of my behavior. I was not there for them.

    • #51351

      Do I accept responsibility for my life and my actions? Am I able to carry out my daily responsibilities without becoming overwhelmed? How has this affected my life?
      Definitely not, I don’t have the means to provide and when I do, I was too self-centered and selfish to want to do that, I want to keep the money as capital to feed my habits.

    • #51352

      Do I fall apart the minute things don’t go according to plan? How has this affected my life?

      Maybe this is God’s timing. I was stuck and stop at this question. It is dated 22nd September 2019 here and I return on the 22nd December 2019 which is 3 months later to answer this question.

    • #51353

      Dated 14 July 2008 I wrote this in my journal

      I tried so many times to stop my self-destructive behavior only to go back to it again. I suffered many slips and relapses, and people who know me have distance themselves from me.

      Friends also think that I was not willing to give up gambling and thought I was always finding excuses to gamble.

      I felt that I was hopeless and wish to give up everything. I begin to feel that killing myself is the only way I can stop my self-destructive patterns completely

      Until I found this story. Please enjoy the story.

      One day a farmer’s donkey fell down into a well.

      The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do.

      Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway. It just wasn’t worth it to retrieve the donkey.

      He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well.

      At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone’s amazement he quieted down.

      A few shovels load later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing.

      He would shake it off and take a step up.

      As the farmer’s neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal,

      He would shake it off and take a step up.

      Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily, trotted off!

      Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt.

      The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up.

      Each of our troubles is a stepping-stone.

      We can get out of the deepest wells just by not stopping, never giving up!

      Shake it off and take a step up.

      I find that the farmer and neighbors in this story is like the love ones, friends and people who have given up hope on us, the donkey in the story is like the addict, the well is like the addiction we have, every shovel of dirt into the well is like the slips, lapses and relapses we have in our recovery journey.

      What do you think?

    • #51354

      We experience an obsession when we are trying to stay abstinent and are overpowered by thoughts of gambling.

      I can also be having an obsession when I feel the desire to control other people’s moods or behavior.

      Obsession can take many forms.

    • #51355

      An intrusive obsession is a thought of gambling that seems to enter our minds from out of nowhere.
      When we are hit by an intrusive obsession, we find ourselves suddenly dropping our plans and responsibilities, and pursuing the gamble that we crave.

    • #51356

      A reoccurring obsession is a thought of gambling that enters our minds over and over again throughout the day.
      Fighting with this thought consumes all of our energy.
      We try to remind ourselves of the importance of not gambling, of all the things we will lose if we gamble again, and of what always happens to us when we gamble, but the thought keeps coming back and seems to grow stronger over time.
      If we are able to hold out against the reoccurring obsession, we become exhausted and depressed. We are easily irritated and find that normal daily tasks require an enormous amount of effort. Even if we don’t gamble, the reoccurring obsession wins by beating us down.

    • #51357

      We experience a circumstantial obsession when we are presented with the opportunity to gamble and cannot think of any good reason not to, even though we have everything to lose.
      We may give ourselves some silly excuse for gambling, or we may not think at all.
      Before we know it, we are deep into active addiction again, wondering what happened to our common sense.

    • #51358

      The fundamental obsession may not be experienced as a thought of gambling at all. Instead, we experience this obsession as a basic preoccupation with ourselves and how we feel.

      Those of us who have been abstinent for long periods of time without a spiritual solution know the pains of fundamental obsession all too well. Life is unsatisfying. We are constantly agitated and restless, depressed. We are unable to form meaningful or lasting relationships. We have a deep sense that life is treating us unfairly. People seem cruel and selfish to us; they ignore us and our needs. No matter what we try, we do not seem to be able to get any peace of mind.

      We are constantly trying to adjust the circumstances of our lives in an attempt to find some comfort.

      We may have a vague sense that something is wrong with us, but we do not know what it is.

    • #51359

      First, there’s a trigger; something that is noticed in your physical, social, or mental worlds.

      Second, it instantly activates an obsession — thoughts, feelings, or impulses that are distressful.

      An impulse is a sudden force, or desire — this could be an electrical impulse, or an impulse to gamble. An impulse is not something you’ve given a lot of thought.

      If you act on a sudden feeling or thought, you’re following an impulse.

    • #51360

      What are emotional triggers?

      People, opinions, words, situations or environment that provoke an intense and exaggerated emotional response within us.

      The way my mum says something can trigger my anger

      anticipating good and happy news can trigger my anxiety and excitement

      a particular song may send me into sadness over some old unhappy memories

      being accuse of something that I did not do can trigger a strong emotion of unfairness, injustice, grievance and fear in me.

      When triggered, we experience common emotions, which include anger, sadness, rage, resentment and fear.

      if somebody upset us, that upset can register in the brain as a threat, unconsciously engaging the fight, flight, or freeze response.

      Within our brains, there’s an area called the amygdala that is responsible for detecting threats and making sure we do one of three things — fight, flight, or freeze.

      A fight response might mean we retaliate with a verbal attack.

      But if the perceived attack is from someone more powerful, fighting back might be detrimental. So our unconscious brain might instead choose a freeze or flight response — we disengage, bear a grudge, or harbor resentment.

    • #51361

      Allow life to be just as it is

      Allowing means “letting be” the thoughts, emotions, feelings, or sensations you discover.

      You may wish that unpleasant feelings would go away, but as you become more willing to live with the discomfort, anxiety, hardship, pain and suffering

      A different quality will emerge; one that is unconditional loving and giving; one about willingness to sacrifice and give up self-will and old beliefs; one that is selfless 

      Allowing healing, peace and freedom from more suffering to return. 

    • #51362

      What does soccer gambling means to me?

      Like any gamble, there are chances to win money here, this winning can provide me with all the money to pay for everything I need and want.

      Watching “live” game and doing “live betting” on football match after match and day after day is very time consuming and exhausting. I cannot do the long hours require and do not enjoy it anymore.

      Like any gamble, it was not design to help me make money, it was design to make me spend money and lose everything I have over time in the end.

      Winning happen all the times, but it is temporally and not permanent. The winning cycle is short and will end one day.

      Once the losing streaks begin, it can be quick, ucontrollable and very destructive. It was scary to be trapped and hook ; you cannot walk away until it is too late. This is not fun anymore.

      My money is not my money if I was still betting in football. I can wake up having enough money in the day and by the end of the day, I will have nothing. This is what football betting do to me. 

    • #51363

      No one fail in recovery, you either succeed or you learn a lesson.
      The only time you really fail is when you stop trying completely.

    • #51364

      If I continue gambling; this may happen, I can be sure one day, if it is not today, it is not yet, this can happen, I may end up with no money by the end of the day but once the gambling stop, the money is safe from self-destruction, I can be sure the money remain my money.

    • #51365

      Do I fall apart the minute things don’t go according to plan? How has this affected my life?

      At this phrase of my recovery, it can affect my life and threaten my recovery when everything fall apart and not go according to plan.

      It has got to do with emotional sobriety, I need to be stronger because my faith, trust and confident during these difficult times is not strong enough. I could not accept the stress, disappointment, hardship, pain and suffering from life’s adversities. I could not sit and do nothing, I want to escape, I want a relief, I need a quick fix, I want a solution to change thing.

      I could still focus, cope and manage with one or two major life issues but when it was a handful, I get overwhelmed and I show lack of ability  to multi task. I can lose my calm, composure and patience, I can become disturb, angry, fearful and impatient.

      It was Oct 2019, I experience something like this.

      My job is giving me everything I need now. 5 days work week, higher pay and doing something I was familiar.

      This has happen many times, there are many office politic and distraction here, it take my mind away from my work. The center shifted from my work to the people. A colleague pick a fight with me and the manger unfairly sided with him. I had to bring this matter to the attention of the company higher management and government authority to safeguard my interest in the company.

      This job provided me the income to provide for my family, living expenses, bills, loans and debt. Lose this job and income, everything fall apart.

      My brother and family used to visit every weekend to offer support but suddenly this stop. My sister was away for holiday. It was during this time that my mum give me problem. Mum complain that sis and brother did not give her money, she wanted to change our maid who has been a great help to us looking after her. 

      She is 90 years old, she need to visit the hospital for regular check up, she need to take her medicine on time. We need the maid to be with her all the times so that she will not fall down. With the maid, she goes outdoor very often to shop at the supermarket and window shopping at the shopping mall. I need this maid.

      I have provided something within my mean to the family this month. My mum was frustrated and complaining about money. I needed to give her some but I do not have any.

      My mind was also pre occupied with selling my flat, dealing with housing agent, and buyer plus all the waiting and paperwork required.

      The negative emotions and feelings with relation to my job and finance, my mum and finance, my bro and sis having confident and trusting me, is building up and snowballing. I was feeling more stress, frustrated, and tired. It feel like hardship, pain and suffering. I was losing my peace, calm and patient, very important quality in crisis management.

      to be continue……

      I want an escape and a quick fix. I focus on what gambling can do for me. I was doing selective memory, I was able to suppress and block out the scary thought and feeling of what gambling can do to me. I was soon doing gambling, food and sex. 

      I like to do alcohol, but the pain and fear of what alcohol can do to me and my recovery was stronger than what it can do for it. I dare not do alcohol and drug to self-medicate but I choose to relapse in football betting, food and sex.

      I did not get rich but I win enough to survive these 3 months. Just enough to pay for everything and nothing left. Anything left will be lost to gambling in the end.

      The gambling outcome did little to change my problems. The problem at work dies over time when I shifted the center to work. Bro and Sis continue to give mum the attention and money she need later, unfortunately the maid’s fate was final, they got a new maid later, mum stop complaining. Found a new buyer for my flat later.

      All the problems dissolve over time and it was not due to my winning in gambling. Imagine if I had lost every single cent and got into more debt, the outcome would have been disastrous.

      Nothing need to be done, There is no need to press the self destructive button. It requires strong acceptance of the situation. We need to accept it, face it and not numb it.

      We need to have strong faith, complete trust and patient in such difficult time,Over time, everything will fall into place.

      I have experience many other problem in the past such as unemployment, my poor health, debt and relationship matters too.

      This is a lesson learn

      When everything did not go according to plan, I can fall apart. This can affect my life. Choosing to relapse can made matter worst, it can be 10 times more painful and complicated. I ended up taking a longer time to return life back to normal.

      I can still be prone to foolishness, carelessness and stupidity when everything fall apart and not go according to plan. “WISDOM” in living life was missing.

    • #51366

      Thank you for your post and encouragement, it helps. I like your posts recently particularly the one about the donkey and also the one about when things go wrong in succession. I struggle with this too.
      Wishing you a blessed, peaceful and very happy Xmas and 2020.

    • #51367

      Many of us have been unwilling to admit we were real compulsive gamblers.

      No person likes to think he is bodily and mentally different from any other normal person.

      Therefore, it is not surprising that our gambling careers have been characterized by countless vain attempts to prove we could gamble like other normal people.

      The idea that somehow, someday he can control and enjoy his gambling is the great obsession of every compulsive gambler.

      The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of hell, insanity, heavy debt, bankruptcy, broken marriage, career, and family, suicide or death.

      We learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were compulsive gambler. This is the first step in recovery.

      The delusion that we are like other people, or presently may be, has to be smashed.

      We compulsive gamblers are men and women who have lost the ability to control our gambling.

      We know that no compulsive gambler ever recovers control.

      Every one of us felt at times that we were regaining control, but such intervals—usually brief—were inevitably followed by still less control, which led in time to pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization.

      We are convinced that compulsive gamblers of our type are in the grip of a progressive illness.

      Over any considerable period, we get worse, never better.

      We are like men who have lost their legs; they never grow new ones.

      Neither does there appear to be any kind of treatment which will make compulsive gambler of our kind like any other normal person. We have tried every imaginable remedy. In some instances, there has been brief recovery, followed always by a still worse relapse.

      Physicians who are familiar with compulsive gamblers agree there is no such thing as making a normal gambler out of a compulsive gambler.

      Science may one day accomplish this, but it hasn’t done so yet.

      Despite all we can say, many who are real compulsive gambler are not going to believe they are in that class.

      By every form of self-deception and experimentation, compulsive gamblers will try to prove themselves that they are not a compulsive problem gambler.

      Many including myself like to think that we are an exceptions to this rule.

      If anyone who is showing inability to control his gambling can change and gamble like a normal gentleman, our hats are off to him.

      Heaven knows, we have tried hard enough and long enough to gamble like other normal people!

      Here are some of the methods we have tried: limiting the amount of money to gamble, limiting the number of hours spend on gambling each time, limiting the number of visit to gamble, never gambling alone, never gambling during business hours, never borrow to gamble, more careful and selective on every gamble; never gamble on every game, swearing off forever (with and without a solemn oath), taking more physical exercise, having hobbies, attending gambling support group meeting, going to Sunday service in church, reading the bible and working the 12 steps recovery program—we could increase the list.

      We do not like to pronounce any individual as a compulsive gambler, but you can quickly diagnose yourself.

      Try some controlled gambling. Try to gamble and stop. Try it more than once for a period of time. It will not take long for you to decide, if you are honest with yourself about it.

      Though there is no way of proving it, many wanted to stop gambling, but the difficulty is that few compulsive gamblers have enough desire to stop while there is yet money, place and time to gamble.

      We have heard of a few instances where people, who showed definite signs of compulsive gambling, were able to stop for a long period because of an overpowering desire to do so.

      For example

      I have the desire to stop gambling, I can see that my gambling would get me nowhere. Once I start gambling, I would gradually loses all my self-control one day. So, I made up my mind to stop gambling, I would not gamble or place the next bet.

      After a successful gamble free period of a year. I fell victim to a belief which practically every compulsive gambler has —that his long period of gamble free time, clear mind, sobriety, self-discipline and self-control had qualified me to gamble like a normal person.

      In a matter of days, weeks or months, I would hit another gambling rock bottom, puzzled and humiliated.

      I will try to limit my gambling for a while, before gathering all my strength, attempting to stop gambling again and found out that I could not.

      This case contains a powerful lesson. Most of us have believed that if we remained sober for a long stretch, we could thereafter gamble normally.

      We have seen the truth demonstrated again and again: “Once a compulsive gambler, always a compulsive gambler.’’

      Commencing to gamble after a period of sobriety, we are in a short time as bad as ever.

      If we are planning to stop gambling, there must be no reservation of any kind, nor any lurking notion that someday we will be immune to compulsive gambling.

      I like to think that I can stop gambling, on my own will power. I doubt if I can do it, because I want to stop gambling yet I love gambling, and really like to gamble again. 

Viewing 146 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.