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    • #48215

      I lost a quarter of my retirement saving in 9 months. It took me 14 years to save it.I am sitting in my big beautiful home that I won’t be able to keep.
      My wife bought new appliances and finally got the home she was waiting for. It is just how she wanted it, down to the throw pillows on the couch.

      She knows about my problem and she knows we cannot stay. Actually I am not sure if all of this has sunk in with her yet. She is being a real trooper.

      Our plan is to sell the house and downsize. Some days she is depressed and cries a lot. As for me I have not had a peaceful happy moment for months.

      Will I ever feel good again?

      This 9 month binge was my first. I am 60 years old and occasionally I would play blackjack or craps or even the horse races but I can’t remember doing more than
      2-3 times in any given year. It was just fun.

      This year was different. I was laid off last December, prematurely by my employer of 30 years, just one year short of retirement benefits. I did not think I had enough
      saved in my retirement accounts to maintain our lifestyle, and one day I just started trading stock options. For the first four months I made a profit, thousands per
      week. My broker called me and invited me to the office to talk with one of their trading experts, and they coached me. They told me I was one of the lucky few,
      talented enough to make money consistently trading stock options. Then quite suddenly I started losing on my positions. Each week I was losing thousands.
      My brain became numb, I guess that is the right word. I would sit at my computer and take positions for thousands of dollars and then watch my account balance
      shrink and shrink. I kept at it, everyday, I guess thinking I was just having a bad luck streak.

      Finally last week I deleted my trading apps, I called my broker and told them to disable options trading from all of my accounts.

      As my cognitive thinking is coming back I am starting to realize the enormity of the problem.

      I am embarrassed to state how many thousands of dollars I lost in such a short time.

      And I am disgusted to think about what is coming.
      Selling furniture.
      Finding homes for most of our pets.
      Going from a grand house to a lower-middle income apartment or townhouse.
      Selling our house, and the housing industry is almost at a standstill we probably wont even get what we paid for it.

      I have been trying to find work. As a software engineer by trade, at age 60, this is proving to be difficult.

      If I cannot find a high paying job within a few months then we need to start selling stuff, dress the house and prepare it for selling.

      And I will have to watch my wonderful wife slowly lose her mind during all of this. Eventually, when we actually start selling stuff, it will set in with her.

      I am asking for coaching, tools, advice about how to prepare myself for what has to be done.

      thank you in advance

    • #48216

      Hello and thanks for starting a thread in the Gambling Therapy forums

      Here at Gambling Therapy we pride ourselves on being a caring and diverse online community who can help and support you with the difficulties you’re currently facing. We understand that this might be a tough time for you, particularly if you’re new to recovery, so come here as often as you need to and participate in the forums, access online groups and connect to the live advice helpline if you need one to one support. We’re in this together!

      Here on the forum you can share your experiences in a safe, supportive and accepting environment. The beauty of writing it all down is that you can take your time and you will be creating a record of your progress that you can look back on if it ever feels like you’re not moving forward. So, share as much or as little as you like but do try to stick to keeping just one thread in this forum so people know where to find you if they want to be updated on your progress or share something with you.

      As well as the forums New Members are invited to join Charles in the New Members Practical Advice Group On Mondays at 21:00 (UK) and Thursday at 19:00(UK)

      And on that note….

      I’m going to hand you over to our community because I’m sure they will have some words of wisdom for you 🙂

      Take care

      The Gambling Therapy Team

      PS: Let me just remind you to take a look at our privacy policy and terms and conditions so you know how it all works!

    • #48217

      Hi Tan

      I am so sorry you find yourself in this situation .
      Can I ask if you have any way of suing the brokers ? Did they mislead you in any way ?

      Once you brain clears a little you may be able to see other ways out of this ? Perhaps subletting part of your house or setting yourself up as a consultant in your field ?

      For now continue to make it impossible for yourself to gamble in this way . God has a way of making miracles happen when we least expect them.

      Perhaps you could join a local GA? Or attend groups on this site and chat to others who have made similar mistakes .

      Tan you are not alone with this – many have made as big and bigger mistakes .

      Well done on seeking help .
      I’m sorry I can’t be of more help but just know people are here and listening .

    • #48218

      Thank you IDI for the kind words. And for listening.

      Today I applied for three more jobs. Still hoping one of the other 35 job applications I have completed will come through.

      I figure wife and I have two months to make move or stay decision. If we wait longer than that we risk not having enough cash to dress the house for sale, and that would mean having to take a hard-money offer for our home.

      I realize end of December is a bad time to apply for jobs. Maybe early January one of these openings will appear for me.

      Had trouble sleeping last night. Dreams about ‘before’ I lost the money. Waking up is the hardest part of the day for me. Especially if i wake up early or in the middle of the night. It just seems hopeless.

      Once I am up and about, have some coffee, and continue my job search I start to feel less hopeless, and almost hopeful.

      Every minute of every day, I have this dark cloud of fear over my head. What keeps me going is my wife. I messed things up, and now I have to fix them. I have to be strong, and smile everyday, to keep her from going into a deep depression.

      Whenever I communicate my fear to her, she starts to crack.

      I need to keep the appearance of hopefulness, because if she completely breaks down, I don’t know if I can keep up the energy to continue job hunting. Maybe a better way of saying it is, “It would not HELP my job hunting”

      I am trying to visualize a future, where the both of us have some level of stability, some level of financial security. It is killing both of us to be in this limbo.

    • #48219

      Hi Tan
      Yes limbo is not a nice place – uncertainly is very difficult – have you thought about calling your old employer or some
      Contacts from your old work to see if they even have temporary or project work? Every little helps .

      I help you get some work soon- it will be good to know here is a wage coming in.
      Keep posting and keep strong Tan.

    • #48220

      When I stopped the destructive gambling, I was unemployed, Ill and about to lose my rented home and to be out on the street. I am 61. I didn’t lose my home and my health has improved. I am also employed. It can all turn around one day at a time. There are many employers who do not age discriminate. If I can do it, so can you. But gambling or playing the stock market can never happen again. It took surrendering to my higher power and knowing I can never gamble responsibly again. Good luck and keep posting.
      U.K. and keep posting.

    • #48221

      Thank you IDI and Monica1.

      Woke up at 4:30 but was able to go back to sleep. Wife woke up around 6am and was cleaning the house and litter boxes. She came back to bed and snuggled with me. I got up at 8:30am had coffee and checked the job sites. No new jobs to apply for today.

      No responses from my current applications. I can start to apply for Help Desk positions, pay is horrible but better than a grocery store, so I will wait a little longer before changing my resume and online profiles, hope that I can land an engineering job.

      Wife is gaining weight, becoming less active. Talking about a low-carb diet for the two of us, stating Jan 1. We are still making love, I guess it makes us feel normal for a little while.

      Not sure why she does not hate me. She is still behind me.

      Fighting the guilt and shame. Need to stay mentally fit.

      Wife continues to talk about moving to Costa Rica. At least we could afford health care. Much too expensive in USA for couples our age unless you get it through work. We watch videos, read books, blogs, this has been our dream and intention for quite some time.

      We just did not want to have to do it in a rush.

      My mind is coming back. I am fighting the temptation to try and analyze what I did wrong. How could I have done this? What happened to my brain for 9 months? Is this a bad movie or a nightmare? Am I really in this situation?


      Starting to pray. I am not religious. Praying for the wife to keep her sanity, appears she is not going forward but backword.

      I am maintaining the same level of dread, not getting better not getting worse. This sucks.

    • #48222

      Today we had some success. We started selling our cats (we are breeders). We have to sell the cats before we can start grooming the house to sell it. No way we can sell the house until we find good homes for them. 7 cats need homes.

      We found a couple that is coming by tomorrow to take two of the cats. It is a start. 5 more to go.

      Then, we get the wonderful task of getting our house ready to sell. No fun.

      But, tonight before I go to sleep I thank God for giving me and the wife a few hours of feeling almost normal. It is a lot of work finding homes for cats, and we love them dearly.

      We have a glimmer of hope. 1% of the hard work is done.

      But it is a start.

      Let’s see if we can ride this momentum. It is Christmas time, I pray we can feel normal the next few days.

    • #48223

      Hi Tan ,
      You sound full of hope .
      I am sorry you have had to let your cats go – I have a dog and I know how pets become part of the family and how difficult this must be for you.

      Everything will fall into place .

      Now the boring bit- is there a way you can gamble again? Do you need to safeguard your money so that you can’t access it?
      Why am I asking?
      Many of us have felt “cured” when we stop first – then a tiny urge to gamble sneak in. Next thing we are back in action after promising ourself to spend a tiny amount and then stop.

      Keep up the momentum with the house – your wife loves you very much and iit sounds like you are a very strong couple-.

      Keep posting and stay strong my friend.

    • #48224

      Thanks again IDI. No, not boring. I realize there are giving, caring people like you that are taking time to help. And it sounds like you are genuine, and your goal is to help others with their addiction. I imagine this helps you as well, a karma influx of positive energy.

      So, if I wanted to trade options again I would have to call my broker and ask them to enable it. I suppose I could call and beg them to ignore me if I ever call and ask to enable it.

      That possibility seems quite remote. I think I mentioned in the beginning this was my only gambling binge. To be honest the thought of ever trading options again makes me physically ill.

      Today is tough. Wife is crying, and crying. Today we sell two of the cats. All of this is starting to register with her. And with me.

      So, today I will ask my higher power for the strength and will to keep going.

      I visualize a day, when we can have some level of stability.

    • #48225

      As an animal lover I feel her pain.
      Must they be sold ?
      Is there another way ?

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