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    • #157016
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Hello all…I’m Don..a gambler with lottery tickets in a convenience store , on-line sports …lately I’ve noticed I’ve been spending
      Way more than my budget allows…I am still trying [in vain!]
      to “control” and enjoy gambling….but it seems lately I cannot….
      And for me, withdrawal symptoms from gambling seem almost impossible??

      Sort of like a child tugging on your pants every 2 minutes saying “Daddy please give me a candy” best way
      for me to describe those withdrawal symptoms…
      and every time I gamble I seem to lose….
      I haven’t won anything substantial and I wonder why
      I keep doing the same thing over and over [gamble a lot]
      and I expect a different result…

      I Don’t have any sobriety today ; but I want to work on this and
      get successful 🙂

      A great big thank -you to Charles for directing me to this thread 🙂

      Don

    • #157045
      Losingitslowly
      Deelnemer

      To reply in the best way I can to your analogy of the child pulling on your pant leg is to say that,as a parent, we all know that if you give in to a child pestering they will never stop. The general rule is that you must learn to ignore them,in the short run, and the will stop, eventually, because they know it wont work for them. Same goes for addiction. You have to hold out so that the patterns that have been mapped out in your brain have a chance to change. It sounds impossible but it works. I have had a few relapses in the past months, but for the most part, I’ve gone from struggling to make it 7 days to easily having no problem going 30 without even thinking about taking the risk of trying again. The urge, the need, is just not the same anymore. When I think about it, the excitement attached to the act has changed for me and I dont feel the need to gamble to get dopamine released. You need to do whatever you can to break the patterns. I was an online gambler so I got gamban on my devices. Find whatever you can to put in place a distraction, for the time being, and then work on your issues once the child at your pant leg has stopped pulling quite as hard. Have a good day today and I hope you are gamble free

    • #157064
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Losing it slowly: thanks for your very helpful reply !
      So- eventually the withdrawal symptoms decrease with time away-and
      A break in my gambling pattern
      Will come eventually too?
      Sounds good-
      And thanks for addressing that
      Analogy I had
      Because that’s how feels for
      Me most times –
      A constant tugging at my pants …..
      Is it safe to say I can hope for
      “Progressive victory”
      Over gambling ?
      I want to try so hard to quit
      I don’t wanna fail at all
      But then after 5 years of constant
      Gambling-
      I really can’t expect a perfect sobriety
      Time?

      I’ve self- excluded from gambling sites online- there are so many out there ..
      But the ones I was on
      I can no longer have access to…

    • #157194
      charles
      Moderator

      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!

      • Deze reactie is gewijzigd 1 jaar, 9 maanden geleden door Dunc.
    • #157249
      Losingitslowly
      Deelnemer

      Hi again don. It’s not enough to self exclude because of the very reason that you mentioned in your post
      There are so many out there and it takes only a minute to join. In the heat of a strong urge it wi happen snits important to give yourself a leg up by installing software on your devices that prevent you and will stifle the nagging child when they start. For some reason, when I installed the software and knew in my mind that I couldn’t gamble on my devices the urges subsided somewhat and gave me the bit that I needed in the beginning. Do whatever you can to make it as easy as possible to get through the first few weeks and then things do get easier as you rebuild your day to day to not include gambling in it. I am at the point now where I do have access to devices that I could potentially play on but I choose not to. Its important for your brain to learn to say no to the urges when they come so that new and better pathways are built. I have learned this the hard way. I thought that if I just kept busy that it would help but the minute I was with a bit of down time, the urges would rush in. Give yourself the help that you can by installing gamban and then learn to say no to land based casinos by avoiding the temptation by staying away. Make the decisions and yes, it will get easier sooner. Hope that this helps.

    • #157300
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Losing it slowly: thanks for your reply /help
      I’ve self-excluded from the Casino here
      In the city that I live in…
      About 7 years
      Back I gambled $400 I had saved up
      For an insurance bill that month…
      I lost it gambling at the casino

      And had to embarrass myself into asking
      My parents if they would cover me….
      I was lucky enough to
      Win my money back
      But my point
      Is I realized I had a problem back then
      So I got myself banned from the Casino …

      Yes!
      You’re so right about how easy it is
      To join these on line sports sites…
      You say a program called “Gamban”

      Could help me to not have access to these sites?
      Also –
      I find I am easily influenced? Today I read about a story that really saddened me and made me feel really bad..
      And a teacher
      In a school where I worked at talked about
      A lottery that’s being drawn tonight…

      I get tired of being sensitive and “caving in“ from outside sources even if there is nothing wrong with me today???

      Why did I have to spend $11 (OK, it’s not much but it still feeds the addiction and I don’t think that’s healthy)
      Today
      Because that teacher said something???
      I want to be more resilient
      And
      I also
      Think I want to understand that
      Outside influence, I do not have to react upon it?? it is a choice and I should be making better choices because my gambling is out of control “my chooser is broken”so to speak…..

      So today I may have failed -at least I didn’t spend money that I couldn’t afford to lose, but I don’t think it’s a good idea to be feeding the habit 🙁

    • #157302
      Losingitslowly
      Deelnemer

      I’m not sure about your chooser being broken, Don, but it’s not all bad being sensitive to bad things that happen. Now, just for a moment, think of all of the good things that you could do with funds that you can afford to be charitable with. The money you put into gambling goes to fund the lifestyles of rich and greedy people. It in no way benefits anyone but them and hurts you in the long run. I am not sure about lotteries, as they are not part of the games that I would consider part of my addiction, and if you would only do them to help a school fundraiser or lottery, then I don’t feel that you have failed miserably today. I, myself, rarely ever buy lottery tickets and dont feel the calling of the lotto, so if I bought a ticket i would not see it as a relapse on my part. As for the gamban, if you look it up on the web you will find it is anti gambling software that prevents you from opening sites associated with gambling in any form. It is fantastic and very reliable and hard to beat. I had it beat for a short while on my phone but it sent an update that killed the loophole, so I’m back to no gambling on my phone or laptop. It is not that expensive and the way I figure it it paid for itself by me missing one fifteen minute gambling session on my devices. Look into it or its equal where you live. Like i said, it gives you the help that you need so much in those first weeks when the urges are the strongest and helps long after that by preventing little slips from happening when you get emails from the casinos trying to lure you in. I hope that you are feeling better now and that you will look into gamban for your devices. Take care.

    • #157368
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thanks for your reply Losingit….Today I had yet again VERY strong feelings/wants to gamble…and that was an adage my former sponsor from a 12-step group was telling me…
      Makes sense…
      Means basically that if i was able to choose freely with no worry…no real money losses…able to gamble
      conservatively, then I wouldn’t be here…..
      I am NOT free to choose to gamble because I am learning I cannot control the amount of money I spend…
      I am always spending way more than I budgeted for myself
      Wish I could so badly!!
      it’s where i am at now…wishing I could try every which way but loose
      to try and control this gambling….

      Glad you’re able to get “Gamban” on your phone…
      Is that available in North America?
      I live in Canada…
      and I do not mean a lottery meant for the school where I work at…I just mean the lottery at the corner store…
      the jackpots always look so enticing to play:(

    • #157405
      charles
      Moderator

      Hi Don, yes Gamban should work in Canada or any other country. It blocks your device. Here is a link to details of a few blockers; including Gamban https://www.gamblingtherapy.org/information/how-do-i-block-gambling-sites/

    • #157417
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thanks for your reply Charles…
      As well as online gambling- I also gamble
      At the corner store …
      Lottery tickets from the machine, every store seems to have them??

      There are a couple of grocery stores that do not have them …does this mean that I should just go to the grocery store and avoid every corner store that I can? Also, what’s

      bothering me today ….is that I like to listen to baseball games on the radio and then I say to myself “if I only knew he was going to hit a home run or “if I only knew the final score of the game then I can bet on it”😩

      Does anyone else have this issue in the forum here? And if you do, is there any suggestions you could give me to help overcome this?

      This seems to happen to me daily, wanting to know the outcomes of sports games and also wanting to gamble on them ;wishing I knew what was going to happen 😩

    • #157783
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Hello all.. I can’t believe that for today; I’m gamble-free?? [June 21,2022] Last few days I’ve been stubborn and think “Oh, I’ll win something if I play”
      Only thing I got was upset that I lost yet more money on bets…

      Some bets were at the corner store with lotteries, other bets were on sports games[also now available at the corner store}
      I’m thinking I should find an accountability partner [hopefully from this forum:)
      and that way I’ll feel obligated to remain sober and not lose any more
      money on bets that
      I think will win …which they rarely ever do…

    • #157828
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don,
      congrats on your 1st GF day.
      you need to put a plan on how you are going to overcome this addiction, don’t count on your willpower it will let you down,
      plan ahead and if you relapse modify the plan until you succeed.

    • #157858
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Hello DE…thank you for your support !
      Yes…my willpower has let me down on day # 2
      I feel
      Like I can be stubborn at times-
      And it’s one of my character defects
      I need to
      Work on…..
      I tell myself lies like “oh! Today I will only bet on daily Keno”
      BecAuse I have come close to winning on it ?
      But by playing ;
      I believe I allow myself “permission “
      To bet on other things too?
      And that’s when I’ve lost control 😣

      I think I am beginning to see the reason
      Why abstinence from the disease
      Is so important:
      I have NO control over it-
      Im powerless
      Step 1 ….
      I wanna get back on the horse and try again tomorrow!
      Thanks again for your help/ support

    • #158013
      Losingitslowly
      Deelnemer

      Hi again Don, I am a fellow canadian and you can definitely get gamban on your devices here. The best move I made was installing them on all devices because the insidious nature of this disease will drive you from one device to another as it drives you from one store to another with your lotteries. The best suggestion that I can give is to a) avoid going to the corner store if that is an issue. It’s not a big thing for most but it is for you so avoidance is the key until you have better control of the demon that is pushing through. Or b) carry little or no money if you are going to be near one so that the access is limited. I have a few other shopping vices and have learned that if i dont have money with me I cant overspend. I bring what I need and get only what I came for. You have to make a real, solid plan to get yourself in a safe zone. The most important thing in the first few weeks is to block your access so that your mind has a chance to rewire the patterns set forth by gambling. It works. Really. I go days without even thinking about it and when I do it is with disdain because of all of the hardship it is causing me right now. Make a plan. Write down your issues and then make a plan to combat access. It will be what makes or breaks your recovery because, at this point, anything else short of being locked in a room will not be enough. Stay strong.

    • #158051
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Losing it: thanks for your help & reply..
      All of what you have said here makes sense-
      Perfect sense ..
      Since I now see that I have 0 luck and cannot
      Seem to
      Win
      I am definitely losing….
      Cost benefit analysis (was a term I read here AND was told this by A gambling counselor)
      Is
      Definitely showing me that I’m always on the losing end of most wagers…
      Even if I win it’s in no way making up
      For the money I’ve lost!

      Yes, you are right to most people, They can go into the store and
      Get milk, etc
      But
      The lottery machine In Circle K
      Is always there to tempt me
      I was sober yesterday
      And I plan on sobriety today…..
      I’m actually not really in the frame of mind to lose more money today 😀

      I’m glad you are able to go days without
      A wager
      And yes
      It’s important to “re-wire”
      The brain into a different thought pattern
      From gambling….

      I try and keep busy with crossword puzzles
      And watching TV
      TO take
      My mind off of any gambling thoughts

    • #158156
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Tough day today- my Diabetes is acting up
      Attempted to go on a date-
      Didn’t work out …
      Having trouble making friends, etc
      But I think I’m understanding that
      Gambling will NOT help me get over
      These issues I’m facing …
      When I lose (and I seem to lose almost every bet I make!)
      It makes things only worse 😩
      I was sober yesterday
      And I plan/hope to be sober today ..

      • Deze reactie is gewijzigd 1 jaar, 9 maanden geleden door Don14765. Reden: Spelling
    • #158371
      Losingitslowly
      Deelnemer

      Don, I keep hearing you say that you are not lucky and end up with no money. The thing about gambling addiction is it’s not about whether you are lucky or not- I was very lucky a lot of the time. The issue is that it doesnt matter if you won, you will always gamble it all away until there is nothing left. It is the very nature of the disease. If you think that your addiction is present only because you keep playing and you are unlucky, then you will never be able to beat it. You have to come to the realization that the problem is with the need to gamble, not the form or outcome. If you cannot stop gambling in any capacity then it is a problem with gambling, not luck. I used to dream about ways that I could predict the outcome of slot machines based on the display of certain symbols at specific times. It’s the same as your baseball issue. It doesnt happen and it doesnt matter. I have a problem and so do you. Stop thinking about bad luck and start thinking about good decisions. You cant stop playing because you dont win. You have to stop playing because you cant stop playing and in the end you are bound to lose. Everything. Period. Tell us how you are doing.

    • #158375
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Losing it: it’s important to remember that
      I’m a newcomer; meaning I am sometimes still
      Stubborn ..,I seem
      To believe there is a way
      To
      Control and enjoy gambling
      Hopefully I’ll learn with support
      And time that I’m too far gone to control
      And enjoy gambling….

    • #158425
      Losingitslowly
      Deelnemer

      Don, I am sorry if I sounded harsh and yes, you are a new comer here, but I wanted to reach out and tell you of the “catches” in your posts that I thought were at risk of jeopardizing your sobriety. It is something that we all eventually learn, that winning or losing is not even a component of addiction. It all doesnt matter and it is an excuse that our mind gives us to keep going back. Chasing losses. Inside information that we think will help us with our bets. It’s always in the mind and keeps triggering relapses and I thought that I should say something. Hope that you are well.

    • #158461
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Losing it: yes- we are all here to support one another….
      Or At least try to….please try and refrain
      From leaving such harsh replies-I am no doubt a sensitive person-your reply triggered me into
      Thinking “well- guess I’m a loser anyways”
      I always try to type with a positive reply
      In order to help
      The posting person out …
      I feel
      You could have gone about your reply
      In a different direction.…

    • #158479
      Losingitslowly
      Deelnemer

      Don, when I first started posting on this site I had someone call me out for making excuses and walking slowly and carefully around MY truth. I resented their comments, of course, but that was because I wasnt ready to face everything that I had become. I am, by nature, an honest person and sometimes a little too blunt. You seem to be at a precarious point and I thought that a quick run to the front of the line could save you some time. Sorry. You must find out your own truth when you need to to heal. I was just hearing things on your posts that I used to think and others have pointed out to me to be traps. I will abstain from now on.

    • #158750
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Kin: thanks for your help/reply on this thread-it’s much appreciated! I hope to be of help to others
      if I possibly can…pass on whatever useful knowledge that I can….

      That is very good question you’ve have asked and I have a couple of thoughts/ideas …
      first off…I know I can be a sensitive person…having said that;
      I think sometimes I let too many possible minor things bother me..
      and then I reach for my drug[s] of choice…
      gambling being the main one….

      Yesterday I had a couple of instances at work that I could have let bother me…but instead I
      chose to look at some positive points of my day -to the best of my ability-
      and chose not to allow these issues to bother me.
      Also …I’ve done a “cost benefit” analysis and I am in shock as to
      how much I’ve lost trying to bet or
      even play the lottery..
      I always seem to spend more money than I initially intended;
      and I never win much….
      making gambling a “chore” which I no longer enjoy at any level …

    • #160367
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Hello Kin:
      I hope you are feeling better!
      I found out by responding to someone’s
      Post & I feel bad when anyone goes through
      A difficult struggle…

      Kin /other gambling recovery folks :
      It’s tough to stay gamble -free-
      I won’t lie….
      I find I’m easily triggered by something someone said the previous day, or dealing with a rude customer, or something going wrong at my school board work….

      I now try to realize just how much money (thousands!)
      I’ve lost trying to win “the big one”
      I admit I have a gambling issue…
      But I seem to be in denial about how much I’ve spent /lost
      In the past years …
      Someone
      Made the suggestion of taking my expired/lost tickets I get out of thelottery machine, and hang them on my door of my computer desk, and add up just how much I’ve lost ….it’s mind boggling!!!

      Hopefully this will show me just how much I’ve spent in the past(and lost!!)

      And also, I am trying to realize that when I have a bad day, people are bothering me/rude customers/tough day doing my school board job ….that tomorrow will be a brighter day, and even if it isn’t ;gambling or escaping to gambling isn’t going to solve my issues! it just makes me feel worse, because then I feel bad afterwards I spent the money and lost the money on gambling😩

    • #160405
      risingphoenix
      Deelnemer

      It is the gambling flywheel.

      Feel sad-> Gamble-> Win some -> Feel good-> Gamble -> Lose some-> Feel angry -> Gamble -> Lose more -> Feel sad-> Gamble -> Lose everything -> Recover -> Feel sad -> Gamble…

      The key is to break the flywheel! One gamble free day at a time.

    • #160806
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thanks Rising for your response:)
      Yes…
      It’s like a vicious cycle for sure …
      You’re right!
      I have to stop this cycle of nonsense..
      Stop
      Believing that somehow gambling
      Will “save the day”

      Again- I think the good days -when I keep busy, work , have positive thoughts
      I can keep “half an eye”
      On the gambling giant…..

      It’s when I feel depressed, lonely,
      Upset at someone-
      That I must NOT turn to gambling
      To try and “soothe” the rough feelings….

    • #160837
      jvr3419
      Deelnemer

      You got it Don. The thing is to learn how to just be uncomfortable sometimes. Believe me as you seen me post I hate it to. It isn’t fun feeling vulnerable or depressed sometimes. But I can tell you soothing with any addiction only makes it 500 times worse. Learning to just sit with your feelings and let it ride out is the hardest thing to learn as someone in recovery. Everyone I’ve met from my past addictions and this current one say the same thing. The “feeling” of everything so intensely is the hardest part. It’s no wonder it’s so hard for us though because we’ve taught our brains to find solace and relief in unhealthy and destructive ways. The shitty days don’t last long but when I have them I talk about it. That’s why meetings and things like this forum are so valuable. I feel we’re only as sick as what we hold inside ourselves. The reason I had a behavior relapse in the first place was because I didn’t talk about my stuff anymore I held it in and tried to fight with it internally. I see your opening up alot more on here and that’s such a valuable thing for your recovery process. I believe you can beat this shit and you will because you have the willingness to try and do so 😊

    • #161239
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don,
      just checking on you, you didn’t post for a while, keep posting wish you all the best in your recovery.

    • #161248
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thanks Dark Energy, for checking in on me ..
      I’m doing just ok…
      Got something going on Monday
      At work that’s really bothering me…
      I’m trying to see good points…
      Trying not to “pyramid “ bad
      Possibilities….
      I can feel the urge starting up to medicate with
      Gambling to numb my feelings….
      But deep inside me I know I’ll probably feel worse if I gamble …

    • #163269
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thought I would post ..another
      Member on this forum was nice enough to point out that I haven’t checked in with my progress in a while…

      I am still struggling with control issues, that is I seem to think that there is someway I can control and enjoy this addiction!

      But every time I go to play I do lose quite a bit, and two things that I noticed lately

      The withdrawal symptoms I experience are really really prevalent and really strong and maybe I somehow believe they are too difficult to overcome and so I just given to gambling on that day?

      Also I find it difficult when the feelings come in my head (I was told by an old sponsor that you cannot stop the thoughts coming into your head but you can certainly not listen to those thoughts)

      And it’s tough to say “no”

      But then I get upset because I’ve lost money? So that’s the insanity of this disease, I want to stop losing money but yet I want to somehow control the amount I gamble and also try and control
      The thoughts coming in 😒

      I find the posts on this forum very helpful, when people list how much sobriety they have, and the ways that they overcome their bad days…

    • #163381
      jvr3419
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don I’m happy to read your post. The withdrawl stage is definitely the hardest. Honestly the only thing that helped me through that stage was having outside help to get me through it. I literally had to post here almost everyday to just get out whatever thoughts would pop into my head to. I wrote insane novels of shit but it worked. As the saying goes you get what you put into your recovery. I no that men tend to have it a bit harder in terms of allowing emotions/feelings out it wasn’t your guys fault at all that comes from bs society that conditioned you to suck it up and move on. I work with tradesman all day with pent up anger,control,addictions because they won’t talk. I have managed to get some of them to do that over time by being open myself and me being a women they tend to open up with confidence and trust. I dont no if it’ll help you at all to do that more knowing that there is others like myself reading your posts wanting to be a support for you. Let that shit out as it hits you whatever it may be thats what this forum is for. 😊

      • Deze reactie is gewijzigd 1 jaar, 7 maanden geleden door jvr3419.
    • #163396
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don,
      I have real concerns about what you wrote, it seems you are not someone who is planning how to recover and doing everything to get rid of this addiction, but you seems like someone who still trying to gamble but he needs to control it.
      because there is a difference between the two cases.

      this may sound a bit harsh but it is for your benefit, I asked you last time to post because I am reading your posts for the last 2 or 3 months, but till now I can’t tell at which stage of recovery you are.

      there is a difference between:
      A: someone who is still gambling and sees the damage that is caused by gambling, but he is still trying to win, trying to control his gambling.
      B: and someone who is admitting that he is a gambling addict and he needs to find his way out of this addiction ( here there is no “control” it is either to stop or to continue gambling).

      I was in position A two years ago, and now I am in position B and trying to find my way out.

      so honestly where do you stand, are you in position A or B?

      • Deze reactie is gewijzigd 1 jaar, 7 maanden geleden door Dark Energy.
    • #163407
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      DE: I am definitely person a)
      And -no!
      You weren’t being harsh at all, you were just asking me to be honest -rigorously honest, and if I am going to achieve sobriety, and if I’m going to achieve battling this disease then I need to be as honest as I can

      I guess I feel I don’t wanna give it up I think? I am afraid to live without it? And I think deep inside I really want to try and control gambling??

      If I may, I have a question for you -how did you get to be person b) ??

      How did you tell yourself “this disease is ruining my life, it is controlling me, I know that I need to stop and stay stopped and I will do whatever it takes and whatever is required of me to stop??

    • #163408
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Jvr: thank you for your kind reply! I am not like most guys, I am not afraid to discuss my feelings and say if I feel sensitive or weak that day?

      I think the reason why most guys that are “tough” don’t wanna admit that they are sensitive are feeling a little bit down the day or are trouble by something is that they want to remain “tough” and if they tell you these things that they are sensitive or whatever the issue is ..then they feel inadequate and they are not living up to the tough guy role ?

      It’s interesting that you bring this up, because there is a trainer/supervisor type person at my work for a few days this week training new people..

      I have worked with her before and had nothing but issues with her, she is very insulting and I truly believe she does not like being around me …and quite frankly that is very triggering for me, the first thought of course is to medicate with gambling ☹️

      I do have some positive news about her though that I am trying to really concentrate on …that at least she ignores me and doesn’t even acknowledge my existence which could be a good thing? And perhaps I should be looking at that more than anything..?

      I think it’s important that I look at the positives and not dwell on the negative, and maybe that will stop my triggers and then I can carry on with my day without giving into gambling…

    • #163418
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don,
      the best tool for that is cost-benefit analysis,
      list all the benefits of gambling “and yes there are some benefits”, then list all the costs and all the suffering. put them next to each other and ask your self you still need to gamble?
      if you still say yes I need to control it, go back and start questioning the listed benefits, are they real or they are just illusional benefits?
      there are many tools, the above is one of them,

      CBT is very good to take you from position A to B.

      in my case, it was experience and relapses, and reaching a rock bottom that let me move from point A to B, but you don’t need all that suffering and you don’t need to waste another year or two of your life to reach point B and start addressing this addiction in a proper way.

      a depressing note: point B doesn’t mean you recover, but it means you are now ready to start your recovery. it is a long way, but you need to start walking on it.

    • #163462
      jvr3419
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don one thing I’ve learned about people especially negative ones at that is you can’t control how they act but you can control your response to it. I’ve taken a beating for years from my general foreman probably the most arrogant jerk I’ve ever met. Those type will always look for our weak spots to use against us. It’s like they sniff out the insecurities. We get to make the choice whether we feed them or not. And the only person we hurt by letting them take us out with our insecurities is ourself especially if we go straight to addiction thoughts. Working on those insecurities also helps big time so that they no longer become a trigger anymore. Counseling definitely helps with that alot for me anyways. I hope your having a better day today 😊

    • #163869
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thanks JVR & DE for your responses!
      JVR: I don’t know how you can take a
      Mental bearing from a foreman who’s that
      Kind of an idiot
      But kudos to you for doing your best to ignore him
      And realize you can only control
      Your own actions
      And not his ….

      DE: yes-I am done some cost benefit analysis before, it is never worth it to gamble or so it seems calmer just the “hopeful promise” that I will win something big one day??!

      Not a good theory..

      Today, Wednesday, September 21, I came into some money that I got reimbursed for a hearing aid , my work reimbursed today in the sum of
      $2400
      Thanks to the community here, I immediately paid a bill that I owed, and put some of it towards my line of credit that I owe money too…

      I am very grateful that I got that advice from this forum, if you have extra money …delegate it right away to bills or family before you spend it on any kind of gambling…

    • #164141
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Hello all: I guess I was kinda looking
      For a response to my last post…
      Maybe perhaps not because I am somewhat new to the forum ?
      Anyhow-! I hope everyone is sober today…
      For a Monday

      I was tempted to gamble at the store today-
      I fought off(white knuckling it?)
      The urges
      And I was wondering if a hope of being
      Gamble -free for this week
      Would be a start?
      So far ;
      My day 1 gamble free is going
      Ok- but I gotta keep
      Reminding myself why I can’t?

      I tell
      myself all the hundreds if not thousands of dollars I have wasted trying to win “the big one”
      Or “I’ll be happier if I win a lot of money “

      I’ve seen a lot of Sobriety on this forum, I wonder what even a week of it would look like? I don’t think I’ve ever had even a week of sobriety in the last couple years?

      I wanna keep reminding myself why I should stay gamble free…

    • #164153
      risingphoenix
      Deelnemer

      Well done Don. So glad to see you allocate the funds where they need to go to and keeping the urges in check.

    • #164185
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thanks Rising ; for your support…
      I want to start out by having a
      Small goal (one week?) to look up to …

      One day at a time yes- for sure!
      And thanks again for your posts
      Of giving your family the extra money
      You have …
      This has helped me tremendously!

    • #164195
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      congrats Don on Day#1, it is a start and you look motivated to change and this is important.

      keeping the money away is the best thing that can be done to guarantee recovery.

    • #164320
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      De: thanks for your support…
      I do feel Motivated to change, but I know there will be “rough patches”

      Of when I really want to make a bet…
      And yes!
      Thank you for your advice of “keeping the money away “because if I didn’t allot that money to bills I’m sure I would have gambled it away:(

    • #166816
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don,
      you didn’t post for a while, I hope everything is going well.
      wish you all the best
      DE

    • #166848
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thanks DE for your support and thinking of me!
      It’s been rough the last couple weeks- I am not going to lie to you, I keep trying, although in vain ;to control this addiction:(

      There is a little light of victory though, I am not playing the “big “lotteries anymore ..matching six or seven numbers is not really practical or feasible….

      I really want to be able to bet just on sports online, but I find I am constantly going over the money that I allot myself and I am certainly not winning a whole lot;

      I am behind; not even breaking even…
      I should learn from that?
      I feel I’m a very stubborn
      Person sometimes…

      Thank you for your support and I will try to post more often but I would like to post with some good sobriety news

    • #166857
      charles
      Moderator

      Hi Don, good to see you posting aain.

      So think on this question….

      What are you trying to control? Your addiction? Or your gambling? There is a subtle difference.

      If you think of the addiction as a monster asleep in the corner we can keep it that way. Howeve, keep poking that monster with a stick an sooner or later it’ll wake up and bite our ass! We can control that monster by starving it.

      When it comes to controlling our gambling…. if we were the sort of people who could do that then we wouldn’t be here in the first place.

      I guess there are two other questions we need to ask ourselves…

      Is what we love/like about gambling wortht the crap that follows? Coz we can’t have one without the other.

      Do we take the steps that will make our next bet less likely now…. or later when deeper in the s**t?

      When it comes to wanting to post with some “good sobriety news” that is more likely to happen if you post regularly now whie struggling. Consider this – if an alcoholic waited until he was sober before he used support he would likely remain drunk.

      Keep posting.

    • #166997
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thank you Charles, for your response & help…!

      Part of me (probably a big part!)
      Would like to be able to
      Control and enjoy gambling….
      But like you say-
      If I could control the amount of money I spent on gambling then I wouldn’t be on this forum-you are right😀

      I guess I am probably trying to control the addiction?
      I just know there is a part of me that wants to try so hard to control and enjoy gambling, and spend a certain allotted amount of money, but then I always seem to overspend on gambling which should tell me there’s no control…

      As far as posting with some good sobriety news, I guess I just wanted to be a
      Positive inspiration for people on the forum here ….but then again I struggle so mightily while trying to get even a week of sobriety….

      I guess that’s why they say “one day at a time“ because we never know how we are going to feel the next day, I just know for a fact there are days that I don’t really need to gamble – and I could care less if I gamble, and then there other days where gambling has been on my mind every minute of every hour😩

    • #167017
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      Don, My friend, you are in the same place, you need to move from ( I need to control it ) to ( I need to overcome this addiction).

      yes, the gambler part in your brain will be there trying to pull you back to gambling but at least the rational part of your brain should be totally convinced that you can’t control gambling, read books about gambling, and watch youtube videos about it. do all that you can do to move from position 1 to position 2 where you are planning how to really recover from this addiction.

      I know it is hard to do this transition, it took me a long time to do so. but this needs to be done to start your real recovery.

    • #167040
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      DE: thanks for your helpful comment 🙂
      I really “hope” I’ve hit rock bottom …

      I don’t wanna go out and “bang my head more”
      As an old sponsor once sAid in a meeting
      A few years back when I was battling another addiction…
      Yes- it appears I’ve switched addictions and
      Now gambling is my most troublesome/prevalent…

      I would like to reach position 2 …
      Sometimes I find the urge to gamble so strong /powerful….
      Possibly because I have not given my brain enough time to be trained? Trained to always reject a gambling thought when it comes in my head,that is….

      I am good at game shows- guessing answers
      And a lot of the time I’m right…
      But when it comes
      To gambling – I’m terrible at predicting outcomes
      And have lost plenty of money ….
      That should help me switch to position 2…

    • #168695
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Hello Forum- I’ve been away for
      About 1 month….
      A member on here mentioned winning quite a bit…gambling off what was won…
      Last month I managed to win almost
      Everything I’ve lost
      This year….
      BUT!! This is exactly what I’m afraid of??
      Now I wanna win more 😯🙄??

      Isn’t it just a vicious circle….
      I mean…you win at gambling…
      You wanna keep on winning, if you lose you wanna gamble to make up your loss? Just seems the logical thing is to stop gambling? But I can’t help think when I won a month ago and

      what it would be like to win a little more to pay off my bills🤨??
      Am I perpetuating this vicious cycyle?
      I’d
      Like some of you folks
      At this forum
      To help me out with this ?
      Over the last
      5 years of gambling ,
      I’m still very much behind what
      I’ve
      Spent gambling 🤨

    • #168850
      cabalsmith6
      Deelnemer

      Hello Everyone, this side Cabal. I am a newcomer in gambling so I have joined this forum to learn more things.

    • #170293
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      Don my frind, you still don’t get it.
      it is all designed to keep you coming back and gambling, again and again, the casino wins in the long run, they don’t care what the result of the next bet is, because they are depending on the long run, they already have an edge against the gamblers, and in the long run, they will win,
      so everything is designed to keep you coming back and bet again and again, you can’t win in the long run, and if you say ok I will win x amount and stop, you can’t do it, because the games are designed to keep you addicted to it ( the small wins, the occasional big win, the bonus…etc. it is all by design) and we are as gambling addict are more prone to continue gambling compared to the average person.

      so please you need to admit that firstly, then your recovery can start, as long as you think you can win gambling you still live in delusion and you can’t start your recovery.
      wish you all the best
      DE

    • #177924
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      I haven’t posted for a while…
      So here goes ….I feel as if I desperately want to be able to control
      And enjoy gambling…
      Set aside a budget…
      Stick to
      It….
      I try hard to do that …
      So, so many games and ways
      To
      Lose; yes, lose your money
      Out there….
      I hardly ever win….
      Last year I managed to win $1,200
      Playing sports
      Online …
      I truly believe
      I’m trying to re- live
      That moment and win Again 🙁
      Ive
      Done nothing but lose last few weeks …
      Ive
      Probably put back all of that $1,200
      That
      I “won”
      I sometimes fantasize about
      How I could quit my job or
      But this …or that if I won…..?

      I think I gotta realize these sites
      And Casinos
      Are NOT in business to make me rich 😒

    • #178167
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Interesting that there are no replies…??
      Do we need to be always sober in order
      To get a reply?
      I am struggling with giving up control
      Of gambling …
      I want SO bad to be able to control
      And enjoy gambling…
      I guess that just isn’t possible for an
      Addict such
      As myself 😒

    • #178190
      marcusmaximus
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don
      Thanks for your message on my thread. Yes, we are all “in the same boat”.
      Struggling over control of our thoughts and actions. Struggling over letting go of what has been lost.
      Struggling over thoughts of “the big win”.
      We have to try and take control of a life WITHOUT gambling.
      I have finally admitted to myself that gambling has won. It has got the better of me, no doubt. I am incapable of controlling myself in that environment.
      I am an addict and always will be. I am ‘wired up” that way.
      Now I am committed to stopping. For my mental and physical health, for my loved ones, for my future.
      I have excluded myself as far as possible from all forms of gambling. This has helped no end, as when those urges start to take shape I know I can’t gamble.
      This is kind of buying me time to try and get my thoughts in order. To renew old interests, take up some newer interests. To prepare for that life out there without gambling.
      Thoughts of what I have lost will hopefully ease over time. Especially if I can become a better man for the whole experience.
      At the end of your last post you mentioned you guess it isn’t possible to enjoy gambling as you are an addict.
      That is true. It is IMPOSSIBLE. This is one of the first things we must realise and FULLY admit to.
      It isn’t easy and never will be. But lots of things in life we have to work hard to get.
      I have found taking things day by day that I am forming a new, maintainable mindset. I will not gamble today.
      All the best buddy, be strong and stay strong. Keep posting.

    • #178293
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don,
      there is no way to control it, I have done every possible trick to control my trading addiction, I have tried to control the amount that I put for trading, and I have tried to use a program to place the trades for me so I will not interfere, I have tried to use a friend to give me access just to place one trade per day….and many other ways.. but nothing worked, all the methods that I used to control my trading addiction didn’t work. simply because I am an addict and I can’t control myself after placing the first bet or trade,

      all these trials delayed my recovery, but I had to go through them all before I surrender to the fact that I can’t do it at all.

      Don, you need to admit that, and then you need to find your way out of this addiction.

      there is nothing to lose if you stopped gambling, if you are doing it for fun there is a million way to have fun, if you are doing it for money there is a million way to make money,

    • #178328
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Dark: thanks for your help and advice !

      I’d like to admit that I certainly do not do it for fun, my main downfall seems to be these online sports betting sites and of course sometimes my brain tells me that I

      have knowledge of certain players, teams, etc. and I should be able to make money at this? And of course a $1200 win last year Just propelled me to keep going 😕
      But!!
      I have more than put all that $1,200
      Back into
      These sites …
      In losses….
      If I am to be honest…
      I haven’t won in 6 months….
      I perhaps am also chasing the “thrill”
      Of a win????!

      This type of behaviour that I am doing is certainly not worth the price I am paying😕

      Last night I self excluded from the only online gambling sports site I use (other ones owe me money and won’t pay so
      I don’t trust them!!) and I am reluctant, but willing to go back into my bank account and find out how much money I spent on this site in the last couple weeks or even a couple months, I don’t want to do it because I am

      afraid to see how much money I have lost but I feel it is necessary step to my recovery….

    • #178342
      Dark Energy
      Deelnemer

      hi Don,
      excluding yourself is a good step congratulation on doing it.
      regarding checking your bank account to see how much you lost, I have done it both ways, some times, especially in the first years I kept a record of what I lost but it always had a negative impact on me it kept me attached to what I lost, it kept me trying different ways to win what I lost back. and kept me gambling.
      in recent years I am keeping a record for what is my net worth (what I have – what I owe) and I am updating it monthly “Currently I am still in Negative, I need one and half years to be in positive”, by doing this I focus on what I have now and planning the future regardless of what I have lost is the past, this keeps me in a positive mindset.

      Finally, it is up to you, I can make a good case for each option but you need to pick what helps your recovery.

    • #180054
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Hello group!
      Another number on the forum here asked me a very good question and I just thought I would give my answer on my own feed here….
      Going through withdrawal/craving symptoms seem to be really strong for me?

      Maybe it is the same for everybody else? The feelings are so overwhelmingly strong or so I feel, that most of the time I say the heck with it, and give into the addiction.😭

      Maybe I shouldn’t be afraid of these feelings of fight/surrender?

      Also, another member mentioned how much money is saved by not gambling, I definitely see my finances dwindling, and I have not won a bet in over two months …which tells me I need to stop for sure

      So I would like to ask a question:
      are the first two weeks or even the first week, the hardest of no gambling to endure? Do the feelings of withdrawal and cravings subside considerably after that amount of time.?

    • #180057
      marcusmaximus
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don
      From my experiences I think the cravings are very strong in the first few weeks. Combined with the feelings of guilt, stupidity etc it is a terrible time.
      After that the feelings, urges come more in waves. I think it is about learning to distract ourselves with positive thoughts and actions when we get those feelings that is vital.
      I guess we will always get the urges, it is the way we are wired up.
      Over the years I have had many a relapse. It is when I forget about the pain gambling can cause, when I relax a bit and get complacent that is REALLY dangerous.
      For me now I think about “living with the scar”. Remembering on a daily basis that I won’t gamble today. Remembering that feeling of hurt.
      So I don’t think things will ever be easy really. That is pretty hard to think about at times.
      I believe things can get better for sure but the guard always has to up.
      I have decided I would rather lead a more sober life and not get caught up in the spin cycle of gambling.
      That is what I want to commit to. I tell myself nothing in life really comes easy.
      Best wishes, it is tough to break any addiction and to keep away from it. If you are 100% committed I believe it can be done.

    • #180070
      jvr3419
      Deelnemer

      The withdrawls are the hardest for any addiction in the first few weeks because ultimately we’re getting a constant dopamine hit from whatever we’re doing. Once you take away that source that creates that chemical we feel empty,sad, depleted, emotional, more self aware which is why the guilt and shame are so high. We have to allow are brains to create there own chemicals again. Some people get medical help at this time for this reason especially with substance related withdrawals. It’s a little different coming down off a behavior addiction but not much. Ultimately it’s a matter of forcing ourselves to withstand the discomfort. There is no shame in asking for professional help during this time either. I’m not going to promise life will 100% be better because the fact is we’re human. And many of us addicts come from extreme trauma, mental health issues and dysregulated emotional responses to life so ya its gonna suck sometimes. But one thing that gets better is our ability to function without the added stress of our addiction. The fog gets lifted the blinders are off so we cope better. Learn better ways to manage stressful life situations. And with gambling addiction recovery we have financial security again. Ultimately money is a resource for our survival if we mess with it in a way that’s destructive we aren’t respecting it the way it should be. I’ve had to teach myself to love and respect money just like I had to teach that for myself as well. Glad to see you posting 🙂

    • #180124
      Don14765
      Deelnemer

      Thanks jvr…for
      You post and support !
      I like when you said
      “ Forcing ourselves to go through the discomfort”

      An old sponsor of mine told me “there is pain with change“
      But there is also
      Pain in staying the same ..
      They are different kinds of pains for sure, but I guess we have to go through this “pain of change“ if we want to stop being the same
      Person
      Who experiences the losses of gambling…
      Yes….
      Good point- I am going to receive a phone call tomorrow morning about getting some therapy…
      I have
      Been to this place about a year or two ago and thought I was on my way to recovery?

      But I have slipped back to my old habits
      And also won some money last year
      And thought I could repeat that win….

      I guess I cannot win no matter how hard I try? Someone once told me “the worst thing that can happen to a gambler is that they win!”
      Sounds odd /oxymoronic…
      But true!
      If I win, then I start believing I can do it again at some point -sooner rather than later, its just my gambler’s fallacy in my own head😐

      What’s really been bothering me in the last couple days is how I tried so hard to repeat that win…I am almost 100% sure I spent all my money I won trying to make that win happen again….

      Not a good idea to chase my losses , either..
      I’ll just go deeper in debt 😯
      I appreciate your help and post though…
      It will be an uphill climb…
      But!!
      One step at a time I
      Must take it….

    • #189620
      kin
      Deelnemer

      Hi Don,

      Thank you for sharing that you can suffer the pain of change or suffer remaining the way you are.

      Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.

      • Deze reactie is gewijzigd 1 maand, 1 week geleden door kin.
      • Deze reactie is gewijzigd 1 maand, 1 week geleden door kin.
    • #189647
      patrick35
      Deelnemer

      Hello,
      I believe I’ve come to the right place to share my struggles with gambling. It feels like I’ve fallen into a hole so deep, returning to my former self seems impossible. After losing my job last year, I turned to gambling with my savings, hoping for a change in fortune. Eight months have passed, and my occasional betting has spiraled into an addiction I can’t seem to break free from. Despite my efforts to stop, I find myself constantly drawn back. My savings are now depleted, and I’m facing the dire prospect of losing my home. With a wife and two children to consider, the thought of us being evicted is overwhelmingly distressing. How can one overcome this addiction to gambling, which truly feels like a disease?

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