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Hi, were to start. I am 34 years old I have been into gambli

Hi, were to start. I am 34 years old I have been into gambling since I was young. When I was 12 or 13 my best friend was 19 and his job was fixing fruit machines he started buying broken ones and fixing them at his house were I would then play them, I worked after school and at the weekends and would gamble all my money away within hours sometimes minutes of getting paid. Over the next few years things got worse and the more I earned the more I gambled. My family were religious and were totally against gambling and I suppose that was another reason I didn't say anything to any of them and kept it well hid, I am ashamed to say that I used to go into my dads jars of money which he kept for bills and gambled that to, I knew at this stage I was starting to get addicted but thought I could control it. By the time I turned 18 I joined the army I thought that being confined to camp and being in training for 6 months would help me but the rec room had a fruit machine and I was no better off and was skint just after pay day most months. When I finished training and had the freedom to leave camp things got a lot worse, One of my mates took me to a bookies and I played one of the video roulette machines, probably the worse thing that could happen that day did I WON, from that day on I was hooked on the roulette machines every chance I would get I would play sometimes winning sometimes losing £1200 salary in 2 hours. Even going on tour to Iraq didn't stop the gambling we started playing poker most nights although at least this was limited amounts of money so I managed to save a bit for 6 months. I started to see someone shortly after this and moved in together and even though I played some machines at lunch time at work I didnt gamble that much and things were looking up, every couple months I would have a blow out and it was starting to increase to the point my girlfriend noticed , I told her it wasn't a problem and i would stop but in reality all I did was try to hid it better. We got married and I really did try not to gamble and to be a good husband but no matter how much I loved my wife I just couldn't stop the urge. When my wife got pregnant I swore to myself I would change and I meant it but even the birth of my wee boy didn't stop me, there was months when the day I got paid I would blow the whole salary not even leaving enough to buy baby milk, I was so caught up in winning back my loses that I just couldn't stop , sitting at the machine knowing I could never win the amount I had put in back again starting to breath fast feeling angry , cross and like crying all at the same time trying to think on how we would survive , were I could get more money and what I would tell my wife. It got bad and with my son to think of and feed I made the hardest phone call I ever had to make and phone my mum and dad tell them all about my past and ask for a bail out promising never to do it again. Things have not changed much over the last 8-10 years , more gambling more lies and me hurting everyone I love, this week I have hit rock bottom, I earn a good wage in my job and when the money went in my bank this month I gambled it all, then I took out loans and borrowed from friends and blew nearly 6 grand, it will take us a long time to recover and a task just to survive the next few months. If it wasn't for my wife and son I really think I would just have ended it all this week but that would leave them in an even worse situation, my wife has put up with so much and lost out on so much in the past 14 years I still cant believe she has stood by me. I told her 2 days ago what I had done, and because she has been through it so many times over the years she shed no tears and no shouting , believe it or not I think this is what has finally done it for me. How have I treated her over the years for her to take such bad ,sad depressing news and not even throw out one insult to me, instead telling me we can get through it together and they love me and just want me to appreciate what we have and not always want more. I have put her through hell over the years and I mean literally hell there has been times when I thought she would leave me and when she probably should have. For me it was always about getting quick money and the buzz of winning it, then I used the excuse that I am an addict to make myself feel better about the loses and almost try to make me sound like a victim and almost justify it wasn't my fault, but no my wife is right for over 20 years it has always been about trying to make money easy and quick but in reality making it take so much longer to get money saved. Now I may be addicted to gambling but as I have found out this past month from quitting smoking after 21 years of it , its just a habit same as smoking same as people who twirl their hair or bite there nails or gamble, I think smokers, gamblers and drug users all maybe say they would like to be free of it but say im addicted so its not easy to quit , but I realised today the reason we say this is to give us an escape route so we can do it again because we enjoy it, I enjoy smoking especially after meal and I will miss that, I enjoy gambling and the feeling of winning so I realised today what I had actually said to my wife todays ago , I said to her I was sorry im addicted and I will probably never change, which I now realise was me leaving the door open to justify me to do it again,. Well bollocks to that, with the smoking I realised I enjoy it but its killing me so I had to break the habit, so where I would normally after evening meal have a smoke with the boys I instead grab a lolly and phone the wife break the habit of standing with them smoking, and once that initial 5 minutes after food is over I feel fine I have broke the habit, gambling will be the same for me I know it, instead of gambling when I get an urge I am going to write stuff down, but the biggest thing I am going to do is to stop calling myself an addict and admit for all these years I done it because I loved the thrill and buzz and thought of easy money, I believe we all do it for different reasons and if you can find that true reason that you started and kept doing it then you can find a way to stop, any time I think about it I am just going to write about it ,i'm gonna do what my wife said and I should have done all along and just be grateful for being alive, healthy and having a great family and stop looking for easy money and enjoy what we have, I will replace the buzz of winning and losing with the gym , as its just hit me everytime I have been heavy in the gym I haven't gambled , this writing thing is good lol it brings back memories and makes you remember things and think clear, I hadn't gambled for months and last week when I hurt my back in gym and was off for 5 days is when I gambled again because I didn't have the buzz of gym. Well I have babbled on long enough this has helped me so much writing it down , it will definitely be a regular thing now.

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Jennipain's picture
Sep 25

Welcome and glad that it helped to tell your story. Others will reach out in this group and try reading some of the other posts in this group too. Good Luck

Oct 11

You are right, the gambling is a choice and we often seek reasons to keep doing it. You have several months in, even with the relapse that’s a great thing. Keep trying to fight the urge. You can do this.


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