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Day 7

The 100 Day Challenge is a program where you set your goals - reduce your gambling or stop gambling altogether, it's up to you. Log onto the 100 Day Challenge website to follow the real stories of four Australians trying to give up gambling for inspiration and get the tools and support you need to find the real you. Click here to sign up, and post about your own challenge here on the Gambling Help Online Community Forum!


Day 7

Postby Jo-Anne » Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:30 pm

Hi I am new to this forum. Now that I have been writing my diary for the past week, I thought I might share today's with you. I know how hard it is for everyone who battles this addiction so I hope that seeing another person with the same struggles could help. I have been reading other posts with the all too familiar stories and I am definitely in the same boat. This is my diary for today!

Got paid again half an hour ago.....normally would already be on the online horse racing site. I looked at my budget while waiting for my pay to go in the bank, tossed up whether I would gamble a little, but given my past record, a little would have been the whole pay! Instead I paid all my car loan arrears so now up to date. Also sent my daughter a little that I promised for my granddaughter's birthday party. Last week I bought her the birthday present that may not of happened if I started gambling last pay.

I have about 1/3rd of my pay left that is ear marked for other bills and living expenses. I need to keep a bit of a balance in the bank without gambling so am testing myself out. If I get urges about actually gambling it, I will be distracting myself fully and keeping off the computer. It is difficult when I look at the bills I have to pay and think that one good win will help a lot. From experience I know that it is most unlikely that I will have a win, and I will just be getting further into debt.

My bills are scheduled out to pay over the next few months so I need to keep to that schedule. I know I will feel so much better tomorrow if I stick to the plan. I have now not gambled for 14 days (the first 6 because I had no money!!) So that is two pays that I have stuck to my plan!

What have I achieved? A sense of pride and honouring promises I have made to others. I am not happy when the hopelessness and desperation that gambling causes ruins my reputation and relationships with others even further. It has been a long 15 years on and off with this addiction.

So in writing all this down today, I have decided to go on to the online site I use and self exclude!! So now I have been on and did not find a self exclude so I have closed the account completely....that was easy. I hope that that is enough to remind me not to gamble!!

I am thankful that today so far I have not gambled. :)

I wish everyone who is doing the 100 Day Challenge every success :)
Jo-Anne
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Re: Day 7

Postby Renee » Tue Feb 16, 2016 7:42 am

Congratulations on your will power and overall decision to better your life. Although our vices differ (mines online pokies) we are not dissimilar.

I'm at day 3. Have had money each day but like you I need it to catch up on my debt over the next few months.

Keep coming on here and posting and reading. It helps
Renee
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Posts: 75
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2015 11:31 am

Re: Day 7

Postby Jo-Anne » Tue Feb 16, 2016 7:32 pm

HI Renee

Thanks so much for your words of encouragement. It is a lonely battle for us, but the support of others in the same situation helps a lot. I wish that I had joined up earlier, however am so pleased that I have now.
I have read some of your posts. I see you have had a tough time of it lately, I hope that you are OK and all is going well for you at home.
I will definitely be seeing the 100 day challenge through. Now that I have broken the cycle and can see good things happening in the future, I am hoping that I will be OK and not gamble anymore. I am fortunate that I live in a remote area and don't go to town much so will not be tempted to go to the TAB. I am also fortunate to be in WA where the only pokies are at the casino and not in every pub & club. I feel very sorry for people in the East. This is something that WA is doing right. I don't say this to be critical of any person on this site battling machine addiction. It must be so hard for you all. Please keep posting Renee and I will respond.

Jo
Jo-Anne
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Re: Day 7

Postby Renee » Tue Feb 16, 2016 9:20 pm

I agree that WA is doing the right/responsible thing. I had a friend who moved to WA many years ago as he needed freedom from the machines.

For me it's not venues. If anything I get annoyed by the people around me or if they're on a machine I want to be on. It's mostly online. Once I started playing online I had no interest in venues. The payout percentage online is higher so you get bigger wins more often but the downside is its in your life constantly and you can gamble at any time of the day. I play on my phone of an evening with headphones on, everywhere really. I guess it might be like a drug addict moving from pain killers to heroin. Lol. Actually, it's really not funny. Online gambling is the pits and should be outlawed.

My partner is sticking by me. I'm a very fortunate woman to have such a wonderful person in my life. Telling him at the beginning of me quitting means he can help me through. All the other times I've tried to carry all the guilt and stress and anxiety with me alone with the goal of telling him at the end when I had made it to the other side.

I've done some long stints before gamble free. I know how easy it is to flick back. At this time I'm at nil risk of gambling and it's not until I'm a couple months in that I tend to screw up as I start to feel I am completely over it and can play a little. I accept I cannot do this.

I spoke to my old counsellor today. I have lots of steps and strategies in place. My partner is helping me also. I refuse to screw up my kids lives by doing this. Not just financially but wasting so much time and energy on the sounds and lights etc.

Day 3. Feels better than yesterday
Renee
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Posts: 75
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2015 11:31 am

Re: Day 7

Postby Jo-Anne » Wed Feb 17, 2016 8:27 pm

Hi Renee, How are you today? I have been thinking about you today while at work.

Things are still going good for me.

I may also have problems down the track if I think that I can have a little flutter. I am a compulsive gambler and really cannot bet $1. I have only bet on horses for the past few years, earlier on it used to be the casino, and I really had a huge problem controlling those urges, spend and then the amount of time that I would spend there.

Fortunately it has not often affected my employment, but has taken its toll on my family life. My second husband left me and I don't blame him. Our divorce is going through next month. To his credit we have remained friends as besides my gambling we had a really happy marriage. I am over the sadness now, as I know I must move on and be responsible for my own life.

For me it is more than gambling, I have had a disability since I was 11 (Arthritis) and Cancer 9 years ago. None of these are excuses for gambling, but explains why I sought the mind numbing pasttime of gambling. It was a coping mechanism for pain both emotional and physical.

I am so happy that I have not gambled and keep looking at my bank account with "normal" expenses for the last two weeks! So far I have not been tempted to reopen my online account and gamble!
Last edited by Jo-Anne on Sat Mar 05, 2016 9:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
Jo-Anne
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Posts: 457
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2016 10:40 pm

Re: Day 7

Postby Renee » Thu Feb 18, 2016 7:21 am

That's fantastic Jo-Anne. It's amazing the pride and sense of normality we can find in paying our bills. In my last 4 month binge I have been reasonable and have paid all bills so am not behind in anything however I have several payday loans that I have taken to cover my gambling so I will have to see out the time of those prior to being able to perhaps do something small for myself. I have also racked up some credit card debt. I can also fix this, in time. It's a reasonable debt but I have a good 'white collar' job and will receive a large payment at end of financial that will kill most of it. I just need to get there without gambling and I really think I can this time.

I sound like a broken record, but I am taking every step I can to conquer this. My partner is by my side and I'm fighting back.
Renee
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Posts: 75
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2015 11:31 am

Re: Day 7

Postby Jo-Anne » Thu Feb 18, 2016 10:40 pm

Renee :) you don't sound like a broken record.....you are someone who truly wants to beat this addiction and good on you for that!

We all speak the same language, have the same thoughts and feel the same things. I have done exactly the same, trying to "hide" the truth so I could make it better on my own.

I was waiting for a good win to clear my debt only to find myself getting in so much deeper.

Just over the last couple of weeks and for the week coming I will have cleared the same amount of bills without requiring that elusive win.

It has finally sunk in, the penny has dropped!!!...... slow and steady wins the race, no matter how long it takes.

Day 10 done and dusted (17 days gambling free!!) :) :)
Jo-Anne
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Posts: 457
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2016 10:40 pm

Re: Day 7

Postby Renee » Fri Feb 19, 2016 6:58 am

Good for you 😁
I'm at day 6 today. Although only early in I feel so much further than normal having told my partner on day 1. Each time I have quit I have quit in silence without him knowing with the plan of coming clean when the debt was clear so he didn't leave me. As stupid as it sounds, the thought of him leaving me has fuelled me to continue to gamble to win money back and sweep it all under the rug.
So my counsellor has given me a task this week of finding a tv program or a series to download. Apparently I have no interests in life aside from working (heavy hours), school/kindy runs, housewifing and of course - gambling on my phone in between. She was surprised when I told her I hadn't watched tv in years. Why would I when I can spend the time on the couch with my phone playing pokies? I am talking to her again next Thursday. I still haven't come up with what I will watch or download so I am going to get through a very busy day at work today and try to find a Tv series to download or buy over the weekend and try to get interested in that and relax a little. What a funny task to have. Makes sense though...
Renee
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Posts: 75
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2015 11:31 am

Re: Day 7

Postby Jo-Anne » Sun Feb 21, 2016 10:12 am

I know exactly how you feel Renee, I did the same with my husband and now I have no husband.....you are definitely on the right track.

I hope that you can talk to your husband if you get the urge to gamble in the future because that was my downfall. I didn't say anything and therefore I gave in to the urges.

Good advice Jo, it remains to be seen if I can do the same!! My psychologist has told me I need to speak to her if I get strong urges.....she has been with me since the beginning and I know she gets disappointed when I give in and don't seek help, but she has stuck by me.

Now I know I can come online and honestly talk about it all which really helps!

I think my family know but I can't talk to them at the moment as it will make my relations with them much worse. They know the signs when I am gambling or not so I will just keep going the way I am and they will see the positive me. I think they don't want to know too much anyway because it has been a long battle!

I have had money in my account and have only had fleeting thoughts to gamble on the Saturday races, but my sensible brain said don't do it.

So now 19 days gambling free (Day 12)
Jo-Anne
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Posts: 457
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2016 10:40 pm

Re: Day 7

Postby Jo-Anne » Mon Feb 22, 2016 6:54 pm

So happy.....just cleared all the bills on my budget for this weeks pay. I had strong urges to gamble. Those voices in my head that say "Just try a little bit and it may help with some of the debt and you can get ahead" I was really tempted but thankfully the 100 day challenge and all the support I am getting on this forum helped me see sense. Also looking at the amount of debt I have cleared in three weeks without gambling is amazing. Please let it continue!!!
Jo-Anne
Senior Member
 
Posts: 457
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2016 10:40 pm

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