Welcome to our online peer support community - A supportive place for anyone making change in their gambling, as well as concerned friends and family.
  • Connect, be inspired, motivate others. Share your experience & strategies.
  • Safe. Confidential. Professionally moderated. Free of judgement.

    Before you can post or reply, join our online community today.

    On now:
  • Sunlight September challenge - getting outdoors to improve mental wellness.
  • Q&A with a gambling counsellor - what's stopping you from seeking support?
  • My Partner Gambles

    Is someone you care about experiencing issues with gambling? Come in here to discuss your concerns, connect, and get some helpful tips.
    Margie
    Junior Member
    Posts: 3
    Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:57 pm

    My Partner Gambles

    Tue Nov 12, 2013 11:30 pm

    I am in my 40's and have been in a relationship for a little over a year, and engaged for 2 months. Looking back I have been an absolute fool where money is concerned. My fiancee has a good job but works away at the mines on an even time shift. He had a lot of debt when I met him - and as I had savings I thought it was a great idea if I "helped him" clear his debt so we could start afresh (and as you would all know there are a million reasons a gambler will come up with as to why things happen to them, it's not their fault, in this instance it was all his ex's fault that he ended up in debt). Of course - never having dealt with a gambler who is forced to lie to cover it up - I believed him.

    Working in the mines, he said it's hard to get online so I started paying regular bills for him - rent, bills, phone. He was suppose to pay the money back - and did in the beggining - but a year later I am out of pocket about $15,000. It was all in dribs and drabs.

    My fiancee started banking his wages into my account in April this year - and "letting me run the money" (his words). We had a budget and I was suppose to give him only his allowance and money he needed for bills like car repayments and mobile telephone that sort of thing. I would bank the money for his bills into his bank a couple of days before. I did this because he said he was not good with money.

    We would sometimes - when out together - play the pokies - only $20 here and there - nothing we couldn't afford to lose - and I love racing and will have the occasional bet so we would bet from time to time. It was in our budget to spend $50/month on gambling (which I include lotto, art unions etc). I budget for every little thing so it's not unusual I included it in my budget.

    But he did not stick to the budget, he would give me reasons why he would need more money or get me to give him more because his allowance was spent. As I was dealing with an adult I let it slide.

    Initially I would open all the mail. Then he told me not to. In the end I worked out he was spending all of his wages and some......long story short I discovered he is 2 months behind on his bills despite earning great money. I own a home and there is plenty to do so it's not impossible to keep yourself amused around here!


    I had a good look at the bank statements - loads of withdrawals at clubs and pubs.

    I feel like I'm going mad. I gave him his money back to look after - I don't give him money now and have told him how much his share of the mortgage, bills and paying me back is. It has been a month now and he still hasn't cleared his debts. He says it will take him until at least Christmas - which only makes me think he is either still gambling or has more debts than I know about.

    He does not admit to having a problem. I came close to breaking up with him twice in the last month but will see if he maintains his repayments to me.

    I can understand addictions and that he has a problem. But what is most hurtful - and distressing is the lies that go with gambling or the emphasis the gambler will make on other things they've done in a day that "normal" people wouldn't bother to highlight - in order to try to hide the time they spend in front of the pokies or horses.

    Why I feel like I'm going mad is that I love him, he is fun, kind and has a lot of good points - but in the last 2 months when I could start to see his spending pattern for what it is - (and I did say things and he assured me things would improve)....I have had several incidents of facial droop, symptoms alike multiple sclerosis, chest pain - and all of these might be purely from the stress of being in a relationship with a man who gambles.

    He would make excuses as to why at almost 50 he has nothing - no property, car etc - actually when I met him he had no shoes or clothes to wear out - only thongs and steel caps.

    To anyone reading this - if a man of that age has nothing - there is a reason. Do not beli
    0 x
    User avatar
    GameChanger (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 156
    Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2012 12:48 pm

    RE: My Partner Gambles

    Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:49 am

    Dear Margie,

    I can't help but feel increadably affected by what you've written, and what you describe is an all too common experience amongst those in a relationship with a gambler.

    Things seemed to start out well; you provided him with financial assistance in light of the relationship that was being formed between you. It seems like assurances were provided to you at the time, but that specific information were not forecoming.

    It sounds like he really struggles with really acknowledging what's happening. By offering alternative reasons - that he is not good with money for instance - he was able to have you manage his finances. Perhaps he also fears what you might think of him, hence why he was so reluctant for you to open his mail.

    However, what is so clear right now is that things have become toxic, your health is being significantly impacted by the stresses involved in working things out.

    The final scenario you talk about, the decision of whether or not to go to the race meet seems to sum things up: this is something you want to do, but should he accompany you? I can't help but wonder whether this might be about that part of you still in love with him versus that part of you that wants to end things, does that sound right?

    I think it would be tempting for anyone posting here to suggest leaving him, but I don't think this reflects at all the depth of relationship you've had with him, the affections you feel for him even currently, and the difficulties faced when trying to figure these really big issues out. I really hear that you want to give him one more chance, but I also wonder whether putting a time frame around his compliance might not also be the way to go?
    0 x
    User avatar
    GameChanger (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 156
    Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2012 12:48 pm

    RE: My Partner Gambles

    Wed Nov 13, 2013 9:52 am

    Dear Margie (again),

    I also wanted to add, that speaking up about things was increadably brave and took a lot of courage. There is help out there for you: this forum with all it's wonderful inhabitants; online counselling with trained staff; an anonymous telephone counselling service (1800 858 858) that you can access night and day. We can even link you in to face to face services if that's what you need.

    Regardless, please don't feel alone in this, there are a lot of people out there available to help.
    0 x
    Margie
    Junior Member
    Posts: 3
    Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:57 pm

    RE: My Partner Gambles

    Fri Nov 22, 2013 12:31 am

    Hi all - thought I would just pop in and update......my partner was due home from being away working and the children were going to be out for a couple of hours, so I took the opportunity to say that while they are out I noticed that as the money coming is all being spent - that I thought we should sit down and have an open and honest conversation about money.

    He was driving home and he said due to an accident that he was not able to get through and would have to have a few beers and stay at his sister's house. There was another way around that he could have come - and this chat was very very important (and necessary) to me so to say I was dissapointed is an understatement.

    In any event I took the opportunity to tidy up - putting away a suitcase I'd borrowed of his that I had used at the weekend I was cleaning my remaining items out of it and tucked in one of the compartments was some ATM receipts and that sort of thing - thinking they were mine I went through them.

    Sadly and much to my disbelief only 3-4 weeks after taking on his own management of money (which did not appear to be balancing as he was still behind in bills and had "no money") there were receipts from a day when I thought he was at home withdrawing at a hotel near his sister's house. This was 2 weeks ago, the day before Melbourne Cup - One withdrawal at 4pm for $100 (bank balance $600); and another withdrawal for $80 (he asked for $100 but was dispensed $80); - it had no balance on it - at best it was $180 - at worst it as the whole $600 - not sure which but either way it's way more than I think is fair and reasonable for a family man with a new partner and 2 teenage children to be doing.

    Even more devestating was a receipt from April 2013 when his car broke down in the country. He rang me claiming as he was broke "I have no money to fix that". I increased my credit card limit to accommodate the payment of $1,500 as he needs his car to get to and from work. The ATM receipt was a withdrawal at a county pub for $100 showing an account balance of $800. I have no idea whether he gambled that money or not - it is now clear to me that he wants to pay for as little as possible because every dollar in his bank account is a dollar to gamble. He stayed with his sister overnight and the next day there is a bank receipt for him putting about $100 into his bank account.

    In my anger I photographed them and sent them by text with tirade after tirade of anger. I did not cry this time (rare for me) as this really confirmed to me that while someone is gambling there will be mood swings, aggitation when they are not gambling as well as drinking (either to celebrate or comiserate).

    These are the straws that have broken the camel's back for me. I really really tried but I have had enough. I am tired and weary from the stress, my health is not good and upon reflection I decided that my children aged 12 and 14 do not deserve to have me engaged to a guy who doesn't think of the whole family. I am protector and mother of 2 - I have to do what is best for the family.

    Someone who wastes such a large amount of money that we cannot afford - on gambilng creates a home environment of stress that I do not want my children exposed to.

    This morning when I spoke to him he still claims he "doesn't know what I am talking about" - very much deny deny deny.

    My (then) fiancee has not admitted that he has a problem - although he has said he will pay me back my debt as quickly as possible straight out of his pay for which I am grateful.

    If he had admitted to a problem and put his hand up to go to counselling - I most likely would have stuck by him to see if the counselling process would help us.

    But he did not and I have to walk away.

    I softened the blow for the children and told them he gambled one week's pay - I want them to hate gambling with a passion.....

    I HATE GAMBLING - IT IS A BLIGHT ON SOCIEY AND A TRAVERSITY OF OUR MODERN AGE!!!

    Thanks
    Margie
    0 x
    User avatar
    Veronica (facilitator)
    Junior Member
    Posts: 27
    Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2012 3:15 pm

    RE: My Partner Gambles

    Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:38 am

    Hello Maggie,

    It was with a great sadness - for you mostly - that I read your recent post. The difficult process you have gone through to make your partner into your ex-partner becomes obvious as you write. You are able to talk about the good things about the man himself and the relationship on the one hand, but on the other hand, you are able to count the cost of the relationship in terms of your emotional, physical and financial health. And ....perhaps more importantly to look forward to the extra costs that are likely in the future for yourself and also for your children if you stay in the relationship. As you have done this exercise, it has become clearer to you what you must do to ensure not only your own but your children's wellb eing.

    He is losing a good woman - you are protecting him and looking after him even now by not giving the children all the grizzly details. Time to look after yourself now. You say you are tired and your health is not good so I hope you will now do something to help you recover. Remember Gambler's Help Services face to face counselling is for partners as well.
    Kind regards,
    Veronica
    0 x

    Return to “For Family and Friends”