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. Anonymous. Professionally moderated. Free of judgement.

    Before you can post or reply, join our online community today.
  • Facing the final Demon.

    For people making and maintaining change in their gambling. Connect, ask questions, offer advice, and share your story in here. If you are new to the site drop in and say hello!
    Murphy
    Junior Member
    Posts: 12
    Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:54 pm

    Facing the final Demon.

    Wed Dec 19, 2018 6:39 pm

    Hi All,

    I thought I would finally join an online support group and get my story out. I have a big history so this may be a long winded post!

    My gambling journey started like many others, my 18th birthday, a few dollars ended up with a $50 win. A few weeks later, $50 won me 300.

    From then on I would gamble semi regularly and play pokies and horses, as I would win more I would play more and this was in control from the ages of 18-20. When i turned 21 the gambling increased and my view of what was normal to lose got bigger, but at the age of 22 I picked up an ice addiction. Over the next 12-18 months I lost around 100k and eventually owned up to my parents asking for help, they bailed me out 50k of debt.

    You would this this would be enough to stop me but it wasn't. My drug addiction continued and 6 months later I managed to come clean and kick that too. I turned to endurance sports to cope with my personality and became an IRONMAN athlete and marathon runner. I have not drank or taken drugs in over two years.

    My gambling however continued, at times of stress I would gamble. The weeks leading into my first ironman, a fight with my girlfriend set off a spree where I lost 10k in 7 days, 6 of it in 3 hours. Again, I came clean and with savings paid of my credit card.

    I had stopped but again in November, I lost 6k in 24 hours. This time I had to get a personal loan to cover the loss on my CC. My parents found the letter and then again I owned up to them.

    I had made 5 weeks no gambling but today a trigger of boredom set me into a poke room, within 60 minutes I had lost 1400.

    I want to quit and will but I believe i struggle the most when i 'think' I am over it. Once the shame passes of a relapse I trick myself to thinking I am okay and a cycle starts. The lapses are getting smaller but I want them to be gone forever.

    I work in the city and have lots of poke rooms around me, a trigger for boredom is to go and play. its a habit I've had since I was 18 as I've been in the same office.

    I have tried help before but never an online community. I can quit drugs and drinking I can do this.

    Day 1 starts today.

    I am excited to save my money and get control again, i need to learn to have patience and let m bank balance rise instead of spending and gambling for a quick win.

    I would have lost 200k in the space of 7 years, most of it in the last 4. That shame hurts me and I struggle to get past that.

    Thank you for reading.
    5 x
    Calvin (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 334
    Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 5:01 pm

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:05 am

    Hello Murphy,

    I'm Calvin one of the facilitators on GH Online.

    Thankyou for sharing your post, it was very insightful and I'm sure other members would appreciate this.

    Its so good to read that you are determined to make changes and it's completely normal to have lapses here and there, just as long as you reflect on these lapses and figure out ways to overcome those urges int he near future.

    I gathered that your main triggers would be at times of boredom or stress.
    It can be difficult to overcome these urges but trying to find other alternatives to satisfy these urges that substitute gambling is most important.
    You have already overcome alcohol and drugs which is a massive achievement considering that it can be quite difficult to do so.
    Have you considered getting further help such as gambling/financial counselling or self-exclusion (banning yourself from venues)?
    This could be helpful.

    Kind regards,

    Calvin.
    0 x
    Murphy
    Junior Member
    Posts: 12
    Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:54 pm

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:30 am

    Hey @Calvin (facilitator)

    Yes it has been a long journey, I found the alcohol and drugs easier to give up though.

    For me it’s a stress and boredom trigger 100% unfortunately with my work I need to access these venues occasionally so self exclusion wouldn’t work. Is self exclusion a total ban or only from gaming room?

    I have like 10 venues within 1.5km of my work place told it’s hard.

    Feeling the usual guilt and regret today, hoping I can channel this feeling and with help of the forum have a gamble free 2019 and beyond.

    I’ve read about the 100 day challenge so that’s a start.
    2 x
    Murphy
    Junior Member
    Posts: 12
    Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:54 pm

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:27 pm

    Got me again, this time not as severe but still frustrating. 100 or 1000 it’s the fact I gambled that annoys me.

    Time to sort it out and learn to give the guilt away and slowly get better.

    :(
    1 x
    Calvin (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 334
    Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 5:01 pm

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Thu Dec 20, 2018 6:38 pm

    Hey @Murphy

    So with self-exclusion you can ban yourself from up to 35 different venues.

    You will only be banned from the actual gaming area of the venue.

    Sounds like you have some great self-awareness of your urges and your feelings at the present moment. Maybe try to find other activities that you can use as a distraction or subsititute for the gambling.
    Remember the temptation/urge is temporary but the consequence of giving in to that urge can last alot longer.

    Kind regards,

    Calvin
    1 x
    Murphy
    Junior Member
    Posts: 12
    Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:54 pm

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Fri Dec 21, 2018 10:19 am

    @Calvin (facilitator)

    Hey bud!

    A new day today, determined to get through it!

    Can you comment the link / process for self exclusion please?

    Thanks mate
    0 x
    User avatar
    BrittV (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 364
    Joined: Mon May 14, 2018 11:40 am

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Fri Dec 21, 2018 11:41 am

    Hey @Murphy,
    Unfortunately Calvin's not on today, but you can read about self-exclusion here on the site.

    There are some useful links there, hopefully it helps!

    It absolutely is a new day - love your attitude!

    Take care, BrittV
    1 x
    Murphy
    Junior Member
    Posts: 12
    Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:54 pm

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Sun Dec 23, 2018 12:54 pm

    Still gamble free, my parents found out about my relapse and are disappointed, I didn’t want them to know as they worry and I’m afraid I’ve ruined Christmas.

    I told them I would be self excluding and will attend meetings..

    Only myself to blame. But today is day 3 gamble free.

    Only up from here...
    1 x
    Calvin (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 334
    Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 5:01 pm

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Tue Dec 25, 2018 11:59 am

    Good on you @Murphy
    It can take some time.
    Thats great that you are going to meetings and are self-excluding. Have you considered getting some counselling support ?
    0 x
    Murphy
    Junior Member
    Posts: 12
    Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:54 pm

    Re: Facing the final Demon.

    Sat Dec 29, 2018 7:45 am

    Yes will look into support as well, 8 days.

    Feeling strong. The 4-6 week mark is trouble time for me though.

    I’m going to beat it!
    3 x

    Return to “Change Makers”