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 monitored. Free of judgement.

    To join the discussion, sign up today.
    Join us Tuesdays at 8pm - 10pm AEST for Chatty Tuesday.
  • Post lockdown set back

    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!
    Liz83
    Junior Member
    Posts: 9
    Joined: Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:52 pm

    Post lockdown set back

    Sun Jun 21, 2020 9:31 am

    Would love to hear any advice or strategies for dealing with post covid opening up of venues.
    I had just made 97 days gambling free when venues reopened. Honestly from the day they reopened I couldn’t get it out of my head and the first chance I got I was back in playing pokies. I feel so deflated and defeated.
    Was so nice to enjoy the freedom of having no venues open during the lockdown. Temptation removed and it wasn’t playing on my mind all the time. Back to Day 1 again and feeling awful.
    Considering moving the family to WA to get away from the constant reminder and temptation. Surely there must be an easier way.
    1 x
    pamela
    Senior Member
    Posts: 1803
    Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2014 9:38 pm

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Sun Jun 21, 2020 10:11 am

    hi Liz83,
    Sorry to hear the lure of the pokies drew you back in.
    You did such a good job while they were closed and you must have been able to fill your time without them.So keep telling yourself they are closed..
    It is a conscious decision you make to play the pokies so you have to make the same decision not to play,even though that one is harder.
    But you can do it,it takes strength and will power ,but each time you choose not to go you gain back some of your life
    Fight the good fight and say no to gambling
    1 x
    shaun1
    Member
    Posts: 56
    Joined: Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:35 am

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Sun Jun 21, 2020 5:25 pm

    For me it was kinda simple, when the lockdown was on i physically couldnt go to a venue to play, now they are reopened ive just self excluded myself from as many venues as possible so i still cant physically go there, its helped a lot
    0 x
    Liz83
    Junior Member
    Posts: 9
    Joined: Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:52 pm

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Sun Jun 21, 2020 6:05 pm

    If the decision was easy to not do it, or something I felt I could achieve without support I wouldn’t be posting here or feeling so desperate about it. It was so nice to not have the constant internal battle while the venues were closed but honestly they are in my face everywhere since reopening. Hence the downhill struggle. I drove ten minutes this morning and passed 4 venues. All with doors open and lights blinking. Huge signs saying we are open. Just feels so in my face and definitely not something I can just pretend is still closed.
    0 x
    Liz83
    Junior Member
    Posts: 9
    Joined: Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:52 pm

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Sun Jun 21, 2020 6:09 pm

    Thanks Shaun, definitely something I’ve been considering and probably would be so liberating to finally do. Where do you start? So many venues in a 10km radius.
    0 x
    shaun1
    Member
    Posts: 56
    Joined: Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:35 am

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Sun Jun 21, 2020 8:20 pm

    Liz83 wrote:
    Sun Jun 21, 2020 6:09 pm
    Thanks Shaun, definitely something I’ve been considering and probably would be so liberating to finally do. Where do you start? So many venues in a 10km radius.
    Visit one of the bigger venues, like a Club or RSL, make sure to leave the house with no cash or ATM cards AT ALL so your not tempted to play...

    Visit the reception and ask to self exclude, go with a list of venues you want to self exclude from, just do a quick google search and write them all down, if you discover anymore venues you can always visit one of them in the reception area again and ask to add more venues to your self exclusion, also you can go onto Betsafe's website and do it online as well.
    0 x
    User avatar
    JinxyWolf
    Senior Member
    Posts: 327
    Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:51 pm

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Sun Jun 21, 2020 9:42 pm

    HI Shaun,

    The main thing to remember is that you have reached out for help and give yourself a pat on the back to that.

    97 Days in a fantastic effort, don't forget what you have achieved. I know it's easy to kick yourself when you give into the gambling urge but you have to also remember to give yourself a pat on the back when you reach goals. Whether that is a month, week, day or even an hour gamble free. We all slip up, we all stumble but try not too look at is as a failure but a learning experience. Don't beat yourself up, take a breath, think about what was going on when you decided to gamble, what was the trigger? Once you discover your triggers you can start to put plans, barriers in place to help when those triggers/urges hit.

    I found when I started my journey my first step was giving up access to cash. I gave my ATM card to my Mum and only had $20 on me for emergencies. No access to quick cash gave me time, so when the urge to gamble hit I had time to think about why I wanted to gamble, time to think about what the consequences of giving in to that urge would be, time to really decide whether I really wanted to gamble.

    Another thing I found helped was to really take a minute and be honest with myself. Why did I want to Gamble? What was the payoff? Obviously it wasn't winning money because even when I won (and I use that term loosely) I lost. Sure you "win" here and there if your lucky but what then? Well it all goes back into those machines doesn't it? I was lonely, I was bored, I had nothing in my life except for work. Going to the pokies was my way of "socializing" but was I really? No. I was hiding, hiding from my life, hiding from the stress of my work life, hiding from the emptiness of my personal life. It wasn't until I began to really see why I was gambling that I was able to really move forward. I opened up to family and my councellor about what I was feeling, I rediscovered old passions like Art. The further away I got from gambling to clearer things became and I was able to open myself to new possibilities.

    I have now been gamble free for 3 years now but this was not the first time I tried to quit. It took many stumbles and falls to finally get to a place where I knew that the pokies no longer deserved a place in my life. The main thing is to keep trying, you fall, you get back up. You can beat this, you are stronger that you think.

    Be well and stay strong, there is light at the end of this tunnel.

    JinxyWolf
    0 x
    pamela
    Senior Member
    Posts: 1803
    Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2014 9:38 pm

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Sun Jun 21, 2020 10:29 pm

    I agree with all the great advice you have been given..and I agree,the bright lights and signs are made to lure us in..God knows I was hooked for 18 years..i chose to gamble..i knew what I was doing even though my life was a complete mess.
    So when I decided to stop ,I had to really make a conscious decision
    Sure,it was tough looking at the signs and driving past all my favourite venues..but I did..i forced myself
    Have you considered counselling?
    With the right one it can be very beneficial
    I wish you all the best and we are all here to help
    0 x
    How the F did I get here
    Senior Member
    Posts: 378
    Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:05 pm

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Mon Jun 22, 2020 2:30 am

    I don't really know what to say except I literally went back a couple of days after they opened also.
    Went on a massive bender. 6 venues over 2.5 day period. Just kept going and going back for more, chasing loses, then chasing profits, loses, profits, loses, profits etc
    Not 2.5 days straight, but pulled long hours over those 2.5 days.
    Up and down and up and down, the regular emotional rollercoaster, which why do we do it to ourselves. One more feature and I'm done BS hahaha

    I just lost complete and utter control, just kept going and going, I'd be down get back in front, down again, Infront, but wanting more.
    I think this may have been another turning point for me (hopefully the last as I've had a lot)

    Let's just say I almost came away from that 2.5 days having blown everything I saved during lockdown and everything I saved from the months prior. Almost walked away 6700 down, absolutely sickening 6 months of savings gone in 2.5 days. Dodged a major bullet and severe bout of depression, came away with a few big wins at the end and ultimately only walked out 500 down.

    Absolutely sickening, I don't think I'll be so lucky next time! I don't want this life! I need to get a life! I want to live a beautiful life.
    1 x
    pamela
    Senior Member
    Posts: 1803
    Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2014 9:38 pm

    Re: Post lockdown set back

    Mon Jun 22, 2020 9:27 am

    When all the venues were in lock down,what did you do with your time?
    It is all about awareness,and decision making.
    Next time you have an urge to gamble..read the comments you posted here and see if that's what you really want to do.
    Try and have no access to cash or cards.
    I always say think of the machine as black and white with out sound..there would be no attraction,it is only the noises that are designed to addict..they are cleverly designed..
    We work too hard at our jobs and relationships to lose it all to a machine..
    You can break the cycle..
    1 x

    Return to “Change Makers”