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  • Starting a new chapter

    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!
    James2
    Junior Member
    Posts: 2
    Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:50 pm

    Starting a new chapter

    Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:14 pm

    Hi all.

    I'm a 26 year old Solicitor that has been privileged with a loving upbringing and supportive network. Although some may be envious of my life I'm sure they wouldn't be if they really knew what was going on. A facade can do wonderful things, I'm sure many of you are aware of this.

    I started gambling when I left school. Although there have been stages where I have gambled less (due to half-hearted attempts to give it up), it's fair to say that I have gambled regularly for the past 8 years. It has been the last 4 months that has caused me to hit rock bottom. I have accumulated large credit card debts, have taken out pay day loans (which are horrible mind you!) and pawned or sold many of my goods. I still reside with my folks and generally don't have any money 2 days after the day I have been paid (fortnightly basis). I have borrowed from mates, siblings and others. If there is ever a time that I have money, it seems to find it's way to a sports multi or on the horses.

    As indicated, I have attempted to abstain from gambling in the past. I have seen a counsellor however was not impressed with her ability to engage me or have any influence on my behaviour. I went to a few GA meetings however didn't think they were right for me. Although I attempted to recognise the similarities between my story and theirs (very sound advice I receieved upon attending), I found it hard to get past the fact that our stories were vastly different. One thing that eminates in my mind is that my life could end up like theirs if I continued on this path.

    I drafted my parents a lengthy letter last night and will be going home this evening to get everything on the table. I am quite anxious about this. Although we have had this discussion in the past, I know that this is going to be much worse. However, the only way to improve your life is to seek help both professionally and personally. It is imperative to establish a support network to help you through the difficult times. This period of my life is likely to be one of the hardest times of my life. However, there is comfort in knowing that if I can get through this period, manage to get my finances in some order and my head in the right place then I will enjoy life like I should be.

    We're all in this together.
    0 x
    Redav
    Junior Member
    Posts: 8
    Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2013 11:42 am

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:25 pm

    James2 (18/01/2013)Hi all.

    I'm a 26 year old Solicitor that has been privileged with a loving upbringing and supportive network. Although some may be envious of my life I'm sure they wouldn't be if they really knew what was going on. A facade can do wonderful things, I'm sure many of you are aware of this.

    I started gambling when I left school. Although there have been stages where I have gambled less (due to half-hearted attempts to give it up), it's fair to say that I have gambled regularly for the past 8 years. It has been the last 4 months that has caused me to hit rock bottom. I have accumulated large credit card debts, have taken out pay day loans (which are horrible mind you!) and pawned or sold many of my goods. I still reside with my folks and generally don't have any money 2 days after the day I have been paid (fortnightly basis). I have borrowed from mates, siblings and others. If there is ever a time that I have money, it seems to find it's way to a sports multi or on the horses.

    As indicated, I have attempted to abstain from gambling in the past. I have seen a counsellor however was not impressed with her ability to engage me or have any influence on my behaviour. I went to a few GA meetings however didn't think they were right for me. Although I attempted to recognise the similarities between my story and theirs (very sound advice I receieved upon attending), I found it hard to get past the fact that our stories were vastly different. One thing that eminates in my mind is that my life could end up like theirs if I continued on this path.

    I drafted my parents a lengthy letter last night and will be going home this evening to get everything on the table. I am quite anxious about this. Although we have had this discussion in the past, I know that this is going to be much worse. However, the only way to improve your life is to seek help both professionally and personally. It is imperative to establish a support network to help you through the difficult times. This period of my life is likely to be one of the hardest times of my life. However, there is comfort in knowing that if I can get through this period, manage to get my finances in some order and my head in the right place then I will enjoy life like I should be.

    We're all in this together.
    James, oh my God I do not envy your position right now I think it is AMAZING that you have coughed up the courage to do what you are about to do.

    I don't know about your background or your position with your parents but from the sounds of it you are in a similar position to what I was in a couple of years ago. my parents are *** and they have always stuck by me, big on family values etc etc. I felt sooooo bad after all the money I was losing that I couldn't find it in me to tell them what I had done. eventually i did and they have been the single most biggest and influential help so far. Sure I have still gone back after deciding to quit but I am happy to say that although i am still a problem gambler that i am no where near as bad as what i used to be.

    i think what you are doing is amazing and i think what you have written is equaly as good because it must be difficult to write it all down on paper. all the best my thoughts are with you and hopefully your parents understand.

    Red
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    AnnaB (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 363
    Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:15 pm

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:46 pm

    Hi James,I am glad that you have found your way to this forum as it sounds like the gambling has taken over much more of your life than you would like and that you're sick of it. I'm with Red it does takes guts to talk to family and write here about the reality of what has been happening beyond the facade....How did it go? It's also good to read that despite the challenges ahead you seem to be driven by the hope for a better quality life. Can I ask what's got you to the point of telling your parents now and posting here, you mentioned the debt...I guess I was curious if there were any other factors? Hope you're going ok,Anna
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    AnnaB (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 363
    Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:15 pm

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:53 pm

    Hi Red

    I completely agree with you...can I ask what got you to the point of telling your folks - sounds like it was huge step, given your background etc. I was also wondering how you have managed to get the gambling down to lower level than it was back then and what your hopes are for your gambling at the moment...hope you don't mind all the questions!!

    Cheers

    Anna
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    James2
    Junior Member
    Posts: 2
    Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:50 pm

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:54 pm

    Hi Anna,

    Appreciate your thoughts.

    The chat went extremely well. We sat down and worked out a plan of attack going forward, both financially and psychologically. I am going to seek help from an addiction specialist and believe that this, coupled with my extreme desire to overcome this sickness, will hold me in good stead. I am also very fortunate to have parents that are able to help me out with my debts; much better having debt to your parents as opposed to those bloody financial institutions!

    The realisation that I wasn't always happy made me want to change things. Not having money on a regular basis means that you have to make up excuses to your mates as to why you don't want to go out, and not be able to initiate doing things on random nights with friends and family. Also, the fact that my financial position was getting worse and worse, and if things continued to go in this direction, there would potentially be a point of no return.

    It's going to be a great struggle however I know what I want and will be doing everything in my power to achieve that.

    All the best guys!
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    BriM
    Senior Member
    Posts: 384
    Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 3:05 pm

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:34 pm

    Woo hoo James! That's awesome news! You'll have to make sure you keep coming in here and keeping us updated. There's also a forum called "Your Diary of Recovery" on here - maybe you could start it off Bri
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    User avatar
    Bull
    Member
    Posts: 53
    Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2012 3:53 pm

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:44 pm

    James2 (21/01/2013)Hi Anna,

    Appreciate your thoughts.

    The chat went extremely well. We sat down and worked out a plan of attack going forward, both financially and psychologically. I am going to seek help from an addiction specialist and believe that this, coupled with my extreme desire to overcome this sickness, will hold me in good stead. I am also very fortunate to have parents that are able to help me out with my debts; much better having debt to your parents as opposed to those bloody financial institutions!

    The realisation that I wasn't always happy made me want to change things. Not having money on a regular basis means that you have to make up excuses to your mates as to why you don't want to go out, and not be able to initiate doing things on random nights with friends and family. Also, the fact that my financial position was getting worse and worse, and if things continued to go in this direction, there would potentially be a point of no return.

    It's going to be a great struggle however I know what I want and will be doing everything in my power to achieve that.

    All the best guys!
    CONGRATS JAMES! sounds like a good outcome for all!

    Can I ask how you exactly went about it? There are some friends of mine who are like family and they don't know about my struggles with gambling. We are all organising a trip and they want it to be heavily focused on gambling but I want to try and change their minds. I don't think I can do this without telling them the full extent of my problem (i.e. what I was like in the past). I also don't want to feel shamed and embarrased abotu it all. Seems like a difficult situation and I'd love to know how you went about overcoming that?!
    0 x
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    AnnaB (facilitator)
    Senior Member
    Posts: 363
    Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:15 pm

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:20 pm

    James2 (21/01/2013)Hi Anna,

    Appreciate your thoughts.

    The chat went extremely well. We sat down and worked out a plan of attack going forward, both financially and psychologically. I am going to seek help from an addiction specialist and believe that this, coupled with my extreme desire to overcome this sickness, will hold me in good stead. I am also very fortunate to have parents that are able to help me out with my debts; much better having debt to your parents as opposed to those bloody financial institutions!

    The realisation that I wasn't always happy made me want to change things. Not having money on a regular basis means that you have to make up excuses to your mates as to why you don't want to go out, and not be able to initiate doing things on random nights with friends and family. Also, the fact that my financial position was getting worse and worse, and if things continued to go in this direction, there would potentially be a point of no return.

    It's going to be a great struggle however I know what I want and will be doing everything in my power to achieve that.

    All the best guys!
    Hi James

    That's great news! I imagine it must be a relief to have it out in the open and to be supported. Sounds like you have a good plan too...I was also thinking that sometimes with time, the pain and memories that got you to the point of being ready to tackle the gambling can lessen but now you've got what you're written here to remind you down the track....I appreciate it probably doesn't feel like you need them right now!
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    Chris2
    Junior Member
    Posts: 21
    Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:27 pm

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:28 pm

    Hi James

    I totally relate to how you must be feeling at the decision to lay it all out on the table to your family. I have been there not long ago. Believe me it makes a huge difference to face up and talk to those (family friends or other) that we initially push away from shame embarrassment or denial. It provides relief and also I found it brought things in my mind out in the open and held me accountable to myself to push forward and seek whatever it takes to recover. I too have sought out a gambling addiction councellor that specifically deals with this issue. I too did not feel GA was right for me. I did self exclude from my local club ( idid pokies) to start and from there told my family as well. Good on you and keep moving forward.

    Reading everyones' stories is trully encouraging too knowing we are not alone. One thing I have to say to everyone..many people seeking councelling sometimes get discouraged because the councellor may not be of the right personality or otherwise but what I trully suggest is looking around till you find the right person. I suggest councellors that only deal with gambling and there are some clinics around if you look online to speak to someone face to face. I have also had counceling through email through this website too but I have to say that a few sessions with someone face to face brings it all out to reality. Some clincs are free. some are not but either way it is worth the investment considering what money has been lost to gambling in the past I reckon.

    I have written in the Diary to recovery on the other pages of this forum too.

    Good luck James
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    BriM
    Senior Member
    Posts: 384
    Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 3:05 pm

    RE: Starting a new chapter

    Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:43 pm

    Hey Chris, nice to see you on here! Good on you for taking the steps you have taken to get over your gambling issues. I agree with you, you should definitely look around to find a counsellor you like if you're not happy with the first one you see. I suppose you just have to remember that you're dealing with people, and it's just like in any other situation where you might not get along with one person, but you really like the next. I'm really interested to hear about your experiences of GA though...what's it like?! Bri
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