Comments

Moron
Reply

Lost 800 on money and lost 400 the week before! My devil is the bookies and roulette machines! On Monday I lost 400 on the roulette machine and then to get it back I put 400 on a even money shot horse! I am crazy I know! And you must all be thinking what a idiot and yeah your right!! I,am 40 now and this cycle been going on for over 20 years now! I got no job and no kids and suffer from anxiety and depression and out of all the medication I took nothing beat the gambling buzz of chasing! I bet that sounds crazy to you all too as your thinking how can you get a better buzz or feeling when your not putting nothing in your mouth but believe me it’s true! I just been laying in bed these last few days taking codine and diazepam and preying not to wake up everyday! If I was 20 or 30 I might have a chance to get a job but who’s going to employ a guy that never worked for 20 years! All I ask you is what’s the best way and least painful way to end this sad exsistant of a life! Was thinking of slitting my wrists the other day as I got told this is a good way! So I would be so grateful if you could give me some ideas! Thanks!

Jane
Reply

Look, I’m not going to pretend an addict’s life is an easy life, because it’s not, but hurting yourself is not the answer, so get that idea out of your head and start looking at ways to solve your problem.
You do not mention if you have been trying to give up gambling at all? Have you tried to stop gambling recently or in the past?

How are you funding your gambling, are you using savings, pawning your stuff because I doubt very much that benefits pay that well?
Of course you will be able to find work, but you will not find it lying in bed all day, taking meds and looking up ways to hurt yourself. You are still gambling, that is something that has been hurting you for the past 20 years, so that has to stop because it is in the way of you getting better.

People would much rather hire someone who hasn’t worked for 20 years than hire an addict. This you can change but you have to give yourself a chance to see that things can improve. Wouldn’t you like to see yourself as an ex-gambler? Someone who has taken the decision to change their life?
There is so much that you can do to help yourself but the first thing you need to do is speak to someone who can help you regarding your thoughts of self harm. I know what I am talking about in this regard and have suffered some dark patches myself. However, I chose to give up gambling, rather than give up on myself and I strongly suggest you do the same.
It won’t be easy, but you can start by self excluding from wherever you are betting at. You need to remove your access to cash. If you are on benefits, then you may be able to have this paid into a different account which you cannot use to gamble, or have your rent paid directly to the landlord instead of having access to it.

I too, suffer from anxiety and depression and have struggled to stay on top sometimes like many of us, but things can get better if you pick yourself up and make change happen. It will not just get better for you. You have to work at it and you have to want to get well. Talk to your doctor about how you feel and get yourself recommended to a specialist.
Putting gambling before even the most basic of human necessities like food and shelter is a sure sign that things have got out of hand for you. You need to take back some control, but before you can start to do this properly, you have to address your most immediate need first, which is your ideas of self harm.
Ditch the gambling, and you will start to see things improve. Your gambling is causing you serious harm, yet you still regard it as a thrill which is fueling your addiction and depression. You need to sit up and take notice of this before it gets any worse.
I really wish you all the very best.

Moron
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I been trying to give up for 20 years but it’s so hard! I don,t think you fully understand how strong this addiction is! It’s not just about the money and wanting money and being greedy ect, it’s the feel good chemicals it causes in the brain and these help when you got anxiety and depression but of course makes them much more when we lose! It’s not your fault you don,t fully understand the addiction as we not be taught in school ect about it! But believe me it’s as strong as any drug! Hope you give up soon before you find out how powerful the addiction really is. All the best!

Jane
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Unfortunately for me, I do. I understand very well. I self harmed for the last 7 years because of severe gambling addiction, depression, anxiety and on top of that, bipolar disorder. To boot, I have thousands of pounds in debt and ill health and no matter how much I hate gambling, I still struggle to give up because I know full well how good it feels when I bet. I can spend hours, days, weeks thinking about gambling and sometimes I still can’t sleep when I start getting urges to bet. I get in bed and my heart starts to pound in my chest and I can feel myself wanting to bet. HOWEVER, I have been trying to stop for the last year and a half and have managed to go 6 months without betting. I relapsed in January but I am back on track now and building up my days again. I am determined to help myself break free from this.

What I am saying to you is that you need to try to give up, you need to fight the addiction, not accept that this is the way you are. We are not taught in schools about addiction anywhere near enough. It is not something that people like to talk about but it is very real. Education is key to understanding. There is a lack of understanding about addiction among the regular folk, but here, we understand very well because we are experiencing it in our own lives. I am not talking to you from a neutral standpoint, I am talking to you as a fellow gambling addict and I am trying to help you see the sense in giving up. ‘Addicted’ doesn’t mean you can’t stop and you cannot use your addiction and lean on it as an excuse for why you can’t stop. You have forged a pattern in your life by gambling all these years, and you can undo it and start again, but it takes time and commitment.
That’s what we are all trying to do on this forum, trying to encourage each other to stop gambling and stay that way and I would like for you to start thinking about ways that you can help yourself rather than look for a way out.

I have been gambling for many years and believe me, it has stolen my life, my happiness and my health. You are not the only person suffering with this. Many are like you, but you must choose to help yourself and not wallow in your depression.
You can give up gambling but you have to want to change. Of course dopamine feels good. That’s why we are all here, but it doesn’t last. The more you get, the more you need and what used to make us feel good stops working. We need to bet more and more to feel good and we will risk everything we have in exchange for that high.

In the end, if we don’t stop, we lose everything. Much more than money. For me, it stopped being about money a long time ago. My gambling got so bad, that it became more about betting to forget, to distract myself from the mess of a life I was living in. I used gambling like alcohol, to numb the pain and block out the world, but I know that I was only making things worse and holding myself down.
I learned to let gambling go and got help and support and now I feel that I am strong enough to finally leave this behind.
I hope that you can too.

Charles Manson
Reply

Jumping off a multi storey car park is a good way. Let me know how it goes

Joanne
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Hi Jane

Thanks for replying, delighted to see you’re doing well.

I think I last posted around mid-feb. My broadband got disconnected on the 16th. I then got a bad bout of flu
I finally felt well enough to go out and about the following sat (24th) and the first thing I did was buy an internet phone!!! I then gambled on and off for the next 3 days on my favourite casino and of course won to begin with and then lost loads. I self excluded and finally let go of my favourite site. I surrender.

Then the snow came on Wed. Luckily I made it home, probably some of the worst driving conditions I have experienced. Woke up on the Thurs completely blocked in
It started to thaw Sunday so managed to get out yesterday. Lots of burst pipes but luckily I wasn’t affected so still have water. Still no milk or bread in the local supermarket. Sadly a person died in my neighbourhood because of the extreme weather conditions.

I managed to get back online today as I have had no signal. One of the first things I did was to check my email to see if loser had been in touch but there was nothing. I hope he is okay and gamble free. I see from his last post on rethink that he was going to take a break from rethink. Hopefully we will hear from him in the future.

I don’t blame some of you for thinking it may be me who is responsible for the nasty comments but it isn’t me. I do wish the person would stop using the ‘c’ word. It’s very offensive.

Delighted to read most of you are doing great. Sorry to read Mat you’re struggling again. The money has gone Mat, it’s game over. Like me, it’s time to surrender and get our lives back.

Hope this message goes on, I’m finding this phone bloody fiddly compared to a lap top. !! I ‘ll put up a post every now and again

All the best Joanne

Joanne
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Hi all

I haven’t been able to access the internet for the last few days due to the bad weather.

I was looking forward to catching up but after reading some of the posts disappointed to see that I m being wrongly accused of posting the vile posts.

Anyway I have relapsed again. ! When my timeout lifted on my favourite site on Feb 18th I couldn’t resist. Lost a lot of money and finally self excluded for 5 years.

Hopefully this marks the end of my 4 year gambling nightmare.

All the best everyone

Joanne

Jane
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Joanne, I didn’t realise that you had only been gambling for 4 years, I thought it was much longer. You must have got in deep pretty quick if I rightly remember the amount you have lost over the years.
I have gambled since the end of 2010 so it is approaching 8 years now.
I am sorry to hear that you have relapsed again. I wondered how you and Loser were doing as he had gone offline too. Hope he is okay. Have you heard from him at all?
I am glad to hear that you have excluded yourself, Joanne. Good for you. I have over 60 exclusions in place because I could never stick to what I tried to do. I always hated it whenever I made a decision to stop and I would set about trying to find another place to bet with, almost immediately.
I’m hoping that’s it for me. I have lost a lot of money, nearly 7 grand in the last half of a year. It has to stop now or I won’t ever be able to see myself stopping.
Get building up those days again and put this last lapse behind you.
Hope the Scottish weather is being kind to you now. My family in Ireland say it was dangerously cold over there. They were given a curfew by the government to stay indoors. Some sort of polar storm that blew in.
Hope you feel better soon.
All the best.

NIK
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Few urges at present with the football tonight.
First real urges of the year.
I know I will never bet on slots or roulette ever again but in play football can be tempting.
I am pretty sure I will be able to resist as I don’t want to break my gamble free year, and it is difficult for me to place a bet anyway as I am excluded from so many.
Bet 365 has the most attracive in play options, but I am excluded for life from them and excluded from all the major bookmakers. I know I won’t go through the process of contacting any of them to be allowed to gamble again so I think I will resist the urges.

Jane
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Nik, I know what you mean. Bet 365 was my go to site as well. I am also excluded from all the major sites. Everyone has their thing and for me, at this time of year, my mind turns to horses and I’ll be honest, it is gently on my mind as has been since my relapse. For me, Cheltenham and Aintree have a very special place in my heart and it is the only time of year that I used to really indulge in the races. Other than that, it was all spinning wheels. The horses never became part of my online addiction. It stayed separate. I would watch the races on telly and still not think to bet on them, I just loved watching them which is strange for a gambler.

This time of year is the only time, since trying to give up gambling, that I really feel I am missing out and I’m not making excuses here, but for me, the racing culture is different. It is for the love of the race, not the bet. I had opportunity to bet on horses all the time, throughout my gambling life, but hardly ever did because I have a genuine love for the sport and and I didn’t want to ruin that for myself like I did the rest of my gambling.
However, since I am on board the total abstinence boat, then I will have to keep away from that too, because even though I know it is different and there is control with the races, it may lead to other things starting up again and it is just not worth it.

Hang in there, Nik and don’t falter. Remember what you used to say, that you can still enjoy the sport for what it is, and if you don’t bet, then it’s still a good day for you, no matter how your team is doing.

All the best.

NIK
Reply

Actually logged onto Bet Bright, one of the few I still have an account. Had a whole 20p still in the account. For old times sake I stuck it on Cleopatra and had a couple of wins – getting up to 39p! Then quickly lost it. It was quite theraputic as it confirmed nothing has changed.
I then looked at the in play football which was what I was interested in, as I know I will never gamble on the slots again.
What had attracted me was that getting towards the end of the first half many of last night’s matches weres still goalless. I intended to have an accumulator on all the currebtly goalless games to produce at least one goal. Looked at the Liverpool game and the odds were still 7 to 1 on! If that wasn’t bad enough I then looked at the Real Madrid game and that was 33 to 1 on to produce a goal. With such rubbish odds I thoght there really was no point in bothering. Just as well I didn’t because the Liverpool game ended goalless as did the Norwich-Notts Forest game.
I think that has got it out of my system for the time being.
Onwards and upwards!
Day 67 now.

Let ‘em starve with their rubbish odds!

Nik
Reply

Joanne seems to have disappeared, although I do wonder if she might still be here.
66 days for me now and still winning the battle.
Let ‘em starve!

Kate
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I had wondered whether another tooth brush was in use …. Split?

Charles Manson
Reply

Shut it you pair of cunts

Zigsuk
Reply

Get stuffed, you schizoid arse wipe.

Charles Manson
Reply

Hi Cunty

Nik
Reply

Oh dear!

NIK
Reply

Interesting response to my mention of Joanne.

Charles Manson
Reply

Shut up you malingering old cunt

mat
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This time its worse cause I think they called police on me and might get in trouble I just hit machine and tore some newspapers machine didn’t break but what do they expect me laughing after losing 1700 and not getting a single win, these awful bookies took £10.000s from me in past 2 years its madness, I am already suffering and I am the bad guy. I cant deal with this I feel sick to my stomach and have headache. Today was a nightmare.
I wish I never started playing these machines this is the end.

Jane
Reply

I wouldn’t worry about being in trouble with the bookies, Mat. What’s the worst they can do, stop you from going in? That’s a win-win for you.
This is nothing they haven’t seen before. I have a Coral near me (among many others) and I’ve seen the windows smashed twice, and a can of white gloss paint chucked all down the front of the shop. There is also the word ‘w*nkers’ spray painted across the car park wall which is a particularly nice touch. #chuckle

Police won’t do nothing, Mat. At worst, they’ll warn you to keep out. #youwinagain
You’ve already paid for any damage upfront anyway, so I’m sure they’re covered for a few pens and papers on the floor.
Remember that man who smashed up 7 William Hill shops in a revenge attack because he was so sick of losing money. They gave him a restraining order to keep away from William Hill shops for 5 years. Funny that, because 5 years is usually what you get if you get them to successfully exclude you. While I’m not one to advocate violence, it may be the only way to get an exclusion actually enforced!

Keep your chin up, keep yourself out the bookies and start counting the days until you forget this ever happened to you.

mat
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You are right, at the same time as me there was an Asian man hitting the machine and doing 100 spins he had a 2000 balance but was crying he must have done many thousands, Ladbrokes and Coral have no shame pure evil they ruin peoples lives every day legalised con these FOBT machines.
I will stay away from gambling this time it went too far I feel sick thinking about yesterday I don’t ever want to go through this again. Day 1 again but this time its staying.

Jane
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With you all the way, Mat. My last relapse cost me in excess of 3 grand, add to that my previous relapse and that’s £6,400 lost in the space of half a year and after I was doing so well. The year before that, it was £7,000, before that, £9,000 etc…That’s a stupid amount of money. It bothered me how much I have lost as it’s only natural to find that hard to accept, but if we don’t then we only make it worse. 3 grand becomes 4 then 5 then 6 and yet the only hope we can see is to gamble some more.
There’s no way I can afford to risk enough to get that sort of money back and I know that if I bet again and won some, it would only make me want to keep betting because I would only be happy with winning all my losses back. Anything less just keeps you in the game. That’s the closure that gamblers feel they need, but it is what keeps us losing more. There’s nothing to say that even if I got my full £43,000 back that I would stop, but that’s what we tell ourselves. Not surprisingly, I don’t know anyone that has ever won back all what they lost, so there’s no way of knowing if it is possible to walk away after that.

We know that whatever we win from now on, won’t cover our previous losses. It’s never going to, so winning will always mean we end up with nothing but more losses. We are made to feel like dogs. It is equivalent to being thrown scraps when what we really want is the whole thing. They taunt us with little wins and dangle false hope over our heads and they know we can never reach it.
A couple of hundred here and there means nothing to me with what I have lost, so there’s really no point keeping this going.
I want to see them made accountable for all this suffering. The shame is on them, Mat, not us, so don’t feel ashamed of what happened. We’re the ones that get branded the low lives for being ‘no hope addicts’ but they are the real low lives, the ones who leech off of society’s most vulnerable.

mat
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True not a chance of ever getting it back losses just get bigger and bigger 1000, 2000 or 3000 won’t even matter just more credits for play. Yesterday again I lost 1700 with not even a winner 20+ losing spins in a row I had number 26,0,32 covered and 35 and 15 just keep coming in right next door to my bets it made me snap. To win back my money I too would need to win 40.000 no way its happening you would need to put 300 or 500 hundred on a single number and real wheel in a casino is just as brutal, they know how to spin the ball to make you lose. It might cost another 100 grand to win the 40.
As for the gambling companies, bookies they will never be at fault only us, they can take money and take but we are the bad guys, this whole system is evil all in favour of the rich, they open these places in poorest areas right next to loan shops and cash machines its all designed to rob the working class and vulnerable people and government turns blind eye to what is happening, they had the consultation then they extended it and it just went quiet.
This is the last time I relapsed next time if by any chance happens I am going to Norway or to some other country where gambling is illegal and there are no betting places

mat
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Won 500 yesterday lost 1700 today went mad hit the machine threw leaflets all over the shop I don’t know what is wrong with me I am sick, why do they let me play every month its the same, I cant do this anymore I think they also called police on me, when I am a victim.
I asked them to not let me in but they just hand me some paper with a number to call, I feel sick and hopeless.
I am lost I don’t know what to do its just getting worse and worse I just want to die

Trevor
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Mat,

I feel for you. This horrible addiction has you tightly gripped.

Everyone has their opinion and my opinion and advise is that fully abstaining day in day may be very difficult for you at this moment in time, but you need to take back some control and quickly.

I suggest you self exclude from 85 percent of the bookies that you can access nearby and include any favourite haunts. There is a place you can phone that does this. As long as you know roughly where the bookies is they will put a self exclusion in place. It takes up to a week I think to put in place. Then you need to do you very to abide by it. Im about 90percent selfbesclyded myself ans it works for me. I hope it can for you

Then allow yourself to go gambling in a controlled manner. Say 2 times a week, very late at night, so 90 mins before chucking out time. No cards, just cash on you. Say £100.

This gives you some structure to appease the addiction to some degree, but gives you days to abstsin too.

Just an idea, any variant of the idea would help. The main aim is to get some days under your belt abstaining, while still feeding the addiction some crumbs. Then with good progress reduce the crumbs.

You need to take some positive action even if it is just a small bit, you need to take back some control.

All the best.

Charles Manson
Reply

You really are one pathetic loser Mat

Trevor
Reply

Mat,
YOU ARE NOT A LOSER. PLEASE TAKE JANE’S ADVICE.

Dear Charlie boy,
You’re not worth talki……

Get the hint.

Trevor
Reply

Jane,

I dont like driving to new destinations in mainland UK. Ive Never driven outside the mainland….i would really hate it if i had to. I always have a sat nav or google maps at hand for new places or irregular places too.

Its one of thise things again where we have conditioned our brain that driving in new places is a problem. Im sure your partner has endured bad experiences do reinforce this too.

Just like gambling, when we are losing our money something in our head reinforces the concept that good things will happen soon and we will win our losses back and more….how nieve we are…..

I hope you get to Ireland and have a break from the norm and get further past “being ok” and get to be the person you visualise you are.

Due to gambling i can be moody, deceitful, coniving, rude and obnoxious. These words should not be used to describe me, but they are true.

My point is that we need to visualise who we want to be and use this powerful feeling to motivate us to abstain.

It can be done. Kate, Jane and Nik inspire me that abstaining is possible and the results are oh so worth it. I want to be me 20 years ago. Bright, content, honest, cheerful, have a clear conscious and be someone who is there for their family and themselves.

All the best.

Kate
Reply

Trevor, thanks for including me in your post – so glad you are on the path to recovery. ” Restless, irritable and discontent” is a description of the emotional state of an alcoholic before taking a drink and when the drinking stops, but I think it applies to any ” aholic” ….the state of restlessness, moodiness, taking it out on our nearest and dearest are all symptoms of the ‘dis-eased’ state ….literally, ill at ease with ourselves. I now strongly believe that what we need to overcome this distressing state is some form of daily practice to relax, calm, centre ourselves, as you say, visualizing a future positive state could be part of this for you …whatever it takes to calm our inner irritable state and move ourselves towards calm. I know it sounds a bit hippy-dippy, but I honestly think it works. The Serenity Prayer is famously used by AA, and the words are very powerful ….. you don’t have to believe in God, but I do think accepting that there are some things you can’t change, that there will always be irritations, challenges and obstacles and sort of ‘giving it up’ is incredibly important for us recovering addicts ….. it is no different to recovering from alcoholism …although I am relieved I am not an alcoholic, because I think the physical damage is so much more devastating …… I am learning to deal with the empty bank account, and it has been a humbling and frustrating experience for me, but I still have my vital organs -touch Woody ( the dog) . All the best

Jane
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Kate, I love your ‘touch Woody’ saying, that makes me smile. I may need to get a pet and call it that just so I can say it too!
:)

Kate
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I would strongly recommend a furry friend … although I have just realised that ‘touching Woody. ‘ could possibly be misinterpreted !

Jane
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Ha ha, yeah, :) I tried stroking my sticks but they’re not really big on fur, however they do come when called, though you have to be prepared to wait a while!

Jane
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Hi Trevor, it’s funny isn’t it that I can understand all of our problems when it comes to gambling, but I find it difficult to relate to my partner’s driving anxiety. I think it is because he is so very good at driving that I’m always like ‘you’ll be fine, it’ll be okay’. It’s new territory for me since I don’t drive myself so it is easy to just say these things. Ultimately, it is a bit selfish of me not to be more understanding but then that is what I have been doing all these years…being selfish. I have been very busy doing that.
How else do you describe emptying your partners bank account, kids accounts, savings, opening credit cards and gambling accounts in his name too, hiding bank statements and letters in the post…..I turned myself into a liar and a thief in order to gamble but I take some solace from the fact that I can at least say so. I find peace in admitting it in the hopes that one day, it will help me atone for what I have done.
There’s not much else I can do to make up for what has already happened and I don’t see the point in ruining the here and now going over it and making myself miserable as I will only succeed in losing more time.

Time has been lost. Money has been lost but even more importantly, I lost myself. I stopped being me and I stopped being a partner and a mum. I just became a gambler and I am not embarrassed to say that that pretty much was all I was. I know now that this is what happens to people and that it is not something that I have to be ashamed of.
I think once we accept that gambling is an illness, then we can see the sense in getting help and also the hope of getting well. We have all taken a really big step in admitting that we have a problem, so we have already done the hard bit. Now we just have to keep taking our medicine which is simple:
Abstinence all the way.

——

Mat, you’re breaking my heart. Don’t you see that’s why you are feeling sick, because you are still taking the poison. You need to walk away for things to get better. Every time you go back, you let its power grow over you. This is not worth your life, Mat. You were doing so well and you relapsed and I tried to tell you that you can avoid extended relapse by accepting that you had a slip and just walk away from what happened. Once you go back, you don’t see the point in stopping because you already feel so bad that feeling worse feels normal to you.
Don’t you see the way you feel now? Compare that to how you felt when you were doing your 27 days. Your posts were more positive, you felt like there was hope and now you can’t see any. That is because gambling is in the way of moving forward. Gambling stands in the way of hope.
Kick it out of your life, Mat. Just do it. Don’t look back. Remember it is not you that is sick, but you are harboring a sickness and that sickness is gambling. You are the host and it is the parasite. You do not need gambling Mat, but it needs you. It offers you nothing but false promises in return for your life. What sort of a deal is that?
Get rid of it Mat. Gambling is nothing more than a sick person’s idea of a joke.
You are better than you know you are. Stronger than you think you are, but you have to believe you can do this or gambling will not let you go.

Remember Mat, you have to let go FIRST.

Jane
Reply

That’s you and Kate sorted for holidays then, Trevor. Good for you. Sounds like a well deserved break away. Never been to Greece but I’d take either right now. I grew up in Ireland so Scotland is pretty much home from home for me. Both beautiful places, steeped in history and mythology. I’m a big fan of monsters and mythology (geek) so I’d love to swing by Loch Ness or go find me a minotaur!

The days are getting easier to get by. Day 42 today. I feel better now it is yet another month since I relapsed in January. It feels like two months ago even though it’s not in terms of days. The snow didn’t help at all, it made me feel like I was going backwards because I was very much looking forward to March, spring and all and feeling like time was moving on.
Got dragged out to go sledging a few times, but didn’t feel like it at all because my mind was distracted with other things. I love to be outdoors but wasn’t feeling good. Instead of losing myself in a little bit of family fun, I found myself thinking about bets the whole time which wasn’t very nice but they went away after a few days.

It’s like that some times, you just have to carry on. I can multi task like crazy so getting busy doesn’t help me much at all. I can be crazy busy at work or at home doing all sorts at once but I can still find myself caught up with thoughts of gambling.
I seem to be able to section off part of my brain, no matter what I am doing and dedicate it to gambling. It seems nothing can get it out of there once it’s in. It just takes a few hours or sometimes days to go away and then I’m okay again. I try not to give it too much mind, and just carry on with my day but it isn’t nice at all because it torments you and stops you from feeling properly engaged with what you are doing.
Glad you got yourself something nice to look forward to, Trevor. Now you can have a great reason to keep away from gambling so you can hit the Greek markets! You never know you will find. #hiddentreasure

Kate
Reply

Hi Jane – day 42 is very good going – just keep going – day by day – you’ll find the length of time you are ‘in-dwelling’ gets shorter as you put a distance between yourself and gambling. When I go inwards I consciously make an effort to look around and draw my attention back on the external world. Works for me … but sometimes I have to work at it, I’ll admit. All the best to you and fellow travelers on the road to never gambling again.

Jane
Reply

Thanks, Kate. I am looking forward to the nice weather. It always makes me feel more positive. I may be popping over the pond for a week if I can manage to save a bit of cash. I really enjoyed it last time, but I wish my partner would take the car cos there’s so much of Ireland that you just can’t get to without it. That’s where all the best places are and you can’t get to them with public transport. Unfortunately, my partner still suffers from anxiety and panic attacks on new roads so we’re not quite there yet. Maybe next year we will take the car, but we will have to settle for the train again this year. When he accidentally turned onto the motorway once, he about had a meltdown. He is such a good driver, but the anxiety gets the better of him. If he knows the roads, he is fine and you’d never know he has difficulty.
I wish I had learned to drive myself and I could share some of the load. That’s one thing I definitely regret not doing.
Mind you, it’s never too late. Maybe it will be something to think about when the cash flow is better.

My son has just come home smelling lovely! He says he’s been smelling something all day and thought it was coming from the school canteen but it kept following him around. Turned out he left his curry powder in his bag from last week’s cooking lesson and the lid popped off in his bag!

I find mindfulness works far better for me than just trying to mask urges and get busy. Being outdoors usually helps me rid myself of urges, as it’s what I like to do, but last week, I was just off kilter.
I feel more like myself now but I spent thousands in imaginary bets over the weekend! Least I don’t have to answer for them though.

I think we will always have to work at being okay, Kate. It just doesn’t seem to come easily for some of us.
Better go get this bag sorted cos it’s really making me want a take away!!
x

Charles Manson
Reply

Jane, your partner suffers from anxiety panic attacks on new roads?? haha what a complete and utter pussy he must be!!!!!

Trevor
Reply

Jane,

Some hidden treasure would be nice….enough to share. Yes 7 nights in Greece, i would like to go to ruins etc but my sun lounger will be calling me instead. Maybe if i was staying longer.

I agree it can be hard getting gambling out of our heads even when youre achieving so much through abstaining. But youve got to be proud that you are not acting on these thoughts. There are probably a small handful of emotional scars that can be recalled in your mind to balance the big picture out….not nice reminders, but they serve a purpose.

Have a good evening with your family and take away. My favourire is Chicken balti, rice and naan. Poppadoms to start with naturally.

I had some duck and plum sauce with my misses….take away this weekend i think.

Keep strong….all of us.

Jane
Reply

Sounds good, Trevor. I am meant to be getting a roast dinner made for me this Mother’s Day, but might need a take away as back up in case it all goes to pot! Last time my partner and the kids were in the kitchen together, they melted my spoon to the hotplate. I was sick and had to get up out of bed to bail them out. They do okay on their own, but put them all together and it just becomes organised chaos!
I didn’t think it was possible to create so much carnage, so when they told me what they had planned, I had to force a rather strained smile that looked more like I was passing wind.

On that note, have a lovely evening Trevor and thank you for offering such thoughtful advice to those that need it. You are a very decent guy.
It’s such a shame we are all caught up in this, but I like to look at it that at least we can do some good along the way.
All the best and stay strong.

mat
Reply

I have been in other countries and never seen so many places to gamble UK is sick, in just town centre there is around 18 places to gamble including one casino and 2 arcades all within half mile radius, normal shops with clothes and stuff closed one after another and now its just gambling town and pawn shops whole town looks ghetto like with increasing homeless people asking for change every 3 minutes.
If it was just lets say 3 betting shops and a casino I would have excluded and not gambled years ago.
My friend lost 4 paydays in a row and cant pay for flat they are killing everybody these FOBTs

Trevor
Reply

Mat,

I struggle with regular relapses, but I’m seeing a trend where I’m letting go far easier and what I mean by this is that I’m walking out the bookies spending less money. I’m giving up on the bookies sooner, I have my 20 minutes of madness, then walk. I have self excluded from 90 percent of the bookies near me and the very few times I have floated the rule I have been identified and told to leave. So to keep some dignity I don’t go in the the ones I’m excluded from. So as soon as I leave, I generally go back home or to the shop for comfort food.

So ideally don’t relapse, but if you do, try really hard not to do it in a big way. I definitely beat myself up less than I normally do, knowing I have spent less.

For now just try and bring some peace back into your life. Try and recreate routines that you may have had in the past to bring some order back to your life or try new routines. I don’t know….go for a walk, go for a run, watch old movies that you really enjoy (my favorite is Love Actually) speak or text people you have not contacted in a while. Do a jigsaw, do some DIY. Please try and get your positive spirit back, this will help you move on and feel better about the future.

Nobody has a time machine, we cannot reverse what messes we have been lead into by the gambling industry. We can only keep trying to learn to get round future hurdles. The gambling industry have put the bars around us and have closed the door, the door is not locked and we can leave at any time, but the addiction compells us to stay…..we need to gain momentum from our bad experiences and turn this force into some more powerful and positive. The power to abstain.

By Abstaining we get closer to the jail door and one day we will open it and walk out, then the bars surrounding the jail door will fall down. Then the gambling industry will have no hold of us anymore.

All the best Mat and everyone.

mat
Reply

I know Trevor I have lots of hobbies and activities and go to gym but like you said it only takes 20 minutes and months pay is lost, You can try to stay away for few weeks or months and in 1 hour you can pretty much lose everything. These machines are traps set to take all your money and make you addicted, near misses and bonus symbols going just out of screen and when you get the bonus on slots it pays 90% of time nothing.
First you start playing then 5 minutes later you are chasing losses and wish for just money back, this gambling is a torture for the mind.

Trevor
Reply

Mat,

It is so frightening how quickly money can go. I dont normally play roulette on slot machines its all the other games. Those gimmicky games that look so innocent, but screw lives up. I press that button as soon as i can….i cant wait. At least with roulette you get a 50 second breather. Non the less you can spend up to £50 a spin on roulette. Its all the same addicted to losing money and time. We could win the lotto jackpot and put the losses in the past, but we will never get the time back. Time is so important, thats remember this when our brain wants us to relapse.

If i smoked or drank heavily in the same period then my body would shut down eventually. I would probably pass out. Gambling as we are all too aware has no physical marks of abuse. My point is that i could lose all life savings in a day if i wanted to (luckily in a joint account with the wife) and there is no stopping. While smoking and drink there is a point where you body takes control and says no. With gambling we need to be on our guard all the time.

The biggest worry for me is, will i be doing this in 20-30 years time. Will i be a pensioner addicted to gambling and where will my wife be. Probably enjoying the spanish sun with her new husband. I need to stop for me and also my wife who has put up with this for so long.

We all need to keep trying to abstain. The gambling industry are not going to stop trying to lure us back.

Jane
Reply

Trevor, you make such a valid point. The disease is so progressive, it sneaks up on you, you don’t even notice it happening until you are already a victim. Then, even when you do, you will make excuses for your habit and why you can’t stop, why it’s not your fault.
Losing thousands was not enough to stop me from gambling, but after years of this kind of stress and suffering, my body and brain protested greatly to what I was doing, but it literally took years. 7 of them in fact.
In that time, I ruined my financial security and jeopardised my home life.
The debt did not deter me until I started having palpitations which scared the sh*t out of me. I couldn’t sleep for days, couldn’t function. I developed depression and bipolar and began harming in ways that I never did before.
Gambling does not make us sick enough to stop until it is too late and we are already in too deep. We see gambling as both our destroyer and our savior. It often needs to get really bad before we do something about it.
That is where I find myself now. Pretty much scared into stopping. I knew I was on the verge of breakdown and the one thing that made me sit up and take notice was the thought of what the hell right did I have to die and leave my family with the sh*t load of mess I made. At the time, they didn’t even know the debt I had made for us all, so I was terrified both at what was happening to me health wise, and what they would think of me if they found out in that way.
So I woke up and now I go through each day, not happy, but happy to just get by.

I hope none of us ever gamble again.
You will not be doing this in 20, 30 years, Trevor. I know you will beat this.

Trevor
Reply

Jane,

Thanks for your post and confidence that I won’t be gambling as a pensioner…I now have a big smile. Thank you for instilling some much needed strength into me.

Let’s keep doing our best to keep strong. Every day we abstain is a day worth celebrating. Every time we relapse (we have to be honest it does happen) we need to grow stronger from this difficult learning experience.

I need to abstain big time, my wife and I went to the travel agent yesterday and got a very nice holiday….courtesy of my wife’s arm bending of me. I’d prefer 2 weeks in Scotland, but it’s a 7 night trip to Rhodes in Greece.

All the best. Keep abstaining.

Jane
Reply

I see on the news that Ladbrokes-Coral are throwing their toys out the pram over the proposal to restrict FOBT’s. If we don’t keep throwing our money away on their machines without restriction then they won’t be able to afford the money they spend on sports sponsorship.
As far as I can see, that’s a win-win for us. Maybe we’ll be able to watch a game without countless gambling ads as well as cleaning up the high street.

According to the bookies, it seems we won’t have to worry about our addiction any more because without free reign on FOBT’s, there will be no sport to bet on because sport can’t cope without sponsorship from the gambling companies. So now they are playing that card. First, cutting FOBT stakes was putting jobs at risk, now it’s a risk to the sport we love? Laughable really.
Gambling companies profit highly from football games because there is the possibility of a much greater profit margin for them, due to rise of in-play betting. The greater the stipulations a player places on a bet, the greater the profit margin for the gambling industry and the lower chance of a win for the player. There are now buildable bets where you can suggest your own little flutter via the app, creating your own unique experience. The greater the number of possibilities, the greater the bookies profit margin and this makes the high interest in football very lucrative, so I doubt very much that they will be cutting sponsorship because if they do, then they hurt their own interest because advertising brings in much more money than it costs.

I believe this is what drives the industry’s interest in football and why so many people spend much of the game sat watching their phones instead of the match.
Combine this with the ever so attractive option to cash out and it makes for a good day out for the bookies and not so much for us.

Bookmaker
Reply

Jane, if they cut FOBT to £2 it will be disastrous for racing and sports as a whole, a lot of sporting events you see are sponsored by betting companies.
Look, I don’t like FOBT’s, I’ve been in the game for many years, betting shops were a much better place when we didnt have them, betting offices used to be packed to the rafters especially on a saturday, with proper punters, a very good atmosphere in shops, not anymore. BUT since they were introduced, they are our only means of making any money, I’ve got 20 staff who will lose their jobs if £2 comes into effect, plus my livihood down the drain, by all means cut the stakes, i want that too happen, ive seen so much heartbreak, but that maximum stake will have distastrous consequences.

Jane
Reply

I’m glad that you can see that FOBT’s have destroyed not only lives but also what used to be a more casual, occasional sport oriented place on the high street. It used to be a case of a bit of a bet tacked on to the sport, now it feels like the other way round. Betting has become more important than the sport itself.

However, I do not buy what you are saying about FOBT’s being your only source of income. I know for a fact that bookies get a vast amount of their income from online betting because I threw my livelihood down the drain giving it to them. The gambling industry does not even need physical shops anymore because we invite you into our homes on our phones and laptops. As I’ve said before, you don’t even have to pay to rent premises anymore. You have all come to live with us.

FOBT’s are just a very nice bit on the side, aren’t they and they pay for themselves. They don’t need staff to man them and they certainly aren’t supervised in shops. No one turfs people out when they are self excluded, no one checks, no one cares because it is your baby. Your money maker. How can 20 people’s jobs be at risk by cutting FOBT stakes in your shop? Do they all get paid to stand around the machine making sure self excluded and underage people do not use them?

Is it really a case of our jobs or yours? We are all working for nothing so you can make a living.
You are always guaranteed profit over time, we are not, so where’s the harm in reducing that profit margin so that we can get some balance back in our communities?
I don’t believe that it will cause a loss of jobs, what you mean is it will cause a loss of jobs in the gambling industry, jobs that would never have been made available anyway were it not for the vast explosion of betting shops opening up around the country.
We just want back what is ours. A healthy, stable, balanced high street. We don’t want your jobs, we just want our lives back.
Surely you can see the pain on these pages.

Jane
Reply

Just to make clear my last point about jobs, bookmaker. The jobs that you state are at risk due to the proposed reduced stakes on FOBT machines would not have been available were it not for the greedy explosion of betting shops on our high streets. An explosion which was due to bookmakers everywhere wanting to legally get round the restriction of having a maximum of 4 money making FOBT’s in each shop. You couldn’t have more than 4 machines in each shop, so you got round that by setting up more and more shops so you could have more and more machines.

We went from having a high street and a community to having a slum, a broken society filled with betting shops yards away from each other, pawn shops and pay day lenders which also shot up everywhere to keep up with the destruction you were causing. Did you know that according to my research 40% of problem gamblers borrow money each week to gamble? I am one of those people. I have thousands of pounds in debt and still struggle to give up gambling because I find it hard to accept that I have to live with that debt.

If betting shops were to reduce back to the level they were at before the rise of the FOBT, then plenty more jobs would be available for regular folk who want to make a living selling goods and services, not misery. Your staff could get jobs selling sausage rolls in the local Greg’s instead.
It’s not about losing jobs, bookmaker, it’s just a reshuffle back to the way things should have been. You should never have been allowed to monopolize the streets like that.
It’s a safe bet to say your customers don’t need to bring their own bag to your ‘shop’ cos they never get to walk out with anything. If stakes are reduced and the gambling industry unlikely suffers as a result, perhaps you can put a few bets on to make ends meet? That’s what you encourage us to do, after all!

In my inbox:

Money tight? Make payday today!!!!!!
£10 free bet when you join.
100 free spins
**** Casino

Click here and start winning.
The **** Team
———————-

Nice.

Bookmaker
Reply

You’re not understanding Jane, I’m an independant, I haven’t got online services, just 3 small shops. If the £2 comes into effect, the independants will get hit much harder as we have nothing to fall back on. You really think betting shops will go back to how they were before? No chance, its a dying industry but the government, by all account are not giving us a chance. £20 max would be survivable, anything lower then we won’t.

Jane
Reply

I figured from your post that you were independent, but it is hard to see the difference from a gambler’s point of view. Bookies are bookies after all. Some make more than others, I get that, and the larger ones have the added pull of online members, but if we came into your shop and used the fobt’s, you would happily take our rent money just the same as if we walked into a nearby Ladbrokes.
Gamblers like what they like. Many prefer bookies and would not choose to go online just because the maximum stakes are reduced. People say that the gamblers won’t use the machines anymore because they can’t reduce risk by spreading their bets with such a small wager. It is those same people that are using these machines that are asking for this limit to be put in place. Why won’t people listen to their actual customers instead of their tills ringing?

I only gamble online and would never use a bookie. Gamblers are as diverse as they are plentiful. I do not think that people will just switch to other forms of betting because gamblers are very habitual. I have access to hundreds of different games and have spent 7 years online playing only 1 game: roulette. I don’t care about any other game. It is my thing, my vice, and those that play the FOBT’s often don’t play any other things either. They will still be played with a reduced stake albeit more responsibly.

People self exclude from bookies to prevent themselves from going, but many still go and gamble anyway. How can you say therefore that reducing stakes will stop people from betting in shops when even self exclusion can’t? Many still want to play the FOBT’s but they don’t want to be able to lose so much money so quickly. They are asking for more sustainable gambling because it is far too easy to lose thousands.

It is what the actual gamblers are calling for, but nobody is listening to THEM. You are just looking at profits. FOBT’s did not even exist years ago and bookies made a living just the same. If you are genuinely making that much money from FOBT’s that you can’t exist without them or with reduced stakes, then that is reason enough for the clampdown because it shows how much things have got out of hand, and how much people are actually throwing away on these machines.

Personally, I would prefer the big bookies to go under. However, an FOBT from our perspective, whether in your shop or Ladbrokes will take our money just the same.
The thing is, bookmaker, it is still our money that is lost whether it ends up in your smaller pockets or the big gambling chains.

This is about protecting where the money comes from, not who ends up with it.

Jane
Reply

It could be argued that the FOBT’s have adversely affected your smaller, independent business. The FOBT after all was the reason why so many more bookies opened up on our streets so that they could own more machines to get round the maximum 4 per shop. This means that smaller bookies like yourself have even more competition on the high street now, thanks to these machines.
The FOBT may be masking the loss of business due to the rise in online gambling, but they will also have increased your competition because so many more shops have opened up to accommodate more machines.

It seems to me that online gambling is the real killer for smaller, independent bookies because the larger chains have the option of both physical and online shops. The rise of the FOBT’s offset this loss somewhat by giving you another source of income and enabled you to keep up more with the larger chains, but in the same way, the machines caused the explosion of bookmakers and the increased competition that you see today.

mat
Reply

Livelihood? You disgusting parasite you don’t even care about your minimum wage staff they 100% hate the job anyway 100s of people will have addiction and suffer along with their families maybe even commit suicide so you can f….. make big profit. How can you even sleep at night, you come here and post comments to us addicts that suffer cause of these fobt machines. Not only they should ban these evil machines but take away all your profits cause its nothing more than theft and give it back to the communities. Remember you cant take away money with you when you die and there will be Judgment Day.

Nik
Reply

So how did bookmakers stay in business for all those years before these licensed robbery machines?

Bookmaker
Reply

No Online betting then NIK

mat
Reply

I wasn’t quite honest first I gambled on Monday lost 800 then won 800 and been gambling till yesterday winning then losing won 2000 only to lose it, got angry lost my temper and did mess in the bookies.
I lose my control very easily and I am now scared sitting at home don’t even want to go out because I might gamble, this been going on so long last year I seem to be relapsing every 4-5 weeks after quitting my head is a huge mess right now I really would want to run away just thinking about it all makes me want to puke.
I feel so low its unreal I am not satisfied with any part of my life I feel like a huge failure and social outcast I don’t see the light at the end of this tunnel.

Jane
Reply

I kind of had a feeling this was happening, Mat. It’s always the same for me. There will never be a happy ending if you keep going back. I think Trevor said earlier about getting revenge not by going back for more, but by walking away for good.
There is no shame in admitting what has been happening to you. It is what is designed to happen to you. They make sure of that.
I’m so sorry that you feel scared and out of control. I did too, Mat. I trashed my own home if you recall, just a month or so ago. It hurts to feel out of control and it frightens us because no matter how bad we feel, we are often still wanting to bet again.
Please allow yourself time to calm down and feel a sense of normality again. You will be able to see the sense in not gambling again in a few days, but right now, you are fueled with hurt, anger and a need to bet again to get even with the bookies.
Trust me when I tell you that I know how you feel and you are not on your own with this. You are only a few words away from support, Mat, so talk when you need to.
Get yourself something nice to eat and get some rest. You will feel better in time so long as you leave this mess of a life behind. It is no way to live, Mat and no way to treat yourself because it makes you feel like this is as good as it gets and that things will never get better. They will, but we all have to get back to respecting ourselves enough to leave gambling behind. I am putting up these posts today to show you all what low-lives they are, in the hopes that it will anger you all into never giving them another penny again.
Stay away from the bookies, Mat. You can never get even with them, you can only hurt yourself more.

Trevor
Reply

Nik,

Thanks for posts and keep clocking those days up….its day 53 now i think..that is brilliant. Best ive done recently is 12 days, but ive never lost more than £600 in a betting spree…… Swings and roundabouts. Its not always how much you lose but the emotional pain that is created and for loved ones too. I am sometines dishonest with my wife relating to gambling and that makes me a deceitful person, which I feel terrible about. This addiction changes the inner you and the true person i want to be needs to break free from gambling and resurface.

It is possible with hard work and being patient and loving towards yourself. Jane us right, being okay is good. Okay is acceptable. As time goes on we will all get to be better than okay….but it wont happen overnight.

Please forgive me for any spelling errors you may find. Im sure you are all big enough not to bring me down on this.

IANGA.

Trevor
Reply

Jane,

I wasnt aware of all the low unhanded, barely legal tatics that the gambling industry deploy. … they are truelly scumbags. As im not into internet gambling im quite nieve to these methods.

Where i live now there is just one local bookie and the area is quite nice. Where i grew up it wasnt a nice area and there are 3 bookies and amusement hall within a 200 metre radius….if there wasnt a profit then the shops will close…..My point is that they must all be making a profit and low and behold it is a poor neighbourhood. Preying on the vulnerable.

Personnaly i am weak minded and that unfortunately helps my addiction. A bit of a yes man. It is tough saying no to your brain when you fancy gambling, as your brain has been over many yesrs been conditioned to say yes to gambling…Another £50 won’t hurt, then another £50 etc…etc…

Enough is enough. IANGA.

Jane
Reply

Trevor, the gambling industry makes a hell of lot of money from vulnerable people. If they asked responsible questions before deciding whether to allow someone to sign up or not, the majority of people would get screened out. They sell gambling constantly as an innocuous form of fun, and suggest that people should just stop when the fun runs out, but this message is not intended for those that gamble for fun, because for them, no message is necessary. It is to cover their backs for the poor, addicted people who cannot stop. They do not warn people out of genuine care, instead they do so out of a legal obligation and to cover their own ass. Their message serves only to remove responsibility from themselves as an industry and place that responsibility on the player.

You are directed to pages and pages of terms and condition whenever you make a complaint, but at no time are you directed to read them when you sign up. They are not even visible because they get in the way of all the necessary sign up details. Instead you will just be asked to tick a tiny box. You will be forgiven for missing the terms and conditions altogether as your attention is turned to huge bonuses and the massive flashing deposit button.

The industry deliberately targets low income people, and research has also suggested that they deliberately target people who have also tried to give up gambling, tempting them back with bonuses and offers. The huge cost of TV advertising has led to many companies using cookies and data analysis to better hone in on vulnerable groups who are likely to be in need of cash, or ex gamblers. They send out offers towards the end of the month when many people are running low on cash, tempting them to spend what little they have left in the hopes of winning more. These data houses as they are called, collect all sorts of information on people, particularly related to debt, credit reference agencies etc and people are employed to help these companies target people who have credit cards, a loan, three kids etc….The data showed that those targeted by gambling companies have a salary of £25,000 year or less.

It also suggests that the gambling companies do something called dynamic retargeting, where they try to hook up again with lapsed players, those who have tried to give up gambling, trying to get them to pick up the habit again. While the same company that you gambled with should not contact you if you are excluded, it is alleged that they sell this information to other companies who are then allowed to reel you in.
The person will start to see betting ads again in their browser, or emails again, despite not having shown any interest in such sites and this is a completely underhanded and immoral tactic to lure addicts back to gambling.
The industry is alleged to have affiliates on Facebook and other such media where they are said to offer a cut of the losses to third party groups such as these, when they encourage people to gamble on bets that are likely to lose. They do so by trying to rally a following for certain events, drawing attention to bets which will attract a lot of backing but which are highly unlikely to pay off. When a person clicks on a link through their website, the third party industry is said to receive a cut when the bet loses.
The gambling industry, although not directly associated with tipsters and affiliates, turns a blind eye to such practices as it has a pay off for both the third party company and for the gambling industry. They target those of us who can least afford to gamble and clearly have no sense of moral responsibility whatsoever.

I urge all of you to think about these kind of vile, underhand tactics when you get the urge to bet. Every £1 you give them enables them to target more and more vulnerable people. So if you’re not gambling, and you start seeing ads in your browser again, it is likely not a coincidence.
To quote Nik,
Let ‘em starve!

Nik
Reply

Helpful advice as always Jane.
Glad to see everyone ignoring our new (old?) troll.
Best thing to do with trolls.
Let them starve too!

Charles Manson
Reply

You’re certainly not though are you NIK?

Nik
Reply

Do you admit to being a troll?
You can now go and play somewhere else, because from now on you will be totally ignored here.

Jane
Reply

They are nothing more than crooks, Nik and I am not going to enable them any further. My money is my own from now on.
It is disgusting to deliberately seek out people who can least afford to gamble, knowing full well that they need the money. When they lose it, they know they will chase it, because it was never being played for fun, but as a means of making money.
They are not targeting the kinds of people who want to gamble for excitement, the emails are directly targeting people who they know are low on cash and who have debt. They get into their head by suggesting that since money is tight at that particular time of the month, that they should gamble because it could be their lucky day. If you recall, not long ago, I put up one such ad from Enzo casino that I received in my inbox that suggested I gamble to make it through the rest of the month. I complained about them to the gambling commission for irresponsible advertising.

Hunting down ex gamblers is also about as low as it gets. People will be targeted with all the new gambling websites knowing full well that they will not be excluded from them, since they haven’t gambled for some time. The industry knows that ex gamblers are more likely to respond to fresh companies because the addict’s mind sees them as a new chance. The new sites have not lost them money, so although it is still gambling, they may see them as a chance for things to be different. The ads for new gambling sites are more likely to fan that flame than seeing ads for sites they are excluded from which create less urges to bet in the ex gambler. The ads for older betting sites create bad feelings in the ex gambler because they are more likely to associate a feeling of loss with that site and create a more negative feeling about gambling generally, when they see sites they have held in the past. That rush of excitement an ex gambler gets when they see a fresh opportunity to gamble is being used to directly re-target old players in the hopes the ads will reignite that flame.
I do not doubt the lengths they will go to, to get people hooked on gambling. We can all do our bit by being wise to these tactics and keeping our money firmly in our own pockets.

Kate
Reply

I’ve just understood what IANGA is – sorry, not very up to speed with Duo Lipa! Me neither – IANGA !

Trevor
Reply

Deer mister mansion,
I cannnot spelll. As Dua Lipa song goes IDGAF.

I hope this post has not discombobulated you.

Good night.

Charles Manson
Reply

Trev you stupid cunt. It’s susceptible.

Trevor
Reply

Jane,

Reading your latest post, makes me feel sad that you have to contend with your other health issues in addition to gambling. In some way your health issues have probably made you very supseptable to gambling. The gambling industry should do more to identify persons who are wanting to gamble and ask searching questions on their mental health background, so that they can be turned away from Internet sites.

I hope you have a strong family and friends who support you.

Take care.

IANGA…..I am never gambling again.

Kate
Reply

I’m never going to gamble again either . Yes, you are right Trevor, mental health issues and gambling are strongly related ….. and we are more susceptible if we not very well . Gambling gives a temporary boost and lifts us, but we need more and more of the fix as time goes by, and this is why it so quickly spirals into addiction. Having given up smoking and gambling at around the same time last year, I then went through a period of 6 months on my knees …exhausted, depressed, gaining weight, sleeping too much….. I think this was a process of withdrawal from 2 powerful drugs, and my brain/adrenals/thyroid needed to time to repair . I took masses of supplements recommended by a GP who also specializes in complementary medicine …it took time, but I am now fully recovered I think …… so much more energy, clear thinking, positive ….. ( most of the time!!!) . My point I guess is that when we decide to give up, we need to be prepared for a kick-back in terms of how our brains respond …… recovery is a process …we need to be kind to ourselves, to accept we are doing something our brains/system initially doesn’t like, but that, in time, we will be free.
All the best – I really like the way you are supporting my friend Jane!! She is one in a million

Jane
Reply

Trevor, Kate, thank you for your support and kind words. Gambling is just another form of self harm or self abuse, whatever you want to call it. This horrible habit has been forged over many years and is not just going to go away, and like you say, Kate, we have to accept that it will not be easy when we try to stop.

It is true that it takes time and a lot of self thought to get us through this. We have to learn to like ourselves again, and nurture ourselves through the recovery. Life is difficult without gambling at first, especially after leaning on it for many years. It can seem like we cant stand on our own, and when we try to, we stumble and feel unsteady and vulnerable. I personally felt exposed without gambling, I felt like people knew I was vulnerable and were provoking me deliberately because they knew I couldn’t gamble. This is ridiculous, but shows how much I came to lean on gambling, so much so that without it, I felt weak and volatile. I felt like life had a target on my back and like everything was trying to make me gamble again.

For years, if something went wrong, I would gamble. If something went right, I would gamble. Gambling was just there all the time and I have to accept that it will take time to adjust. I think if we can go long enough without it, then we start to accept the way we feel, instead of fighting it and we learn to just get by.

I am at that stage where I am getting by, but I don’t feel happy and fulfilled. I’m just okay. However, I have come to accept that it is fine to be just okay.
I remind myself that I was not getting by at all when I was gambling, I was just hiding from the world and my problems and I was suffering mentally and physically because of it. I was using gambling to keep myself down, afraid of the way I felt when I wasn’t doing it. But when I gave myself time without gambling and learnt to accept that I am flawed, then I can more easily get through my days without having to fight urges because I know that I don’t have to be swinging from the chandeliers and that it is okay to have off days.
Contentment is the key to getting through the recovery process. We have to let the dust settle on the sh*t storm that we have lived in for all these years. Expecting too much too quickly will only cause urges because we may feel that we deserve much more for giving up gambling. Progress is slow but it is still progress and that is what we have to keep in mind.
All the best to you good people.

Charles Manson
Reply

IANGA, haha you mug

Trevor
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Mat,

This addiction plays on everyone’s mind and takes advantage of your mind and the negative feelings you feel after gambling. We have to be strong and use the same mind, to fight back. You’ve had a blip, you’re feeling low about it, but you need to bounce back. You need to rebuild your defenses. I think at this stage of relapse you need to remind yourself of all the successes and promote your mind to be positive. For example, think of the last two months and count the number of blips….sure it will be pretty low. Think of recent achievements in work and your life and think how these would have been hampered or unachievable if you were gambling. It’s really hard, but you need to apply some spin like politicians, tell your mind things aren’t too bad and move on positively. The more negative you are and beat yourself up, the more chance you will want revenge on the gambling by playing them again….that’s what I think and feel at times. Don’t get revenge in this way as it will cause more self harm. Get revenge by not playing them.

Be a winner, don’t gamble.

mat
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Thanks for your replies I know its only time lost but its worse that I lost progress I gambled twice already and at least when I was counting days I had some sort of restriction now I feel it all started again, having urges what a shit feeling, I am afraid that I will gamble again I could hide at home and wait but for how long?
I wish they would just reduce the spins on fobts down to £2 so that I could never play them again as I hate slots and don’t go to casino.

Jane
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Mat, it is so good to hear you say that you feel bad more because you have lost progress. That is a very positive sign of a change in attitude towards your gambling and you should feel pride in feeling this way. Despite gambling again, please remember that relapse does not have to mean extended relapse. It also does not mean that you have thrown away all of your days. You have only gambled for one of those days, Mat. Please try to see it that way. So 27 days out of 28 were still gamble free, right?
All those others days still count and will have helped to forge a new mindset. Your last relapse will not affect you for long if you can see the positives in everything you have done so far and get yourself back on track.
Think positive, Mat. You just nearly went a full month without gambling! For someone who has gambled much of their young life, that is an admirable achievement. Instead of feeling down, just aim to beat that last score next time.
Most importantly, be proud of the positive things you do Mat, they outweigh the negative things by far.

Stay strong and don’t turn a minor setback into something much worse.

Trevor
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Typo adjustment. Second paragraph. Fourth line down. Please ignore NOT.

Trevor
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Mat,

Take stock of the situation and be grateful the outcome has only cost you time, but let it serve as an important reminder of easily this slippery, sly addiction can grip us. I too wish the addiction was all centered in my little finger….happIlly chop it off…..but let’s how this distorts your brain….I have said I would disfigure my hand due to gambling…that’s wrong isn’t it.

We need to keep strong and focused. You have 760…spend it wisely on things or people are that make you happy. If I had spare cash I would be buying a homeless people a hot drink, food and a sleeping bag that would make me happier than anything. Makes not a difference to someone less fortunate than me.

You’ve had a blip, learn from it and move on. Be a winner….don’t gamble.

Nik and Jane,

Just seen your posts. Keep abstaining and keep our money in our pockets. The days are counting up quickly to in your world, keep enjoying life and an important message I got from a book I read, if life gets you down, it is easier to cope with while you are gamble free and I agree. In the past when work has been tough and trying to cope with gambling too it is hard. Know that without gambling life’s challenges are far easier to deal with.

Congrats to you both on your abstaining journeys.

Nik
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Thanks mate.

Please stay gamble free.

Jane
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You are right, Trevor. That is something that I regularly remind myself; that life is full of problems that you cannot plan for and cannot control, and if gambling is in the mix as well, then even the simplest of setbacks can seem too much to bear.
I suffer from depression, bipolar and self harm, Trevor so it is insane to be a gambler too. I had some symptoms of these before gambling, but no way near as bad. Gambling has caused me health problems and aggravated existing problems. I felt low sometimes and would gamble to lift my spirit, but most of the time, gambling was used to wallow in my own self induced misery. I knew that I needed to change, but couldn’t see how to. It became easier to just coast along, struggling with the issues that gambling had made but also struggling to let it go as I saw gambling as a way out and foolishly clung to that hope.

…..

Mat, Trevor is right. You have only lost time but this can affect your mentality too. This is how my gambling often played out. I would spend half a day being up, being down, coming away with maybe a tenner extra in the end or nothing at all.
Gambling is the biggest waste of human time and talent. There is more respect and self esteem in following a horse and shoveling sh*t all day.
Trust that this will end, trust your instincts not to gamble. Be wary over the next few days because that hunger will still be there because it hasn’t been satisfied with a win. The reason I say this is because you have spent time gambling and not had anything out of it, except for your money back and this can make you want to gamble again for a more fruitful result.
When I would ‘invest’ time gambling and come away either even, or with just a tenner more, the mind is affected because believe it or not, though you have probably wasted hours, to the gambler’s mind, this still reinforces gambling because you didn’t lose anything so you have more chances to play again. It is equivalent to getting a £1 win on a scratchcard and simply swapping it in for another card, because it is not a win, it’s just another go really.

Take care both of you.
All the best.

mat
Reply

Gambled again, too much time all week no work all because of the f….. snow, 27 days gamble free it was going so well then I played again had 760 and almost lost it last spin managed to get it back. This thing is not easy to give up, I am so tired of all this, ticking time bomb waiting to go off.
We all give excellent advice and make promises then it all goes to shit and starts again. Gambling parasite lodged itself deep in the brain the only way to stop would be to cut the head off like in a zombie.

Jane
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Day 38 for me. Hope everyone is doing well. A new month, and a new opportunity to be gamble free for those who have gambled recently. Just get up, get busy, stay focused and remember why you want to be done with gambling. Go to bed with a smile and tell yourself well done for saving yourself from harm.
Lose the fascination with gambling and all its trappings. You are not missing out on anything. Nothing that gambling promises can last over time and all it does its become a game of keep up, trying to get back what you already had before.

We have all lost a lot of money over the years, but we keep gambling and losing more because the last relapse is the one that hurts the most. It is this loss, that will fuel the next loss because it is this one that we focus on and dwell upon. If we can try to see the bigger picture and remember how much we have lost overall, then it seems stupid to keep ourselves in the cycle trying to get back whatever smaller amount we have lost most recently. All that will do is add to our overall losses and will keep us stuck in this cycle forever. I lost £3085 on the 22nd Jan and although it tormented the life out of me for a couple of weeks, I feel that I can now let it go. After all, If I win it back, I have still lost £40,000 in the last 7 years, so getting that last loss back would only fuel me on my journey to try to win back the rest, ensuring that I end up with nothing.
When we stay away from gambling for long enough after relapse, we are able to see the sense in walking away because we know that it is better to cut our losses, than risk starting the cycle up again, because with each win or loss, our gambling gains momentum.

When you get the urge to bet, try to remember that none of us are gambling to win anymore. We are gambling to get back what we have lost and in doing so, we lose more. Tell yourself therefore, that if you had kept the money in the first place, then gambling would have no hold over you and what was already yours. What is exciting about risking more and more money to get back what you already had? Didn’t you start gambling to win money, to get your hands on some free cash, to have fun and excitement. That didn’t happen did it? Not for any of us. So let it go and if you do, you will never have to lose again.
Take back control of your life.

All the best to each and every one of us.

I am never gambling again.

Nik
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Hi Jane

Love your comment about never gambling again. Please, please, please keep it up.
I’m still totally on top of it. 51 days now.
Like you I am never gambling again.
Let ‘em starve!

Jane
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Hi, Nik, that’s great. It’s going fast which is really helping to put distance between me and the last slip. So pleased you too, are doing well. A few urges, but mostly caused by the disruption to my usual routine because of the weather. Nothing I can’t handle. I am trying techniques to help me work through my urges that involve a rational approach. I get an urge, and instead of feeling that excitement and anticipation, I try to recall the way my other relapses have panned out and how I also felt that it would be my lucky day, only to go to bed having lost thousands. It helps me to separate fantasy from fact, and remember the way that my gambling actually ends up in the majority of cases. It really helps me to douse that fire when the urge strikes and bring me back down to earth.
I thought it might help me to type out those words, each time I sign off to reinforce it in my mindset that I am never gambling again. It also helps others, I think, when you show continued determination.
Stay strong, all the best.

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