Twelve Ways to Stop Gambling Addiction Forever

Updated on April 19, 2017
michelletee profile image

I am a professional coach and author in the field of gambling addiction, which I've worked in for over 10 years.

Gambling addiction is brutal and highly destructive. It can lead to dire consequences that run the gamut from bankruptcy, job loss, depression, anxiety, loss of friends and family, and even suicide. It is so important for the addict to stop gambling sooner rather than later.

This addiction does not discriminate. If the propensity is there, and the gambler crosses over that invisible line into problem gambling, addiction can occur in anyone’s life. It does not matter whether the person is rich or poor, educated or uneducated. An addiction like this can send people to jail, cause major social and occupational problems, mental instability, and financial devastation that can last for years.

Studies show that problem gamblers are more likely to commit suicide than all other types of addicts combined.

It is important to get help as soon as possible. It isn’t easy to quit gambling, but there are ways you can help yourself before you get to the point of no return. Here are twelve strategies to use to stop gambling and reclaim your life!

Remember the feeling when you lose a lot of money at the casino, online, or through sports betting. Allow yourself to feel that despondency when you are having thoughts about gambling again.

Twelve Tips to Help You Quit Gambling Forever

1. Take a Short Break

When you wake up, make a decision that you will not gamble, just for this one day. If you have to do this an hour at a time, that is okay. Some might have to work one minute at a time, which is fine too, as long as you promise yourself that you will not gamble, and you keep the promise. Schedule your day in a very structured way so you do not have a lot of free time. Forbid yourself from entering a casino, downloading online gaming apps, or visiting gaming websites.

2. Find a Replacement Activity

Find something to replace your gambling. Exercise, go shopping, go out with friends, or do some cooking. You can also rent a movie, listen to some music, or do some reading — do whatever it takes to keep yourself busy. You could pick up a new, exciting hobby, like bike racing or climbing or welding.

Your goal is to stop gambling, and it is not easy when you get such a high from it. Finding replacements, however, can help. Try and see how it goes.

3. Remember How Bad It Feels to Lose

Remember the feeling when you lose a lot of money at the casino, online, or through sports betting. Allow yourself to feel that despondency when you are having thoughts about gambling again. You may find that you are less likely to go out and place a bet. I have done this before, and must admit that these feelings have stopped me from taking that ride to the casino. This hasn't worked every time, but many times this tool has helped.

4. Educate Yourself About Gambling Addiction

Read as much as you can about gambling addiction. Educate yourself, especially about your particular type of gambling. Find out what type of gambler you are and whether you have a gambling problem and have crossed over this invisible line. Are you an escape or an action gambler? Find out what some of your triggers are, as this can help a lot. When you read about gambling addiction, especially the power that it can have on your psyche, you may think twice about going out and placing a bet.

The resources at the end of this article may be of some help to you.

5. Find Self-Help Materials

Seek help. Look for books or courses. Self-hypnosis for gambling problems can also be helpful. Consider joining an online gambling addiction forum. Even if you do not join, reading other people's stories may help you realize that you are not alone. It is crucial that you realize that you are not the only person with this problem. Many share your plight and are looking for answers and support from other gamblers.

Again, there are resources at the bottom of this article that may be of some help to you.

6. Find a Support Group

Attend a Gamblers Anonymous meeting for group support. If you do not want to do a 12-Step program, there is an online program called Smart Recovery. Having support from other gamblers who also want to quit is an important piece of your recovery. Just talking about gambling with other people who understand what you're going through can be really helpful.

7. Hand Over Control of Your Money

Ask a close family member to handle your money. If you do not have money on your person, you will be less apt to impulsively gamble money away. It will be hard, but it is an important step in your recovery. Also, do not allow yourself access to ATM or credit cards. Just keep a small amount of cash with you, so you cannot spend the money gambling.

8. List the Cons of Gambling and the Pros of Quitting

Make a list about how your gambling problem has affected your life in a negative way. Write as much as you can. Make the list on the left side of a sheet of paper so you have room on the right side. On the right side, write about how your life will change for the better when you stop gambling.

9. Make a Financial Plan

Talk to a debt counselor about your gambling debts. Ask for advice about how to relieve financial pressure and solve financial problems caused by your gambling. The financial stress that you have from gambling addiction debts can drive you back to gambling if not addressed. Financial problems are the biggest consequence of gambling, and help is available. Be sure to use a non-profit debt assistance agency, and not one that is for-profit.

10. Get a Good Counselor

See a counselor that specializes in addictions, especially gambling, and talk to this person about your problem. If your addiction is severe, you will need as much support as you can get to stop gambling now.

11. Get Help for Underlying Mood Disorders

Many people with a gambling problem also suffer from depression, anxiety, stress, or other substance abuse issues. These can both trigger compulsive gambling as well as make it worse.

12. Get in the Right Environment

Surround yourself with people that you trust who want to see you recover and avoid any kind of environment where you might be tempted to gamble, which could be anything from a casino, to being at home alone with your smartphone. Delete gambling apps from your phone and tell casinos that you have a problem and that you want them to block you from entering.

Some Final Thoughts

Gambling is a dangerous addictions because of the related risk of suicide. Find help now and make a plan to begin quitting. Take it one day, or hour, at a time and keep in mind how great you will feel when you have come clean and stopped gambling with your life.

More Information About Problem Gambling

Do You Have a Problem With Gambling?

There are many terms that are used to describe gambling problems, including "problem," "at risk," "compulsive," "disordered," and "pathological."1

The American Psychiatric Association uses the term "gambling disorder," in the 5th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders to describe the most severe form of gambling problems. Keep in mind, however, that individual experiences with gambling can differ wildly from person to person.

According to the Manual, a gambling disorder is characterized by:

  • A preoccupation with gambling
  • The perceived inability to cut back or control one's gambling
  • Irritability or restlessness when one tries to cut back or stop gambling
  • Risking more money to reach the same levels of excitement as before
  • Gambling to escape problems or depression
  • "Chasing" gambling losses with more gambling to try to make up for them
  • Deceiving family and friends with regard to gambling habits
  • Risking or losing jobs or relationships because of gambling
  • Relying on others for the financial needs caused by gambling

If you're experiencing any or all of the above to any degree, it's likely that you don't have a normal relationship with gambling. You don't need to be completely out of control in order to have a problem with gambling.2 In fact, problem gambling is any kind of behavior that disrupts your life, regardless of how much you gamble or how much money is at stake.

Gambling addiction is frequently seen alongside other forms of psychiatric disorders, such as depression and anxiety.3 It is also seen frequently alongside other kinds of addictions.4

Just because you have a problem with gambling does not mean you are a weak-willed, irresponsible person. Strong-willed or responsible people are just as likely to develop a gambling disorder as anyone else.

A Note on Recovery

The path to recovery differs for each individual, and there is no consensus in the scientific community regarding the best treatment for addiction. Some people recover spontaneously, some do it alone or one-on-one with a therapist, others in group settings or a combination of the two.5 Half of all addictions end by age 30,6 but only 1 in 10 of the 23.5 million teenagers addicted to alcohol and drugs seek treatment, and when they do, it's often in places that do not use evidence-based care.

This is just to say that addiction treatment is a complex issue. In your journey, don't be afraid to try many options for treatment, even ones that might seem contradictory. Relapse is likely, but so is regaining a life without addiction.

Some of the tools people have used include:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Harm-reduction techniques
  • In-patient treatment programs
  • Marriage and credit counseling

If you need to reach out to someone, you can call:

HelpGuide's list of resources (at the bottom of the article that the link sends you to) is very extensive — It's a good place to start.

Sources and Resources

1. "What is problem gambling or gambling disorder?" 2016. National Center for Responsible Gaming. Accessed April 12, 2017.

The website for the National Center for Responsible Gaming, which has information for researchers about grants they can apply for, research projects funded by the NCRG, and some resources for public education about gambling.

2. Segal, Jeanne Ph.D., Melinda Smith, M.A., and Lawrence Robinson. "Gambling Addiction and Problem Gambling." April 2017. HelpGuide. Accessed April 12, 2017.

A comprehensive resource to compulsive gambling, with many resources for people to begin their recovery journey including worksheets, websites, and support groups, as well as step-by-step guidelines and advice for both compulsive gamblers as well as the people who love them.

3. Martin, Ryan J., Stuart Usdan, Jennifer Cremeens, Karen Vail-Smith. "Disordered gambling and co-morbidity of psychiatric disorders among college students: An examination of problem drinking, anxiety and depression." February 21, 2013. Journal of Gambling Studies. Accessed April 12, 2017.

A scholarly article studying the relationship between gambling and other mood and substance disorders.

4. Nordqvist, Christian. "Gambling Addiction: How Is Gambling Bad for You?" August 19, 2015. Medical News Today. Accessed April 12, 2017.

An article about gambling addiction, its triggers, and treatment for it.

5. Brody, Jane E. "Effective Addiction Treatment." February 4, 2013. New York Times: Well Blog. Accessed April 12, 2017.

A blog post on the current state of addiction treatment in the United States, on the myths that perpetuate it, and on how to choose a treatment program.

6. Szalavitz, Maia. "Can You Get Over an Addiction?" June 25, 2016. New York Times: Opinion. Accessed April 12, 2017.

An article from someone who was formerly addicted to cocaine and heroin about the changing perception of addiction in the United States and new methods for treatment.

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    • profile image

      MADGAMBLER 

      7 weeks ago

      damn....gambling robs you of small pleasures in life...missing out on my children growing up..excessive amounts of alchol going with the gambling and after loosing R50 000 over a week end I feel crap for about 2 days..get busy at work and the urge comes back...recently stopped smoking again and its tough...been gambling on and off for over 15 years I am 47 and need to see the world again...instead of making the big bosses rich at casinos.....strong mind where are you ????

    • profile image

      Benny USA 

      3 months ago

      You are not alone my friend! Just move on ..... stop if you can, if not.... gamble only what you can afford . Play low! Don’t hurt yourself..... remember, there’s always tomorrow! I used to play big ... knocked off all my savings.... and I’M 60 years old .. almost there to retire! Stay busy my friend.. make gambling for reacration only ..... there hope ... life is good ! Enjoy money to enjoy life not to waste it for nothing.... forget the past .... start a new life ..... !

    • profile image

      Gotta stop 

      3 months ago

      I'm taking my first step to stop gambling. I know I can do it, I just, need to stay focused. My problem is I let myself believe I'm only going to spend a little and then when I start losing, I start withdrawing more and more money! Last night I lost $1,800 usd and I, felt so horrible! I now know I just have to stop completely. The only time I've been able to stay away for a week is to give my husband my debit and credit cards. I need to stay disciplined but it's so hard. I love the excitement it can bring but hate the depression after I lose so much money. I thought if I posted here, I can start my life without gambling. I'll keep reading your posts, so keep them coming!

    • profile image

      Tracy 

      4 months ago

      I have had a problem with gambling for over 5 years now. I try and quit and am usually successful for about a year and then stress and financial problems drive me back to the casino. I play one slots game maybe two. I will sit for hours at this one machine and veg out. I am so unhappy and it is putting a big strain on my marriage. I leave usually with all my money in that machine and nothing left but depression and fear of facing my husband and tons of guilt. I just don't know what to do

    • profile image

      Inrecovery69 

      6 months ago

      My first post was almost 8 months ago and have posted a couple of times since then. I am proud to say that i haven't gambled one penny in all that time and have worked hard to clear my debts. Last time i checked i had

      £3,500 on credit cards, and was just over £3,000 into my overdraft. 10 months ago i was £26,000 in debt with a lot owed on loans. It's been hard but well worth it. In fact, just last week my wife and i purchased a new home. Getting a mortgage was a distant dream 12 months ago. It shows how much you can accomplish if you can give up gambling. I have, and it is wonderful! Now that i have a mortgage to pay i have even more reason to stay away from gambling. I keep on top of my credit card payments and make more than the minimum payments each month, something that has greatly helped my ceedit score. Next step is to wait a few weeks and take out a balance transfer credit card. This will help reduce what i have to pay as no interest will be added for 3 years. I am aiming to be totally debt free within a year. Please be a winner and not let the bookies or casinos win. Giving up is hard, but you can do it if you really really want to. I did it after gambling forr nearly 30 years. Good luck.

    • profile image

      Dsuhe29 

      6 months ago

      thanks my dear friend, i am thinking that i can stop but still not stop yet.

      i hope after i read all comment from dear friend i can stop and no more casino. i've been play casino many years and been worked at many country such germany, macau, dubai but i dont even save some money from my worked. i am really tired but still difficult to go away from gambling.

      i will be happy if someone have good suggestion and share more experience.

      thanks from Indonesia

    • profile image

      Stay strong 

      7 months ago

      Please stay strong people! Into my first week gamble free myself! God bless you all

    • profile image

      mark 

      7 months ago

      just came across this site and sounds like everyone feels like I do or have. I have gambled for 15 years and lost my house and marriage. 4 months ago I went to GamCare and I haven't gambled since. Something just felt different this time and although I will always have an addicted gambling problem I really feel like I wont gamble again. In 4 months I am no way debt free but so much better than before and amazed how I managed to spend 100k gambling last year when I earn half that! However things do get better. Its one day at a time but every day you are not making it worse, you are making life better. I believe you can learn to despise gambling and as much as momentum makes you gamble more and more, momentum can make you NOT want to gamble more and more. I am terrified of gambling again after 120 days and starting from 1 again. I know if I have one bet I will have 100 so cant gamble. Have to start with 1 day away from casino or bookies, then build and build. More days you don't go the more scared you are to start again and gamble. Know its hard as I swore never to gamble again more times then I can remember. However it can be done guys and f**k the casino and bookies is what I think now. Its always been my fault I gambled but now I despise anything to do with gambling and feel in a good place because of it.

    • profile image

      Carly01 

      7 months ago

      Soooo tired of this. I’ve been doing really well over the last 4 years and every year around this time I end up back at the casino. I know I can quit. I’ve stayed away for long periods of time with help from a 12step group but, it’s like I make the decision to go out of he blue and end up downtown losing money I’ve worked really hard for. I come home and look at my son and cry. I want to save money for him and I can’t get ahead trying to win money for the high of it? This has gone from crazy obsession (gambling every day) to a few times a year...the damage I do in those few times a year is something I can’t seem to understand. I struggle with anxiety and depression so I know it has to do with that along with alcoholism (I’ve been sober for 4.5 years thanks to aa). But, something triggers me. I’m exhusted of this and want to live a completely clean life. I know I’m capable of better and that’s the worst part. I’ve never written this out bc I’ve been to scared to address it. Thanks for reading. Hope and healing to all.

    • profile image

      Layed 350 mistake 

      8 months ago

      Well my head messed up as looking to lose just under 350 by mistake! Crazy!

    • profile image

      goldbar7s 

      9 months ago

      We will never outsmart the casino. The only way to survive is to not go.

    • profile image

      Benny usa 

      9 months ago

      You are not alone my friend..... were Just in the same boat! I’ve been in your stuation so many times..... feeling low ,remorse ,guilty , have debts , body is tired !...hey man, Let’s stop this gambling habit !...I’m 59 yrs old ..... I would rather spend my money in doing something else ! Soon , I’ll be 60... in planning to travel and see the world !.. I don’t mind if it cost me lots of money.... at least I reward myself ..... way better than to donate it to casinos! Live to learn ..... there’s hope!

    • profile image

      Dontgiveup 

      9 months ago

      Hi everyone, it's me again, and I just went on another gambling bing! Trust me, its not easy when you don't have money but I found a way to waste another $1200. Maxed credit cards, personal loans, borrowing from future (4 401K loans outstanding) having to cancel my vacation to Disney, it just goes on and on. I have posted for the past 6 months and there were times when I stopped for a few weeks, but like a drug addict, I need my fix. But I will never give up (and I don't want any of you guys either). Life is a blessing, no matter what happens, today can be a new beginning. Its been 4 days for me now, but the weekend I spent about 8 hours at the casino, cursing at the machines, cursing at myself (under my breath) up and down, but mostly down, and definitely down before I left. I knew there a big fight waiting for me when I got home and there was another huge fight - this the only thing we ever fight about - I wonder why, right?! Thank God I am one lucky SOB to have the most amazing person to share my life with! I am soo tired of feeling this way, of being broke, and disappointing myself (and my family). Please continue to post Benny USA and Dave, and others. We can stop, we must stop! God Bless!

    • profile image

      dave 

      9 months ago

      i lost a lot of money at casinos for 9 years in a row, and finally had to quit, maxed out credit cards and lines of credit , i actually quit for about 13 months, and was doing good ,but then started all over again, im back at square one,and need help and have to learn to quit all over again

    • profile image

      Benny usa 

      9 months ago

      Stop the pain ....stop gambling! U got 2 choices.....gets life better or gets life worse.....that’s how simple it is!. Remember there’s no winnngs in gambling...u win today , tomorrow , the next days..... but comes a time u lose everything ....it happen to us, right ?.. is there anybody out there that is up in money from gambling ?.... it’s your choice my friend .... there’s HOPE to change for better..... we can do it!

    • profile image

      First week. 

      9 months ago

      I got to give this up so this is my first week

    • profile image

      Quitter from Nigeria 

      9 months ago

      My dream was to see myself in a classic position tomorrow and become boss of my own not until I tasted the fruit of sport betting which completely futile my dream!

      I exhausted what I can call "future" and even created problems for my tomorrow, (... Let me rather say "problems for my yesterday") until I lost and I found myself in Christ! Now, I can see my tomorrow glowing and brighter than yesterday. Halleluyah!!!

    • profile image

      Ginger 

      9 months ago

      Hi it has been great reading comments, I would like to give up slot machines chasing the last pound I lost. I lost £260 today which I am not proud about hopefully reading other peoples comments will help me quit,

    • profile image

      Dontgiveup 

      9 months ago

      Thank you InRecovery69 for your encouragement. I sincerely appreciate it! I am glad that you posted and shared with us that life/finances are getting better for you. It is wonderful to hear some success and a life without gambling can provide you a better life. I hope to on day make it pass 30 days. For now, I must confess, after "3" WHOLE days, I went to the casino 2x today. I am bad, I know. My lack of discipline and determination waned - I will try a fresh start tomorrow. I can't give up! God bless everyone!

    • profile image

      InRecovery69 

      9 months ago

      Hi Dontgiveup, good to see you got back on the horse again after falling off (please forgive the pun)! As you are doing, take it one day at a time and your strength will grow. One of the key things is to learn to despise gambling. Just recall all those times you lost and the pain and hurt that you experienced. That will help you to loath this habit. As for me, its been nearly 7 months without gambling and i am now applying for a mortgage. Credit file has livened up with debts being repaid in full and no credit applications for the last 8 months. So my once distant dreams can perhaps be realised. Such a difference from a few months ago. Please please keep it up....it is incredibly worth it! Good luck.

    • profile image

      Dontgiveup 

      9 months ago

      3rd day - no gambling. I just got paid today and I am trying to keep extra busy after work, and paying my bills asap instead of throwing my money away.

    • profile image

      Dontgiveup 

      9 months ago

      Hi everyone, 2 days - no gambling. :-)

    • profile image

      Dontgiveup 

      10 months ago

      Hi everyone, well its been 3 months since I posted and haven't been back to this site. I had believed I was on the road to wellness since I hadn't gambled for 3-4 weeks and I thought I was "recovering" from gambling addiction. But basically for the past 3 months I have gambling again, almost daily, and when finances and time permitted 2x a day. Not exactly the "recovery" I was hoping for you. I was there Christmas Eve until closing (I made time for friends & family during the day - but managed to squeeze 4 hours in the evening to myself - not proud of it), and the Casino closed on Christmas day, and so I am telling myself that the best gift I can truly give myself, my family, and friends is stop gambling. For today, I can't make any more promises to myself that I can't keep, but I do not want gamble anymore either. If you are looking to quite, make today your 1st day and we can help support each other through this struggle. God Bless.

    • profile image

      Marti 

      10 months ago

      I Gamble a few times a week until I loose everything. Spending all my money this addiction has left me broke. It all started in June it's now December and I still can't stop. I don't have any idea how to stop any body have any idea how to get me to stop this addiction to Gamble. I am ready to to stop. It is time before It's to late.

    • profile image

      Daniboi 

      10 months ago

      Hi everyone, I'm new here, but there are no ga meetings near me, and my gambling is way out of control! I was hooked on meth 25 years (clean 7 ears now) so I know how addiction works, but I just can't seem to stop :( I'm hoping an online forum can help? It's to the point all I think about is the game room, even when I'm at work, I'm spending about 1000 a week, which is putting me in debt , I tried getting rid of my on hand cash and my debit card, then today I was desperate and drew a cash advance on my credit card! 24% interest DAILY. I take care of both my elderly parents (separate households) both I'll, and my disabled brother, I have a lot of people I take care of, I'm praying I don't have to loose EVERYTHING before I can quite?:( ps, no one in my family know the true extent of my gambling problem:(

      Any advice??

      I lost 380 just tonight :(

    • profile image

      Mums dinner. 

      11 months ago

      You should try GA glenna.

    • profile image

      Glenna Washburn 

      11 months ago

      I need to quit gambling now! I'm sooo addicted!

      I have a counselor for gambling too. This is so bad!

    • profile image

      Headache 

      11 months ago

      It’s just all one big headache atm

    • profile image

      Not again! 

      11 months ago

      Done it again and lost 330 in the bookies. This addiction is killing me! I was doing so well too

    • profile image

      In pain 

      11 months ago

      Let’s keep strong everyone

    • profile image

      goldbar7s 

      11 months ago

      InRecovery69, thank you for your inspiration. That is where we all want to be.

    • profile image

      InRecovery69 

      11 months ago

      My first post was almost 3 months ago. I am glad to say I haven't gambled since then. In fact, I last gambled in May 2017 so it's been almost 6 months without gambling. One of the things I have realised is how easy it gets to refrain from gambling once time passes. However, I have been burnt in the past when I thought I could control it and gambled with little money. That was such a mistake, you simply get sucked back in. The only way to is complete abstinence - not even a lottery ticket. I have also registered with free websites to check my credit score. This had been damaged by taking out payday loans to cover my losses and to gamble with. Now, I can see my credit score improving greatly. I got in debt to the tune of £31,000 before I stopped gambling. In 6 months I have managed to reduce that debt to £12,000. This was mainly due to my wife borrowing my a few thousand pounds to pay off the payday loans early. This reduced the debt by several thousand pounds. In a few more months I aim to be completely debt free by paying off credit card debts and my overdraft and will apply for a mortgage to by our first property next summer. My wife is so much happier now and I am a changed person...no more lies and deceit. I love the way things are going, my outlook is so promising.

      I hope this shows how life can change for the better without gambling. I know it is hard and I know I still have a lot to work on, keeping away from gambling is incredibly hard. The rewards though are great, and the inner peace is beyond words...no more suicidal thoughts. I can walk through the city centre and pass all bookmakers and casinos and not even give them a second thought.

      If you are on the road to recovery - whether you have taken many steps or your very first step please keep going. The effort is absolutely worth it.

    • profile image

      Shez 

      11 months ago

      i started out small with little cash R200.00 but as time went by i started using a lot of cash and going to different casinos.I hated the life but sometimes it helped me until i started sleeping there and also asking people for money i was lying to everyone around me and that felt so bad.i am not sure if i am an addict or im going there.I also dont want to open up to my friends because i know they will judge me.

    • profile image

      Izzy e 

      11 months ago

      Another bit of advice I have found good! Stay away from mates who gamble... I was tempted with a friend and he was almost egging me on, almost hoping to see me crack. Not drinking with him again for a long time. I must say that he made me despise the pokies!

      Share your stories people, it helps heaps

    • profile image

      Aldi 

      11 months ago

      Well done lizzy. Keep it up

    • profile image

      Izzy e 

      12 months ago

      Now on Day 33. I feel as though I wont touch the slots again but I also read stories about people gong months without gambling then going nuts and losing the lot. Keep strong people because i can see the benefits already

    • profile image

      Samuel 

      12 months ago

      Very bad

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      TLM 

      12 months ago

      Hi I'm new to this...I started gambling 10 years ago....I'm tired and sick how I have lied constantly to my husband about how I waste away our money....everytime I got paid I went to the casino blew my check and his...I even took money that wasn't mine...wasn't alot but that doesn't matter it was wrong. ..I'm hate myself sometimes that I can go months do good...but once I go I don't stop till I'm broke. ..one of my reasons I started gambling I was trying to help support my daughter and her kids...you win big once and it sucks you in....I want to stop!!..so I'm deleting games on my tablets...and staying away from casinos....I've been praying alot wondering why God wasn't helping me to stop...it wasn't him it was me... I was like I can control this I will only spend a $100.00...as long as I keep going to the casino or playing games on tablets it will never be under control. ..day 1 for me...

    • profile image

      Edward 

      12 months ago

      Kathy with time and not gambling everything gets better pretty quickly. The key is to not gamble which is the hardest part I know. You can do it! Don’t let this addiction beat you!

    • profile image

      Kathy 

      12 months ago

      Today is day one for me. I have tried several times to quit - my longest stretch has been six weeks without gambling. I am determined to beat this addiction and start feeling better. Reading all of your comments has been helpful. You know what it is like and how hard it is. This past weekend I hit rock bottom. Thank you for sharing your stories!

    • profile image

      Edward 

      12 months ago

      Hi. How is everyone? If u stop gambling u will see finances and life in general gets so much better, I know it’s easier said then done but trust me your not gonna recoup the money you lost. That money is gone, their is more to life then just money, stop gambling and live life. I wasted so much of my life gambling it’s quite pathetic. I remember when I was 15 and they told me I was lucky to discover n recognize I have a problem at such a young age, but I’m 39 now and life moved in the blink of an eye. I’m tired of putting myself through this roller coaster. I’m stopping now with a little bit of savings still left and no debt. It’s gonna be hard because I live in Vegas but I have to do this. Nomore gambling! Anyone else here in Vegas? Good luck ladies and gents

    • profile image

      goldbar7s 

      12 months ago

      Christopher1985 and everyone else, I did not post the previous comment. Someone else signed in under my name and posted that comment. Although I understand their sense of humor,I did not post it. I posted the previous 2 comments. I am only speaking for myself but I see how sick I am from losing at the casino constantly. I never thought about what a sick intolerant person I would become if I was winning millions and what trouble I might end up in. Recent events have made me think about this. I really think I am not interested in the big casino game any longer. I feel that I am seeing that the casino wins in the end no matter how brilliant you may be at this game. Help us all!

    • profile image

      Christopher1985 

      12 months ago

      Gold bar 7s, I am not sure if you are posting on here as a joke but you are wasting yours and everyone else's time. You probably also heard of "successful" professional poker players like Mike Matasau who are truly degenerates. Players like this play for millions but on a bad losing streak can lose EVERYTHING which is not hard to do for a high roller poker player. Yes Ivey and Helmuth may have a better chance to win than the average player but they get plenty of sponsors who support them, which the average poker player does not. You can have a 98% to win a hand but when the only card that beats you comes it can be very significant

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      Gold bar 7s 

      12 months ago

      Good luck gold bar but if you do return to the casino just stick to no Limit holdem poker! I been reading up about it and there is a chance you can make good money and even make a living out of it! Goggle names like Phil Ivey, Phil hellmuth, Chris moneymaker. I bet all these people was like us and thought there no way to win at gambling and no way out but they changed there life’s around and become consistent winners! I say we join the club! Who’s up for joining the poker challenge and finally becoming a winner!

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      goldbar7s 

      12 months ago

      The best of luck to everyone on this forum. I think I have lost interest in the casino scene.

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      goldbar7s 

      12 months ago

      Making millions of dollars per year from gambling is where everyone on this forum wants to be. What a joke.

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      Izzy e 

      12 months ago

      Day 14 without gambling! and feel good about it but still freaking worried I am going to cave in. Have decided I will not go in pubs with pokies visible or loud coz thats hard to stop the temptation. Have told my best mate that Ive stopped and he agreed to as-well, hes not really hooked but the fact he is stopping will help me. I am also going to go to a GA meeting when I travel for work to remind me of what it can do to my life!!

      Dead Feeling and Lyn try the 100 day challenge and log all your past and now feelings, it helps remind you of the fucked up feelings and emotions

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      Lyn 

      12 months ago

      This is so hard. I'm a gambler and week after week I gamble my whole paycheck. I come home from the casinos saying I'm not going to gamble again but when it comes payday I'm back at the casinos. This is day one for me.

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      Christopher1985 

      12 months ago

      I appreciate it Goldbar. Just last night there was a meeting and a member named Don celebrated 14 years free of gambling. The biggest help is getting support from loved ones. I'm sure that once you come clean and have the desire to stop, things will get better and better.

      Izzy E you can just google Gamblers Anonymous meetings or go to local churches where meetings are usually held.

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      goldbar7s 

      12 months ago

      Christoper1985, so glad you are doing so well.

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      Izzy e 

      12 months ago

      Went to the pub with mates yesterday and watched them gamble, it was hard but proud I just sat and watched. How do you find the GA meetings?

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      BigFatDad 

      12 months ago

      Day 22 for me... the amount of money I have saved by not gambling is incredible!

      Christopher 1985: great advice on GA. I have been to several meetings and they help. They are very encouraging. As a traveling salesman, they also offer a great alternative to the casino. It was very powerful to realize I am not alone, and do not need to fight this by myself.

      Thanks to all for the posts! Keep fighting...

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      Christopher1985 

      12 months ago

      Hello all. I have been posting on this site for years. I have recently been active in gamblers anonymous and recently celebrated 90 days of being clean which people say is the hardest step. I have truly realized if you try to stop on your own there is a high possibility you will relapse. If you stop on your own, who is there to encourage you and celebrate your 90 day, 1 year and 2 year anniversaries. Take my advice and try GA for 30 days. Gambling will always be there for you if you don't like it.

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      Izzy e 

      12 months ago

      On Day 3 and thinking about gambling but not going to!!! Big problem is when I travel for work. I need an alternative, maybe the GYM!??

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      Izzy e 

      13 months ago

      Need to stop gambling, been hiding it for years and really had enough! I am looking at a 100 day challenge. My plan is to stop going to places where slots are and stay out of casinos, I am also going to leave my money cards at home all the time if I can help it! So need help before its too late!

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      Inrecovery69 

      13 months ago

      Good job BigFatDad! It shows how sharing via this site can help people stay on course and offer encouragement. Keep it up. I haven't yielded yet and am currently looking at my credit file to see how my credit score is improving. And it us definitely improving! I am aiming to get on the property ladder within the next 9 months - something that would be impossible if I was gambling. The future is so much brighter when gambling is out of the picture. God speed.

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      goldbar7s 

      13 months ago

      Dontgiveup, the best of luck to you!!!

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      BigFatDad 

      13 months ago

      Day 8 for me! It ain't easy, but it is worth it. I scheduled my customer visits this past week, in a manner that kept me out of the casinos. I actually thought about driving 4-1/2 hours the one night, to gamble, but called my daughter instead. I didn't tell her the real reason for calling, but just talking to her gave me the inspiration I needed to not gamble. A few other times I was tempted, I read through the comments below, and decided against it. Thanks for the comments, everyone! Stay the ccourse!

      1 minute, 1 hour, 1 day at a time....

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      Mukeshrao 

      13 months ago

      Hi guys I'm mukesh and I'm just 20 this year and going to reach 21 soon. I started gambling on the age of 18 and until today I'm gambling. I used to be a non gambler last time but since I were influenced by my friends I made it as habit. Every time I had money and the first thing I do is going to the gambling shop. I lose all of the money. Sometimes all of my salary about 2000 In 2-3 hours. I felt like what the shit I'm doing every I have money. I rarely spend money for myself cause I'm totally addicted on gambling. When I can't take it anymore, I came to look up for ways to lose this addiction and came up this website. Most of the information are good and from now on I'm going to stop gambling. I'm quite confident after came up these informations and the response of others. Thanks guys. I love u all.

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      Inrecovery69 

      13 months ago

      Thanks BigFatDad, keep the positivity going. Thanks for the encouragement - it is upbuilding and means a lot. Thanks again.

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      BigFatDad 

      13 months ago

      Congratulations Inrecovery69! 4 weeks is awesome. I am on day 4, and it is not easy. Your post is an inspiration for today. I appreciate it. Keep it going.

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      Inrecovery69 

      13 months ago

      I last posted 4 weeks ago and I am happy to say i haven't gambled since then. Last time I had a relapse it nearly cost me my marriage; I didn't want that at all. I guess the realisation that I had just one last chance has really hit home. I was at the bottom; sometimes it takes hitting rock bottom for the only way to be up. So guys, if I can do it so can you. Put Family and yourself first; gambling is an unnecessary evil that controls and destroys lives. Keep this in mind always, and try to be closer to your loved ones...they are a real source of strength. Good luck to you all and I am hope my abstinence continues.

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      BigFatDad 

      13 months ago

      Chandra, if you feel like you want to do suicide, please don't! Your life has meaning and value and worth, and you can find it. If that feeling is overwhelming, you owe it to yourself, and to everyone that knows you and loves you, to come through this. SEEK HELP IMMEDIATELY, call a hotline, or someone that loves you, and don't give up.

      I'm new to this page as well... I would have never dreamed that my life would bring me to this point. 4 years ago, when the company I work for changed ownership, I was demoted from a great executive management position in a factory, to a manufactures sales rep. Even though I lost all my authority and responsibility within the company, it turns out I had the ability to make tremendously more money...

      This should have been a great thing, right?? Turns out it wasn't....

      I found that all the extra money, which could have gone to pay down my kids college debt, my house, my cars, my credit cards, or anything else, ended up going to the casinos.

      I actually started planning my weekly customer visits around the casinos. I have now arrived at the point in my life, where I spend 30 or so hours a week in a casino, and less than 20 with my customers.

      That great money from the new position has gone due to my sales dropping off, and my debt is climbing quickly. I just need to stop, but it seems so frigging difficult.

      I have lied to my family, my friends, and my workplace about my addiction, but today I claim NO MORE!!! I CAN DO THIS!!

      Like bee said below " I'm going to give the casinos the finger as I drive by them.

      Thanks to everyone who has posted. It has been a great encouragement and very inspiring.

      One minute at a time, one hour at a time, one day at a time..

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      Chandra mouli 

      13 months ago

      hii guys.i am new to this page. i just wanted to stop gambling.When ever i loose money i think of stopping it but i am not able to stop it for more than a week.i am a b tech student from India. My father gives me money every month end.But from the last 4 months i didn't even use single rupee in it.When ever he gives me money i will place that money in gambling.Now i am left with nothing.I even borrowed money from my friends too.Now what should i do.How to stop gambling....I am not able to come out of it.I tried a lot but i am not able to stop it.when ever some one gives me money for eating.Even that also i am spending on gambling.I am not able to sleep night properly also. only one thing that is going in my mind is how should i clear the money which i have taken from my friends.I want to do sucide......But my father is struggling a lot to make money so that i can study well. i want to take care of him in late stages.i want to share these thoughts with someone but even my friends are not letting me to come nearer to them also.so i shared here

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      Lovelife1215 

      13 months ago

      Sometimes you are sent to the right place. I am done. I have spent the Labor Day weekend in the casino. Lost more than I can even admit to myself. :-( I have lied to my family, saying "I want to stay home by myself". Ha! I spent the evenings with my "sick friends at the casino", Jack & Queenie & the other losers (sorry people) I often see there.

      I know why I gamble. 2 years & 2 months ago my 28 year old daughter died, she struggled with her own addictions, eating disorder, depression, alcoholism. I couldn't help her, and now she is gone. So now I live with that pain. At the casino I can forget the pain for a few hours. & feel good when I win (not that often, not at all this weekend!). I have 4, soon 5, beautiful grandchildren and 3 beautiful children, friends, why do I need to do this????

      I suspect my kids know my problem, but do not have an idea of the severity and would be horrified. As these young families struggle with money, I am throwing it in the garbage can. I must be crazy.

      Finding this article, the 12 helpful steps, and all your comments are giving me hope this morning, I am intelligent, I know I have a problem, but this is so hard. I hate that I was not more compassionate to my daughter's struggles. But I can do this for her. I will do this for her. Today I start. One day, one hour, one minute... that was her mantra and it will be mine.

      Thank you for listening, and I look forward to reading all your suggestions for stopping.

      (& damn you video poker, I really love to play! Just like an alcoholic loves the 'taste of beer'.

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      Dontgiveup 

      13 months ago

      Goldbar7, you are soo correct. My analogy is a casino is like a "crack" house. Some people can handle trying crack, but many people will get hooked and will keep going back to get "high" - I am definitely one of those people. Anyways - I have been gambling free for a solid 3 weeks (21 days) - I am happy about it, even though it is a daily struggle. I come to this post daily, sometimes 2-3x a day and if no new posts, I just go back and reread some prior posts. This, along with prayer, and talking about it with the people that care about me is important to my recovery, because, like alcohol and drug addiction, there is no cure, but it is manageable and I am hoping to have a better future! For now, one day at a time. God bless!

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      goldbar7s 

      13 months ago

      The casino is death. All the people there are ensnared in death. The cruel thing is that people feel like they are enjoying themselves while they are being killed.

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      Jackson rankin 

      13 months ago

      I am a gambler. I am 29 years old. I have five children and an amazing beautiful woman whom I lost to gambling. I spent all my money two weeks in a row. I promised my son who is six and the second youngest two packets of pokemon cards and nine fidget spinners this week totalling 50$ he lives in Auckland n I in taupo. His birthday was last week. He asked if I played for his bike. I lied and said yes I sent the money to his mum. He knew I was lying. I then went on to promise him what he wanted only simple little things to show that I love him once again I failed because of my addiction my greedy selfish addiction.

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      Enoughisenough 

      13 months ago

      I think everyone needs to know that we are all not alone in this fight. The first step to recovery is realizing that you have a problem and mine is an addiction to table games. I started with Blackjack then moved to Craps and then learned Baccarat. I will get paid on Friday and lose it all by Saturday morning and be scrambling until next pay day. The casino's make you think that you're valued by offering all these coupons and free this and that and all they're trying to do is get us through the doors and take more of our money. I will sit at the tables for 17 hours sometimes and only get up to go to the bathroom and leave there with nothing. Go back the next day chasing the losses from the day before and walk out with even less. One thing we have in common is the CHASE. No one that gambles is ever ahead. We win one day and lose it the next and it's a disgusting feeling. Life is so short and if we are going to spending our money why not spend it on things that we can show for like traveling! Today is my day 1 with no gambling. Today I take back my life.

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      Whyme? 

      13 months ago

      Won a bundle and then give it back plus more.

      That was 6 days ago. i'm trying to avoid going out so I won't gamble. So, I'm spending alot of time in bed.

      Trying to make it 30 days without gambling.

      I hope this blog gives me clarity.

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      Dontgiveup 

      14 months ago

      Hi bee, good for you! It's been 16 days for me now, the LONGEST I have been without gambling! Coming to this site has been transformative. Reading and sharing our stories has been very healing and inspiring to me. I wish you all the best, and please keep us posted. God bless!

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      bee 

      14 months ago

      hi everyone, i'm new here. I don't know where to begin. I'm addicted to slot machines. i decided on Saturday that I quit. I felt horrible lying to my husband about why i was pulling out so much money from the ATM. The breaking point was when we visited a mission in Mexico and realized that all these poor people were content with so little, and here I was just practically burning money on NOTHING. Well, on my addiction. And it was a hard pill to swallow. How could I have been so selfish, just wasting money on nothing? many times my husband check would just vanish...all because of my gambling. and I would lie and lie and lie and he would believe me. Well no more. I'm on day two of my recovery. And I know it will be hard. I drove past a casino today and I gave it the finger. Funny as it seems but I have to start thinking that it's the most horrific place I can go to now. We can do this. I can do this.

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      Pinoyben 

      14 months ago

      You are not alone my friend .... be strong! I'm also addicted to gambling but you can manage it ... in a way, you don't hurt yourself too much!.. don't over do it!!!!!..think about the value of money... our families and friends!.....remember, there's no winning in gambling ! Today u win..... next day you comeback then lose more than you win.... that's how it is my friend. I know it's fun.... but it is taking you slowly in the wrong way!..there's hope my friend......welcome on this site, Hopefully helps you!

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      Dontgiveup 

      14 months ago

      Closer77 and CF, thank you for posting. Like you guys, I literally just found this site and it is helping me relate and share with other gambling addicts. Recently, I was about to move out of the house that I have lived in for over 16 years, make my doggies and partner move with me, and move away from our best friends b/c I wanted to live in a cheaper place and "save" a lot of money and try to get out of debt (due to my gambling of course). This site helped me realize that I needed to "own my shit" and I cannot escape or run away (or pretend I was being financially smart). I was doing what a gambling addict usual does, what always did, make excuses as to why I needed to do what I needed to do - but not really telling the truth about where did all my money. On paper it sounds great, live more simply and move further away from casinos. The problem is, unless I plan on quitting my job and living within some reminiscent of civilization, I was kidding myself. We had signed a lease to rent and started moving our furniture, contacted realtors to sell our house, and prepped it sell, etc...when I got to this site 2 weeks ago, it helped me to realize that I didn't have to move, and the "really" reasons why I was moving. My partner, friends &family didn't want us to move, but "I" needed to realize that I didn't want to move b/c I was using the move to cover up all the horrible discussions that I had made. It was going to be a "fresh start" - you guys made me realize that I must "STAY", take ownership and that I could no longer hide, run, go under, over my PROBLEM - but I need to GO THROUGH this, OWN this, PAY the consequences for my ADDICTION, and LEARN from this. I will never, never be cured of this addiction, but I can MANAGE this addiction by 1) taking it one day at a time; 2) talking/posting about gambling; 3) keeping the focus on my addiction as the #1 most important thing that I needed to own - work, food, relationships was secondary - but stay focus that I CANNOT gambling; 4) Let go and Let God- there is a higher power at play - Pray 5) have faith and belief in myself that I deserve a better life - we all do my friends! 6) Again, talk to someone, I would NOW rather let people close to me, who love me, know that I have problem and that I need their support- rather than continue lying to them - and feeling ashamed. We are on this earth for a very, very short time - Now is the time to deal with addiction, have faith, and please Dontgiveup! God Bless.

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      MatchBettor 

      14 months ago

      I am hoping this post is somewhat therapeutic for me. I am in my mid-20's and live in Brazil where i do Matched Betting (Google It) Full time , i make good money doing this and it has been life changing in some aspects as the only job for a gringo here in brazil is teaching which is nowhere near a sustainable salary and is barley 20% of my income now. I have taken to matched betting massively and love the idea that it is upon me to make as much or as little money as i can. Casino offers are a huge part of my job (Mainly Slots) i would say it equates to about 50% of my income the other 50% being sports betting. Obviously with this comes an exposure to Online Casinos as well as having hundreds of pounds sitting in lots of different websites. Now i never had an issue with slots i always found once i hit a big win i never though it would pay out again and also with a lot of slot offers the buy-in to do them is small (normally under £50) meaning if i lose its only £50 I'm losing. My issue is with online Blackjack i first started using it 1 year ago to build up my winnings on casino websites and once i experienced a few big wins from blackjack well as they say the rest is history and i was hooked at first it was if it went under the radar as i would freak out at the thought of losing £100! so when i lost it was normally around that amount then i would stop. but then i came into a good chunk of money in the new year and then my losses started to get larger, after my first big loss (£400) i promised i would never do that again, sure enough a week later and i was back on it again i went through a week of accumulating big wins from blackjack i had made £1000 in 1 week just from blackjack but then by the end of the next week i had lost that £1000 and i was down ANOTHER £1000, as i said the severity never seemed so big because i was still making money doing matched betting so it was as if i was sustaining this habit but then every month my losses became more and more until 2 months ago i was £10,000 in debt which is crazy considering my monthly outgoings are £1500 and i make £4000 a month you do the maths and you can see i lost a SHIT TON of money! luckily my dad bailed me out and i said that i believe in what i do and that i would not make the mistake i made (i did not tell him the truth that i was 10k in debt because of blackjack instead i told it was due to a number of things and misplacing a BIG sports bet) he wasn't happy that i wanted to continue matched betting but i think he felt worried about what i would do (potentially suicide, although i never did contemplate this i can completely understand how people can get to that point) so he caved in and gave me money to start again, over the past 3 months i have cleared £8000 of that debt and have been doing great although i have still played blackjack from time to time i feel incredibly guilty when doing it, but to be honest i am writing on this page tonight because i feel i do have a problem and i have to be realistic I've lost about £800 this week on blackjack and feel the urge to play is stronger than ever i tell myself everyday i will never play it again and to look at the evidence of the past 2 months of when i didn't play i and made A LOT of money, but at the end of the day as I'm sure you are all aware the urge is very strong, at the moment i would say i am containing my addiction i am making more than i am losing and i am also very aware that i should not be doing it and that it is a toxic thing (this is the first step to accept its a problem) but i am very concerned that i could get sucked back into the gambling hole and if i were to lose everything like last time there would be no second chances and i feel the consequences would be even more severe

      My main issue is that there is no getting away from the access to gambling websites doing what i do , because i am sure that everyone who reads this will think "well obviously you need to stop what your doing" but when i tell you that it is not as simple as that you need to believe me and please try to take it into context

      i am living in brazil because my girlfriend is studying here my portuguese is limited so my only job options are teaching english which has an income of £1000 a month

      at the moment i make £4000 but will lose maybe £500-£800 of that on blackjack a month so obviously it is still much more lucrative to do what i do and i would really ask anyone who is reading this to put themselves in my position and really ask yourself would you stop doing a job that gives you £4000 a month and do something which gives £1000 a month even though the £4000 job has a big risk to it ? thats a question for everyone to answer subjectively but for me the answer id rather have the £4000 a month job

      but as i said i am still worried that i may be falling back into old habits , the past 2 months proved to me that i can control it but as i said this week i have fell back into it.

      its a long shot but if anyone has any advice other than "stop doing matched betting" then id love to hear it , i know about setting deposit limits but that will not work as i sometimes need to deposit thousands of pound in a site for a sports bet, maybe i might have a look into stake limiting to see if sites will let me have a stake limit on casino .

      Anyway i wish everyone on this site the best in their recovery i completely sympathies with you all but we do all have to take ourselves accountable for this mess we find ourselves in but having quit smoking and drinking in the past year i 100% believe we all can overcome our addictions , i think the best advice i have read on all these forums is to replace gambling with activities we need fun in our lives and things to look forward too i know its easy to say and harder to do , i have been struggling for a long time to find activities and i procrastinate about it frequently , but i know that is the key because it is BOREDOM which triggers my gambling ONLY THIS -- BOREDOM fill your life with great things and live it too the fullest.

      All the Best

      A

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      Closer77 

      14 months ago

      Hey guys just wanted to get on here and say that I've had a gambling problem for over 20years and it's been so hard for me to stop I'm blessed with a great job and a wonderful wife and family and I don't want to loose any of it. My problem has been online gambling I've lost over 250,000 in the last 2 1/2 years and I've been to a counselor and been on pills for it but none of that ever worked and yesterday I found this site and read some of the post on here and it made me realize that I need to stop gambling I'm sorry for all the things all u have been through and today has been the first day in a long time that I have not made a deposit it's been very hard I'm not gonna lie but I have to be done with it . Me and my wife's dream is to go to india and build shelters for all the homeless kids and I know that's possible because God has blessed me with the finances to do so. Again I've never bone anything like this before so I will pray for all of u and just ask that u pray for me as we all go through this struggle forgive me if my spelling and words are wrong not a very booksmart guy lol God bless all of u

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      Cf 

      14 months ago

      I have gambled for 6 years mainly on fobt they are a joke. I as many people would like to see them banned as we all know that wouldn't happen. I got into loads of debt and to ashamed to tell any of my family. The last straw was I lost 200 pounds I punched the machine and was banned from the shop. If we all stand together stop chasing your losses. I don't gamble now as I want live my live.

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      Dontgiveup 

      14 months ago

      Hi everyone, its been 12 days - I am doing good. The "calling" is starting to get less (but they are still there), but I am not fooling myself - I have to stay diligent and know that I am messed up, and that I CANNOT GAMBLE!

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      Dontgiveup 

      14 months ago

      Hi guys, day 7, it's Friday night and I have free slot dollars today. I am going thru withdrawal (physical and mentally), because I have the night free and it's been a long week and I deserve to get "high" and escape for awhile. But I forcing myself to take ownership and come back to this post to share and be honest with myself. I reread some of your posts to help me deal with this addiction. I read someone saying that it may take 30 days for your brain to rewire itself. I can't wait! Obviously, I know that 30 days is just the beginning, and for now, I just need to focus on the here and NOW! I keep chanting (my inner voice) I don't ever want or need to do "crack" (aka gambling) again! Stay strong everyone - God bless!

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      Dontgiveup 

      14 months ago

      Hi everyone, thank you for sharing your stories! Its powerful! First thing I want to say - besides THANK YOU, is there is HOPE! Even in my darkest hour (there have been many), I always thank God for life...my life. My story - I have been a gambling addict for almost 10 years. It started innocently - leisure and entertainment - I could afford to loss "a couple of bucks" at the beginning but it has spiraled into almost a daily addiction (4-5x a week) on average. I would think with anticipation of my next visit at the casino - in the morning I would write in my daily planner book, during work, coming home from work, going to bed - nonstop. Slots machines is my drug. Win or lose, winning jackpots or not I would still leave almost with nothing and 99% of the time with losses because I was chasing the high. I would just tell myself that it was ok that I only lost $100, then $500, then $1000 on one visit, and would stay on average 3hr to 4 hrs, but a few times more than 12 hours. I was driving over an hour to various places on work nights to "hit all of the casinos" that gave me "free slot dollars". I paced myself (I am a really organized, smart individual, "put together" with a great job - at least that's how I fooled myself and others). At one point, I had 5 casino membership cards and was "chasing the high". Thank god Atlantic City was 2.5 hrs away, and with at least 5 casinos within an 1-1.5hrs I had my fill (while also working full time, and hanging out with my friends and family) and keeping a façade. I was living a lie, I was lying to myself (that I was in control and that it wasn't that bad, and things could be worst). I was a "functional gambling addict" like many of you here on this post. So for the past 6-7 years I accepted that fact, I had some highs, but mostly lows, and the highs that I did have needed to be higher, I was no longer content if I won a $100, or a couple hundred dollars - I was soo numb and bored and felt that the "machine" owed me more, that if I don't "hit big" then I haven't really won - and just as scary, I felt like I deserved it - I deserved to win - win BIG. Talk about pathetic and sad- that's me. In any case, I am on my 6th day of not gambling. It's not about will power, self loathing or shame, I have FINALLY decided to own it - I have told my dearest friends and family, I have asked them for their love and support, ask them to hold me accountable because I "need" to get better so I can be the person I was before this addiction took over. I have started to associate the casinos as the "crack house" and I no longer want to be a crack junkie. I am telling myself daily that I own my life, and its not about will power, but surrendering to the truth. I have to face my "demons" head-on DAILY (just like the compulsion to gamble) I need the same desire/focus to stay vigilant! I will pray for you all, god bless. I will post again soon, I promise.

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      goldbar7s 

      14 months ago

      Went to Atlantic City on Monday. I did not go to gamble. I went to walk the Boardwalk and to sit by the ocean to think and I did that. The only gambling I did was the $30 free slot play I got for the bus trip. I won $33. At one point I looked into my purse for my wallet and my wallet was gone. The day turned into a nightmare. When I got home I checked my accounts and hundreds of dollars were charged on my credit cards. Hundreds of dollars were charged on my bank debit card. Someone knew exactly what to do with that wallet. So, I lost big in Atlantic City, not to slots but to a sharp criminal. Maybe sooner or later I will understand what a complete dummy I am.

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      Imatwitsend 

      14 months ago

      I've read the stories and I need help !!! I've lost 2 houses in less than a year. I've lied to my wife and family members to feed my addiction. I'm currently living with my wife's parents I pay rent here but I have not paid this month !!! I love to gamble even when I win I lose because I'm trying to win bigger jackpots 500 to 2000 is nothing . I've tried to quit gambling but I can't. Was doing well for a bit but when those free buffets come to me I go and it's like the gaming area calls me and I can't stop . I'm about to lose my family I've got to get help!!!!

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      AC2 

      14 months ago

      I have a gambling problem. I know I do, I admit it but continue to go to the casino every chance I get. I lie to my husband, I ask my son to lie for me, I am now pawning things to allow me to have money to go. I just got back..I went with 125.00, hit 400.00, came home with .15. I am so disgusted with myself. I tried telling myself on the way home if this damn woman would have gotten off the machine I wanted to play (and have thought about this machine since last week when I first played it) that I would still have all the money. I am still feeling angry that she sat there knowing I wanted the damn machine! See, I have a problem but all I want to do is figure out how to get the next 1-200.00 so I can go back and try to win something, knowing damn well I will still come home with nothing because I have NO SELF CONTROL! My god, I just a entire box of cereal! Im a mess! My grandparents and I would go to the casino together, grandma died a couple years ago, I have brought her with me in her little urn that I have. Grandpa is in the nursing home and can no longer go. I go every week by myself. My husband is pissed! He was telling me via text tonight that if I went he was taking the kids and leaving. I still went. I told him I had free money on my card that I was going to use (which was true) but I didnt tell him what I had pawned to go there. I hear the sounds in my head, I hear the bells dinging and all I want to do is to go back. SO LOST IN LIFE RIGHT NOW!

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      goldbar7s 

      14 months ago

      Videopokerloser, thank you for sharing your insight about the problem we are experiencing. It really is a great help. Good luck to you!

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      it s been a while since i posted a comment. tbh, it was really hard, i was able to stop for 3 months, then one big mistake, relapsed again. it just so hard that, you stop, saved money, then one big mi 

      14 months ago

      sorry for the negatives, but this is our reality.

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      Noname 

      14 months ago

      Hello, I have been gambling for more then 15 years and going to GA religiously once a week for more then 5 years and I still can't stop gambling. I've lost everything my home, family and friends. I think I love gambling more then anything and nothing can stop me from not placing a bet. I feel like home when I'm in casinos, I love sitting in front of the machine and press that F button. I feel so powerful when I have money to play and noone can tell me how to live my life. Most of the time people can't tell that I have a problem. I look good and happy, very chatty and no one knows what has been happening to me what I really feel deep inside. When I loose I feel lost, abundant, lonely, sick to my stomach, etc. That last for a few days until I get better and then I'm back in action. I cannot describe how severe this addiction is. I'm hopeless and most of the time want to disappear. The only what keeps me alive is knowing that my children will suffer if I do anything to myself. I pray every day to God to give me strength to stop gambling. Gambling has total control of my life. I really wish that one day I will not return to casinos and start living life and be real happy person again.

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      InRecovery69 

      14 months ago

      I am a compulsive gambler and i need help. These are two important admissions. I was openly exposed to gambling as a child as my mum and dad both gambled. The disease took hold of me and has made my life tell since the age of 16. I have caused so much heartache for my lovely wife who married me after I convinced her I could quit. We have been married 9 years now and have a beautiful 8 year old daughter. I have tried to quit during our marriage and even went 3 years without spending as much as a pound on the lottery! This was great, we were so happy then. However, I lapsed a couple of times and filled my life with lies in order to cover my gambling. I lied to my wife nearly everyday. I was ashamed of this. I would cry on the way home and have to perk myself up before entering the front door so I could lie convincingly to my wife. To cut a long story short I lapsed recently and took out payday loans, long term loans and credit cards in order to find money to replace what I had lost. My wife found out as I had no choice but to admit what I had done. She, through some kind of miracle us still with me. She is helping me...it is so important to have support from someone so close. But I hurt her a lot. She would cry a lot by herself and with my daughter. I felt so sad, suicidal at times. We went through a difficult period when she found out. It was very hard. Somehow I convinced her to give me one last chance and she has. This was in March and it is now August. I am happy to say I haven't gambled in this period. I have done something I had been unwilling to do in the past through pride alone; I gave her my credit cards and debit card. I gave her access to my online banking and online credit card apps. I have given her complete transparency of my finances. She goes through my accounts to check the balances and takes comfort in the fact that she knows where my money goes each month. At the moment it is mostly going towards clearing the loans and credit cards, but a lot goes toward paying the rent and keeping on top of bills. I gambled in bookies and online casinos and it is hard to stop. Letting someone take control of your finances or have clear visibility of where your money goes is so important. This is a big big help. However, gamblers are cunning and there are always ways to deceive people. You have to really want to not gamble, to not lie, to be honest with your spouse. I want all of those desperately. Sometimes you have to hit rock bottom to have this desire and I hit rock bottom. The thought of losing my wife and child was awful. The pain of all I had done through gambling was awful. The mental anguish I endured and the physical pain that I caused myself through self-harm was awful. The low esteem in which those who know about my problem hold me was awful. The friends I have alienated is awful. The pain I put my wonderful wife through was awful. So many negatives to gambling...i cannot think of one absolutely genuine positive. My wife is so happy that i am in recovery, however, she still struggles with thoughts of how our life would be if I was not a gambler. We would own our own home and our daughter would have her own bedroom and a beautiful garden to play in. It is not too late for me, I have a well paid job and a final chance. I intend to cease that final chance with both hands. Finally, I owe a debtor gratitude to Jehovah our god. His power has given my wife strength and he has given me strength. Prayer and faith are two amazing things that can help anyone achieve anything. Do not underestimate them. I thank God for my wife, she has literally saved my life. I owe her a happy life and future which I can give her...if I can abstain from gambling. I hope my post is useful. Good luck to everyone cursed by this horrible addiction.

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      videopokerloser 

      14 months ago

      Lauragirl, I stay on this list for confirmation to stay away from gambling. Been there, done that many times with $2k down the tubes. I couldn't go to GA either, but went to private one-on-one counseling for 6 months. Big difference. You have to stay away from gambling for at least 1 month in order for your brain to start reverting away from the reward neurotransmitters. Slowly after, you begin to realize what you've done. The chasing your money ache goes away, the desire to gamble turns to outward sickness-nausea, at least it did with me. You have to understand that gambling is like alcoholism or any other addiction. It changes your brain. It's hard, but don't gamble for at least a month and clarity will return. You'll make better decisions. I messed up once earlier this year, but it made me realize how stupid it is to gamble. Been 'clean' over a year outside of that, and now am just a few months away from buying a house with a large down payment. I'd be in the poor house I was in before if I still gambled. Btw, I live in Las Vegas.

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      Lauragrl6627 

      14 months ago

      I've been reading the blogs on this site an hour now because this week I lost 2000 dollars and had not gambled in months. I just seem to open Pandora's box at times that I feel lonely. Chasing my losses has made me nuratic. I am trying to find a solution for my problem without GA because guys this did not work for me. I can not sit in a group therapy session does anyone have any suggestions because I need real help. This makes no sense to me how I ended up sneaking around and sitting alone in a casino sweating to try to catch up and pay my debt. Please give me good advice because I'm gonna go insane. It's a cruel habit as it ended a relationship with a man I truly loved but since his mother was a compulsive gambler and he had nothing to do with her for 30 years, I should have paid more attention to what he was going through with me. He is gone now and I have to stop pining for him to come back and I really have not changed my situation at all. I want to change and start a new healthy life without this dragon breathing down my neck to pull into the casino. I even Uber people around the casino all night and that's not good anymore but I am trying to make up some of my losses and pay my bills. HELP!!

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      goldbar7s 

      15 months ago

      This game is bigger than all of us. Everyone that puts a dollar in a machine and sees how money can come out of it is addicted and is thinking about their next visit to the casino. We all start believing we can win. This is only very sad. We cannot win!

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      GaryThomp 

      15 months ago

      Day 9 nearly over and it's getting easier each day. Don't suffer and think there's no help out there as there is.

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      IN pain..... 

      15 months ago

      Every payday.. Pay my bills, tell myself im not going to gamble.. I never win. Ends up spending £500+ every 4 weeks. Ive had enough, I never even win anything to walk away and enjoy I just loose loose loose. I can't believe im so fucked in the head to keep doing it. I literally cannot control it. I also have £10 left for 4 weeks. same position as every other month tbh.

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      Pinoyben 

      15 months ago

      You are not alone my friend! The only way to win in gambling is to S T O P!

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      jerry 

      15 months ago

      I start to gamble at the age of 19, now I'm turning 44 in October, hoping to stop going to casino. It's hard that everytime I promise myself to stop stil I sneak in whenever I have free time, hopefully I will be true to myself this time.

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      GaryThomp 

      15 months ago

      It's horrible Roly, I've done the exact same things at times. I'm only on day 3 but feeling good for it. I'm back on that book and it seems to be the only thing that makes me think about what I'm doing.

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      Roly poly 

      15 months ago

      It's true as you can never be in control when your chasing! Not gambled for 3 months and a moment of madness I ended up losing 800! The same cycle time and time again! Really had enough of life!

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      Christopher1985 

      15 months ago

      Thank you Goldbar. It is a relief to get help. I encourage everyone posting to go to GA meetings as we need to realize we can never ever be cured but we can arrest this disease by going to continuous meetings. The 2 hours you spend each week far outweighs the massive negative consequences and potential time lost from relapsing.

      Please do not bother posting if you refuse to receive help as it is very unlikely to quit on your own.

      I do hope everyone posting can quit for good.

    • profile image

      Gary Thompson 

      15 months ago

      Reading all the comment here it's both good and horrible to know I'm not the only one. Good that I'm not alone but horrible there is so many other people in the same position. No matter how many times my friends and family help me out I manage to fuck it all up again. It seems like I like to get myself in complete messes. Marriage fucked, friendships fucked and on the verge of my mother wiping her hands with me. I've got a very well paying job and I've got nothing to show for it. My wife's mother died 2 months ago and I had to borrow the money from my mum so she could go to the funeral, I didn't even have enough for me and my son to go with her. Completely ashamed of myself. Lost another £400 odd i didn't have last night and already owe 80% of my wages at the end of the month. Couldn't pay my bills this month because I'm an inconsiderate prick. I had a good strong word with myself last night and today. I'm determent to get a life as I've wasted the last 20 with this crap. Last year I stopped for 2 months after I bought the audio book "Allen Carr Easyway to Stop Gambling" it did work for me for them 2 months but then I got cocky and thought I could control it, I was wrong I'm actually worse than ever I feel. I've got hundreds of embarrassing stories of all the shit I done to fund my gambling but it would take a lifetime to mention them all. I need help I know I do and today is the start of my new life. I'm in a good enough job where I will get my life on track in a year or so, it's not long at all because if I don't fix this now I'm going to be a very sad lonely old man some day with a lifetime of regrets. I'm only 39 I've got a few years left on this planet, please god don't let gambling control the rest of them. If anyone needs to talk just add me on skype (red25devil) I need to talk also so some support for each other can only be a good thing. Peace out and everyone have a great gambling free day xx

    • profile image

      GaryThomp 

      15 months ago

      Reading all the comment here it both good and horrible to know I'm not the only one. Good that I'm not alone but horrible there is so many other people in the same position. No matter how many times my friends and family help me out I manage to fuck it all up again. It seems like I like to get myself in complete messes. Marriage fucked, friendships fucked and on the verge of my mother wiping her hands with me. I've got a very well paying job and I've got nothing to show for it. My wife's mother died 2 months ago and I had to borrow the money from my mum so she could go to the funeral, I didn't even have enough for me and my son to go with her. Completely ashamed of myself. Lost another £400 odd i didn't have last night and already owe 80% of my wages at the end of the month. Couldn't pay my bills this month because I'm an inconsiderate prick. I had a good strong word with myself last night and today. I'm determent to get a life as I've wasted the last 20 with this crap. Last year I stopped for 2 months after I bought the audio book "Allen Carr Easyway to Stop Gambling" it did work for me for them 2 months but then I got cocky and thought I could control it, I was wrong I'm actually worse than ever I feel. I've got hundreds of embarrassing stories of all the shit I done to fund my gambling but it would take a lifetime to mention them all. I need help I know I do and today is the start of my new life. I'm in a good enough job where I will get my life on track in a year or so, it's not long at all because if I don't fix this now I'm going to be a very sad lonely old man some day with a lifetime of regrets. I'm only 39 I've got a few years left on this planet, please god don't let gambling control the rest of them. If anyone needs to talk just add me on skype (red25devil) I need to talk to so some support for each other can only be a good thing. Peace out and everyone have a great gambling free day xx

    • profile image

      goldbar7s 

      15 months ago

      Christopher, I am glad that you found help!

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