The siren song of the slot machines used to lure me in, promising a fleeting escape from reality. Reading other stories about gambling addiction, I felt a chilling echo of my own experiences reflected back at me. As an Italian living in the UK for six years, my life had taken an unsettling turn when I discovered the flashing machines within the bookies.
Initially, it started small. I justified it by telling myself, "At the end of the day, all the bills are paid. Why not give these machines a try?" Soon, however, the occasional try morphed into a regular habit, consuming days and weeks. Today, the weight of £450 thrown away at the slots sits heavy on my conscience. That money could have been a gift for my kids, something they truly desired. The truth is, I knew about this problem. Back in October, I vowed to take control. For four glorious months, I was free – no cigarettes, no alcohol, and most importantly, no gambling.
Looking at my bank account overflowing with saved money, a voice whispered, "Just £20. Just this once." That was all it took. The cycle restarted, and the shame washed over me. I realized fighting this alone was a losing battle. Desperate for help, I stumbled upon this website, and a flicker of hope ignited within me. Perhaps, this is the decisive step I need to finally overcome this pathology.
My English might not be perfect, but my message is clear: I need help. Thank you for reading.
Thank you for sharing on our forum, a big welcome to you. You have explained your situation very well. Clearly you are able to remember the benefits of being gamble free so hold onto those thoughts. As you said, it looks like complacency crept in. We hope you find connecting with others a great source of support and help.
You are also welcome to contact our 24/7 helpline to speak to an adviser.
Hey man I hope you’re ok.
That’s all it takes sometimes is ‘that voice’ telling ya it’s not that bad & u will go & do it all over again.
What safeguards do you have in place, have you considered going to gamblers anonymous as well? If not I would suggest you do.
To introduce myself to you my name is Rob & I am a compulsive gambler. However my last bet was on the 5/8/23
Hi Rob, thanks for suggesting Gamblers Anonymous. While I haven't joined yet, I'm actively working to change my gambling habits. I recently acknowledged my condition and am exploring the underlying reasons behind my behavior. To avoid triggers, I've adopted a strict routine - work, gym, home - and actively resist temptations like after-work drinks or walking past betting shops. Even on bus rides, I avert my eyes from gambling advertisements. This approach has been effective so far, but I recognize the challenge ahead.
Although my longest period of abstinence was 4 months, I'm aware of the risk of relapse. Should I enter a betting shop again, I will definitely seek physical support like Gamblers Anonymous. Your suggestion means a lot, and I truly believe in the power of community. Let's keep supporting each other in our journeys towards recovery.
Best of luck to you too!
have you considered quite a drastic action where someone else is in control of your finances? I’ve recently used this technique.
turning gambling off on your banking / blocking yourself on all betting websites also helps.
In terms of having someone else manage your money, it could be your partner, a relative or even a close friend who you trust. Failing those options, would a weekly check in with someone you trust to show them banking apps to prove gamble free?
I have found over the years that my relapses tend to happen when I think I can get away with it and not be caught. So possibly setting yourself up to have regular check ins with someone to have a quick peek will deter you as the lying / deception make it a very real situation and often the guilt takes over from the compulsion to gamble.
obviously I’m not an expert, just someone whose done the same as you repeatedly and just trying to make it to the other side.
Good luck, everyone is rooting for you.
Uv had some decent advice here, if u feel edgy going past bookies I would consider self excluding from them.
I’ve got Gamban installed on my phone & that stops access to European betting sites as well.
Fill your time wisely enough but don’t putt too much pressure on yourself all the while, try not too bro.
Take care, good luck. If you need anything reach out 👍
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