Consider the following steps.
Admit to a close friend, partner or parent about your Gambling Addiction or all of these.
I touched on this subject briefly in my last blog post ( link below ) but felt I should explain further.
This will be mentioned so much throughout these blog posts because I can’t put enough emphasis on how important was to my recovery and still is to this day.
It was my parents, my girlfriend and my best friend that I told.
Why did I tell these people in particular about my Gambling Addiction?
They’re the closest people to me and yes I wanted them to know but also one of the main reasons I told them was that I had somebody to turn to no matter the situation. I might not want to tell my girlfriend something that I be able to tell me best friend as i didn’t want her worrying etc.
So i made sure I wasn’t bottling things up, I was getting it off my chest and getting advice then taking action.
As Gambling Addicts we are really secretive I knew this had to change for me to fight this addiction.
All the people I confided in acted as accountability partners and people I could lean on in times I was struggling both with my addiction and financially.
It was the hardest thing I’ve had to do to this day to tell them about the trouble I’d got myself in with gambling and now debt but the hardest things often reap the biggest rewards and I stand by that especially regarding this subject.
My relationships with my girlfriend, parents and best friend are now stronger than ever because they appreciate that I turned to them in my time of need.
They understand how difficult for me it was to be honest with them about my gambling problem but they also see the actions I’m taking to put this behind and work on creating a better future
Let somebody else deal with your finances.
I closed my personal account and got my salary paid into a joint account that I hold with my girlfriend. I done this firstly because I wanted to prove I’m committed to fighting this addiction and being transparent from then on.
It also acted as a safety net should I relapsed my girlfriend would see the suspect transactions in our joint account and I would be called out on it immediately.
Then I got in touch with Stepchange to control my debt.
I made Stepchange aware of all my outgoings and all the money I owe to lenders and they took over from there.
I pay them once a month and they distribute that amount to my lenders evenly and I no longer have to speak to them as they speak to Stepchange and when I receive letters or phone calls I refer them to Stepchange.
This Is completely free and there are other debt charities that other similar services. I do now have defaults on my credit history as a result but this will vary depending on your situation.
The link below is for Stepchange’s Debt Remedy Tool. It will take about 20 minutes to complete and gives you a suggestion of how they think it’s best control your debt.
It’ll make it far more difficult when you have urge to gamble if you’re not controlling your money and because you aren’t acting on the urge hopefully this with give you enough time to realise that it’s not a good idea to gamble
Get help for your Gambling Addiction
I used Aquarius’ free 1 to 1 sessions because I didn’t feel comfortable speaking to multiple people about my problem which is what the GA meetings are.
It was helpful speaking to someone outside of family and friends.
I often found I was sharing things in my counselling that I wasn’t my friends and family. The counsellors knowledge of addictions was far greater than my family and friends.
He was full of ideas about how to tackle this addiction, understanding, empathic and not judgmental.
Use the link below for more details about the free counselling Gamcare offer through Aquarius.
I used Gamcare’s netline and phone line services when I was having urges or just not feeling very good about myself.
Again I found myself confiding information in them I wasn’t sharing with friends and family because they were more likely to understand
Find Your why
I’ve mentioned that I told my family and friend about my Gambling Addiction for the reasons above but this also became my why and driving force.
It was so difficult to come clean about my gambling problem to them and the last thing I want or need is to have to go back to them and admit I’ve relapsed.
I want a better life for myself and for my girlfriend, I don’t want to be controlled by anybody or anything and my gambling addiction was controlling every aspect of my life.
I got into the habit of thinking about my Why when having urges or moments of despair got me back on track and reminded me why I’m doing this and why I don’t want to let people and myself down again.
What are the first steps you took when you finally admitted you have a Gambling Addiction? Tell us your tips and story in the comments below!
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