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Lanie's Hope

Gambling Addiction Suicide

Suicide, attempted suicide and suicidal ideation  is common among compulsive gamblers. By the time the devastation of the disease reaches the tipping point in a pathological gambler’s life they face grave financial problems, their families and relationships are in ruin, self-esteem has been decimated and a sense of helplessness and hopelessness is pervasive. Generally, by the time an addicted gambler “reaches bottom,”  every aspect of their life has been destroyed.  Suicide is all too common in those afflicted with the disease of compulsive gambling.

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I would argue that the “bottom” for a compulsive gambler is much lower than that of other addicts. Why? Compulsive gambling does not physically impair the addict. We don’t fall down, slur our words, pass out or exhibit other outwardly visible warning signs.  Our livers don’t give out and our kidneys don’t fail. Compulsive gamblers stop gambling when our resources run out.  Period.  There are no more stashes of cash, no more credit card cash advances to be had, no more loans from friends and family and no household funds  to reallocate to feed our addiction. By the time a compulsive gambler reaches bottom they have several choices; reach out for help through Gambler’s Anonymous, faith-based groups and therapy, face a life of desperation on government subsidies or on the streets and,  all too often,addicted gamblers see suicide as the only way out.

I frequently hear from mental health practitioners that problem gamblers have the highest suicide of any addicted group. I believe this to be more an anecdotal statement than a quantifiable one, for several reasons. 1) The body of scientific study on compulsive gambling is quite limited. 2) Most studies that do exist are funded by gaming industry-related entities thus  there exists at least the possibility of bias in studies or at the very least funding can be targeted to studies that don’t encompass studies as offensive as suicide rates and 3) Most gambling-related deaths don’t indicate “pathological gambling” on the death certificate as the cause of death. A drug overdose, a car crashing into a brick wall would not necessarily be listed as a suicide. A self-inflicted firearms incident would of course be labeled a suicide, but the likelihood of an indication of a  “gambling related suicide” as the cause of death is highly improbable.

From an “in the trenches view”  I can tell you that my experience is that suicidal thoughts are commonplace.  Last year, while sitting in a break room at a Gamblers Anonymous convention,  the conversation turned to suicide. Quite candidly five of us discussed whether or not we had attempted or considered suicide. THREE out of FIVE said they had! And..frankly…we weren’t freaked out about this. We could have been talking about a recent news story or a movie we’d all seen. Suicide and discussion of suicide is common in our groups.  Gamblers anonymous includes the question “Have you ever attempted or considered self-destruction as a result of your gambling?” as one of the screening questions for Compulsive Gambling diagnosis.  I would venture to guess that at any GA meeting, 40% of the room would answer YES to this question.

My sister Lanie died as a result of an overdose of Paxil  due to her secret and devastating gambling addiction. Do I believe it was a suicide? In my heart of hearts …No. I think she was sad, depressed, ashamed and simply didn’t want to feel the emotional pain and heartache her addiction had caused. Lanie’s death certificate reads “cerebral hemorrhage.” There is no mention of  a gambling addiction in relation to the overdose and resultant Seretonin Syndrome and stroke that ultimately ended her life.

And here’s the REAL tragedy – pathological gamblers who DO seek treatment for suicidal ideation RARELY covered by medical insurance. I have first hand experience of this and similar stories are common within the rooms of Gamblers Anonymous.  I once assisted in admitting a suicidal gambler  to a local hospital for observation  and mental health care. We were clearly informed by the hospital admissions representative that their insurance would have covered the hospitalization if they were an alcoholic or a drug addict with the same self-destructive thoughts.  The admitting clerk’s words echo in my head to this day, “Any drug or alcohol problems? No? That’s too bad Hon’! Your insurance covers that!”

If you or someone you love has a gambling problem, please reach out for help!  Life gets so much better!  You can experience a gambling-free and happy life!  Help is available 24/7 at  the  National Hotline  1-800-522-4700.

 

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97 Comments

  1. bhnMarch 30, 2013 at 9:53 pmReply

    Gambling destroyed my life, I hate myself and cannot think how I will make it through this night without killing myself. I despise myself and I deserve to die a slow and tortuous death. I do not deserve my life anymore.

    I have tried everything with gambling and always relapse, my life is over I just need to finalize the ending.

    I am sorry to my family but you are better off without me. Please forgive me, I am a waste of life.

    • JezebelJune 6, 2015 at 1:14 amReply

      I am right there with you. It’s baffles me how I can continually make poor decisions and fall victim to the allure of gambling. I feel the time is drawing near for me to part with this miserable existence. Perhaps in another life I will do better.

    • Steve, a fatherAugust 11, 2015 at 10:27 amReply

      I’ve hit rock bottom. Years of compulsive gambling. I am devastated.

      • Karen LeeAugust 12, 2015 at 2:51 pmReply

        Thank you, Steve for your letter. If you are in the United States, I would highly encourage you to check out treatment and 12-step programs available in your area. Most states offer free or very reasonable treatment for the gambler and their families. I can speak from personal experience that I was once helpless and without hope until I walked into a GA meeting over 13 years ago. That meeting changed my life for the better, brought new friends who cared and provided support and helped me to change the way I think and live each day. If you need resource information, I have included the number of the National Council of Problem Gambling’s 24-hour help line at 1-800-522-4700.
        Additionally, you can check the website at gamblersanonymous.org for meeting information in your area. If you feel that you are in danger of harming yourself, then I would strongly advise you to contact the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8225 for immediate assistance. No matter how bad you think things are, suicide is a ‘permanent solution’ to a ‘temporary problem’.

    • ShelleySeptember 12, 2016 at 5:28 amReply

      I know how desperate you are feeling right now as I am in the exact same mindset. I have finaly admitted to myself that I need to get help for my addiction to online gambling, and this is due to the fact that it has dragged me to the lowest point in my life.

      I can’t sleep or eat, I feel physically sick all the time, and I cannot look my loved ones in the eye. How do you explain to them that you are a sad liar who will do anything to find a way to gamble away money that isn’t even yours? I don’t know how to start that coversation, especially given the fact I have lied to them time and time again when they ask ‘Have you been leaving those slots alone?”

      So I now find myself about to lose my car, I am behind with my rent, and I cannot live this half life anymore, all because I am convinced that one day I might win big and then I can make all of my problems go away. How bloody stupid of me!!!

      And the sad thing is that I am old enough and wise enough to know better. I have a beautiful new granddaughter, 4 amazing grown up children and a partner who loves me deeply. So why have I taken such a bad turn in life? I just cannot work it out, 5 years of my life wasted on these poxy gaming sites.

      I just do not know how I am ever going to put this right, I just do not know where to start.

      • libbyDecember 24, 2016 at 6:07 amReply

        Shelley, speak to your loved ones. Their response will surprise you. My partner of 17 years had a gambling habit, he hid it from all of us. The police were waiting for me as I arrived home from work, he had been in a road traffic accident and was killed. In the days and weeks afterwards, the phone rang and letters arrived from debt companies. We would do anything to have him back, its only money. We would have found a way. The situation we are now in is horrendous Our minds never stop and our hearts feel we have let him down. Did we ever really know him if we were unaware of his daily struggles? Please, speak to someone, share this burden and find a way. Do not leave your family behind with this legacy. They will not be better off without you. Believe me. I will live with this outcome for the rest of my life. Ending it will not stop the pain, just pass it on to everyone in your life, for the rest of theirs.

        • Bea AikensJanuary 5, 2017 at 3:36 pmReplyAuthor

          Libby
          I am so sorry to hear of your partner’s death:( Far too many suicides occur as a result of gambling addiction! In fact, we get more “web-hits” on this topic than any other. I wish that wasn’t the case! I long for the day when treatment and awareness are such that there is no longer shame associated with a gambling addiction and people who need help SEEK IT! Thank you for sharing your story. I am so sorry. I pray for you and your family. You are brave to speak out. We CAN make a difference by sharing our shared stories and struggles. God Bless you! Bea

        • KAJanuary 20, 2017 at 2:59 amReply

          I am a mother of five and married for 24 years , I was able to live with my gambling addiction for about 14 years . I have stopped on and off I am at a point of my life that for months can not shake the thought of just doing my family a favor and relief the stress of watching me waist away every time I loose everything. I lost my job , due to my gambling , I have no friends because I keep to my self and destroyed my marriage little by little. I can honestly say that I feel hopeless to this lack of self control. I see only pain in my family because of it and have tried to stop and not achieve this goal. I keep my self glued to the tv , just so I stoop thinking about killings my self , but as soon as I stop that thought is there . My kids are now in denial of what is going on and my husband can deal with it anymore he just stopped talking and we just don’t exist anymore. Is hard , I don’t even want to eat, can not sleep . I feel that it might be better for everyone not to have to deal with my ups and downs. I guess I am just a coward can’t move forward and at the same time can’t stop. I feel guilty and sad. Even getting help is hard since I just can not bring my self to talk Or look for help. I hope I can somehow figure something before I get the strength to just finish what I start and be done with it.

          • Bea AikensJanuary 20, 2017 at 2:30 pmAuthor

            Dearest Karla,
            I have felt exactly as you do. It’s an awful feeling and a lonely place to be. Please, please…make yourself pick up the phone and speak to a professional. It really DOES get better! So much better! But you’ve got to reach out for help. I promise you that life will get better if you get help for your gambling addiction. This is a very real mental health disorder. You are not weak, nor are your worthless. You have an illness that can be arrested. Please, if you are thinking of suicide, CALL the SUICIDE PREVENTION HOTLINE at 1-800-273-8255. For 24 hour HELP with GAMBLING ADDICTION,call 1-800-522-4700

  2. Bea AikensApril 10, 2013 at 8:15 pmReplyAuthor

    This poignant message was not a hoax. This was a very real cry for help. I am not trained in handling such a situation, yet I received this on Easter Sunday..with no phone number…no means of communicating other than by email, so I reached out in the only way possible. Sometimes we just need to know we are not alone.

    Thank the Lord this individual replied, got help and has touched base several times to give a progress report on recovery. Intensive treatment and a mutual aid group are helping. One day at a time.

  3. MichaelOctober 15, 2013 at 6:42 pmReply

    I have same problem as above. Life is ruined. No hope. Need help.

    • Bea AikensOctober 16, 2013 at 1:21 pmReplyAuthor

      Dear Michael,
      There are resources available on this site and in your community to HELP you! I understand that feeling that your “life is ruined.” I once felt that way as well…lost…hopeless..afraid and ashamed. Please know that I understand as do many others in recovery from the disease of compulsive gambling. The fact that you said “Need help” tells me all is not lost and you are reaching out! That’s awesome! Please contact a recovery program like Gamblers Anonymous in your area. HELP is available and it won’t always feel this way..if you pick up the phone. Blessings to you Michael and please keep us posted.

  4. BazOctober 26, 2013 at 6:46 amReply

    I too am wondering how and if I’ll ever break free of this disease. Another $3,000 wasted, another supermarket trip looking for cheaper goods tomorrow. It hurts so much.

    • Bea AikensNovember 4, 2013 at 8:49 pmReplyAuthor

      Dear Baz,
      Help is available…if you truly are a compulsive gambler, you can’t go it alone. The American Psychiatric Association recognizes “Disordered Gambling” as a disease requiring treatment. Please reach out to one of the resources on this site, or call the 24-Hour HelpLine at 1-800-522-4700.
      Bea

  5. ThomasJanuary 5, 2015 at 3:56 pmReply

    I am in the same situation. Hurt everyone I care about and feel like there is no turning back. I owe people over $15000 with no way of paying them back. Can’t file bankruptcy because I owe people and not credit cards. No where to turn to and these people want there money. What else can I do? I feel there is no way out. I’m sorry for being a waste of space.

    • ThomasJanuary 5, 2015 at 3:59 pmReply

      Even if I find the strength to keep going these people I owe Are not as forgiving. Stuck in a terrible situation.

      • Bea AikensJanuary 26, 2015 at 1:27 pmReplyAuthor

        Dear Thomas,
        We do hurt people in our addiction…and the person we hurt the most is ourselves! I know that it can be difficult to see any hope …yet I know first hand that there IS Hope and Life gets better. Please, please, don’t give up on life. Get help. Therapy is available. 12-Step programs are available. There is a 24-hour helpline at 1-800 522-4700 and the Suicide Prevention Hotline is 800-273-8255.
        Never, never give up on yourself or on life. Compulsive gambling is a disease…an addiction that makes us do things we never imagined we would do. But it gets better. With help. With time. Please stick around for the miracles.
        Your life matters and I am praying for you!
        Bea

  6. JenniferApril 13, 2015 at 9:06 amReply

    I feel worthless because of my gambling, I’ve pushed just about everyone away from me, I hardly see my children. I think they have given up on me. I just don’t see the point of going on anymore.

    • Bea AikensApril 17, 2015 at 4:26 pmReplyAuthor

      Dear Jennifer,
      People often say “I understand” or “I know what you’re going through” …and we think… “No. You don’t.”
      In this case…I do. The specifics of our life circumstances may differ, but the impact of a gambling addiction is the same. I have felt shame, pain, fear, helplessness and self-loathing as a result of my past gambling behavior. I know many others who have experienced those same feelings of hopelessness and helplessness and sadly, I know many who have considered self-destruction as a result of their gambling. Thank the Lord they TOLD someone and got help!
      By posting this on line, you have just “Told Someone” how you’re feeling. Good for you Jennifer! It’s a first step. It may not feel like a “big” step…yet it is. You’ve reached out. I encourage you to take the next right step and seek help for your gambling addiction.
      You’ve mentioned that you’ve pushed away “just about” everyone. Does “just about” mean there’s still “someone” you can call? If they know you and care about you, your gambling addiction won’t be any surprise to them. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness. It’s a big step to let another human being see us as we really are.
      And Jennifer, if you feel there’s not “someone”, let me assure you that there are thousands of people in recovery groups around the country who WILL understand, who have been where you are and who will talk with you and be there for you. I have experienced this remarkable healing of just sharing my truth with another human being and being amazed that they didn’t turn and run! That’s the beauty and strength of recovery groups. We get it.
      I urge you to call the 24-hour Gamblers Helpline at 1-800-522-4700.
      Please know that your life matters. It can and will get better. One Day At a Time!
      Please let me know how you’re doing.
      God Bless you,
      Bea

  7. Mike PApril 20, 2015 at 10:09 amReply

    I, too, am a compulsive gambler who has reached the “end of the road”. Even before “gambling” ever became the problem it is, I have always felt on the outside of life looking in, a social misfit more by choice and, I suppose, low self-esteem. And yes, before gambling became a problem, I drank, but nothing close to my gambling excesses. I owe more money that I could ever pay back in a lifetime and would not even think of asking for help from anyone because it wouldn’t be forthcoming and because they are not responsible for my debts. I seem to gamble in such a way and to such a degree that self-destruction is eventually the only way out. At 60 years of age, relative to every single member of my family, immediate and extended, I have NOTHING, both financially, emotionally and spiritually. I work, of course, but my focus has been declining for a couple of years now. My mother took me in many years ago after I ended up on the streets of Toronto. She died in November of 2013, and since then I have a rather strong desire to be with her, even if it only to have my remains together with hers. She accepted me with my less than stellar character and loved me anyway. As I write this, I am thinking about the best way to “go”, and sadly, the effect it will have on my sister who loves me dearly. But it isn’t enough. I dwell on what never was or ever will be, meaning all those “moments” in life that keeps one warm at night. I never wanted to be rich or famous, just to have a chance at the same opportunity for happiness that everyone else seems to have had. I’m not fool enough to believe that they haven’t know hardships and setbacks, but they all seem to possess a character that I don’t have. I know that no amount of “winnings” could ever help change my fundamental nature,, just as I know when I go out to gamble with money that I can’t afford to lose that the consequences will be dire, but I don’t seem to care. As I said, I think the ultimate goal of this compulsive gambler has always BEEN self-destruction, and in the end, it may be the only goal in my life that I actually achieve. I am very ready, it is just a question of finding the courage to take the next step! Soon, tomorrow or the next day at the latest. Peace at last! There was a movie on some months ago, actually a play made into a move called, “Night Mother”, about a woman who has simply had enough and knows that things aren’t going to get better. In it, she makes a comment to the effect that she knows, I guess we all know, where the bus is going and has simply decided to get off early (I don’t think I have stated the exact context of her argument correctly). This is how I feel. At age 60, why struggle on to 65 or older. The difference between her and I of course, is that she has her “affairs In order”, while mine are an absolute mess. Well, death will sort some of it out. I’m not sure why I writing this other than perhaps an electronic version of “Izzy was here”. Unfortunately, I don’t have access to a weapon but I hope that won’t prove to be too much of an impediment. Goodbye!

    • Karen LeeApril 21, 2015 at 7:28 amReply

      Dear Mike- We thank you for taking the time to write to Lanie’s Hope and tell us what’s going on with you. You’ve had a lot of loss and disappointment and yet, I write to tell you that there is hope and help. As a person in long-time recovery (over 13 years) I came in to Gamblers Anonymous empty, defeated, alone, and without hope. I thought I was coming to GA to help stop gambling and instead, found a whole bunch of people like me and for the first time, felt I belonged. Yes, there are still times (although rare) that I feel alone or sad and just wonder ‘What’s the point?’ and then, I take a hotline call or go to a meeting and meet someone who has many more challenges and I feel valued in being able to share my experience, strength, and hope with them. Please don’t give up and don’t feel as if you have to do this alone. I would strongly encourage you to seek help, whether through an addiction specialist dealing with gambling and/or your local chapter of Gamblers Anonymous. As it’s been said before ‘Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.’ Please reach out for help in your area and find others who’ve found recovery and a new way of life.

    • MaryMay 3, 2015 at 12:42 amReply

      Are you okay. Idk for sure, but my brother took his life Thursday am. I am his sister. There are no words at how heartbroken I am. His friends are devastated.
      I am guessing this was the reason. I am not positive, but things you wrote, are him to a t . Pls. Respond .

      • Bea AikensMay 5, 2015 at 5:41 amReplyAuthor

        Dear Mary,
        My heart broker for you as we spoke yesterday of the loss of your dear brother “Arch.” I pray that you took the time for yourself without worry of social norms and explaining over and over again the nature of your loss. I know this is painful and exhausting. Right now it’s time to focus on you and your dear 85 year old mother. Please, when the time is right, join a support group. There are far to many of us who have been impacted by suicide – only to be left with questions. The “whys” and “what ifs” can take up residence in our hearts and heads. The people in support groups will understand what your feeling. They will provide a space for you to cry, yell, be silent, or simply FEEL. I won’t give you platitudes like “time heals all wounds.” The wound is there. It’s real and it (YOU) deserve to be acknowledged and heard.
        Thank you, for, in this moment of your extreme sadness and loss, you have reached out to Mike P to encourage him with a simple “Are you OK?” Perhaps in some way, knowing the pain and sorrow left behind will serve as a reminder to Mike and anyone struggling with a gambling addiction that suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. It may not feel that way as one stares the debris of a gambling addiction in the face, but there are real solutions for long-term recovery. It starts with the first step.
        Talk to someone. Call the Gamblers Anonymous hotline, Call the suicide prevention hotline, REACH OUT. Help and hope is available for you Mike, and for anyone who feels hopeless against their gambling addiction.
        For dear Arch, and for Lanie, it is to late to choose a different outcome. Please, please…talk to someone and choose a better tomorrow.
        Thank you for reaching out Mary.
        God Bless you,
        Bea

      • AudraJune 7, 2016 at 3:39 pmReply

        Hi Mary My brother took his life 2/23/16. I found bank statements of $2000 a day withdrawal from bank account EVERYDAY with a few days break in between in 2015. He spent our moms social security $ for her nursing home in 2013-2014. I thought he had quit in 2014 after that. He paid me back all the money he took from her bank account. I didn’t realize this could be the cause of suicide! I to am traumatized finding his body after they shut off his water then power. He lived on a boat. He stopped leaving his bedroom of the boat with no job and no $. He never asked for help.

    • MichelleApril 30, 2017 at 3:30 pmReply

      Mike p are you still there. I feel the same as you. I am hopeless , past desperate. I’ve let everyone down and they don’t even know it yet. It will probably come to a head in the next month and the waiting is killing me. I have made a note, which scares me that this actually might happen. I am scared. I am very scared

  8. [email protected]May 3, 2015 at 11:32 amReply

    As the parent of a pathological gambler I say to all of you who are suffering please don’t give up. Seek help through GA. For family and those who love you Gam-Anon can be the answer to understanding what you are going through, also sharing information on how not be an enabler. True forgiveness does not come easily and is an ongoing process for all involved. GA and Gam-Anon saved our family. It is truly one day at a time. On the days that we thought we all couldn’t go on it was one hour at a time. Our son is married and able to work a job. He is loved and cherished by his family. It is challenging for him to live with what this disease has done to all of us. He has moments of deep sadness and regret. He keeps moving forward as he works his program and we his family work ours. Please seek out help and never give up.

  9. RobertMay 3, 2015 at 8:07 pmReply

    I stumbled upon this site at a rather appropriate time. I never really knew many, if any people like myself. It’s comforting to know there are others who have fallen victim to the wicked compulsion/addiction known as gambling. It’s not a form of entertainment for me. Legalized theft is what it has become for me and that’s exactly what it feels like when it’s all over. My compulsive behavior became less financially devastating when I figured out a way to lock up gambling winnings onto prepaid gift cards that “cannot be redeemed for cash.” I found that (by some miracle) when I won several hundred gambling, part of the high was leaving the casino with the winnings. Well, every single time I returned hours or day’s later only to hand my winnings right back. The gift card method allowed me to lock up my winnings ASAP. Recently I figured out a way to turn each card into cash instantly for only a $3 fee. Thus, I lost $2,000 in two trips to the casino. It was a terrible losing streak. I couldn’t win more than $100 to save my life. I don’t know what to do to protect my money now. I guess I must learn self-control. Its just so hard to win these days. $300 is lit on fire in 20 minutes betting 1.20-2.00/spin. I don’t like to bet lower than that because it’s nearly impossible to win anything sizable. I don’t have a job right now and I know once I get one I will be working for free. The thought of gambling, the anticipation of knowing I will have money and be able to gamble soon is so therapeutic for me. It takes away all of my worries, stress, aches or pains. The anticipation is better than the result, which is nearly always losing and feeling miserable. I have $0 now and there is no more money coming in. All I feel now is sad, hopeless, worthless. Without any money to my name, I feel like I’m not even part of the human experience. I’m like an animal. I can’t believe the casinos can get away with being so unfair. I’ve lost tens of thousands and the most I ever won was $1,000 and that was 1 time only. The casino I frequent has almost all its video-reel slots with a goofy cartoon theme. It has an affordable hotel and bowling and movies. Lots of families stay there and kids are always being paraded through the casino. Perhaps they are trying to display these silly cartoon themed slots to get kids interested in gambling. It seems so wrong. These are the types of games I always play though. Why does a thoroughly adult form of entertainment use childish characters and imagery constantly? Sorry to get off topic. I’m here for anyone who needs a shoulder to cry on or someone to share these wretched experiences with.

    • Karen LeeMay 4, 2015 at 2:06 pmReply

      Dear Robert-
      We’re glad that you found our website and hope that you will read through our various pages and posts to know that there is hope and help for the compulsive gambler. I admire you’re willingness to look for solutions to not having to handle money (and with time away from the bet and some recovery, you may eventually get comfortable with handling your finances) and would recommend a family member or a trusted friend to help. The one thing I know for certain after years away from the bet is that I don’t blame the casinos for their enticing ads and gimmicks to come to the casino. I live in Las Vegas and am blessed that all of my recovery was found here and that we have one of the biggest GA chapters here in the country. I not only found peace and serenity away from the insanity of the bet, but found many people and true friendships in these 12-step rooms. I found that getting involved, giving back service, and staying connected with several meetings a week have blessed me with the removal of the obsession to bet. It would be easy enough to look to the casinos as the culprit and it would be much like an alcoholic as blaming the bars, the grocery and liquor stores for selling alcohol, and the liquor/beer companies from promoting sporting events. I have come to realize that although many people can gamble ‘normally’, I’m not one of them. I do hope that you will reach out for additional help (depending where you’re at in the country, free treatment) to the national hotline number for compulsive gamblers at 1-888-LAST-BET or 1-888-222-5542 for information and meeting location for a 12-step meeting near you. Please know that life does not have to be the way you described and all that I sought from the bet, I have gotten back so much more and glad that I didn’t follow through with my desire to die.

  10. Belinda l.May 4, 2015 at 1:00 pmReply

    Dear Jennifer- when we made decisions based on our emotions we usually think of the worst one. All of us are not worthless. We just feel that way after a devastating action that we know is wrong. This feeling usually occur when we are in our lowest. No self esteem. Hopeless etc. There lots of help available but you have to be willing to use it. Material things can be replaced, but not a person’s life. Killing our self is not the answer; talk to someone and it will help you a lot.

  11. MarshallMay 14, 2015 at 12:03 amReply

    I came across this site looking for ways to painlessly commit suicide. I don’t necessarily want to commit suicide per-say but I feel like I would be better off. The only reasons preventing me from committing suicide is because of my family, friends and being Catholic it is said that you would go to hell for committing such as act. If it wasn’t for that I probably would have done it already – plus I can’t find an appropriate outlet for it.

    I’m 29 years old and I’m finally about to graduate college. I thought I had life figured out multiple times and had my future mapped out. Now I’m in a trap and I’ve lost all hope, ambition and a vision for my future. I no longer know what I want to do and things I used to enjoy I don’t enjoy anymore because I’m so miserable. I’m lost. I used to be an honors student and I’ve owned two businesses for over five years – I have no more energy and I’m beaten down.

    I live 15 minutes away from the casino. I work in the casino for a corporate restaurant inside of the casino but I do not work for the casino itself, therefore; I can gamble.

    99% of the time after my 6 hour or so shift I walk out of the restaurant and gamble all of my money away (literally right after I clock-out I start to gamble.) I even gamble money that is not mine, on credit or wherever I can get it in order to chase the money I have lost from the nights before. I can’t stop, literally, I make a bee-line for the slots immediately after my shift. I used to play on tables but it wasn’t fast paced enough for me – I’m a high roller. I get all of these incentives that encourage me to gamble more or free perks for gambling.

    I never do anything fun. I just work all night gamble and do it again. I cannot be any more depressed. I have the best parents in the world and I don’t even talk to them because I’m so ashamed. I’m about 20-30k in debt and I don’t see a way out. I wish someone could just buy my life back so I’m at zero again and I can sign myself out of both casinos for life and quit my high paying job and get a real career with my education. I’m so screwed. I cry almost every night on my way home from work. I keep a dark house and lay in bed all day and night because my body is full of depression. I don’t want to spend any extra money on food or excessive driving because I don’t have it so I save my energy and money by not doing anything at all. I can’t live like this anymore.

    I was admitted to the hospital by my parents and attended an intensive out-patient program for six weeks. I didn’t gamble for over 30 days the longest I’ve ever gone without gambling. I started to relapse once my body got used to the medication “naltrexone” but when it did work it was like an “off” switch for gambling – absolutely amazing no urge nothing – I could even sit in front of a machine and laugh at how stupid I was for ever gambling in the first place.

    Presently, I’m back to square 1 nothing is working, I am past the point of recovering from my losses and I have seriously jeopardized my future. I don’t know what to do. I can’t quit the job money is too good and I’m too far in debt. I need to quit gambling. I can’t beat the overpowering urge. The depression is getting to be unmanageable.

    After I lose all of my hard earned money from a night’s work, I drive home ashamed, angry, embarrassed, regretful, hopeless, depressed and I often cry or scream in the car the whole way home. I then struggle to put gas in my car and to put food into my stomach (I use points for both food and gas and literally have no money) I don’t want to eat because I’m so depressed I have no appetite. I make fantastic money at my job and I’m a top employee but I literally have nothing to show for it. Over the past two and a half years I have blown an easy 100k. My utilities are about to get shut-off, my fridge is empty, my clothes are shot and I’m so far in debt it will take me easily a year or so just to be caught up.

    • Bea AikensMay 14, 2015 at 10:37 amReplyAuthor

      Dear Marshall,
      Your email touched my heart so much that I could have cried when I read it. My heart hurts for you for many reasons. First and foremost you are questioning the value of your own life and your desperation came through loud and clear. Also, it is so Relatable to me. I once felt this despair as well and I know many, many people in recovery from gambling addiction who have expressed different versions of the exact same story. You are in the grip of the progressive illness and it can be a vicious cycle.

      I too hit the steering wheel of my car many nights as I drove home from a casino. I too felt hopeless and helpless and ashamed. And then, for me the ONLY hope was to finally say “I cannot do this any more”…I had relapsed like you did when you had 30 days without a bet. I get it that it’s even MORE shameful because the people who love us have helped us and they think we’re doing OK when we’re not. We’re living a lie and it eats us up. I really and truly get it Marshall and I promise you that it can and does get better …if you get help.

      I am not a clinician or a medical expert, so understand that I am speaking to you as just another person like yourself who suffers with a mental health condition recognized by the American Psychiatric Association as an addictive disorder requiring treatment. I often say, “If I had diabetes I wouldn’t be ashamed. If I had cancer I wouldn’t be ashamed.” I WOULD be responsible for taking my insulin or getting chemo treatments or doing whatever I could to live a healthy life.
      There are consequences of our actions committed as a result of the addiction, and yes they can be overwhelming, but I think you know by now that continuing to gamble and “chase” is not the answer.

      When I was finally done, defeated, and out of options, I had two choices – kill myself or get help. Thank God I got help! Today I am SO grateful that I no longer have to live that way. And I know many many people who have had the same experience. Yes it is scary and painful to “get honest” with those we love, but it’s the only way to get to the other side of this addiction. The isolation and shame is awful, and once you take the steps toward recovery life gets better.

      The National Council on Problem Gambling offers a free 24-hour help line at 1-800-522-4700. Gamblers Anonymous also has hotlines and meeting lists for the entire county available on their website. Gamblers Anonymous is an excellent program of mutual aid and they offer a process called “Pressure Relief” which helps you navigate the financial aspects, while you get to meet others who once felt just like you do who will understand and offer their experience, strength and hope. Many states offer free or low cost Intensive Outpatient Programs and there are specially trained Certified Problem Gambling Counselors throughout the country specializing in this disease. And finally, there are a few gambling specific residential treatment programs.
      Please get help Marshall. And, if you ever have a feeling that life is not worth living and you consider suicide…remember reading this and stop yourself. Instead, remember that help is a phone call away. Pick up the phone and dial the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1 (800) 273-8255.
      You are in my thoughts and prayers!
      Bea

  12. Debbie LarsonMay 15, 2015 at 4:45 amReply

    All that I can say today is that just knowing that I am not the only person that is feeling these feelings and thoughts is temporarily comforting. I will try to keep going and work through this pain and hopeless feeling.

    • Bea AikensJune 6, 2015 at 11:48 amReplyAuthor

      How are you doing Debbie? Although I am always saddened when I read of people’s despair as a result of gambling addiction, I’m glad that in some way you know that you’re not alone as others have felt what you felt.
      It’s been over two weeks since your last post. Hopefully you are doing something good for yourself to arrest your addiction to gambling. Group Support meetings like Gamblers Anonymous and counseling help. So does sharing with others who understand:)
      Blessings,
      Bea

      • NikkiMay 4, 2016 at 8:15 pmReply

        My mother is Debbie Larson. She commited suicide on May 25, 2015. This has been a horrible life changing experience for her entire family. I don’t think the pain will ever go away.

  13. AlexJune 20, 2015 at 2:02 amReply

    I came here thinking about suicide.. Never thought I’d ever be in the position I am now. I have been very successful in everything I do in life but gambling has been my downturn and the only thing keeping me from reaching my goal. Somehow in the back of my mind I like to think gambling is a shortcut to where I need to be to be happy or satisfied. Sitting here writing this I think to myself what is the point anymore! Hopeless, lost and anything else you want to through in there. I’m only 29, I’m sure this is not how any 29 year old would think. I want to be happy again, enjoy the things I use to enjoy. It is the first time my family have all gone on holiday together. My sister left me hers cards because she didn’t need then all. I told her she should hide them as I didn’t know because I don’t trust my self after this week. Having lost all my salary plus selling my shares this month I had a huge pay day this month and hit the casino at midnight and drew cash the minute I got paid. Did really week the first hour and was up couple of thousand. My friend was with me, I had brought him along because I had banned my self from that casino previously having lost loads there before so I wouldn’t have been able to cash the winnings my self. I had only the money I needed that month plus more to pay off few debts and enjoy my self a little. Walk out to leave but my friend wanted to carry on playing. He lost all his money and I ended up giving him more money to play with.. Watching him play made me want more. Before I knew it I was drawing money from my account because I had lost all my winnings. With in an hour all was gone and I was back to square one!! Two weeks have passed and now I sit here with my sisters card in my wallet losing all her money in her account with her mortgage money, having sold everything I had an losing that as well. I don’t know what to say to my family when they are back. I don’t think I can face them!! What do I do?

    • TommyJune 22, 2015 at 10:10 pmReply

      Hi Alex. My name is Tommy. Sounds to me like you’ve already realized the first step in recovery, admitting powerlessness and recognizing your unmanageable life. I’m a compulsive gambler in recovery. I attend GA meetings. And in those meetings, I hear your story, over and over, often from my own lips. In our disease, and that’s what gambling addiction is, we often hurt and betray the ones we love. Many of us have caused irreparable damage. I believe that some amends need time. Ending your life may seem like the only alternative at the moment. But think that thing through. You mentioned your sister, and family. Imagine what they deal with if you went through with it. Imagine the pain they will feel. Your sister would no doubt be devastated, knowing that part of your reasoning was because you couldn’t face her, knowing how upset she would be that you lost her house payment. You didn’t mention children or girlfriend. But your parents? What about them? You’re so young Alex. And you mentioned having been mostly successful in your short life. Gambling addicts suffer worst. And suicide, prison, or insanity is where we end up, without recovery. Please postpone any decisions on your immediate future for the moment. Find a gambler anonymous 12 step meeting immediately. Call Gamblers Anonymous. Talk with someone in GA about what you’re going through. Pour your heart out. Let GA guide you now. Your sister might be pissed. Your family, your friends, even your employer might be disappointed and hurt. But you have already taken the most important step. You recognize that you have a very serious problem, and you’ve reached out for help. You are not alone. Don’t give dying another thought for now. Get to a meeting, talk with folks in GA, and breathe. It looks bad, maybe hopeless. But I’ve been where you are. A few times. Suicide would just be the last worst choice you make. Don’t do that to your sister. Call GA. You Alex, are why Gamblers Anonymous exists. 855-222-5542
      http://www.gamblersanonymous.org

  14. Ara HJune 22, 2015 at 10:12 pmReply

    Thank you for reaching out Alex, My name is Ara and I live in Burbank, Ca…i also am a problem gambler, I completely understand your situation, I have also taken money from my parents, employer, etc to gamble in Las Vegas, this disease is very strong and it makes you think you are ok. All you need is a big win, which is right within reach. But it never comes, not big enough. I had maxed out all my credit cards, savings accounts and was suicidal my last time I gambled….It took a lot for me to come to GA and stop gambling, it was 1995 when I quit. Today my life is good and gambling is no longer a option for anything…
    yours,
    Ara H

  15. AlexJuly 3, 2015 at 12:54 amReply

    Thank you so much for your advice guys… I was lost and stupid for thinking about suicide, but at the time it seemed like the only option.
    I managed to confront my family about my problem and to my surprise they were really supportive about it. I have given them all my cards and came clean with what I had done. Feel as though a huge load is off my shoulders and can start my life again.
    I know it’s only a start but I’ve got hopes that it’ll turn out alright.
    Thank you all again for the support, I live all the way in London and yet this site managed to reach me and help me out 🙂

  16. KarenJuly 3, 2015 at 7:42 amReply

    Hey, Alex. Good to hear from you and hope that you will reach out to the UK GA groups for additional support and understanding from others like you who felt that they’d destroyed all hopes of a future. I am thrilled that your family was there for you and support of the family is tremendously helpful. Keep your feet on the ground, keep reaching for the stars (I think that was a quote from Casey Casum at the end of his Top 40 countdown here in the States) and I hope that you will find the joy of living life without the bet.

  17. DJuly 13, 2015 at 6:12 amReply

    Ive had enough. All these wasted years so close behind, all my shallow tears flowing pointlessly away from my essence, an empty shell i have become.
    What is hardest is a good life is so agonisely close by.
    I never meant to hurt anyone

    • Karen LeeJuly 15, 2015 at 9:19 amReply

      Thank you for reaching out and expressing what’s on your mind and heart. Gambling addiction can lead us to a very dark place, especially when we have ‘burned bridges’ to family and friends. There are many like you who have destroyed relationships, committed crimes to fund their addiction, and feel as if there’s no hope nor anyone who can understand what we feel. I can assure you that there are many like you who have done the same or worst. Please reach out to one of the resources I’ve listed here for help. No matter how dark and deep that hole is, I hope you will look for that light of recovery instead of taking a drastic step to end it all. The National Council on Problem Gambling offers a free 24-hour help line at 1-800-522-4700. Gamblers Anonymous also has hotlines and meeting lists for the entire county available on their website. Gamblers Anonymous is an excellent program of mutual aid and they offer a process called “Pressure Relief” which helps you navigate the financial aspects, while you get to meet others who once felt just like you do who will understand and offer their experience, strength and hope. Many states offer free or low cost Intensive Outpatient Programs and there are specially trained Certified Problem Gambling Counselors throughout the country specializing in this disease. And finally, there are a few gambling specific residential treatment programs.
      If you have a feeling that life is not worth living and you consider suicide…remember reading this and stop yourself. Instead, remember that help is a phone call away. Pick up the phone and dial the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1 (800) 273-8255. Please reach back out to us here at Lanie’s Hope and let us know how you’re doing.

  18. ShayJuly 16, 2015 at 6:09 pmReply

    I feel worthless , I’ve been on a gambling downward spiral for the past 7 months, living paycheck to paycheck just to,takepaycheck and blow it, I’ve taken out payday loans and. Pawned anything I could. I feel the most worthless piece of crap, why can’t I just fight this urge, its like any money has no meaning compared to going to try and win more,even then I don’t leave when I do, I play it all back. I know I should know better but I’m so dumb! What the he’ll is wrong with me, I hate this feeling. I have done nothing but put us in the most preventable binds.

  19. JulesAugust 22, 2015 at 9:38 pmReply

    I have done things I never would have imagined doing due to my gambling addiction. Up until recently, the only thing I’ve done is 1 speeding ticket. Tuesday, I will lose my job and probably be prosecuted when they find out what I’ve done. I am a 57 yr old single female who is ruined. Don’t tell me I can start over. Who’s going to hire someone my age with a felony to boot? Nope, come Tuesday, life will be over for me.

    • Bea AikensAugust 25, 2015 at 8:52 amReplyAuthor

      Dear Jules,
      I am so sorry to hear of the depths your gambling addiction has taken you. I really do “get it” Only another compulsive gambler can understand the inexplicable! I remember feeling exactly as you do – so afraid, ashamed, unable to stop, hating myself for NOT stopping, and repeating the same vicious cycle again and again. Every day I vowed I would never gamble again, and then I’d find myself in front of a video poker machine the very next night.
      I feel for you knowing that today you face some very big challenges, pain, fear, and a myriad of emotions. You said “Don’t tell me to start over” so I won’t. What I WILL do is encourage you to “start anew.” I couldn’t have imagined life free from the bet, let alone a life that is free from the pervasive fear that ran my life. Participating in a Twelve Step Program changed my life…actually SAVED my life as I felt I had nothing left to live for.
      You may feel that you are all alone. Know that you are NOT alone. There is a whole community of folks in recovery from the very same addiction you describe who are here to support you. Help IS AVAILABLE. No matter how bad things look today, I promise you that it can and does get better. All you have to do is reach out for help to begin the process of healing and living a life free from the bet One Day At A Time.
      Jules, these are not platitudes. I’ve lived this as have many in the Lanie’s Hope community. We have an expression in recovery; “Let us love you until you can love yourself.” I certainly felt “unlovable” when I first came into recovery. Down the road I found peace of mind that I could have never envisioned. I found hope and help and friendship. It is here waiting for you Jules…no matter what you’re facing today. Please reach out for help!
      The National Council on Problem Gambling’s Hotline provides 24 hour support at 1-800-522-4700.
      Please let us know how you’re doing. I will be thinking of you and praying for you!
      Bea

    • CaroleNovember 3, 2015 at 2:01 pmReply

      Hi Jules

      It is November 3rd 2015 and I have just read your story. Well I hope you are able to read this. I was feeling so low and have hit rock bottom due to my gambling addiction and came across what you had written. Well I am praying that you did not take your life because you can come back from this. And it was your story that has made me think positive and become strong as from this moment I am going to fight this every step of the way. Enough is enough I am so bloody angry at how much misery this gambling does to so many of us. We have all got each other to support. I am determined as from this moment I will be not going to give into this terrible thing that ruins so many people’s lives. I started gambling on line two years ago and am now going to stop and it was reading your write up that shone a light for me. Please let me know you are ok we will all get through this together. God bless

  20. HieuSeptember 24, 2015 at 7:50 pmReply

    Hi there, I’m from Vietnam, a country in South East Asia. I’m 30 years old.
    I’m so depressed now…
    I’ve lost $2500 in the last 24 hours in online casino. And now I’m typing these words.
    I’ve been gambling addicted for almost 10 years now. First I gambled on sports, then I started gambling on online casino. I’ve borrowed money from my friends so many times. Also I’ve taken some bank loans. What is worst is that I’ve even borrowed from the “loan sharks” many times as well. My parents have always paid for my debt all the time. After all, I’ve lost around $80,000 since the first day I gambled. It’s a very very big money in my country.
    I’ve wanted to commit suicide many times, but I really couldn’t do it. I was afraid, and I was very hurt when thinking about my beloved ones.
    But this is the end for me. I can’t stand myself anymore. I feel hopeless, there’s no way out for me. I’m going to do it the next Monday or Tuesday.
    I’m really sorry, Mom & Dad.
    I’m so sorry, my beloved wife.
    I’m so sorry, all my beloved ones.

    • Bea AikensSeptember 25, 2015 at 8:29 pmReplyAuthor

      Dear Hieu,
      Nothing is worth your LIFE! I’m sure you’ve read other posts on this site about suicide and that indeed many compulsive gamblers consider this when they reach their “bottom.” That’s when it’s time to “surrender” – not your life – but surrender to the fact that you’ll never get that “big win” and it’s time to reach out for HELP! I’m very sorry that I’m not familiar with suicide prevention services and gambling treatment services in Vietnam, but there are 24 hour services available in the US and those numbers are on this page, if you can’t find services there. Please watch our most recent YouTube post – it’s a video from the Suicide Awareness and Prevention Walk. Look at how many people are in that arena Hieu! They are all FAMILY MEMBERS and friends who have suffered the loss of a loved one due to suicide. I am one of them. I would give anything to have my sister back. She took her life because of gambling addiction! Please, please, talk to your parents and your beloved wife. You will break their hearts if you commit suicide. You can heal your own heart if you reach out for help for your gambling addiction! I know this as well as I too am a compulsive gambler and once felt as you do today. I was afraid and alone and so ashamed. That feeling passes when you share your secrets and realize that people will not reject you and you CAN recover from a gambling addiction.
      God Bless you Hieu! Make the Call!

  21. ShelleySeptember 26, 2015 at 7:23 amReply

    Dear Hieu,
    My name is Shelley and I, too, am a compulsive gambler. I know the shame, guilt, and remorse that invariably accompanies the progression of this addiction. For me, thoughts of suicide were comforting at times because I believed it would end my pain. Pain is what drove me to gambling and what I sought to avoid. For many years, the devastation my death would bring to those I loved kept me from acting on that impulse. The day I no longer cared about those left behind is the day I reached out for help. Although it may not feel like it right now, there is always a way out. Suicide is not the answer. Go to your parents and to your beloved wife. Explain to them your shame and remorse and, more importantly, explain to them your feeling of hopelessness and powerlessness and what these emotions nearly drove you to do. A call helped save my life. Let your family love you and care for you until you are able to do it for yourself. Be brave and strong. Take the next step towards a new and better life. Make the call!

  22. AbuOctober 15, 2015 at 11:29 amReply

    Im 25 years old female from the philippines. Ive started gambling 2 years ago. I tried quitting but i kept coming back everytime. I am a business woman and now i am nothing. Ive lost too much money over bacarrat. I feel like im the stupidest person to believe that i can invest my money in casinos. Now that i have left with nothing but a failure to my family and significant other i just want to be at peace and let the pain go away with my life in it.

  23. jim wellerNovember 30, 2015 at 3:06 pmReply

    Somebody please help me. im 26 and have been a compulsive gambler for 10 years. i think this disease has finally won. i think its time for my to end the pain and the constant longing for my next bet.

    • Bea AikensNovember 30, 2015 at 3:59 pmReplyAuthor

      Dear Jim – You started your message by asking for help. That, and the concession that your addiction “has finally won” tell me you’re ready for HELP! And Help IS available Jim! Are you open to it? Have you tried to stop before – on your own? Have you tried counseling or 12 step meetings? There is a lot of evidence to support doing both…that’s what worked for me when I was FINALLY able to be free from the impact of this addiction! I’ll never be “cured”…but one day at a time, I am living a bet-free life as are many, many people I talk with every day. Life gets SO MUCH better Jim! Please reach out to Gamblers Anonymous, or a Certified Problem Gambling Counselor. HYPER (Helping Young People Experience Recovery) is another option. I am not a therapist- but I will be happy to talk with you ANY time! Feel free to call me at Lanie’s Hope or email via the “contact us” link. You have taken the essential “first step” of admitting that you can’t do this alone. The great news is…you don’t have to! There is a huge community of recovering compulsive gamblers ready to help. All you have to do is pick up the phone:)
      Blessings,
      Bea

  24. JerichoDecember 2, 2015 at 4:47 pmReply

    Dear all,

    I could not help but cry reading all your gambling addiction stories for the very reason that I can relate to them. I just arrived today from the casino and i lost the money I have saved for a few months within 30 minutes of playing the slots. It’s from my allowance as I am a student dependent on my partner and in-laws for my day to day expenses.

    Last time, on my way home from the casino (I had to travel 2 hours by train to get to the nearest one as I banned myself in the ones in town), I tried to reflect on my growing addiction by recapping my story from a 3rd point of view. I want to share it with everybody.

    Affliction

    He sat there, lost in his reverie. His baffled mind couldn’t find an iota of calmness which would allow him to think sensibly. His disturbed thoughts changed as fast as the kaleidoscopic scenery outside the train window. He clasped and sought comfort from the gold plated rosary with an angel pendant he always carried in his wallet. Both objects were gifts, the rosary from his friend and the angel pendant from his partner. He uttered some words while holding the religious trinkets, pleading them help as if they could hear him. He badly needed some relief from the unexplainable feeling of remorse and self-loathe which began to consume his whole being as soon as he got out of the casino with an empty pocket. It was the same feeling he had in the past when he found himself in the same situation. He proceeded to search for himself, his very essence, the very core of his being. He felt empty.

    “Is this really who I am?” he asked. “Lord, help me!” he continued.

    A few months before, he thought he made progress as he could finally speak about his affliction openly with a professional and with some family members. His partner who found out what he was up to, in the months of acting bizarrely before he was caught red handedly, immediately asked this form of intervention from the municipal social services. It was one of his terms and conditions, if they were to continue their relationship. He submitted to this professional help without any hesitation. He was afraid and felt embarrassed. He was at his lowest.

    “How could you?” his partner asked repeatedly. “It was not even your money!”

    He calculated a total of $10,000 dollars wasted in the slot machines. He always made note of everything he spent in all his trips to the casino, ironically labeling the file in his phone as “Figures of Speech”. Factor the time he spent playing and you have a serious example of time and resources wasted. Well, perhaps, that was a bit of an exaggeration but if you include the fact that he was a student and he was largely dependent on his partner and his parents for his day to day living, this preoccupation was more than serious.

    Somewhat traumatized by what he could actually do, his partner became distrustful of him and temporarily took control of his finances. He willingly accepted this intervention. Somehow he was relieved that he was banned from the casinos and that he had no more access of excess money. He felt a sense of safety and empowerment. Most importantly, he felt a great sense of relief. All those episodes of lying to his partner, in-laws and friends were over. Now, he could look at them in the eyes again.

    I wish my story ended that way with no more continuation. The sad truth is I am on a relapse since March this year. The thought of telling my partner (who’s been very loving and supported of me) and my in-laws (who treat me as their own child) that I have been gambling again is currently my biggest fear and source of embarrassment. I am afraid to disappoint them again.

  25. SteveDecember 5, 2015 at 10:25 amReply

    Hi I don’t know what to do. I’m 23 years old and I am in debt over 80k my family has been there for me since day one and my mother cleared credit card and loan debt about 3 months ago so I can only owe her and once she did that I just took out more loans and jacked up all my credit cards again. I’m to the point where I don’t want to live I can’t live with the way I treat people. I leave my family everyday to go to casinos I treat them all like shit I am completely embarrassed with myself. I stopped gambling for 90 days after being in GA about 5 months ago and then since then my life has been a complete disaster. I thought about suicide once before but never went through with it but now I am to the point and I don’t know what to do with myself. I am to ashamed to even walk back into a GA room or talk to anyone from there.

  26. NomorecardsFebruary 10, 2016 at 3:48 amReply

    Hi there. I don’t know much about slot machines but Im hooked on cards. Black Jack. I’m in debt and my boyfriend is fed up. I haven’t spent as much as some of you on here, yet, but I have less to spend which is the same impact. I don’t want to gamble. I do not trust myself. I finally came to this realization yesterday. I travel to tribal casinos where the odds are terrible. I am having trouble facing myself. I spent money that wasn’t mine. Somehow I rationalized it was mine. I told myself that only part of it was theirs. I was holding it for someone else. I’m shocked at how I lied to myself. My boyfriend is tumbling. I think he may need to leave me in order to survive. I’m sick to death over this. I’m feeling numb but I keep dropping tears. My spirit is very low. I can’t stop. I want to change this around. Its going to take a lot of work. ((

  27. LisaFebruary 24, 2016 at 5:54 pmReply

    Last night I won 1000 on horse races then lost it in video lottery … after cashing 950 in winnings. I stayed out half the night and called off sick from work. I felt depressed ashamed and worthless and still contemplating suicide. I am 40 and have been struggling with this addiction for half my life. I have tried holiness, GA, addiction services… nothing has worked I am at a loss on how to stop… recently I stopped for two or three weeks. but I keep going back and I don’t know why it’s like I have no control. Soon as I have a few dollars… I find my way back to the machines. the only thing keeping me here right now is my son who is 11. I am unsure what else to try to defeat this addiction. Lisa

  28. kris vencatMarch 16, 2016 at 11:48 pmReply

    Gambling is a disease for sure. I lost my father due to his addiction to gambling last year. The answer to what i could have done to prevent this from happening just bother me day and night. But deep inside me, i know it’s too late now. I do know the grief of losing someone dear to our heart and believe me, there is nothing worst than this . There is always a solution to every problem but SUICIDE IS DEFINITELY NOT THE SOLUTION. Just think how bad and desperate your dear ones, your family, your friends, your collegues will feel about your lost. I will say it again and again- there is always a way out and suicide is not the solution. Just seek help and the simple fact of ADMITTING THAT YOU ARE ADDICTED TO GAMBLING to someone can be of a great relief to yourself. Try calling any anonymous gambling associations or visit the website below:

    http://www.gamblersanonymous.org/ga/

    You may feel ashamed of what you have done, but remember that you are not the only one that make mistakes, everyone else do. GAMBLING is not like a disease but is a real disease which is often taken for granted. Accept it that you are ill and HELP from someone is the only remedy and believe me, this will do good to yourself.

    Ask for help. There is nothing to be ashamed of when seeking help and remember that life is a gift from the great almighty that does not need to be wasted at any cost. There are ups and downs in life and our job is to face them fiercely without losing hope. Just know that brighter days are waiting for you if you ask for help for your gambling addiction.

    So, if ever the thought of committing suicide comes to your mind, JUST TELL YOURSELF THAT THIS IS NOT THE WAY OUT.

  29. DanielApril 26, 2016 at 10:50 amReply

    I am going to kill myself tonight! I can’t take this anymore. I have major debt problems and loan sharks hunting me down and threatening my family plus bailiffs knocking on the door every day and adding another £200 on to the bill every time I don’t answer! They are evil bastards, the bailiffs! I can’t afford to pay in the first place so why the f**k do they add so much interest on? They are partly to blame for what I’m about to do! Now they won’t get f**k all off me and i am about to be the happiest I’ve been for the last 10 years! Goodbye everyone and hope you can all sort yourself out! For me now I feel relieved that I’m finally going to kill myself. Take care and leave the gambling alone so that you don’t end up like me.

    • AudraJune 7, 2016 at 3:45 pmReply

      Please go outside and see the beauty. It hurts so much to lose a loved one to suicide. Unmeasurable pain that never goes away!!!!!!!! Please breathe and live.

  30. Kinyua NjeriApril 28, 2016 at 7:47 amReply

    The same storySUICIDE is being told all across Africa. Gambling sites have penetrated into the economies and this way, they are ripping off every piece of sanity and sobriety from kids. Almost every month, the http://www.254campusnews.com/category/sports/ reports an attempted suicide as a result of losing money to gambling. Guys, this is serious!

  31. gina langleyMay 14, 2016 at 1:23 amReply

    i AM ALMOST 60 AND HAVE DECIDED TO END IT. mY KIDS ARE 16 AND 18 SO THEY CAN TAKE CARE OF THEMSELVES. i CAN ONLY BRING THEM MORE UNHAPPINESS. tHEY ARE CONSTANTLY ASKING ME WHAT IS WRONG. I just say that I am tired. But I am really depressed about the gambling. I have a house and a car and a job. But I have no savings, things in my house need to be repaired and I can’t fix them because I have NO SAVINGS because any cent that I get, I gamble it away. I don’t want to live 10 or twenty or even five more years like this. Not even another month. Gambling is like heroin addiction. The only way to get out of it is to die.
    I m divorced because of it, I am alone because of it, I waste a lot of my life because o fit. I could paint my house or plant a garden or wash my clothes, something constructive instead of hours and hours at a slot machine.

    I look around at other women there and none of us are happy. There is no reason to go on. I have nothing to look forward to. I am tired.

    • CguyMay 29, 2016 at 9:43 amReply

      Hi Gina, I know your pain. I’m 42 and every cent I have ever earned in 20 years went to gambling. I’m not married nor do I have children because of this insidious disease. But you have a 16 and 18 year old. They are enough reason to want to stick around. Be honest with them (although I’m sure they already know). They love you and don’t want to lose you to this ridiculous addiction we subject ourselves to. I’m still gambling and need to quit myself. I know the pain your feeling… Oh believe me I know!

  32. AudraJune 7, 2016 at 3:42 pmReply

    No matter what do NOT end your LIFE! Life is so beautiful and precious. There are so many people that love you and will be so wounded when you leave. Suicide is not the answer. Life can be challenging this we know. Death is unknown. Know this that the stars, the moon, the sun, will always be there for you. Go outside and see the beauty. Live, breath, dance, yell, scream, let it out, and find support and help now. WE need you.

  33. JillJune 18, 2016 at 3:13 amReply

    Hello Gina,

    Please do not end your life. Your kids may be 16 and 18, and eve though they are technically old enough to take care of themselves, that does not mean they do not need you. Try to put yourself in the opposite position. If one of your kids told you they wanted to end their life because of a gambling addiction how would that hurt you? You would do everything in your power to stop it and help them. Please reach out and let them know you need help and that you love them or call one of the many hotlines listed on this forum. I am stressed and depressed over a gambling problem too and I found this site after googling the correlation between suicide and gambling. I thought about suicide briefly but the thought scares me and I always try to think of my family and how it would devastate them. Gambling is awful but there is always help. I actually stopped for a couple of years and have recently relapsed. I also struggle with opiate addiction and am currently prescribed methadone maintenance therapy. Just like there is help for a drug addiction there is always help for gambling as well, so please reach out and seek support in others who are struggling as well. I hope you feel better and again please do not harm yourself. I am here if you need to chat.

  34. DavidJuly 17, 2016 at 10:05 pmReply

    I am 37. my life is now 10 years behind. I am unmarried and lonely. Thank God I am into many sports like paddleball, handball, badminton and chess. I also go out time to time. Due to this I was going to casino. I have lost my past two jobs due to gambling. The 2nd job I lost because I used to call sick a lot as I was upset losing lots of money in the night, and felt like shit in the morning. Casino is only 10 mins away from me. So it was hard for me to stop myself. I am sharing a house with my parents and brothers. They are very nice with me. They never bother me even if I miss a monthly rent payment. But I used to treat them really bad, now I am gradually coming to my senses. I am currently working on building my business. I have some success on it, but I am trying to be more successful. I am gradually working to establish my business, and hope one day I will not have any emotion for gambling..

  35. ComefindmedeadOctober 8, 2016 at 5:12 amReply

    No one understands us. No one can relate to us. 12 step programs and faith based initatives are just bull shit. They don’t do anything to help complete lack of control. Sometimes death is the only way to change a behavior. I’ve been through the programs, I’ve done the 12 steps, and I always always relapse. I’m tired of hurting my friends and family. It’s too much and no one understands. There’s no way out. There’s. No step program, there’s no real support, there’s no sponsor who isn’t full of Jesus bull shit…. People. Do. Not. Understand. And they do. Not. Care.

    • Bea AikensOctober 28, 2016 at 1:01 pmReplyAuthor

      I posted your comments just as you wrote them, as your expression of frustration and pain is palpable. I am so sorry that you are feeling this way, and, I can tell you from first-hand experience that I do understand and I can relate, as can many others who struggle with gambling addiction. Life can be different and so much better. Recovery is not one-size-fits-all. The 12-steps work for me and for many folks I know with gambling addiction. But it’s not the “ONLY” answer – there are alternatives for treatment. You can reach out to a therapist or a certified problem gambling counselor. Many states offer free intensive outpatient treatment AND there are 12-step programs that are not religious or spiritual in nature – such as SMART Recovery. There really is “no wrong door” to recovery – please don’t give up and try another door that works for YOU. You are fighting a life-threatening mental health disorder. This does not make you a bad person or a flawed person …it makes you a person with a chronic illness in need of treatment. Please don’t give up. MANY people DO care. Including me. I don’t know you, but I know your disease because I have it too. With help, You can regain control of your life and live a better life in recovery.

  36. MattDecember 20, 2016 at 3:38 pmReply

    As I have read all these comments I feel exactly the same. I owe money to friends and cannot pay them back, because as soon as I’m paid, I gamble away all my pay in hours, and then no money for another month. I feel sick to my back teeth of feeling this way. The last 8 months I have not only blown all my money, but my partner’s also, and feel ashamed of myself now she has told me its over. 3 years ago I went to GA meetings for 12 weeks and felt so much better and looked alot healthier and life was as good as its been since I was a young lad. I know I’ve got to go back but feel really bad at what my life’s become again. Sucidal thoughts and tears are all thats been on my mind the last 5 days I hate living like this

    • Bea AikensJanuary 5, 2017 at 3:41 pmReplyAuthor

      Matt
      You said it yourself – you “felt much better” when you were going to meetings. You are not alone! I pray that you have returned to meetings – if not, I pray that you DO! I understand too well that despair and pain – both from my own gambling addiction AND the loss of my sister Lanie due to her gambling-related overdose. Please, please….seek help! Help is as close as your phone. The 24-hour Helpline # is 1-800-522-4700. Life can, and DOES, get better!

  37. #Fresh StartJanuary 13, 2017 at 6:23 pmReply

    I’m a gambling addict. Over the past year it has progressively gotten worse. As each day passes by I lie to myself; constantly telling myself that this time will be different. As you all know it’s never different. I’ve lost over 35000k over the past year and this is a great majority of my income. It hurts because I have to go home and look at my wife and kids empty handed financially and emotionally. The life i call my own isn’t much of a life so I’ve found myself constantly thinking about life after death. The thought of leaving the emptiness, depression and sadness behind seems appealing and sometimes it seems like the only way. Reading all these post gives me hope because I know I’m not the only one. There is someone out there that feels my exact pain. There are also others out there that feel the pain that I’m considering transferring over to my loved ones. In all fairness to my wife and kids I know I have to fight for my life and for them as well. I know that I’m a fighter because no matter how many times I get knocked down at the casino I’m always right back there, just like you! Let’s fight together to overcome this horrendous addiction that we share. Personally, I have a lot to fight for and I’m sure if you think about it you do too. I came here to see if my suicidal thoughts were normal. It’s apparent that my thoughts are normal, but I won’t allow normal to dictate my next move. Neither should you! Please love yourself enough to get help and if you don’t love yourself, get help so that you don’t have to leave a parent, child, grandchild, or significant other behind wondering what they could have done to help you!

  38. VinnyJanuary 16, 2017 at 9:25 pmReply

    I’m reading all the post and I pray for all
    You can do it NEVER GIVE UP!!!
    Get to them GA rooms and get around. People that will
    Support you get in recovery and just take one day at a time
    Forget about trying to win it all back
    Just let it go and start enjoying life and family and friends
    Will forgive you …it may take a little time but for now just focus
    On your recovery
    Blessings!!
    Vinny

    • Bea AikensJanuary 20, 2017 at 2:32 pmReplyAuthor

      Thanks for your support of those who “still suffer” Vinny!
      We get more posts on “suicide” than any other topic. What a sad a real commentary on the devastation gambling addiction can cause! You are right on…life gets so much better with the support of others who are recovering from a gambling addiction. Life can, and DOES, get better!

  39. Lai Teck ShinJanuary 26, 2017 at 9:04 amReply

    Today is Thursday. Next 2 days will be 1st day of Chinese New Year in my location Malaysia. I owe many debts and a few of them will come to my house to collect tomorrow. My year end bonus and salary just out 2 days ago and i lost it all totally all in fish arcade gaming machine. I now laid on my bed thinking of tomorrow. I feel like i wanted to end my life now.

    • Lai Teck ShinJanuary 26, 2017 at 9:09 amReply

      I had tried seeking for gambling therapy help but they charge me for it and some need me to be in their hostel for maybe 6 months. I have no more money and i cannot stay in there as i need to work to cover all my debts. I have no more way to go. My family scolded me very fierce today saying i didn’t do anything for family and always come back home late. I made a reason i went to look for friends as a reason. They asked me is your friend really help you or want to take advantages on you. Suddenly i realize my friend is the fish arcade gaming machine i look for everyday and it really take advantages on me. Now is too late to stop. I stop today but how am i going to face all the creditors tomorrow? I am doomed.

  40. JayFebruary 16, 2017 at 1:41 pmReply

    Today is my 30th birthday. I got paid today as well. I lost my full paycheck at the casino. I have $6 until I get paid again in two weeks and that check will be for rent. I’m tired of this cycle but I’ll probably never really quit until I’m dead which is hopefully soon.all I wanted to do was play poker but I lost it all in baccarat before even making it to the poker tables. My problem is severe. My friends and family know about my problem but don’t do anything to try and help me. I need to help myself but never do.

    • Bea AikensFebruary 16, 2017 at 4:41 pmReplyAuthor

      Dear Jay,
      I understand how “severe” the problem of gambling addiction can be! I’m really glad you reached out, and I pray that you will reach out for HELP. Life can and does get better! Those things that seem insurmountable now really do get better. The financial fears, the secrets and deceptions…that’s all part of the disease Jay. Please, please reach out for help! Look for your local Gamblers Anonymous hotline, or call the National Helpline at 800-522-4700. And Jay, if your feeling suicidal, please call 1-800-273-8255. Someone is there to HELP. We really do care and life can get better. Please reach out for help!
      God Bless You Jay,
      Bea

  41. JohnFebruary 23, 2017 at 1:20 pmReply

    My son committed suicide because of his gambling addiction and I am campaigning for more regulation of the gambling industry.

    ‪https://www.change.org/p/british-government-regulate-the-gambling-industry-more-robustly-especially-where-advertising-and-online-gambling-is-concerned-the-adverts-on-uk-tv-always-infer-that-gambling-is-socially-acceptable-and-that-everyone-is-a-winner-it-never-shows-the-deva?‬

  42. AbdulFebruary 25, 2017 at 2:25 pmReply

    Please don’t kill yourself. You have people that love you.

  43. bryan dimmickMarch 5, 2017 at 4:49 amReply

    Dear everyone.
    As a compulsive gambler at rock bottom here in Southampton,England I am writing my story for myself and all out there who may seek some hope, advice and a wait out of this killer disease.
    I am 46 year old male and have been a problem/compulsive gambler since the age of 17!!!
    It all started on fruit machines for many years and increasing gambling on horse racing. Within ten years two relationships ruined and promising myself to stop gambling every Monday,only to be back in front of a machine or at the bookmakers counter by Wednesday. Often borrowing,scamming money to gamble. This still was not enough.
    In 2003 I played roulette for the first time on a fixed odds terminal at a bookies……and won of course. In a matter of minutes I had amassed a month’s wages,and the compulsive gambler in me was hooked instantly.
    My gambling has free called since 2003 with constant weekly losses, relationships lost, massive debts and 5 months in prison in 2013.
    Upon release I found Gamblers anonymous – a most amazing place and group of people,friends and saviors. All the tools to abstain from gambling are in that fellowship and regular weekly attendance if possible can really help anyone,no matter how severely addicted stay away from that next bet.
    I have unfortunately, due to a combination of less attendance,alcohol, available income and arrogance, slipped up and gambled……. Quite terrible, upsetting, anger,frustration and the horrible feeling of my wife finding out.
    Our partners suffer as much,if not more than us and there is support for partners,friends and family members of gamblers at gam anon here in the uk.
    I am now back to square one mentally and financially with only time, hope and determination plus massive support from my wife and GA family. I know I can stay off gambling again, but must not only not gamble but attend GA whenever I need a meeting as well as my regular meetings.
    So to all gamblers and family, partners, friends of gamblers… reach out. Do not fear telling somebody,and get yourself to Gamblers anonymous as this wretched disease is a killer. BCD Southampton

  44. Laurie LankoMay 29, 2017 at 6:00 pmReply

    My life has been one of…. Oh hell no matter what I think about my life it could always be worse. I need to quit feeling sorry for myself get over it and move on. I just want someone to hold me and tell me it will be ok. Ive been married for 37 years and yet i feel alone. Will the loneliness ever end? I think I should just end this madness now. I keep digging the hole deeper there’s no hope anymore

  45. Rose WeaverJune 4, 2017 at 12:44 pmReply

    Hiya,
    I’m feeling very alone right now. I spend a lot of time thinking about all the money i’ve lost recently and some of it was for charity. I don’t want to kill myself but I think about ti often and how great it would be if my life just endded and I wouldn’t have to keep going through this hell. For 5 years now i’ve been on and off gambling, always promising to stop after I lose all my savings only to relapse 6 months/1 year later. This time I didn’t just lose all my savings but other peoples money also. My boyfriend hates me for it and says that i’m ridiculous for crying about it all the time but I just can’t stop. It feels like I have let everyone down and all my hard earned savings are gone with bills still needing to be paid. I don;’t have a solid job, working as a freelance face-painter so I can’t even work out how long it will take me to recover. I hope I survive this

  46. LgJune 10, 2017 at 12:49 pmReply

    I have lost everything. My mom’s money and my own. I have so many problems of which gambling is only one. I have so many worries and I gamble to try to make things better but I only make them worse. I see no hope and believe me I have prayed without end. I have huge family problems and everybody relies on me to help and I can’t even help myself. There is no hope and God will not help me anymore. This cannot be fixed so where do I go from here. My kids still need me but I am so lost I cannot give them support. I cannot stop and I cannot go on. Help me I give up. Have a husband who never stops reminding me of the first time I gambled and lost. He will not even think twice about abandoning me now. Where do I go for help. There are no answers and no one to help. My one child has mental problems and will not survive without me, but I don’t have the strength anymore. I can’ t survive but I do have life insurance and that might help my kids. What do I do. I hate leaving them but that is the last I can do for them.

  47. VanhaJuly 23, 2017 at 6:58 pmReply

    Hopefully the bet I put in yesterday was my last bet involving money! Gambling ruined me emotionally and financially, more than me it had huge negative effect on my relationship with my wife. I quit gambling twice before, during the years I did not gamble , my life was beautiful. Weekends we’re great, and they did not cost a ton.

    Gambling was in my family, my father gambled most of the time in his prime years. I always liked the rush.

    My addiction to casino games started in 1996, at that time my game of choice was blackjack. For the first two years, myself and my wife used go to the casino on Friday nights. She stared to see the problem, I started playing $25 a hand by the end if second year I was playing $200 a hand. This kept on going for a while, huge ups and downs. I wish there were never any ups. The confidence that it is possible to win made to chase my losses.

    I switched to Baccarrat game, Banker bet was my favorite. Huge ups and downs. The worst part was every time I won big for few weeks, it always followed with heavy loosing weeks.
    I continued to gamble despite knowing you can not beat the house in the long run. I knew I would loose even if there was no such thing as house advantage. I knew the “the law of large numbers” is not on the side of persistent gamble like me. I still gambled away all the money for which I had worked very hard.

    For the last few weeks I have been getting suicidal thoughts. I lost about 500k in last 18 months. Credit cards, home equity, personal loans from bank, borrowed money from couple of friends stating business needs.
    I am suppressing the suisidal thoughts by remembering my kids, wife and my mother.

    It took long time (20years) for me to realize I was not gambling for money, I was gambling to get that high feeling. Simple, I was happy winning $5000 even if I had lost $25,000 prior week.

    I hope this time I will be successful in quitting gambling. I know it is a hard addiction, but I want to choose life over addiction. I want my high school going daughter to finish college, I want my 11 year old son not to end up like me. I want my wife to smile again. It has been few years since she smiled. This is my last opportunity, there is no way I could recoup my losses by more gambling. But I can be a good dad,son,husband just by not gambling, it is free and very satisfying.

    NO BET = NO TEARS

    All the best to all of you out there!

  48. GarryAugust 5, 2017 at 1:31 pmReply

    Hi group am at rock bottom here I feel so alone I thought I had beaten gambling problem but I’ve went blew everything again my family will disown me no point living anymore

    • Bea AikensAugust 15, 2017 at 4:40 pmReplyAuthor

      Dear Garry, Please, please call the Suicide Prevention Hotline (800) 273-8255 or the Gamblers Helpline 1 (800) 522-4700 and get the help you need! Both Helpline’s are staffed by professionals who understand and can help! I see that you care about your family! Trust me when I tell you that they would rather have YOU than lose you to this DISEASE! I know…because I lost my sister Lanie to the disease of compulsive gambling. It is not a “cop out” to say it is an illness and you need help. You’ve been there, so you know that we really do lose “free will” when in the grips of this thing! Please get help Garry. You are not alone!
      God Bless You
      Bea

  49. Kevin GSeptember 3, 2017 at 9:08 pmReply

    Gambling has destroyed my life, but I absolutely f’in LOVE IT!!! It’s the only thing in this entire world that I truly feel OK while doing. I live to be in action. I’m 30 years old and in a insurmountable amount of debt. I had bailout after bailout after bailout in my life. Enabler after enabler after enabler. BUT NOW I don’t. And suicide is very heavy in my mind.

    I went to a rehab in 2009. Came out and gambled. Went to a rehab again in 2012. Started going to GA and had 13 months. My life was great, BUT I started that 13 months off a bailout of ALL my debt wiped clean. I ran with it for 13 months, beautiful girlfriend, out with friends, vacations – life was great! It was a normal life! Sadly I decided to gamble one day and back I was for another miserable 3+ years wasted.

    I have a good career. I get paid every week. Every week I can’t wait till Wednesday to get paid. I then lose everything in an hour after work and have no food, gas, NOTHING for the week. I somehow manage to borrow, steal, manipulate money throughout the course of the weekend and somehow someway even though I lost my entire check and didn’t pay a bill, somehow SOMEWAY I’ll lose another $500-$1000. Then payday comes and I lost it all and REPEAT.

    I recently went back to GA on march 7th 2017. I got 4 1/2 months clean. I relapsed at the horse track on July 23rd. I was in GA and also seeing a therapist and REALLY trying to work on my emotional problems deep down. I’m filled with so much guilt, fear, self-pity, low self esteem, etc. these all lead me back to the bet.

    Now here I am, writing on this site because I’m not strong enough to go back to GA. I don’t want to stop gambling and the only reason I don’t kill myself is because I can’t gamble if I’m dead!!! I lost the love of my life, lost all trust and respect back again, been begging my entire contact list for money, late on all my bills, etc etc etc. I can’t take the pain anymore and the only time I don’t feel the pain is when I’m in ACTION. I don’t care if it’s scratching a scratchoff, sitting in an OTB betting horses, sitting at a blackjack table, or betting a sports game, I LIVE FOR ACTION. Without action and that high my life is meaningless. Sadly I’ve done everything and expressed every option for money. From borrowing, to scams, to fraudulent things. All I have left is my paycheck every week and next thing will be to rob a fucking bank. I know I’ll end up dead or in jail due to this addiction, but it doesn’t stop me. I really want to kill myself, but I’m also so scared to. They always say we need to live in the moment but I just can’t. I dwell on the past and worry about the future.

    I’m so lost. I work so hard. Every week. Never miss a day. Ever. Because work feeds my addiction. But it’s getting very old now. I’m mentally and physically exhausted.

    • Bea AikensSeptember 6, 2017 at 4:35 pmReplyAuthor

      Oh my Kevin…what a cunning, powerful and baffling disease this is! The disease of compulsive gambling has you expressing how it has taken absolutely EVERYTHING from you….and yet you say you “love it.” My heart hurts for you, as I too know that awful cycle. Are you sure you “love it?” Maybe it’s that you just can’t stop. Clearly, you’ve done 12-step meetings and therapy and rehab…so you KNOW this is a mental disorder that can be treated and, while not “cured”, it can be put into remission. I pray that your bottom is IN recovery my friend. You’ve done it before. You’ve gone months and more than a year without the bet. Are you open to trying again? Life is SO much better when the madness stops! Please don’t give in to this addiction. Fight the good fight and get back into treatment. If you are ready for help NOW, please pick up the phone and call the Helpline at 1-800-522-4700.

  50. Tommy WSeptember 8, 2017 at 7:48 pmReply

    Hi Kevin. Yeah. I could not have written a better essay Kevin. You summed up our shared madness very well. You understand it. You respect it. Sadly, that isn’t enough. And I’m not gonna throw the GA platitudes at you. Our program is full of cliches. However, prison, insanity and death. I know the combo book uses the word ‘or’. But you and I are of the same cloth. You are in the midst of the insanity. Prison is your daily routine, “living” for Wednesday payday. Surely, without GA and all it provides, death is not far. The yellow combo book also contains a sentence which speaks to me and my disease with a bullhorn. “….there is a theory that compulsive gamblers subconsciously want to lose to punish themselves.” That hit me so hard the first time I read it that I refused to read it again. Powerful truth right there. For me anyway. Talk about crazy. Insanity? Yeah. I hate myself, so I’m gonna gamble away my house, my car, my Princess, my job, my friends. my dignity, my freedom, (I did over 20 years for a compulsive gambling related crime) and finally, my life. But here’s the good news. You, I, we…all of us have a choice. Gamble and be miserable until we commit the ultimate tragedy upon anyone who might possibly love us? Or, get back into recovery and live, and turn this thing into something beneficial to humanity, to those who love you, to yourself. It’s not easy. It won’t be comfortable. But you do know it works. You do have the knowledge that with program comes recovery and sanity and healing and peace. You said as much. You don’t know me. I really don’t have the right to speak into your life except that you reached out and that’s what we do. Don’t give in to the pain. Don’t let the disease win. I am praying that just one glimmer of someone’s love in your life speaks to you through the fog of your despair and stays your hand and sobers your mind to where you see your way to another meeting, another day, another hour. And then you will be where I am, reaching back to that fella crying out from the muck and mire of this insidious disease. I am proud of you Kevin for the letter I just read. That honesty came from your gut, and is essential for your next step. Take that next step Kevin. One foot at a time. I have confidence in you because I have confidence in GA, and you do too. God bless you, young man.

  51. Vicente SanchezSeptember 9, 2017 at 8:52 pmReply

    I’m lost and I don’t know what to do. Ive gambled more money that I can handle and I am ruining everything. I can’t provide a basic life for myself and my daughter. My credit is maxed out and I am having to take high interest loans to try and make basic ends meet. With my credit being so screwed up I can’t get any money and I blew 8k I didn’t really have last night. God all I want to do is stop and I cant/

  52. Aiden13September 13, 2017 at 7:11 amReply

    Hi everyone,
    My name is Aiden and I’m addictited to gambling. I have lost everything. I’m on the verge of bankruptcy. Gambling has deteriorated my life. I am dying a very slow death and I really want to end up because I rather die now then live miserably. I really want to stop gambling but I can’t seem to. I would stop for a bit and then I would relapse again. It’s a vicious cycle and I don’t think I’ll ever get out of it. If this is how my life is gonna be then Lord the pray that You take my life cause I can’t bare his pain no more. There is no hope for me because I know in my heart I will gamble everything away again until the day I die.

  53. Aiden13September 13, 2017 at 7:40 amReply

    Hi everyone,
    My name is Aiden and I’m addicted to gambling. I have lost everything because of it. I’m on the verge of bankruptcy. I’ve been losing for the past 10 years now and I can’t seem to stop. I can’t work because my mind is poison, so therefore I can’t hold down a job. I wanna quit so bad but somehow I always relapse. Just like everyone I’m always thinking that the big payout is coming and I can restart my life again. But that’s not the case because I realize that it’s my addiction that’s thinking that. I really want to stop because I’m dying a very slow death. I’m living in pain and misery. If this is what my life is going be then Lord I pray that You take my life please. I have nothing to offer anyone, I serve no purpose what’s the point. I’m just hurting my family and friends. It’s sickening because I know in my heart that I will never be able to stop gambling. I’ve tried many times to stop but also end up gambling again. It’s a vicious cycle for me. The only way I can stop is if I just end it all. Please God I can’t take this anymore.

    • RoxieOctober 1, 2017 at 12:05 amReply

      Dearest Aiden, I just read every story posted to this site, ending with yours. My mother ended her life on Sept 27, 2017 about 6pm. She was not found until the following morning. When I received the call I dropped everything and flew to Kansas City. I never knew she was addicted to gambling until today when I gained access to her computer and paperwork. She was 79, semi retired and had little income. Yet she was able to borrow money from many sources that she would never be able to pay back and she gambled it all away. I now now understand the situation she was in. I must tell you that I still love her more than ever and I would do anything to have her here with me. Please don’t think for a single moment that you are alone and that money is more important than your one incredible life. Please put all that energy into fighting for your life. I believe we have to put laws in place to protect compulsive gamblers from destroying themselves. I believe we should regulate the casinos and other gambling establishments and lending institutions to prevent them from sucking the life from us. Can u help me develop legislation that would protect us? The medical examiner released my mothers remains today so she will be transferred to the funeral home for cremation on Monday. I will never see her again, all I wanted to do is just see her again, there was no one more like me on this earth, and Ishe took her own life for NO GOOD REASON. I miss her so much. Please go to your family or loved ones and tell them you need help. Please be truthful, you can’t do it alone. In the meantime we need to fight these bastards, ok?!

      • Bea AikensOctober 3, 2017 at 10:00 amReplyAuthor

        Dear Roxie,
        My heart aches for you! I have been where you are, and the pain is so great! What we all wouldn’t give for “just one more day.” I too was angry when Lanie took her life due to gambling. I wasn’t sure who I was mad at…the Doctor’s for not understanding how gambling could lead to an overdose and who had the audacity to ask me if she’d “won.” Perhaps the casinos for offering the gambling? In the end I found myself cursing the addiction…which I too have.
        I am a compulsive gambler in long-term recovery and, today, I understand that many people see gambling as a form of recreation…no different than going to a movie or another “entertainment” venue. For those like me, and Aiden, and your precious mother, it is a LIFE THREATENING mental illness! I believe the “fight” is with public perception….where gambling addicts are often viewed as morally weak and lacking in self-control. I don’t think we’d say this of a drug addict or an alcoholic. There is much work to be done there.
        But for now Dear Roxie…it’s not time to fight. It’s time to grieve. To feel your feelings and honor your mother. I am so terribly sorry for your loss! It breaks my heart every time I hear of a senseless loss like this. It happens far too often, and the world needs to understand. Insurance needs to cover TREATMENT of this disease and society needs to pave the way to have safe and open discussions about the disease of “Disordered Gambling.”
        God Bless you Roxie. Feel your feelings. They will come in waves and you will likely vacillate between anger, deep sorrow, regret and back again. You did nothing wrong. We gamblers keep secrets and…there were probably no signs for you to “miss.” Surround yourself with caring friends and loved ones. Allow yourself quiet time, and crying time. If you pray, time with God. Perhaps a support group or Gam-Anon. I will lift you in prayer and Lanie’s Hope will continue to do what we can to shine a light on this insidious disease.
        When you’re ready, you can share your experience with others. Right now, it’s time for you.
        May God Bless you….and thank you, thank you, thank you for reaching out to Aiden! You may have just saved a life.
        Bea Aikens
        Lanie’s Sister

  54. Noel GallagherSeptember 20, 2017 at 12:22 pmReply

    COMPULSIVE GAMBLERS FIRST INTENTION IS ALL GOOD. THEY WANT TO SHOW HOW WONDERFUL THEY ARE BY GIVING GIFTS TO THEIR FAMILY AND FRIENDS AND THESE GIFTS ARE FUNDED BY GAMBLING. IF ONLY THEY KNEW THAT THEIR FAMILY AND FRIENDS ONLY WANT THEM, THE PERSON. EVERY PROBLEM GAMBLER IS CONNED BY GAMBLING INTO BELIEVING THAT IN ORDER TO BE NORMAL GREAT SUMS OF MONEY IS A MUST. NORMAL IS LIFE WITHOUT EXTREMES.

  55. TatumSeptember 22, 2017 at 8:35 amReply

    My name is Tatum, and “I AM A COMPULSIVE GAMBLER”. I sit here today wondering why? Why me? Why can’t I stop? Why do I continue to hurt everyone that tries to help me?
    I remember the day it started, 12 years this has controlled my life. My life wasn’t perfect before that day, but it was nothing compared to the last 12 years. I had a great job, and stopped at the casino and won. That was the beginning of the end. I can’t imagine how much money I have lost, but I would guess it would be hundreds of thousands of dollars. I have attempted suicide multiple times, and hurt everyone that ever cared. I have been to inpatient treatment twice, been hospitalized multiple times and still continue to self destruct. My “husband” has tried to help me and I keep screwing up. I still can’t believe he is still here. He has bailed me out and picked up the pieces more times than I can count. He doesn’t deserve this. He does it because he loves me. But he is tired. He works so hard to make sure we have a good home and life. He tries to make my life easier. He hopes if I am not stressed out I won’t gamble. HA! I wish.
    I’m sitting here alone, terrified. My husband comes home tomorrow and when he finds out what I have done, I can only guess what will happen. We are not actually married anymore. But he talks about getting married again. For the third time. But I am pretty sure when he gets home, I will be out on my ass. Unfortunately I have no where to go. My family is tired. They don’t want to deal with me anymore either.
    So I sit here, Counting down the hours till my world falls apart – AGAIN.
    I have spent the last 12 years trying to fix this. When I can’t fix it, I run away.
    So now all I can think about is what do I do now? I have nothing left. I have no job, no car, no money, and the one person that has tried so hard to make me happy is going to come home tomorrow and figure out what I’ve done. I really feel like I don’t have any other options at this point. The only thing that stops me is that I have tried and failed multiple times. It’s like I can’t even do that right. In the past, when everything falls apart, I would run. But can’t do that either. So I will sit here and wait to see the disappointment on his face. The yelling and screaming. And then I’ll have to walk out the door. I’ll leave the man that I love, my step-sons, my dog Harley, and my life. I don’t know where I’ll go, or how I’ll get there. But it is inevitable.
    I hope some day I can be at peace. I hope some day they can forgive me for the hell I have put them thru. And I hope that some day they will know that I never wanted to hurt them or drag them down with me. I am broken and don’t think anyone can put the pieces back together. And I can’t ask them to anymore. It has to stop.
    All I can do now is pray to GOD to give me strength.

    • Bea AikensOctober 3, 2017 at 10:54 amReplyAuthor

      Dear Tatum,
      Your story breaks my heart. You have REASONS to live – you obviously love your family ….and your dog Harley. Our pets give such unconditional love and comfort:) The fact that you’ve tried rehab before, and the power of your words, tell me that you WANT things to be different! They can be Tatum! I promise! I’ve experienced recovery for myself. And…I’ve also felt the despair of just not wanting to face it any more. Please, please…don’t give up on yourself or on LIFE!
      By now you KNOW that you have an illness and you’ve heard that it is treatable – even if treatment didn’t “work” for you before. Gambling Disorder is a “chronic disease.” Google it. You’ll see that a chronic disease “persists for a long time and generally cannot be prevented by vaccines or cured by medication, nor do they just disappear.” Please don’t give up! Just because it’s chronic, doesn’t mean that relief is not available to you. I have interviewed many compulsive gamblers; and I am one myself. I’m in long-term recovery, but I didn’t “get it” the first time. A survey I took in 2016 showed that most compulsive gamblers with 5 or more years of abstinence had relapsed 3 times before they accumulated any real “clean time.” MANY of them considered or attempted suicide.
      Thank the Lord you were “unsuccessful”…. I believe God has a greater plan for all of us. Clearly, he has a plan for you.
      Don’t give up on yourself Tatum! And don’t beat yourself up for having a chronic illness. Try treatment AGAIN! Just as you would go to the doctor if a medical condition reoccured. Be sure that you are seen by a Certified Problem Gambling Counselor. I don’t know where you live, or where you’ve gone to rehab, but pick one that is “gambling specific.” And of course, 12-step programs augment our recovery and for many, it is the only “treatment” they seek and need for continued abstinence.
      Please reach out again and let us know how you are.
      Praying for you Tatum!
      Bea

  56. E.October 13, 2017 at 2:15 amReply

    My 25 year old husband has been a gamble addict for about 5 years now…We have tried everything. Doctors, therapists, 10 weeks spent in hospital, getting angry, showing understanding, etc. He recently started gambling again and it’s like we’re a few years back. All he does is lie and play on my emotions…just to get money (which I’m no longer giving into ..he’a gambled away over 200.000 dollars..). He’s Korean and I’m originally from Europe, but we’re both living and working in Korea. I don’t know what to do. I just want to go back to my previous life. I can’t do this any longer…but I also know I care too deeply and I’m terrified of leaving. I don’t want to to leave him by himself at the other end of the world. I know that I would think of him and would worry about him every day. His family has recently told me they are going to cut him from their lives..I really don”t know what to do.

  57. JeffOctober 18, 2017 at 1:35 pmReply

    Since 2015, I’ve been gambling larger amounts since Bitcoin has been easier to aquire. I came into about 100k from a serious injury and I started buying Bitcoin around $250. I began gambling on sports full time and it started out very well for about 3 months, making around 30k but then I began chasing losses and $100 bets went up to $10k bets. The value of money completely disappeared. Numerous times I tried to stop and just keep Bitcoin as it was constantly increasing value. I would see tremendous gains, but lose them on risky bets. I quit several times, months and even 165 days at a time, but relapsed into large bets that I had never been gambling at 10 years ago. All of the 100k is basically gone, which would have been a great starting point for retirement savings (I’m 33 and work with dogs). The worst part is the Bitcoin equivalent of what I lost is easily worth a million dollars or more to say.

    Luckily, I paid off my modest home before this spiral began and I have relatively basic expenses, but my soul has basically been crushed and I spent many long hours reading on suicide and wishing there was a way. I’m consumed many days by thoughts of “what’s the point”. 100k$ is a good amount of real money but the lost opportunity of not just letting my money sit on Bitcoin as it’s gone from $250 to $5600 is also a real stinger.

    I have constantly made good savings plans, saving like 75% of my income, only to relapse and bet a years savings on one bet. At this point the only win that would mean anything would be getting back to $100k and it’s just highly improbable of turning 10k back into that 100k.

    I just look back and wish I didn’t have all this joy sucked out of me and it makes me silly to think it’s gonna take 8 years to save up 100k again, and who knows what other issues I will have. Although I love my work with dogs, it’s physically very hard and there isn’t a lot of money in it. I know I’m one injury or physical problem away from not having an income.

    I try to rationalize it as a bad business decision or just a risky choice, but it’s still so defeating. I 100% know it could be worse, as in I could be in debt to someone or have a mortgage, but it’s really all relatively. I feel like I wasted by UofMichigan education, spent 10 years wasting $5k a year on weed, and blew $100k+ on gambling (probably more like $150k since my college days). I’ve read about the difficulties of managing receiving a large than normal sum of money, but all of my “learning) has taken place after the fact. I would do anything to go back and just sit on the money I had saved and received, even just in safe 3% a year investments.

    It is only money and the truth is I didn’t live any different when I had $100k cash in my safe, but maybe that’s because I didn’t understand the value of experiencing life with freedom. I could have not worked or did some traveling, or helped someone out that really needed it. Instead I was reckless and uneducated about what to do with my money and I can’t ever forget about that fact.

    I have moments I enjoy at work with the dogs and maybe some moments out on my motorcycle with my dad but I don’t imagine or expect my life to ever be fulfilling again. I expect to live the daily grind until my parents pass in 20 to 30 years, and then I can’t imagine I’ll really have much to live for in my 50s. I’m sure there will be either a point in the next few decades where something comes into my life that shows I’m worth being around, or I’ll realize that life just isn’t worth the fight anymore. I tend to view suicide as brave, instead of the taboo selfish way that most people against suicide label it as. I’m pro-suicide, as in I think since we as a civilized culture have the means to end our lives without pain, that we should have the free will to make that decision. I have guns but the thought of my brain stem exploding is not really how I want to go out.

    My advice to anyone out there is to never think about starting to gambling in any form. If you ever get a thought that you can make money or win gambling, you have a problem. The only way you’ll win in gambling is if you have money or investors and start a sports book. The house always takes a cut, even on winning bets. Human psychology and the chemical reactions associated with gambling also lead to more losing. A big win might give you a big high, but you’ll be overcome by a smaller loss and the want/need to win again. Once your amounts start to increase, you’ll start to lose the comprehension of the value of money and you’ll never get a rush from winning a $100 bet when you’ve bet $5000 previously, even if you have a great streak and win 5 straight $100 bets. I remember being up $10000+ for a week and even having 5 of 6+days in a row of winning, only to have one losing day set off a terrible chasing spiral.

    I write all this in the hopes of saving one person from becoming the soul-sucked zombie I’ve become. No one should feel as empty as I do because of gambling and no one should constantly be consumed by the pursuit of money. I remember a time where I had to borrow money for daily things, but I wasn’t gambling and I still felt good about myself and had pride. Now, I still can save and invest over $1000 a month usually but I feel completely dead with no sense of pride. Usually when I get to 5k or 10k, it’s usually thoughts of how if I could just pick 3 or 4 games in a row that I could turn 10k into 80or100k. It’s such a powerful delusion of the mind. If I can save one person from not starting to gamble and not have their time transformed to thoughts death, then let me know, I’d love to talk.

    To anyone like me, that maybe found this page to see if there are others who have lost six figures (and are below average income earners), just know that there are. I was doing a million dollars of volume betting in a month. There are a lot of us that have lost large sums and if you’re not stealing, lying, or in debt then it should be a warning sign that the bottom hasn’t been reached and the only way things will improve is by stopping all gambling. The systems, the numbers, the tracking, the winning days are all alluring but it is all like the start to a roller coaster–the part where you’re being pulled up hill–but then that coaster always reaches a peak and then it’s all downhill from there. There will be many hard days, shitty, lonely, boring, depressing days but gambling will just bring darker thoughts and even darker days.

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A Compelling and Passionate Speaker
Bea Aikens couples her personal experience with extensive knowledge of the disease of compulsive gambling to build a compelling platform for civic, community and national organizations seeking knowledge and understanding of the disease of disordered gambling. To engage Bea for your upcoming event, contact her at
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P.O. Box 60214
Boulder City, NV 89006
702.812.1922
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