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No matter when you gambled being in meetings is the best and healthiest place to be
No matter when you gambled being in meetings is the best and healthiest place to be
Over time I would learn and understand when I was emotionally vulnerable and how to cope with triggers in my life.
Some people think it is strange that room compliments people even when they are only one day off gambling.
Every clean day is enabling us to get healthier in our lives.
I like many felt threatened by the meeting on my first few times, I reacted in unhealthy ways to the mention of God or religion, the recovery program is about our inner healing, I am a non religious person and did not think I would find a much healthier life.
Funny thing the recovery rooms often raise more questions than answers, hence people gather after meetings to talk longer about their life time experiences.
I use to think that I was a very weak useless person, that I had no value in myself, when therapies start you will be a witness to seeing and hearing your self in other people, both the healthy and unhealthy.
Working with a sponsor is very worth while, it helps if you are committed to sharing and being in a two way stream of sharing and communication, and in time some  intimacy at a deeper emotional level.
Once in my recovery I understood that no one could stop me gambling, that no one could make me do some thing I did not want to do.
The gambling did not control me, gambling was a form of escape where I could avoid facing my feelings and my emotions.
Once I understood all of my emotional triggers I would understand that my levels of fear were very high most of the time, and that living in my fears caused me to say or do some very unhealthy things.
Thinking I was a weak person was not the same as being vulnerable.
I could not cope emotionally even before my teen age years, as a teenager I tried to take my own life at my grand mothers, I woke up the next morning feeling even more of a failure.
In my life I have suffered emotional abuse, physical abuse sexual abuse, I have suffered neglect and abandonment, I have been cut with a knife, I have been cut with a broken bottle, I have been hit and run two times, I am just so lucky, both times drivers left me injured and drove off.
So I reached a time where I could not speak up for myself, I could not stand up for myself, I could not articulate my feelings and emotions even to myself.
Every time I took up any unhealthy habit was a form of escape, one thing was getting involved with television programs, or even soaps living their life though other people real or not.
In saying I have to implied that I did things reluctantly or resentfully, by saying or doing things in that way I was cheating myself.
I use to be nice to people to get what I wanted, being nice for me was person pleasing or trying to manipulate people to fulfill my needs.
Me being nice was also person pleasing, why could I not do or say things for healthy reasons, to give of myself unconditionally.
Only by reading my fears down and dealing with them would they reduce from 10 out of 10 fear to low number fears, fear of rejection, fear of being humiliated, fear of failure, I learned soon enough to not try new things I was failing myself, fear of being betrayed, fear of being hurt, fear of Christmas, fear of dentist, fear of fear of tax time, fear of bills arriving at our home, fear of not being able to do my job, fear of my neighbors, fear of running out or petrol.
My fears indicated the anxiety I was putting myself through, the build up of my fears.
For most of our married life we use to get so stressed out that on Christmas day we could be relaxed and enjoy it.
Then of course after Christmas all the bills once more.
We both decided to get Christmas cards sent early, to have a file with envelopes all listed out so we only had to place envelope after envelope in printer and they were done in matter of minutes instead of days and losing things.
One Christmas we sat down so relaxed we could not believe it was Christmas, we said it did not feel like Christmas us being so relaxed.
There were so many things that were unhealthy it took me along time to change those unhealthy habits in to healthy habits, it is not to impress people it is because I learned to value myself and my family.
The consequences of healthy actions and healthy words is healthier relationships with myself first of all, then with other people.
If all I did was to abstain and do nothing else with my life I would be cheating myself and my family.
I have friends today that I have known for over 59 years, I have stayed in contact with people I betrayed and let down, have they forgiven me, that is their choice not mine, do they trust me today, that is their choice not mine.
I do understand that I can heal my pains I am not able to heal other people pains.
Being a willing student in recovery the pace and quality of my recovery was and is today, is all up to me.
If I am not able to or willing to be honest with myself, I am cheating myself.
There comes point in recovery where text and words changes in to our nurturing motivation to be much healthier place in our self.
Time and relationships are the most important things in my life today.
I use to waste so much of both before my recovery.
Having healthy sponsors is two way street, and can be very nurturing and in time our sharing helps us both make healthier choices in every avenue of our life.
It is not healthy to think or give compliments to a healthy sponsor, once we talk things out and once I seriously commit to healthy actions and words the responsibility belongs to me and not any sponsor.
A healthy sponsor helps us commit to our self and to make healthier choices and decisions in our lives.
It is almost like saying when things go well it is the sponsor responsibility, when things go pear shaped it is my responsibility, that makes no sense what so ever.
Expressing gratitude and appreciation is a very important part of my recovery, showing gratitude and appreciation helps intimacy with all people in our life, and often people will think we are different to the normal and we are unusual.
One day we were a=eating out in a fast food place, we placed our orders and our food arrived, well there was paper in between the pieces of meat on my plate.
In the old days instant rage, then I would try and embarrass people, then I would have tried to get some thing for nothing.
On this occasion I spoke to waitress in a very quiet voice and asked her if I had to pay extra for the paper, there was laughter and we were offered free sweets. We declined sweets because we did not want a sweet.
Many times I will compliment the chef for good meal well done, again it is not a healthy expression of my gratitude.
I am now 74 years of age, we have been married over 50 years, we would not be married if I did not get my ass in to gear and become a healthier person.
The lady I married has been a very loyal yet vulnerable lady because of who I use to be, my gambling did not hurt I did, the gambling establishments never lied to my wife I did.
I am able to love myself today and am able to love my wife and my family today more than I could ever have done in the past.
In starting to heal my hurt inner child I started to understand how my pains fears and frustrated adversely affected me.
In time I started get wise as to make healthier choices in my life, I was not a bad person, I was not a evil person, I was not a stupid or dumb person, in taking my recovery seriously and putting more and more effort in to my days I am pleased to say I am a person I can start to like.
The out come of any person recovery is dependant on how much time and effort you invest in to your self.
I knew that just abstaining was not enough for me, only by my abstaining could the healing of my hurt inner child start to begin. Recovery is not a race. Recovery is seriously possible to anyone who truly wants it.
Love and peace to everyone.
Dave L
AKA Dave Of Beckenham UK
(08-12-2021, 08:19 AM)gadaveuk Wrote: Hi

There were important things that I needed to do but did not want to do to help me with my recovery.

Give up talking and thing about Gambling or money lost.

To give up access to large amounts of money to some one I truly trusted.

In meeting talk about how vulnerable I was emotionally.

Talk about my fears my pains my frustrations my loneliness and my boredom.

No matter when my last bet was keep going to as MANY meetings a week as I could get to.

The simple fact if I am in meetings I am not gambling.

To write down for my own viewing the exact amount of how much money I owed.

Get to talk to at least one healthy sponsor who is open to talking about any thing which was troubling me.

Work out your finances as to how money you can a ford paying back to your debtors.

I owed 5 or 6 debtors and over the years reduced debts back to completely cleared.

Once you pay all funds you can become vulnerable so be very careful you get more support at this time.

It was difficult to stop seeing people in any unhealthy actions because I use to think that were my friends.

This was difficult yet again very important.

It was not healthy to go to see or meet people inside Gambling establishments.

You can think there are free meals or cheap meals not healthy.

In my wording I use to say I have to, this implied my thinking was obsessive.

In time I would write down my lists of my needs my wants and then importantly my goals.

By my talking in focus what was a need and what was a want thing.

A want thing can be some thing I reward myself with.

By writing down my goals help me focus on today and tomorrow.

Living in the pains of my past was not healthy or any way Beneficial

As we learn to heal our pains we tend to learn from our past and not live in it.

As we heal our pains our fears also reduce, as our fears reduce we are open to more intimacy and closer relationships and friends.

Before my healing and my recovery was seriously in motion I was not ready to have a close sexual encounter, this was not wise as I was not ready for it emotionally.

Often the meetings raised more questions than answers, it was important to talk to people after meetings to help see things more clearly.

Having more than one sponsor was very healthy and often people would have more experience in dealing with certain issues in my life.

I did not fully grasp emotional resolve or understanding firstly in my recovery.

It takes much time to understand when I am emotionally vulnerable and how to deal with things with out going in to panic and fear mode in a split second.

As I got more stimulated with getting things doe I was able to take on more challenges in my life.

At one time I even was able to rebuild a small extension on our house in England.

I did every thing myself, it was a big challenge for me yet once you get things done you tend to think what can I do next.

In time I started to buy tools, I started to think that if I use my tools it was cheaper than paying some one else to do the jobs.

But having the tools like recovery I went from feeling so worthless and useless to having confidence in myself and also self worth. 

Time in recovery is investing in our self, it is a very useful healthy investment.

It is very important to not give up on our self no matter what happens in our life.

Having a healthy sponsor gives us the choice to think things out clearly and to not react in an unhealthy way and to not do any thing which will adversely affect myself or other people.


Love and peace to everyone.
Dave L
AKA Dave Of Beckenham UK
(08-12-2021, 08:19 AM)gadaveuk Wrote: Hi
No matter when you gambled being in meetings is the best and healthiest place to be
Over time I would learn and understand when I was emotionally vulnerable and how to cope with triggers in my life.


It is always nice to see people sharing their life with us.

My addiction and my obsessions only indicated how emotionally vulnerable I was.

I got to understand that Recovery for me was a healing process, in time I would heal from the pains of my past.
It was impossible to heal my pains if I was still in action with my very unhealthy addictions and my very unhealthy obsessions which was causing more pain than I could heal from.

On arriving in the recovery program I felt that gambling controlled my life.

I even use to think that being in action was fun and exciting, that I use to think that I loved gambling, how mixed up could a person be.

The rage that use to come out of me only indicated how much pain I needed to heal, I understood that my fears even those I did not understand came from unresolved pains in my youth.

While I was in the meetings I was not gambling, yet one meeting was not enough for me, not two even, I needed more than two meetings per week.

There were certain meetings that were very honest about their feelings and emotions, and in time I saw myself in those people I started to understand myself and what I needed to do to become healthier in my every day life.

The more aware I become I understood I needed a lot or work on myself, talking on one to one was very helpful for me.

It was hard for me to write things down, yet I was being accountable to myself, why did I fear being honest, well as a child w hen ever I was asked to be honest I was punished for it.

The funny thing there was only one time that I stole money as a child and my mother was willing to pay me money to be honest about my stealing. Mum kept he word.

In recovery the more honest I got there was less fear of intimacy. The more honest I got in a healthy way people got more honest with me.

The less fear I had the more open I could be with my therapies.

It is very important to find a healthy sponsor, some who is honest with out causing pains, some who can have a healthy two way sharing at every level.

People found it strange that often ladies wanted me to sponsor them, I was willing to do that, yet only with the permission of their partners or husbands.

There was some one a lady who wanted to talk to me with her husband, that was very healthy.

There was many times the emotional baggage use to come out in every day events, it was obvious I ad not fully healed from my past.

I often use to hear older people say that they did not enough hours in a day. Now I am saying it, I use television to relax, I do not run my life to certain  television programs.

At one time I use to think that I wanted to do nothing with my time at the age of 15 years of age, I went away for one year, I did not work, I did not make any commitments at all.

After that year I knew that I did not want to do nothing with my time.

Who is to say what is healthy or unhealthy, that is my choice, if I try to justify my actions I am being unhealthy.

If I am not willing to commit myself I am not being healthy, if I am not able to keep appointment times I am being unhealthy inconsiderate and disrespectful.

If I am not being respectful to other people it indicates I am being disrespectful to myself.

I understand that there is nothing I can do or say to change another person, that is their choice, if a person wants me to go to meetings with them I would do so, I will not go in to or near gambling establishments for another person, it is not healthy for me.

All of my fears were ten out of ten on walking in to the recovery program, it is amazing that when your fears reduce you can achieve so much more with our life.

Love peace and serenity to every one.

Dave L

AKA Dave Of Beckenham UK.
(08-12-2021, 08:19 AM)gadaveuk Wrote: AKA Dave Of Beckenham UK


On walking in to the recovery I did not have much faith in myself, (Non Religious) I did not know or understand what recovery would mean to me, I thought that program was going to stop me gambling, not so.

The recovery program I now understand to be a healing process which could only occur once I abstained from unhealthy habits.

It was not possible to heal my hurt inner child if I was still causing that inner child further pains.

So basically people would think that abstaining was how you get healthier, once my abstaining started was just the beginning of the healing part f my recovery.

I walked in to the recovery program back in 1969, sadly I have only been clean for 29 years why did it take so long for me to grasp what a healthy recovery would like or feel like.

Today I understand and grasp that every pain in my life caused fears in me, fear of being honest, fear of intimacy, fear the opposite sex, fear of failure, fear of trusting people and of course myself, fear of commitment, fear of rejection, fear of embarrassment, fear of being told off, fear of being found out, etc.

The recovery program helped me understand that telling lies was unhealthy, it helped me understand that living in fear was unhealthy, it helped me understand what was healthy and what was unhealthy. 

To exchange every unhealthy habit in to a healthy habit.

So how can I think that gambling was the best thing in my life, that the buzz was happiness, the true was gambling was a way of me escaping people life and situations, that when I could not cope emotionally I would escape in one way or another.

Being in the rooms the honesty started, to give up talking about lost money or about being active, to talk more about my feelings and emotions.

Today there is no doubt in my lind that before recovery I was a very unhealthy person, with out recovery I could not help my self or help any one else.

If I could not be honest to myself how could I be honest with other people.

I was heading to self destruction and could not admit to myself, winning money was the worst thing to happen to me it just gave me more fuel for my self destruction taking even longer.

A boundary was set by my wife, she asked to be honest honest each, not about how much money was lost or won but if I had gambled, I agreed with her asking me each day, then suddenly she stopped asking me, that caused me to be curious.

After some time I asked her she stopped asking me if I gambled, she smiled and said now I know you are not gambling, that caused me more questions than answers.

Just because I stopped gambling did not mean I was healthy, just because I stopped gambling did not mean my fears stopped, only when I asked myself what is the worst that would happen and I accepted the worst thing, only then did my fears drop from 10 out of ten to single figures.

Over time I could heal my pains, I could also reduce my fears, yet you can do one with out the other separately.

Understanding my emotional triggers was important to understand, my emotional triggers were my pains that were not healed, another trigger was fears I would not face, another trigger was frustrations due to my unreasonable expectations of people life and situations, another trigger was fears of emotional intimacy, and my last another trigger was boredom.

So each I went back to unhealthy habits I was would question why how and how I could deal with things in the future in a much healthier.

My anger use to come out in a very unhealthy way some times rage which would adversely affect people round me, I think the best way to explain my instability was I was like sweaty nitro glycerine one thing could make me explode.

And after you have lashed out and hurt the very people that love you there is guilt shame regret and you feel like a piece of crap.

Things that use to make me explode in anger now make me laugh, some times my wife can not be figure me out completely.

Having a big win was not going to give me happiness contentment or love, it was not going to heal my pains, it was not going to help me become healthy whole and self sufficient in a spiritual way.

I had completely blanked the fact that as a teenager I tried to take my own life at my grand mothers, I took some things that were suppose to kill me and woke up the next morning feeling even more of a failure.

The very sad fact was that I completely banked it out, not just the fact of what I took but also the fact I could not understand myself how much pain I was going through. 

I could not put in to words my feelings and emotions, I could not say to any one that I was very emotionally vulnerable and emotionally traumatized.

On walking in to the meetings I did not think it was strange or weird that my legs use to twitch when I crossed them over, I have seen 11 counsellors, I have attended meetings for over 45 years.

When I see a new person come to meetings I am so pleased to see them there, it is not important they talk, it is not important when they last gambled, it is important they stick with recovery it is a life saver. 

I found some thing which was important to me and my recovery that as my fears reduce I am more open to healthy interconnections with more and more people, it is important for my healthy growth.

Another important issue was to express my gratitude to all people, it helps me in so many ways but also improves my internal values.

Only when I appreciate myself can I appreciate all other people.

Only when I respect myself can I respect all other people.

Only when I love myself can I love all other people.

Recovery helps us heal the hurt inner child, so that they can come out to paly once more and enjoy life to the full with out fear restricting us.

Love and peace toe very one.

Dave L

AKA Dave Of Beckenham UK

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