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Addicted boyfriend
Hello, this is my first post and first time actually talking about my boyfriends gambling at all with anyone. We have been together for 2 years, and the problem has been going on for about a year or so. He has a gambling problem and has done for a while, and each month when he gets his wages, it will be gone within a couple of days which I know is due to gambling, however he will make up a story as to where its gone. As he has no more money for the rest of the month he turns to me to ask for money and will make up absolutely anything to get it. He makes me feel so bad or makes out something bad will happen if he doesnt get the money that I will cave in and give it to him in the hopes of this one time being different because im scared that if hes actually telling the truth then he will get into worse money troubles than lending off me. I never know the truth and get told i would get the money back a day later but something ALWAYS gets in the way obviously so i dont get it back. This has built up over a period of time and he now owes me a good sum of money, he pays me back monthly on payday - which he is good at doing however its the same story each month after hes gambled the rest where he needs most of it back and makes me feel terrible. I feel like such an idiot because I KNOW deep down whats going on but he just has a way each time. And i worry that if its not me hes borrowing of then it could be someone who wont be as forgiving and that scares me. I feel like the only way to help the situation is to be apart so he cant ask and I cant give but its not that simple. Its making me fall less in love with him which i dont want and i dont want to leave him because im scared of what will happen to him if he goes through this alone. Help Sad im only 21 and have never been through this its so hard
Hi Jan9510

Thank you for sharing, I know how much of a secret it can be, I kept my addiction secret and also made my wife keep it secret when she found out. From my experience, all the time I could borrow money, it just kept me gambling. It wasn't until I couldn't get access to any more money and people said NO to me asking for money, did I finally do something about the addiction. I understand that you feel that you are doing the right thing, but hoping that it will be different this time, most likely won't change anything.

Does your boyfriend actually admit he has a problem? Until the compulsive gambler, themselves faces the fact that thy have a problem with gambling, there is very little GA can do to help. You can strongly suggest to him that he goes to a GA meeting. In the mean time, please have a look at gamanon meetings for yourself. This is a fellowship of men and women who are the loved ones of compulsive gamblers, who help each other.

Wish you both well

One day at a time.  My last bet was 15/03/2016 and I hope and pray each day that it stays that way.
Hello Jan Your boyfriend is playing you "like a fiddle". Each and every time he knows EXACTLY what he wants and how to get it. Manipulation is a common characteristic of the compulsive gambler and we tend to be very good at it in order to sustain our addiction. Truth be told, you are actually very easy "prey" for him. So like my friend Simmo says, if he has no desire to stop, little can be done. So the question remains of what you can do to help YOURSELF. Like Simmo suggests, Gamanon is a great choice. It has helped many just like you. Your story is really not unique and experience is a great teacher. Until your boyfriend does something to help himself, you might want to look down at your legs and use those legs to run away as fast as possible. Tough love requires some strong decisions. If the situation remains static your boyfriend will drag himself down and you as well. Love may be blind but I hope you get your sight back soon. LewB-Woodbury Monday Night
Welcome Jan,
I hope you find the support and solutions you require from this forum. Most gamblers lie to conceal their addiction, I certainly did. Financing my addiction became an art, and, on reflection, I can see just how secretive and devious I became. Unfortunately you are an "enabler" to his addiction and your actions are feeding the problem. It is very easy to consider the impact that problem gambling has on the gambler, but the effect on those close to the addict is underestimated, you clearly love your boyfriend but by funding his losses you are creating a bigger problem. I never really borrowed from family or friends, I guess I was too proud, but I did lie about how overtime wasn't paid, that I needed to loan a friend some money....I can recall selling some personal possessions too....gambling does deprive you of your dignity.
My advice is to talk to your boyfriend in a supportive way, explain your concerns. It is likely that he'll be defensive, the addict will need to be ready to open up (I never really did this until sat in a GA meeting). Progress can only be made if a) he identifies he has a problem... and b) he wants to do something about it. One thing is certain, your continued financial assistance will only feed the problem.

I wish you well.
Hi Jan,

What you describe is exactly what I used to do to anyone who would lend me money. Mainly my wife.

I have had a "demand from the tax man" to pay back some taxes from a prior year when I was contracting.
I have had "reduced wages from work due to a tax coding error"
Plus the usual lies of "need new tires for the car and don't have enough right now" and "I lost my wallet and it had x pounds in it, I now don't have my cards or any means to get cash until new ones come, can you lend me"

I was a despicable human being, that is 100% fact.

I faced up to my problem when I felt it was a choice between suicide or tackling the problem with help. I'm too much of a coward for suicide and with 2 young children it would have been a far more selfish thing to do than owning up and facing up.

Simply, your boyfriend has to get past the denial stage, learn to accept that he has a problem and then seek help. All things that others here have said.
Bluntly though, as a compulsive gambler, we are in our own hole with a shovel....every time we get cash (and we don't care how we get it, what the repayment will be, or who we get it from) we will dig our hole down a little deeper. For your sake and his, you have to say no to lending him cash, in a way you are just feeding his addiction. The only way we begin to rise out of the hole we've dug is through continued abstinence, repayment of past debts. We will though never get fully out it, but will have risen enough to see the world again. The compulsion is here to stay, and it's a battle for the rest of your life to stay away.

My wife now has my cards, and full control of my bank account. With that in place it's a huge barrier I would have to break to gamble again, and frankly almost 8 months on now it's not a place I ever want to go back to.

The gamblers tri-angle is Time, Money, Location.....with access to all 3 the gambling won't stop. Take 1 away and it becomes harder, take 2 way and it's nigh on impossible.

The GA meetings are the key to my continued abstinence, as well as approaching with honesty, and an open mind.

Best wishes, I hope that your fella recognises that you are there to help him, and responds in the right way.

Take care


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