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My name is mark i'm 30 yrs old, i would describe myself as a problem gambler one step removed from a compulsive gambler.
I have gambled on and off since i was about 6 yrs old (i was allowed in a pub with my dad so i gambled on the machines for many years)
Most gambling i ever did when i left school was occasional and some might say virtually non existent, that is until FOBT machines in bookies, an arcade opening nearby and online "gaming".

I came here for two main reasons:
1. I do not want to become compulsive but i have at times come very very close

2. I actually do not want to gamble anymore, it is a bad habit, although i am in no financial trouble i do spend plenty of money and time which is wasted.

Probably the worst of it financially in the past has been caused by online "gaming" sites (i like how they use the word gaming these days to make it sound harmless), i have since put blocking software to block that, so that certainly lessens any damage, i actually believe those sites are dangerous to almost anyone especially these days when people are struggling and are more liable to chase a loss.

The other thing i did because i'm in a fortunate zero debt position is to get rid of credit cards, i also got rid of debit card and when i need cash i load it onto a pre-pay card (you can only spend or withdraw what you have placed on the card).

I have techniques to lessen gambling and bring it to a minimum or lessen the damage but i cannot say i can just stop.

I meet all the criteria for a compulsive gambler (chasing losses, spending more time than i should etc) except i have only on a few occasions spent more than i could afford to lose, i do very often spend more than i WANT to lose, i suppose that is the crucial difference.

But i fear i could go over the line and i have crossed that line a few times and stepped back and survived, now i just want to quit.

Truthfully, i think gambling has damaged my lifestyle, as in it has prevented things getting done, or stopped me going on holiday, wasted time, and caused upset in the family, and it has done this without putting me into debt which is quiet frightning because i always thought you can only have a gambling problem if you have debt, i realise now that is far from the truth.

Ok this is turning into a rant, so apology for that.
Thanks for reading.

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