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Was it possible to find recovery with out being religious.
My name is Dave of Beckenham. I am a compulsive Gambler! I am becoming a healthy spiritual person, yet I am not a religion person.

I now know for sure that I was completely ignorant as to how unhealthy I was spiritually long before my spiritual recovery, or any clue how to make healthy changes in my life, in recovery I moved away from having unhealthy addictions and obsessions.

I moved away from having unhealthy habits as I now understand that every action has consequences

Unhealthy actions have unhealthy consequences,

Healthy actions have healthy consequences, no actions on my part is I remain stuck being unhealthy and not improving my life and how I feel.

Calling myself evil stupid dumb bad useless and worthless is unhealthy and I am beating myself up emotionally and causing myself further pain which is unhealthy and detrimental to my recovery and I am emotionally undermining and belittling myself.

The “I have to” talking and thinking was an indicator that not all was well with me and that I was obsessive.

Only by understanding my wants needs and goals could I mature and become a healthier person day by day.

It was and is important today that I do not mix with people who do not want or need recovery program, yet if a person asks for help while attending meeting I will ask them to call me before they go back to their unhealthy habits. Yet call me at reasonable healthy times of the day.

One person told me that after our telephone call and once he was at meetings if I did not answer the call he was going to jump, he was on the twelth floor of a tower block.

Spiritual recovery is very important to me today, it has been important to me for over 44 years and I am a very selfish person and many people are told that of that simple fact.

It took me attending over 4 meetings most weeks just to abstain, that was how vulnerable I was for over 30years.

When I walked in to the spiritual recovery program I did not feel responsible for my unhealthy actions, when I attended two prisons after been caught in the act I did not feel responsible for my unhealthy actions, in those two prisons I cried myself to sleep.

For me to be healthy I understand I need to fulfill my wants needs and goals, physically and emotionally.

That is part of what being a healthy adult is all about.

To understand completely and in whole the serenity prayer.

Gratitude is about healthy spiritual values yet people do not need to be religious to be healthy spiritual people. Often what we want from others we need to fulfill in our self.

Am I in touch with my inner child, do any of my family fear, can I be completely healthily honest with my family and my friends. Am I free to be emotionally intimate with all people. Does fear and doubt hold me back in any way with relationships today.

Do I avoid and fear any person today. Am I able to respect myself more than I respect all other people today. Do I respect other people or fear them in any way.

No one could stop me gambling, no one could stop me smoking, no one could stop me escaping in another form of addiction or obsession that was going to be my own conscious decision to want to become healthy and give up my unhealthy life of my past.

In sharing with many people I am very surprised how deep people can go these days, in talking about things I avoided facing over 20 – 30 years.

I am not a victim today I do not want pity or sympathy, I do not want people to do things for me that I can do for myself, I do not want to hear war stories or people go on about money and the gambling.

There are or were three unhealthy roles I Played in my life, I was for sure a victim living in the pity of my pains of my past, I was also a perpetrator on to other people transferring my pains fears and frustrations on to other people, in recovery I was playing the rescuer rather than focus on the unhealthy parts of myself.

I do want people to show me how to do things I am ignorant about myself, I want people to advise me the best day to do things in my life, I do enjoy the spiritual recovery program and feel like it is a second family to me.

I use to fear the opposite sex, I use to fear my mother father step father and my wife, I use to fear being honest, I use to fear being accountable, I use to fear apologizing, I use to fear failure.

For me failure is not trying new things, failure is not trying to fulfill my wants and my needs, failure is not trying to plan and have goals.

For me failure is giving up all faith and hope in myself.

Being in control or controlling other people was a fear based issue, controlling other people was an indicator of how inept inadequate and insecure I was in myself.

The serenity prayer use to mean to me if I am a victim I am not able to change that fact, I set boundaries if people do not respect my boundaries I walk away from those unhealthy people.

Boundaries is not about controlling other people, boundaries are about me valuing myself, I use to say that I wanted to be normal now I found that supposedly normal is not a very high standard.

So for me the spiritual recovery program is about raising the bar each day, not to impress or person please or get approval but for me to understand that each day I do the very best at whatever I do.

The start of my recovery was Just for today I WILL not gamble.

Next step and part of my recovery was Just for today I WILL not smoke.

Next part of my recovery was Just for today I WILL not get drunk.

Next part of my recovery was Just for today I WILL put every effort and time in to my steps my spiritual recovery and open up more.

My recovery great change was moving from I WILL not to I WILL.

I now understand that it was possible for me to heal from pain if I was still causing myself pain on a daily basis.

For me to heal from pain I had to give most forms of unhealthy living and stop undermining myself in every way.

One of the things I sought was approval from other people, that was due to my unreasonable expectations of other people from a very early age.

Seeking unreasonable expectations of other people caused me a lot of pain and was not healthy, so in time my lack of confidence lack of self esteem, my lack of values was replaced with me doing healthy actions saying healthy words and paying myself compliments and giving myself approval.

How can a person feel guilty for someone being kind to you, how can a person feel embarrassed for someone paying a compliment to me, how can a person feel uncomfortable being kind to yourself and for fulfilling your own wants and needs and having healthy goals.

You can take away the money and fuel for the addiction from someone yet you can take away the desire to want to gamble, today at this minute I do not want or need to gamble.

Today I am emotionally detached from gambling I do not hate it or love it, it is just nothing to me.

In hating anything or anyone in my life I only hurting myself.

In resenting anything or anyone in my life I only hurting myself.

The very first time I walked in to the spiritual recovery program was back in 1969, that is over 44 years ago, and up today I understand that being in spiritual recovery is the best thing in my life.

I could not imagine how many times I broke out gambling, no how many times I broke out gambling the question was the same, do you want to stop gambling.

Each time I broke out was an important lesson if I was willing to learn from it, what was my emotional trigger was it pain fear frustrations loneliness or boredom.

The serenity prayer helps me understand what I can change and those things I am unable to change, for the control freak in me it was not something I did want to accept or listen to.

It sounds strange that by giving up unhealthy control gives you more control and healthy choices in your life today.

Thank everyone for caring for me during the loss of my mother, her loss was the end of a season in her and in my life.

Before she died I saw her laugh, I saw her cry, I saw her without a glint in her eye and I even saw that little girl in her.

I was able to stroke her head and when she was hot I was able to bathe her head with a cool face clothe, I can only say that most of my life I was not there for her physically or emotionally.

Yet before she died I knew that I saw and felt that little hurt girl in her being at peace with herself and with the world.

As a person fades away the material things in our life are no longer important, knowing that loved ones are there for you is the most important thing in their life.

With regards my mothers will I told our solicitor to give it all to my wife and we will deal with things later on, I am able to trust my wife more than ever before in my life.

My trust of my Shirley my wife has nothing to do about her and everything to do about me and my own security.

To be fearless and spiritual is very healthy.

To be fearless is an indicator that I have healed the pains and emotional trauma of my past experiences.

I did not have a clue how lonely and isolated I was before my spiritual recovery, I could not admit the simple things like I was frightened of the post man, I was frightened of the telephone ringing and I was frightened of strangers coming to our home.

As I opened up more I become slightly more comfortable with going in to meetings, yet felt uncomfortable about some

I carried emotional trauma from a very early age in my life, the most traumatic adverse effect on me was abandonment issues.

The abandonment issues came from a very early age and it was going to undermine my emotional and physical growth.

I understand that emotional and physical well being are very much interlinked with each other.

When I walked in to the spiritual recovery program I did not have a choice if I Gambled or not I just did.

I now understand for me that my addictions and obsessions were just a way of me escaping how I felt within myself.

I was not stupid evil bad or dumb I was just a very unhealthy person who when I felt emotionally vulnerable would escape in any way possible for me.

I did not understand that I felt very vulnerable, I even married another not person not knowing that deep down emotionally I was a very immature vulnerable child who had not healed from the pains of my past.

Did I suppress my anger and my resentments or did I internalize those pains and felt that I was responsible for all the things that happened to me and started to doubt myself.

One thing caused me a lot of pain from a very early age was my unreasonable expectations of life and other people,

For me there is no such thing as failure once a person is in the spiritual recovery program, there is a gradual learning curve which seems so slow at the beginning.

How many people give up one addiction and another kind escape in another addiction or obsession, for me escape was television I would get angry if someone disturbed my watching television, now only use television to relax and chill out, I can take it or leave I would plan my life around television I am not that sick.

I now understand that I could not do spiritual recovery on my own, it is like expecting a defective computer to repair itself.

Our healthy honesty is an indicator of how healthy my relationships are with other people and with myself.

Every action has consequences, in my recovery every healthy spiritual action has healthy consequences, by doing nothing and being bored sitting on my hands abstaining only I do not progress.

I am feeling more proud of myself, as I become more productive there is less regret in my life, as I become more focused on healthy living I reduce the odds of me going back to unhealthy living again. Abstaining on its own was and is not enough for me today.

Being over sensitive and getting angry quickly was a good indication that the pains of my past were not healed and nurtured away. How can I tell if I Have healed my pains in a healthy way, well for me all my pains caused me many fears, and if I am able to feel sadness for a painful event in my life it is healed.

By burying and suppressing my pains I was not healing them, at what time in my life would I cry for that little hurt child in me, at what time in my life would I start to respect like love and care for myself.

My honesty demonstrates how healthy my relationships are with other people and with myself, my honesty demonstrates that I am not afraid to be open about who I am and what I am today.

I used to be like a rat in a wheel going faster and faster getting nowhere, and could see or feel that what I was doing all the time and energy was a complete waste of time and energy it was very unhealthy activity in my addictions and obsessions.

I am glad that I am a compulsive gambler because without the spiritual recovery I would never found out how much I was missing from life and my relationships with other people and how unhealthy I had become.

Sponsorship is a very important part of peoples recovery, it is an opportunity for people to come out of their fears and talk about deep seated issues they have never talked about before, it is a very slow process and it is very much the birth of a very close relations and friendships.

Love and peace to everyone.

Dave of Beckenham
so the short answer....yes
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thanks Dave
Smartie xx
Meetings help, but meetings are only a small part to how GA works....

GA is a 12 step organisation that offers the program that keeps me in recovery...

(11-10-2017, 04:26 PM)recoveringlad Wrote: Thank you Dave...

got a lot from reading that..  

just back in ga for a third time and trying to be a bit more spiritual

.... and will read it again.


Please stick with your recovery.

It opens up so many possibilities.

And we stop hurting our self and others.

regards Dave
(11-10-2017, 04:26 PM)recoveringlad Wrote: Thank you Dave...

got a lot from reading that..  

just back in ga for a third time and trying to be a bit more spiritual

.... and will read it again.

Each time I went back to my addictions or obsessions is a lesson if we are willing to learn from it.

Understanding my emotional triggers helped me so much.

Regards Dave

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