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There was no chance of me finding a healthy life on my own,
My name is Dave of Beckenham. I am a compulsive Gambler!

Why of the most confusing questions I asked going in to recovery why did I Gamble and why could I not help myself stop this insidious decline in my life.

I now see that what I was doing to myself was self abuse, I could not give myself any kind of credit or approval and could not feel secure and happy with in myself.

Sadly I use to think that I loved the gambling, did I not fully understand what love was all about.

Did I not understand that I could have emotional intimacy with people without any issues of sex being involved.

Why did I live in so many fears and doubted myself in so many ways.

Today after over 44 years in recovery I understand that in days before recovery I really did not have a choice but to escape in any way possible from facing myself or facing responsibility.

I learned to live in fear of being honest from a very early age, I use to associate being honest as being painful, in recovery I have learned that honesty empowers me to be a healthier person each day.

There was no chance of me finding a healthy life on my own, in spiritual recovery I learned to listen and absorb healthy advice.

Today I am an equal to a people, no matter how long since my last bet I am able to interact with people and life today rather than react in an unhealthy way.

Step one I use to think that my life was manageable before my gambling and drinking, that was a lie that I told myself, my life was emotionally unmanageable when as a teenager I tried to take my own life.

My life was emotionally unmanageable when I feared being at home, my life was emotionally unmanageable when I feared going to school , my life was emotionally unmanageable when I was wetting my bed as a teenager.

My life was emotionally unmanageable when I cried myself to sleep in prison and felt I was not responsible for my actions.

My life was emotionally unmanageable when I feared the opposite sex and feared my own parents.

When I hear people giving their last date of gambling days months years I add them up and sometimes all those dates added together equal one person who life time of not gambling.

The spiritual recovery program helps us be enlightened as to how we can change unhealthy habits in to healthy habits.

As we laugh at another person experiences we are in fact laughing at our self because we often and see and feel our self in other people.
We are not laughing at them we are laughing at our self in so many ways. When we laugh at our self is an indicator we have forgiven our self.

I often heard the reference a dry drunk, it implies that a person has just stopped drinking and is not working recovery.

For me abstaining and not recovering was like sitting on my hands doing nothing which is not recovery program is about.

Sitting on my hands doing nothing and abstaining was white knuckling recovery and was doing hard time. It was not progress.

Once I started doing the twelve steps I was reducing the chances of me doing unhealthy things, or going back to gambling or getting drunk.

It is funny because there is lots of drinks in my home and it sits there so that when I fancy one or two drinks I can, I do not fear or hate drink or gambling, me living in any kind of fear is unhealthy for me.

In comparing me with other people is about me not being content with myself, by me listening being attentive and learning from other peoples experiences.

There is no doubt in my mind that when I walked in to the spiritual recovery I was seriously emotionally traumatized in so many ways, I was so inept inadequate mixed up and confused I did not know where to start in my journey of recovery.

I think the best way I can explain my recovery I was like a million pieces of a mixed up jig saw I did not have a clue where to start, yet once you work around the edges and I started to build strength in myself the pieces of a mixed up jig saw started to make sense to me.

By being emotionally traumatized I did not have a sense of awareness it was like I was in a fog nothing made much sense.

The mention of going to a counsel scared me because of the fear that overwhelmed me.

Sadly in the old days when people questioned me I felt they were interrogating me that is how insecure I was in those days and I would choke up.

Just because I am in the spiritual recovery program does not mean that people will not try and manipulate me, it does not mean that people will not lie to me, it does not mean that people will not try to control me.

For these people I just laugh and smile, when people try to guilt trip me I just smile and let them know they are no longer able to transfer their pains fears or frustrations on to me anymore.

Guilt tripping is one of those unhealthy dysfunctional habits that need to be removed and discounted.

Dysfunctional habits go against all spiritual values, blaming, escaping responsibility, justification for unhealthy actions and words, avoiding being honest, procrastination, using reasons like I was just to busy, I would have if if if…

Dysfunctional habits have an adverse effect on other people and dysfunctional people will feel very unsettled and uncomfortable as we get healthier.

Dysfunctional people will resent our recovery, dysfunctional people will use words like it is a waste of time doing that, what is the point of doing that,

Is procrastination fear based, procrastination is it due to lack of confidence, procrastination is it healthy to leave things to the alast minute and cause our self unhealthy stress.

In order for me to just abstain I found that I needed four to five meetings per week, then I found out that by arriving 15 – 30 minutes before meeting I was more relaxed in the meeting.

Then I also found out that by being more and more honest I was feeling more free to be myself and my fears were fading gradually , that my honesty was a reflection of how healthy my relationships were with other people.

People in the rooms know of my unhealthy past yet they are able accept me for who I am and what I am today.

Last night I saw a lady crying, it was very powerful in that in front of people she was able to show her pains healing, that she was able to expose her own vulnerability.

For most of my life I buried and suppressed my pains, yet at what cost, the consequences of my suppressed pains were growing fears and so many it would take decades to peel back the onion and let that inner hurt child out and play once more.

So today I am more aware and less afraid, so today my past is no longer important, I am able to face people I use to fear, I am able to face places I use to fear.

Before my mother dies last year there was no fear between us both, we were able to be our self, we were both able to show emotional intimacy towards each other, it was like the past no longer mattered or interfered with that healthy precious moment.

At that instant with that emotional intimacy towards each other nothing else mattered or was important, and that when mother passed away I knew that she was at peace and I was at peace with myself and with my mother.

Those painful moments in the past were no longer painful, there was a sadness but no more pains.

I did not have a clue how lonely and isolated I was before my spiritual recovery, I could admit 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.

I use to chew my thumb nails down till they bled, my legs use to twitch from being so stressed out uptight and nervous all the time, yet from my thinking I thought that everyone else lived liked that.

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

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.

Before I was seven years of age I had suffered emotional abuse physical abuse and felt very vulnerable within myself I Had even by this time already started to suppress and bury things I could not cope with emotionally.

After I was eight years of age I suffered emotional abuse physical abuse and sexual abuse and felt even more vulnerable and again could not admit it to myself.

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.

For sure I was a victim from a very early age and yet understanding how painful it was from my own experience I did and said unhealthy things to people that were close to me, I was doing the same things that were done to me, I was transferring my pains fears and frustrations on to other people.

On walking in to the spiritual recovery program did I truly understand how unhealthy I had become, did I understand how immature I was, did I understand how inept I felt, did I understand how insecure I was, did I understand how scared of being honest I was.

I like many people think that if I did not gamble I would be happy, it did not happen that way, if I had loads of money I would be happy, not true, if I had loads of money I would not worry not true.

Money was never going to resolve my emotional issues.

I started to understand that I would find recovery without taking up religious beliefs.

That all religions educate people with spiritual values, yet why did I go against my own conscience and against spiritual values why was I willing to cause myself and other people pain due to my deceptions and lies.

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

One can question if all of my wants and needs were fulfilled from an early age and I know for sure that was not the case, not because would not fulfilled my wants and my needs, they were unable to.

In recovery I learned to have empathy for myself and over time empathy for other people it is of no importance when people had their last bet or last unhealthy habit, it is important to encourage people to stay with their recovery no matter what happens.

Sadly people will think and feel that if they break out after some time of abstaining that time is lost no clean time is not lost, is not correct if one gambles after time they have not lost clean time.

If I were to gamble tomorrow does that mean I have no value to the rooms of the spiritual recovery program, even my last break out does that mean they cannot learn from my emotional vulnerability or my emotional triggers and what to watch out for.

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.

Some people think that they can only be happy if there team wins if the teams fail they feel they have failed, how can that in any way be healthy.

My reacting in my anger and in my resentments is my responsibility today, I needed to understand my emotional triggers and then once I recognized my emotional triggers do something about them.

I have a great fear to aggression and confrontation which was a result of many spiritually unhealthy adults transferring their pains fear and frustrations on to me.

For certain people abused me in several physical ways and for sure I was a victim yet not only did they physical me with it came their emotional abuse which I internalized on many occasions.

It took me over two years of doing Karate to understand that I feared aggression and confrontation through people transferring their pains fears and frustrations on to me time and time again.

By doing Karate I found I enjoyed fighting and physical contact, and doing Karate help build my contact with other people.

I think the easy way to explain recovery is to relate it to mountain climbers and they gain confidence and learn safe practices in how to progress and learn new skills.

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

That mountain climbers use the rope of hope and faith which is our honesty to stay safely connected with spiritually healthy growing people for the feeling of safety and to share our safe healthy wisdom and helps people progressing without fear holding us all back from progressing? The strength or our rope is our honesty wisdom and our trust and our healthy sharing?

Sadly people want quick fixes and to be healed and resolved over night, sadly it took me many many decades to become unhealthy and take up unhealthy habits and it was and is going to take time to exchange those unhealthy habits in to unhealthy habits.

The number of people is not a measure of the strength of our recovery or our progress; it is our honesty which is strength and the quality of our progress? Our honesty is the best policy?

Even the slowest person moves and grows with the healthy spiritual group that are all tied together in their recovery and their honesty.

The spiritual program was going to help me help myself over long period of time. Sadly most of us want to have the quick fix, recovery and healing does not work that way.

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.

Love and peace to everyone.

Dave of Beckenham
Rich material Dave bless..

I keep adding to my tool box of recovery..

Each and every day..

in unity

Smartie xx

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