I am a professional coach and author in the field of gambling addiction, which I've worked in for over 10 years.
Gambling addiction is brutal and highly destructive. It can lead to dire consequences that run the gamut from bankruptcy, job loss, depression, anxiety, loss of friends and family, and even suicide. It is so important for the addict to stop gambling sooner rather than later.
This addiction does not discriminate. If the propensity is there, and the gambler crosses over that invisible line into problem gambling, addiction can occur in anyone’s life. It does not matter whether the person is rich or poor, educated or uneducated. An addiction like this can send people to jail, cause major social and occupational problems, mental instability, and financial devastation that can last for years.
Studies show that problem gamblers are more likely to commit suicide than all other types of addicts combined.
It is important to get help as soon as possible. It isn’t easy to quit gambling, but there are ways you can help yourself before you get to the point of no return. Here are twelve strategies to use to stop gambling and reclaim your life!
Remember the feeling when you lose a lot of money at the casino, online, or through sports betting. Allow yourself to feel that despondency when you are having thoughts about gambling again.
Twelve Tips to Help You Quit Gambling Forever
1. Take a Short Break
When you wake up, make a decision that you will not gamble, just for this one day. If you have to do this an hour at a time, that is okay. Some might have to work one minute at a time, which is fine too, as long as you promise yourself that you will not gamble, and you keep the promise. Schedule your day in a very structured way so you do not have a lot of free time. Forbid yourself from entering a casino, downloading online gaming apps, or visiting gaming websites.
2. Find a Replacement Activity
Find something to replace your gambling. Exercise, go shopping, go out with friends, or do some cooking. You can also rent a movie, listen to some music, or do some reading — do whatever it takes to keep yourself busy. You could pick up a new, exciting hobby, like bike racing or climbing or welding.
Your goal is to stop gambling, and it is not easy when you get such a high from it. Finding replacements, however, can help. Try and see how it goes.
3. Remember How Bad It Feels to Lose
Remember the feeling when you lose a lot of money at the casino, online, or through sports betting. Allow yourself to feel that despondency when you are having thoughts about gambling again. You may find that you are less likely to go out and place a bet. I have done this before, and must admit that these feelings have stopped me from taking that ride to the casino. This hasn't worked every time, but many times this tool has helped.
4. Educate Yourself About Gambling Addiction
Read as much as you can about gambling addiction. Educate yourself, especially about your particular type of gambling. Find out what type of gambler you are and whether you have a gambling problem and have crossed over this invisible line. Are you an escape or an action gambler? Find out what some of your triggers are, as this can help a lot. When you read about gambling addiction, especially the power that it can have on your psyche, you may think twice about going out and placing a bet.
The resources at the end of this article may be of some help to you.
5. Find Self-Help Materials
Seek help. Look for books or courses. Self-hypnosis for gambling problems can also be helpful. Consider joining an online gambling addiction forum. Even if you do not join, reading other people's stories may help you realize that you are not alone. It is crucial that you realize that you are not the only person with this problem. Many share your plight and are looking for answers and support from other gamblers.
Again, there are resources at the bottom of this article that may be of some help to you.
6. Find a Support Group
Attend a Gamblers Anonymous meeting for group support. If you do not want to do a 12-Step program, there is an online program called Smart Recovery. Having support from other gamblers who also want to quit is an important piece of your recovery. Just talking about gambling with other people who understand what you're going through can be really helpful.
7. Hand Over Control of Your Money
Ask a close family member to handle your money. If you do not have money on your person, you will be less apt to impulsively gamble money away. It will be hard, but it is an important step in your recovery. Also, do not allow yourself access to ATM or credit cards. Just keep a small amount of cash with you, so you cannot spend the money gambling.
8. List the Cons of Gambling and the Pros of Quitting
Make a list about how your gambling problem has affected your life in a negative way. Write as much as you can. Make the list on the left side of a sheet of paper so you have room on the right side. On the right side, write about how your life will change for the better when you stop gambling.
9. Make a Financial Plan
Talk to a debt counselor about your gambling debts. Ask for advice about how to relieve financial pressure and solve financial problems caused by your gambling. The financial stress that you have from gambling addiction debts can drive you back to gambling if not addressed. Financial problems are the biggest consequence of gambling, and help is available. Be sure to use a non-profit debt assistance agency, and not one that is for-profit.
10. Get a Good Counselor
See a counselor that specializes in addictions, especially gambling, and talk to this person about your problem. If your addiction is severe, you will need as much support as you can get to stop gambling now.
11. Get Help for Underlying Mood Disorders
Many people with a gambling problem also suffer from depression, anxiety, stress, or other substance abuse issues. These can both trigger compulsive gambling as well as make it worse.
12. Get in the Right Environment
Surround yourself with people that you trust who want to see you recover and avoid any kind of environment where you might be tempted to gamble, which could be anything from a casino, to being at home alone with your smartphone. Delete gambling apps from your phone and tell casinos that you have a problem and that you want them to block you from entering.
Some Final Thoughts
Gambling is a dangerous addictions because of the related risk of suicide. Find help now and make a plan to begin quitting. Take it one day, or hour, at a time and keep in mind how great you will feel when you have come clean and stopped gambling with your life.
More Information About Problem Gambling
Do You Have a Problem With Gambling?
There are many terms that are used to describe gambling problems, including "problem," "at risk," "compulsive," "disordered," and "pathological."1
The American Psychiatric Association uses the term "gambling disorder," in the 5th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders to describe the most severe form of gambling problems. Keep in mind, however, that individual experiences with gambling can differ wildly from person to person.
According to the Manual, a gambling disorder is characterized by:
- A preoccupation with gambling
- The perceived inability to cut back or control one's gambling
- Irritability or restlessness when one tries to cut back or stop gambling
- Risking more money to reach the same levels of excitement as before
- Gambling to escape problems or depression
- "Chasing" gambling losses with more gambling to try to make up for them
- Deceiving family and friends with regard to gambling habits
- Risking or losing jobs or relationships because of gambling
- Relying on others for the financial needs caused by gambling
If you're experiencing any or all of the above to any degree, it's likely that you don't have a normal relationship with gambling. You don't need to be completely out of control in order to have a problem with gambling.2 In fact, problem gambling is any kind of behavior that disrupts your life, regardless of how much you gamble or how much money is at stake.
Gambling addiction is frequently seen alongside other forms of psychiatric disorders, such as depression and anxiety.3 It is also seen frequently alongside other kinds of addictions.4
Just because you have a problem with gambling does not mean you are a weak-willed, irresponsible person. Strong-willed or responsible people are just as likely to develop a gambling disorder as anyone else.
A Note on Recovery
The path to recovery differs for each individual, and there is no consensus in the scientific community regarding the best treatment for addiction. Some people recover spontaneously, some do it alone or one-on-one with a therapist, others in group settings or a combination of the two.5 Half of all addictions end by age 30,6 but only 1 in 10 of the 23.5 million teenagers addicted to alcohol and drugs seek treatment, and when they do, it's often in places that do not use evidence-based care.
This is just to say that addiction treatment is a complex issue. In your journey, don't be afraid to try many options for treatment, even ones that might seem contradictory. Relapse is likely, but so is regaining a life without addiction.
Some of the tools people have used include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Group therapy
- Harm-reduction techniques
- In-patient treatment programs
- Marriage and credit counseling
If you need to reach out to someone, you can call:
- US: The National Council on Problem Gambling Helpline — a free, confidential, 24-hr helpline for problem gamblers and their family members
- UK: Gamcare — a UK-based line offering help and support to those struggling with gambling addiction or their family members.
HelpGuide's list of resources (at the bottom of the article that the link sends you to) is very extensive — It's a good place to start.
Sources and Resources
1. "What is problem gambling or gambling disorder?" 2016. National Center for Responsible Gaming. Accessed April 12, 2017.
The website for the National Center for Responsible Gaming, which has information for researchers about grants they can apply for, research projects funded by the NCRG, and some resources for public education about gambling.
2. Segal, Jeanne Ph.D., Melinda Smith, M.A., and Lawrence Robinson. "Gambling Addiction and Problem Gambling." April 2017. HelpGuide. Accessed April 12, 2017.
A comprehensive resource to compulsive gambling, with many resources for people to begin their recovery journey including worksheets, websites, and support groups, as well as step-by-step guidelines and advice for both compulsive gamblers as well as the people who love them.
3. Martin, Ryan J., Stuart Usdan, Jennifer Cremeens, Karen Vail-Smith. "Disordered gambling and co-morbidity of psychiatric disorders among college students: An examination of problem drinking, anxiety and depression." February 21, 2013. Journal of Gambling Studies. Accessed April 12, 2017.
A scholarly article studying the relationship between gambling and other mood and substance disorders.
4. Nordqvist, Christian. "Gambling Addiction: How Is Gambling Bad for You?" August 19, 2015. Medical News Today. Accessed April 12, 2017.
An article about gambling addiction, its triggers, and treatment for it.
5. Brody, Jane E. "Effective Addiction Treatment." February 4, 2013. New York Times: Well Blog. Accessed April 12, 2017.
A blog post on the current state of addiction treatment in the United States, on the myths that perpetuate it, and on how to choose a treatment program.
6. Szalavitz, Maia. "Can You Get Over an Addiction?" June 25, 2016. New York Times: Opinion. Accessed April 12, 2017.
An article from someone who was formerly addicted to cocaine and heroin about the changing perception of addiction in the United States and new methods for treatment.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
Saddo on January 12, 2020:
It’s true that’s the only way and just play poker for fun maybe. Hope I can win one day but no bookies or roulette ect.
Benny usa on January 11, 2020:
Yeah! 2020 a good start....the only way to win....is to stop gambling !
Saddo on December 31, 2019:
No bet today and no bookie bets for 2020 maybe just a fun game of poker to pass the time away
Christopher1985 on December 30, 2019:
Let's not gamble at all in 2020. That is my goal. I foresee a bright 2020 with no gambling.
Next time you think about making a bet, think about all the negative feelings you ever had after taking a loss.
Use your time wisely. Each second we waste gambling we will never get back.
Your time can be better served to the world by volunteering and doing positive things that could help your well being.
Saddo on December 29, 2019:
No bets for me today just been laying in bed all day to keep me away from it all
Saddo on December 28, 2019:
Almost done 700 today but about 60 lost in the end as I done Man U Man U. Even ran over to cover the bet. No bets for me 2020
Saddo on December 11, 2019:
I lost a 1000 in one day on the horses 2 weeks ago and just getting over. Sudcide thoughts everything
Clo79 on December 10, 2019:
I know Im chasing the high of winning even though I can never come out ahead. I spend until I lose even if Ive won. Im stressed out, getting divorced and I think depressed. I know Im chasing the high of winning to feel the high I feel when winning. Feels good to get that out an be hoest with someone evn if its a stranger. I don't know how to feel happy that is really what my problem is. I haven't wasted an amount of money that I cant recover from yet so thankful for that but I have definitely wasted a lot of money.
BennyUSA on November 30, 2019:
I lost a lot of money from this gambling illness ...the only way to win ...is to stop ! I’ve been from ga meetings,gambling therapy, forums...it all depends on you !theres hope guys.....life is good .....move on in life.....leave this miserable life of gamblers !
Sinead on November 30, 2019:
Lost a 1000 today as Man City let me down for big money and a bribver dare 2 to 13 lost and head just went. I hate this illness but no more now
Sinead on November 26, 2019:
Lost 600 last month and all confused and unhappy hope it gets better for my after Christmas.
Bennyusa on November 25, 2019:
Same here! Stop gambling !
Laura on November 24, 2019:
This is me I’m close to losing everything. I’ve been a gambler for years and it is destroying me and my relationships. I can’t get control I’m at a loss
Cherry67 on November 24, 2019:
Just found this site - while desperately searching for help at 4:00 am.
All these feeling are like my feelings - I can't believe I am not alone.
Hope we can help each other. This will be my first step to recovery.
Day One. I pray for all of us. These are all good advice. I am going to take to heart. Thank You for the Forum.
goldbar7s on November 14, 2019:
Please stop! Be happy with what you have. That is what I say to myself constantly.
Gary Thompson on November 11, 2019:
I done a course called the landmark forum and I stopped gambling that day 23/08/19 and have not gambled a penny since. Google it, you’ve nothing to lose
DaisyRuth on November 11, 2019:
I like your help suggestions.
I am gonna try them, starting now.
sourav on August 30, 2019:
I am 16 years and I have heavily addicted to cricket betting since 2 years. at first I used to play with 200 to 300 rs(3-4 usd) then day by day the limits got increased to around 15k even 30k . I am from a middle class family and I used to play with my dad and my brothers savings without telling them anything.and now I have lost all my dads savings around 250k(5000 usd) and they didn't know anything about it....I am now in heavy depression ..I don't know when my dad know about these things what they'll do with me...give me ssome solution sir.... otherwise I am going to end betting with my life....thank you goodbye.
Sinead on May 16, 2019:
What a terrible day down my mums as felt terrible and lost 50 on Leeds in the playoffs and felt like rubbish in the night and over eat too
Sinead on May 15, 2019:
At house last night and acting like a fool
Melissa Etherington on April 24, 2019:
Good blocking software is a great tool to help prevent the temptation of gambling - https://gamban.com/
Slimbo on March 27, 2019:
Hi looking for some support as I feel myself falling into a habit of thinking I can luckily make more money to help me pay bills due
goldbar7s on January 18, 2019:
Good to hear, Christopher. Good Luck to everyone.
Rovy on January 12, 2019:
Gambling is a terrible addiction ! I used to work at casino ...I saw so many people addicted & I can't believe I'm one of them .. Many time driving home from casino .. Im so mad & angry to myself & I still come in back .... One day as the time ... I'm trying to stay away from casino ..I work 2 job , Try to cover the money I lost ( so so stupid ..) .. Hopefully read all these post from this program will help .. Be strong people .. Remember casino don't open business to give money ... They are open we need business to take our money ..
Christopher1985 on December 23, 2018:
Sorry didn't see your message. I haven't made a bet in about 18 months. It's funny, I never thought I could live without gambling but there are different ways to spend your time in healthy way. I don't miss betting very much. I hope things are getting better for you.
goldbar7s on December 22, 2018:
Life is not at the casino. Life is at home or with your family or at your job. No matter how small it is, that is where life really is. Please cherish every moment of your REAL life. Christopher, I am sorry you are having problems again. The best of luck to you!
TLKG on November 17, 2018:
Thank you very much for your support, yes you're right, more time about living! Today is day#4 and I feel so good. Today I'm going to Costco with my family. How long has it been for you? Thank you god bless and stay safe. TLKG
Christopher1985 on November 16, 2018:
Hang in there. Every day not gambling is a good day. Forget about what is lost. The only thing we have is our time and we need to cherish our time. We can not spend any more time gambling. We need to spend our time living.
TLKG on November 15, 2018:
I have read everyone's comments, how is everyone doing? Update please? Don't really know how this website works, wish I could click on your comment and we could start chatting. I'm praying for ALL OF US, GOD HELP US ALL PLEASE!
TLKG on November 15, 2018:
I have been gambling for 21 years in Vegas and so over it! I get so bored and to Dotty's and sit there for over 8 hours to come home BROKE!!! I'm asking for help from others how to stop, I've gone 5-7 no gambling and then I get hit....UGH I feel so good in those 5-7 days, but I must say keeping busy is a hard thing, the machine keep us busy!
Today is my 2nd day.
goldbar7s on November 02, 2018:
Have not been gambling. I keep getting offers of free slot play from the casino. Have not been going. It will just get me back into it and the SPIRIT will take me over again.
Sam84xx on November 01, 2018:
Need to stop gambling. Been doing it for years. I get paid and my money is gone within a matter of days. I do pay my bills but thats it then end up getting loans. My husband is fed up and so am i. I really want to stop but its so hard
MADGAMBLER on August 28, 2018:
damn....gambling robs you of small pleasures in life...missing out on my children growing up..excessive amounts of alchol going with the gambling and after loosing R50 000 over a week end I feel crap for about 2 days..get busy at work and the urge comes back...recently stopped smoking again and its tough...been gambling on and off for over 15 years I am 47 and need to see the world again...instead of making the big bosses rich at casinos.....strong mind where are you ????
Benny USA on July 09, 2018:
You are not alone my friend! Just move on ..... stop if you can, if not.... gamble only what you can afford . Play low! Don’t hurt yourself..... remember, there’s always tomorrow! I used to play big ... knocked off all my savings.... and I’M 60 years old .. almost there to retire! Stay busy my friend.. make gambling for reacration only ..... there hope ... life is good ! Enjoy money to enjoy life not to waste it for nothing.... forget the past .... start a new life ..... !
Gotta stop on July 08, 2018:
I'm taking my first step to stop gambling. I know I can do it, I just, need to stay focused. My problem is I let myself believe I'm only going to spend a little and then when I start losing, I start withdrawing more and more money! Last night I lost $1,800 usd and I, felt so horrible! I now know I just have to stop completely. The only time I've been able to stay away for a week is to give my husband my debit and credit cards. I need to stay disciplined but it's so hard. I love the excitement it can bring but hate the depression after I lose so much money. I thought if I posted here, I can start my life without gambling. I'll keep reading your posts, so keep them coming!
Tracy on June 02, 2018:
I have had a problem with gambling for over 5 years now. I try and quit and am usually successful for about a year and then stress and financial problems drive me back to the casino. I play one slots game maybe two. I will sit for hours at this one machine and veg out. I am so unhappy and it is putting a big strain on my marriage. I leave usually with all my money in that machine and nothing left but depression and fear of facing my husband and tons of guilt. I just don't know what to do
Inrecovery69 on April 10, 2018:
My first post was almost 8 months ago and have posted a couple of times since then. I am proud to say that i haven't gambled one penny in all that time and have worked hard to clear my debts. Last time i checked i had
£3,500 on credit cards, and was just over £3,000 into my overdraft. 10 months ago i was £26,000 in debt with a lot owed on loans. It's been hard but well worth it. In fact, just last week my wife and i purchased a new home. Getting a mortgage was a distant dream 12 months ago. It shows how much you can accomplish if you can give up gambling. I have, and it is wonderful! Now that i have a mortgage to pay i have even more reason to stay away from gambling. I keep on top of my credit card payments and make more than the minimum payments each month, something that has greatly helped my ceedit score. Next step is to wait a few weeks and take out a balance transfer credit card. This will help reduce what i have to pay as no interest will be added for 3 years. I am aiming to be totally debt free within a year. Please be a winner and not let the bookies or casinos win. Giving up is hard, but you can do it if you really really want to. I did it after gambling forr nearly 30 years. Good luck.
Dsuhe29 on April 09, 2018:
thanks my dear friend, i am thinking that i can stop but still not stop yet.
i hope after i read all comment from dear friend i can stop and no more casino. i've been play casino many years and been worked at many country such germany, macau, dubai but i dont even save some money from my worked. i am really tired but still difficult to go away from gambling.
i will be happy if someone have good suggestion and share more experience.
thanks from Indonesia
Stay strong on March 21, 2018:
Please stay strong people! Into my first week gamble free myself! God bless you all
mark on March 21, 2018:
just came across this site and sounds like everyone feels like I do or have. I have gambled for 15 years and lost my house and marriage. 4 months ago I went to GamCare and I haven't gambled since. Something just felt different this time and although I will always have an addicted gambling problem I really feel like I wont gamble again. In 4 months I am no way debt free but so much better than before and amazed how I managed to spend 100k gambling last year when I earn half that! However things do get better. Its one day at a time but every day you are not making it worse, you are making life better. I believe you can learn to despise gambling and as much as momentum makes you gamble more and more, momentum can make you NOT want to gamble more and more. I am terrified of gambling again after 120 days and starting from 1 again. I know if I have one bet I will have 100 so cant gamble. Have to start with 1 day away from casino or bookies, then build and build. More days you don't go the more scared you are to start again and gamble. Know its hard as I swore never to gamble again more times then I can remember. However it can be done guys and f**k the casino and bookies is what I think now. Its always been my fault I gambled but now I despise anything to do with gambling and feel in a good place because of it.
Carly01 on March 08, 2018:
Soooo tired of this. I’ve been doing really well over the last 4 years and every year around this time I end up back at the casino. I know I can quit. I’ve stayed away for long periods of time with help from a 12step group but, it’s like I make the decision to go out of he blue and end up downtown losing money I’ve worked really hard for. I come home and look at my son and cry. I want to save money for him and I can’t get ahead trying to win money for the high of it? This has gone from crazy obsession (gambling every day) to a few times a year...the damage I do in those few times a year is something I can’t seem to understand. I struggle with anxiety and depression so I know it has to do with that along with alcoholism (I’ve been sober for 4.5 years thanks to aa). But, something triggers me. I’m exhusted of this and want to live a completely clean life. I know I’m capable of better and that’s the worst part. I’ve never written this out bc I’ve been to scared to address it. Thanks for reading. Hope and healing to all.
Layed 350 mistake on February 11, 2018:
Well my head messed up as looking to lose just under 350 by mistake! Crazy!
goldbar7s on January 18, 2018:
We will never outsmart the casino. The only way to survive is to not go.
Benny usa on January 18, 2018:
You are not alone my friend..... were Just in the same boat! I’ve been in your stuation so many times..... feeling low ,remorse ,guilty , have debts , body is tired !...hey man, Let’s stop this gambling habit !...I’m 59 yrs old ..... I would rather spend my money in doing something else ! Soon , I’ll be 60... in planning to travel and see the world !.. I don’t mind if it cost me lots of money.... at least I reward myself ..... way better than to donate it to casinos! Live to learn ..... there’s hope!
Dontgiveup on January 17, 2018:
Hi everyone, it's me again, and I just went on another gambling bing! Trust me, its not easy when you don't have money but I found a way to waste another $1200. Maxed credit cards, personal loans, borrowing from future (4 401K loans outstanding) having to cancel my vacation to Disney, it just goes on and on. I have posted for the past 6 months and there were times when I stopped for a few weeks, but like a drug addict, I need my fix. But I will never give up (and I don't want any of you guys either). Life is a blessing, no matter what happens, today can be a new beginning. Its been 4 days for me now, but the weekend I spent about 8 hours at the casino, cursing at the machines, cursing at myself (under my breath) up and down, but mostly down, and definitely down before I left. I knew there a big fight waiting for me when I got home and there was another huge fight - this the only thing we ever fight about - I wonder why, right?! Thank God I am one lucky SOB to have the most amazing person to share my life with! I am soo tired of feeling this way, of being broke, and disappointing myself (and my family). Please continue to post Benny USA and Dave, and others. We can stop, we must stop! God Bless!
dave on January 13, 2018:
i lost a lot of money at casinos for 9 years in a row, and finally had to quit, maxed out credit cards and lines of credit , i actually quit for about 13 months, and was doing good ,but then started all over again, im back at square one,and need help and have to learn to quit all over again
Benny usa on January 11, 2018:
Stop the pain ....stop gambling! U got 2 choices.....gets life better or gets life worse.....that’s how simple it is!. Remember there’s no winnngs in gambling...u win today , tomorrow , the next days..... but comes a time u lose everything ....it happen to us, right ?.. is there anybody out there that is up in money from gambling ?.... it’s your choice my friend .... there’s HOPE to change for better..... we can do it!
First week. on January 10, 2018:
I got to give this up so this is my first week
Quitter from Nigeria on January 09, 2018:
My dream was to see myself in a classic position tomorrow and become boss of my own not until I tasted the fruit of sport betting which completely futile my dream!
I exhausted what I can call "future" and even created problems for my tomorrow, (... Let me rather say "problems for my yesterday") until I lost and I found myself in Christ! Now, I can see my tomorrow glowing and brighter than yesterday. Halleluyah!!!
Ginger on January 05, 2018:
Hi it has been great reading comments, I would like to give up slot machines chasing the last pound I lost. I lost £260 today which I am not proud about hopefully reading other peoples comments will help me quit,
Dontgiveup on December 29, 2017:
Thank you InRecovery69 for your encouragement. I sincerely appreciate it! I am glad that you posted and shared with us that life/finances are getting better for you. It is wonderful to hear some success and a life without gambling can provide you a better life. I hope to on day make it pass 30 days. For now, I must confess, after "3" WHOLE days, I went to the casino 2x today. I am bad, I know. My lack of discipline and determination waned - I will try a fresh start tomorrow. I can't give up! God bless everyone!
InRecovery69 on December 29, 2017:
Hi Dontgiveup, good to see you got back on the horse again after falling off (please forgive the pun)! As you are doing, take it one day at a time and your strength will grow. One of the key things is to learn to despise gambling. Just recall all those times you lost and the pain and hurt that you experienced. That will help you to loath this habit. As for me, its been nearly 7 months without gambling and i am now applying for a mortgage. Credit file has livened up with debts being repaid in full and no credit applications for the last 8 months. So my once distant dreams can perhaps be realised. Such a difference from a few months ago. Please please keep it up....it is incredibly worth it! Good luck.
Dontgiveup on December 28, 2017:
3rd day - no gambling. I just got paid today and I am trying to keep extra busy after work, and paying my bills asap instead of throwing my money away.
Dontgiveup on December 27, 2017:
Hi everyone, 2 days - no gambling. :-)
Dontgiveup on December 26, 2017:
Hi everyone, well its been 3 months since I posted and haven't been back to this site. I had believed I was on the road to wellness since I hadn't gambled for 3-4 weeks and I thought I was "recovering" from gambling addiction. But basically for the past 3 months I have gambling again, almost daily, and when finances and time permitted 2x a day. Not exactly the "recovery" I was hoping for you. I was there Christmas Eve until closing (I made time for friends & family during the day - but managed to squeeze 4 hours in the evening to myself - not proud of it), and the Casino closed on Christmas day, and so I am telling myself that the best gift I can truly give myself, my family, and friends is stop gambling. For today, I can't make any more promises to myself that I can't keep, but I do not want gamble anymore either. If you are looking to quite, make today your 1st day and we can help support each other through this struggle. God Bless.
Marti on December 02, 2017:
I Gamble a few times a week until I loose everything. Spending all my money this addiction has left me broke. It all started in June it's now December and I still can't stop. I don't have any idea how to stop any body have any idea how to get me to stop this addiction to Gamble. I am ready to to stop. It is time before It's to late.
Daniboi on November 30, 2017:
Hi everyone, I'm new here, but there are no ga meetings near me, and my gambling is way out of control! I was hooked on meth 25 years (clean 7 ears now) so I know how addiction works, but I just can't seem to stop :( I'm hoping an online forum can help? It's to the point all I think about is the game room, even when I'm at work, I'm spending about 1000 a week, which is putting me in debt , I tried getting rid of my on hand cash and my debit card, then today I was desperate and drew a cash advance on my credit card! 24% interest DAILY. I take care of both my elderly parents (separate households) both I'll, and my disabled brother, I have a lot of people I take care of, I'm praying I don't have to loose EVERYTHING before I can quite?:( ps, no one in my family know the true extent of my gambling problem:(
I lost 380 just tonight :(
Mums dinner. on November 19, 2017:
You should try GA glenna.
Glenna Washburn on November 18, 2017:
I need to quit gambling now! I'm sooo addicted!
I have a counselor for gambling too. This is so bad!
Headache on November 18, 2017:
It’s just all one big headache atm
Not again! on November 17, 2017:
Done it again and lost 330 in the bookies. This addiction is killing me! I was doing so well too
In pain on November 09, 2017:
Let’s keep strong everyone
goldbar7s on November 08, 2017:
InRecovery69, thank you for your inspiration. That is where we all want to be.
InRecovery69 on November 06, 2017:
My first post was almost 3 months ago. I am glad to say I haven't gambled since then. In fact, I last gambled in May 2017 so it's been almost 6 months without gambling. One of the things I have realised is how easy it gets to refrain from gambling once time passes. However, I have been burnt in the past when I thought I could control it and gambled with little money. That was such a mistake, you simply get sucked back in. The only way to is complete abstinence - not even a lottery ticket. I have also registered with free websites to check my credit score. This had been damaged by taking out payday loans to cover my losses and to gamble with. Now, I can see my credit score improving greatly. I got in debt to the tune of £31,000 before I stopped gambling. In 6 months I have managed to reduce that debt to £12,000. This was mainly due to my wife borrowing my a few thousand pounds to pay off the payday loans early. This reduced the debt by several thousand pounds. In a few more months I aim to be completely debt free by paying off credit card debts and my overdraft and will apply for a mortgage to by our first property next summer. My wife is so much happier now and I am a changed person...no more lies and deceit. I love the way things are going, my outlook is so promising.
I hope this shows how life can change for the better without gambling. I know it is hard and I know I still have a lot to work on, keeping away from gambling is incredibly hard. The rewards though are great, and the inner peace is beyond words...no more suicidal thoughts. I can walk through the city centre and pass all bookmakers and casinos and not even give them a second thought.
If you are on the road to recovery - whether you have taken many steps or your very first step please keep going. The effort is absolutely worth it.
Shez on November 02, 2017:
i started out small with little cash R200.00 but as time went by i started using a lot of cash and going to different casinos.I hated the life but sometimes it helped me until i started sleeping there and also asking people for money i was lying to everyone around me and that felt so bad.i am not sure if i am an addict or im going there.I also dont want to open up to my friends because i know they will judge me.
Izzy e on October 29, 2017:
Another bit of advice I have found good! Stay away from mates who gamble... I was tempted with a friend and he was almost egging me on, almost hoping to see me crack. Not drinking with him again for a long time. I must say that he made me despise the pokies!
Share your stories people, it helps heaps
Aldi on October 28, 2017:
Well done lizzy. Keep it up
Izzy e on October 27, 2017:
Now on Day 33. I feel as though I wont touch the slots again but I also read stories about people gong months without gambling then going nuts and losing the lot. Keep strong people because i can see the benefits already
Samuel on October 25, 2017:
TLM on October 22, 2017:
Hi I'm new to this...I started gambling 10 years ago....I'm tired and sick how I have lied constantly to my husband about how I waste away our money....everytime I got paid I went to the casino blew my check and his...I even took money that wasn't mine...wasn't alot but that doesn't matter it was wrong. ..I'm hate myself sometimes that I can go months do good...but once I go I don't stop till I'm broke. ..one of my reasons I started gambling I was trying to help support my daughter and her kids...you win big once and it sucks you in....I want to stop!!..so I'm deleting games on my tablets...and staying away from casinos....I've been praying alot wondering why God wasn't helping me to stop...it wasn't him it was me... I was like I can control this I will only spend a $100.00...as long as I keep going to the casino or playing games on tablets it will never be under control. ..day 1 for me...
Edward on October 17, 2017:
Kathy with time and not gambling everything gets better pretty quickly. The key is to not gamble which is the hardest part I know. You can do it! Don’t let this addiction beat you!
Kathy on October 17, 2017:
Today is day one for me. I have tried several times to quit - my longest stretch has been six weeks without gambling. I am determined to beat this addiction and start feeling better. Reading all of your comments has been helpful. You know what it is like and how hard it is. This past weekend I hit rock bottom. Thank you for sharing your stories!
Edward on October 16, 2017:
Hi. How is everyone? If u stop gambling u will see finances and life in general gets so much better, I know it’s easier said then done but trust me your not gonna recoup the money you lost. That money is gone, their is more to life then just money, stop gambling and live life. I wasted so much of my life gambling it’s quite pathetic. I remember when I was 15 and they told me I was lucky to discover n recognize I have a problem at such a young age, but I’m 39 now and life moved in the blink of an eye. I’m tired of putting myself through this roller coaster. I’m stopping now with a little bit of savings still left and no debt. It’s gonna be hard because I live in Vegas but I have to do this. Nomore gambling! Anyone else here in Vegas? Good luck ladies and gents
goldbar7s on October 11, 2017:
Christopher1985 and everyone else, I did not post the previous comment. Someone else signed in under my name and posted that comment. Although I understand their sense of humor,I did not post it. I posted the previous 2 comments. I am only speaking for myself but I see how sick I am from losing at the casino constantly. I never thought about what a sick intolerant person I would become if I was winning millions and what trouble I might end up in. Recent events have made me think about this. I really think I am not interested in the big casino game any longer. I feel that I am seeing that the casino wins in the end no matter how brilliant you may be at this game. Help us all!
Christopher1985 on October 11, 2017:
Gold bar 7s, I am not sure if you are posting on here as a joke but you are wasting yours and everyone else's time. You probably also heard of "successful" professional poker players like Mike Matasau who are truly degenerates. Players like this play for millions but on a bad losing streak can lose EVERYTHING which is not hard to do for a high roller poker player. Yes Ivey and Helmuth may have a better chance to win than the average player but they get plenty of sponsors who support them, which the average poker player does not. You can have a 98% to win a hand but when the only card that beats you comes it can be very significant
Gold bar 7s on October 10, 2017:
Good luck gold bar but if you do return to the casino just stick to no Limit holdem poker! I been reading up about it and there is a chance you can make good money and even make a living out of it! Goggle names like Phil Ivey, Phil hellmuth, Chris moneymaker. I bet all these people was like us and thought there no way to win at gambling and no way out but they changed there life’s around and become consistent winners! I say we join the club! Who’s up for joining the poker challenge and finally becoming a winner!
goldbar7s on October 09, 2017:
The best of luck to everyone on this forum. I think I have lost interest in the casino scene.
goldbar7s on October 08, 2017:
Making millions of dollars per year from gambling is where everyone on this forum wants to be. What a joke.
Izzy e on October 08, 2017:
Day 14 without gambling! and feel good about it but still freaking worried I am going to cave in. Have decided I will not go in pubs with pokies visible or loud coz thats hard to stop the temptation. Have told my best mate that Ive stopped and he agreed to as-well, hes not really hooked but the fact he is stopping will help me. I am also going to go to a GA meeting when I travel for work to remind me of what it can do to my life!!
Dead Feeling and Lyn try the 100 day challenge and log all your past and now feelings, it helps remind you of the fucked up feelings and emotions
Lyn on October 04, 2017:
This is so hard. I'm a gambler and week after week I gamble my whole paycheck. I come home from the casinos saying I'm not going to gamble again but when it comes payday I'm back at the casinos. This is day one for me.
Christopher1985 on October 03, 2017:
I appreciate it Goldbar. Just last night there was a meeting and a member named Don celebrated 14 years free of gambling. The biggest help is getting support from loved ones. I'm sure that once you come clean and have the desire to stop, things will get better and better.
Izzy E you can just google Gamblers Anonymous meetings or go to local churches where meetings are usually held.
goldbar7s on October 02, 2017:
Christoper1985, so glad you are doing so well.
Izzy e on October 01, 2017:
Went to the pub with mates yesterday and watched them gamble, it was hard but proud I just sat and watched. How do you find the GA meetings?
BigFatDad on October 01, 2017:
Day 22 for me... the amount of money I have saved by not gambling is incredible!
Christopher 1985: great advice on GA. I have been to several meetings and they help. They are very encouraging. As a traveling salesman, they also offer a great alternative to the casino. It was very powerful to realize I am not alone, and do not need to fight this by myself.
Thanks to all for the posts! Keep fighting...
Christopher1985 on September 29, 2017:
Hello all. I have been posting on this site for years. I have recently been active in gamblers anonymous and recently celebrated 90 days of being clean which people say is the hardest step. I have truly realized if you try to stop on your own there is a high possibility you will relapse. If you stop on your own, who is there to encourage you and celebrate your 90 day, 1 year and 2 year anniversaries. Take my advice and try GA for 30 days. Gambling will always be there for you if you don't like it.
Izzy e on September 28, 2017:
On Day 3 and thinking about gambling but not going to!!! Big problem is when I travel for work. I need an alternative, maybe the GYM!??
Izzy e on September 25, 2017:
Need to stop gambling, been hiding it for years and really had enough! I am looking at a 100 day challenge. My plan is to stop going to places where slots are and stay out of casinos, I am also going to leave my money cards at home all the time if I can help it! So need help before its too late!
Inrecovery69 on September 21, 2017:
Good job BigFatDad! It shows how sharing via this site can help people stay on course and offer encouragement. Keep it up. I haven't yielded yet and am currently looking at my credit file to see how my credit score is improving. And it us definitely improving! I am aiming to get on the property ladder within the next 9 months - something that would be impossible if I was gambling. The future is so much brighter when gambling is out of the picture. God speed.
goldbar7s on September 17, 2017:
Dontgiveup, the best of luck to you!!!
BigFatDad on September 17, 2017:
Day 8 for me! It ain't easy, but it is worth it. I scheduled my customer visits this past week, in a manner that kept me out of the casinos. I actually thought about driving 4-1/2 hours the one night, to gamble, but called my daughter instead. I didn't tell her the real reason for calling, but just talking to her gave me the inspiration I needed to not gamble. A few other times I was tempted, I read through the comments below, and decided against it. Thanks for the comments, everyone! Stay the ccourse!
1 minute, 1 hour, 1 day at a time....
Mukeshrao on September 16, 2017:
Hi guys I'm mukesh and I'm just 20 this year and going to reach 21 soon. I started gambling on the age of 18 and until today I'm gambling. I used to be a non gambler last time but since I were influenced by my friends I made it as habit. Every time I had money and the first thing I do is going to the gambling shop. I lose all of the money. Sometimes all of my salary about 2000 In 2-3 hours. I felt like what the shit I'm doing every I have money. I rarely spend money for myself cause I'm totally addicted on gambling. When I can't take it anymore, I came to look up for ways to lose this addiction and came up this website. Most of the information are good and from now on I'm going to stop gambling. I'm quite confident after came up these informations and the response of others. Thanks guys. I love u all.
Inrecovery69 on September 14, 2017:
Thanks BigFatDad, keep the positivity going. Thanks for the encouragement - it is upbuilding and means a lot. Thanks again.
BigFatDad on September 14, 2017:
Congratulations Inrecovery69! 4 weeks is awesome. I am on day 4, and it is not easy. Your post is an inspiration for today. I appreciate it. Keep it going.
Inrecovery69 on September 13, 2017:
I last posted 4 weeks ago and I am happy to say i haven't gambled since then. Last time I had a relapse it nearly cost me my marriage; I didn't want that at all. I guess the realisation that I had just one last chance has really hit home. I was at the bottom; sometimes it takes hitting rock bottom for the only way to be up. So guys, if I can do it so can you. Put Family and yourself first; gambling is an unnecessary evil that controls and destroys lives. Keep this in mind always, and try to be closer to your loved ones...they are a real source of strength. Good luck to you all and I am hope my abstinence continues.
BigFatDad on September 10, 2017:
Chandra, if you feel like you want to do suicide, please don't! Your life has meaning and value and worth, and you can find it. If that feeling is overwhelming, you owe it to yourself, and to everyone that knows you and loves you, to come through this. SEEK HELP IMMEDIATELY, call a hotline, or someone that loves you, and don't give up.
I'm new to this page as well... I would have never dreamed that my life would bring me to this point. 4 years ago, when the company I work for changed ownership, I was demoted from a great executive management position in a factory, to a manufactures sales rep. Even though I lost all my authority and responsibility within the company, it turns out I had the ability to make tremendously more money...
This should have been a great thing, right?? Turns out it wasn't....
I found that all the extra money, which could have gone to pay down my kids college debt, my house, my cars, my credit cards, or anything else, ended up going to the casinos.
I actually started planning my weekly customer visits around the casinos. I have now arrived at the point in my life, where I spend 30 or so hours a week in a casino, and less than 20 with my customers.
That great money from the new position has gone due to my sales dropping off, and my debt is climbing quickly. I just need to stop, but it seems so frigging difficult.
I have lied to my family, my friends, and my workplace about my addiction, but today I claim NO MORE!!! I CAN DO THIS!!
Like bee said below " I'm going to give the casinos the finger as I drive by them.
Thanks to everyone who has posted. It has been a great encouragement and very inspiring.
One minute at a time, one hour at a time, one day at a time..
Chandra mouli on September 09, 2017:
hii guys.i am new to this page. i just wanted to stop gambling.When ever i loose money i think of stopping it but i am not able to stop it for more than a week.i am a b tech student from India. My father gives me money every month end.But from the last 4 months i didn't even use single rupee in it.When ever he gives me money i will place that money in gambling.Now i am left with nothing.I even borrowed money from my friends too.Now what should i do.How to stop gambling....I am not able to come out of it.I tried a lot but i am not able to stop it.when ever some one gives me money for eating.Even that also i am spending on gambling.I am not able to sleep night properly also. only one thing that is going in my mind is how should i clear the money which i have taken from my friends.I want to do sucide......But my father is struggling a lot to make money so that i can study well. i want to take care of him in late stages.i want to share these thoughts with someone but even my friends are not letting me to come nearer to them also.so i shared here
Lovelife1215 on September 04, 2017:
Sometimes you are sent to the right place. I am done. I have spent the Labor Day weekend in the casino. Lost more than I can even admit to myself. :-( I have lied to my family, saying "I want to stay home by myself". Ha! I spent the evenings with my "sick friends at the casino", Jack & Queenie & the other losers (sorry people) I often see there.
I know why I gamble. 2 years & 2 months ago my 28 year old daughter died, she struggled with her own addictions, eating disorder, depression, alcoholism. I couldn't help her, and now she is gone. So now I live with that pain. At the casino I can forget the pain for a few hours. & feel good when I win (not that often, not at all this weekend!). I have 4, soon 5, beautiful grandchildren and 3 beautiful children, friends, why do I need to do this????
I suspect my kids know my problem, but do not have an idea of the severity and would be horrified. As these young families struggle with money, I am throwing it in the garbage can. I must be crazy.
Finding this article, the 12 helpful steps, and all your comments are giving me hope this morning, I am intelligent, I know I have a problem, but this is so hard. I hate that I was not more compassionate to my daughter's struggles. But I can do this for her. I will do this for her. Today I start. One day, one hour, one minute... that was her mantra and it will be mine.
Thank you for listening, and I look forward to reading all your suggestions for stopping.
(& damn you video poker, I really love to play! Just like an alcoholic loves the 'taste of beer'.
Dontgiveup on September 02, 2017:
Goldbar7, you are soo correct. My analogy is a casino is like a "crack" house. Some people can handle trying crack, but many people will get hooked and will keep going back to get "high" - I am definitely one of those people. Anyways - I have been gambling free for a solid 3 weeks (21 days) - I am happy about it, even though it is a daily struggle. I come to this post daily, sometimes 2-3x a day and if no new posts, I just go back and reread some prior posts. This, along with prayer, and talking about it with the people that care about me is important to my recovery, because, like alcohol and drug addiction, there is no cure, but it is manageable and I am hoping to have a better future! For now, one day at a time. God bless!
goldbar7s on September 02, 2017:
The casino is death. All the people there are ensnared in death. The cruel thing is that people feel like they are enjoying themselves while they are being killed.
Jackson rankin on August 31, 2017:
I am a gambler. I am 29 years old. I have five children and an amazing beautiful woman whom I lost to gambling. I spent all my money two weeks in a row. I promised my son who is six and the second youngest two packets of pokemon cards and nine fidget spinners this week totalling 50$ he lives in Auckland n I in taupo. His birthday was last week. He asked if I played for his bike. I lied and said yes I sent the money to his mum. He knew I was lying. I then went on to promise him what he wanted only simple little things to show that I love him once again I failed because of my addiction my greedy selfish addiction.