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LiamJ

Gambling addiction and issues

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Hey, new to the forum but just wanted to add my two pence in. I, like most who are here, watch most or all of the uploads. One thing I've noticed in the comment section is pretty obvious gambling issues. Now for some people this topic might make you think stop being a downer.. and I hope it does because if you gamble responsibly and just for the fun, congratulations and I'm glad gambling is here for your enjoyment. However, some people like myself take it at least a bit too far.

I've been seeking a bit of help in the past few months and personally havent bet much at all in 2019, had my first child in February and it sparked me into action to stop being so stupid. But for the past 10 years since I turned 18 it slowly (or quickly) spiralled into something bad.

Enough about me though, I'm aiming all of this poorly punctuated and poorly written gobble at people who need help - whether you will admit it or not. I always knew I had a problem, I just assumed I couldn't be beaten, I could combat it myself. I eventually realised how wrong I was and contacted an Essex based one to one counciling named breakeven. They only work in chelmsford and the south east to east of England but wherever you are there are similar sessions and I strongly recommend getting a grip of things now if you are at any point where you feel maybe you should. Are you in debt from it? £10, £10,000? More? Then yes you do need help. Even if you just spend too much of your wages but stop it there you should still look for advice and guidance. They are amazing, mental health and suicides have come from a result of gambling and I'd love to never see another one. Because there is help. Quite extreme yes but it can sink that low.

NHS have a write up on gambling addiction, including helpful websites, phone numbers and email addresses to aid in helping stop. https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/gambling-addiction/

Gamcare is one of the biggest if not biggest in the UK. On this website you will find just about everything you need to read up, talk to, email etc anyone to start your help as soon as possible. https://www.gamcare.org.uk

Finally, begambleaware are a bigger one now too. Same as above contact info on their website https://www.begambleaware.org/confidential-help/

If anyone has anything else to help someone who may not be in a good place, please do comment. I hope maybe I will help at least someone with this. I am also always here for a chat for anyone in a bad place, just ask for phone number or email address, if I can get to you I'll even have a coffee at wetherspoons for a chat!

Thanks

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Good and helpful post. As I said in a different thread, I’m from a seaside town. The main attraction to anyone under 18* was the seafront arcades and it became a bit of a compulsion with me and still is now. I have no problems at all if I don’t start, although if I do then it becomes difficult to stop. I was a teenager in the 90s and spent most my time playing 5p which escalated to 20p plays when I was of working age... I started to give them a wide berth when they became 50p/£1 plays with the exception of the FOBTs which were like fruit machines on acid to me. It really does surprise me that there is no regulations with regards to 10 year olds playing fruit machines still, but hopefully it’ll come.

My only compulsive gambling was fruit machines, never had a problem with football betting or the lottery, I guess I was just tuned into them from a young age (my choice, albeit I’m not sure from 10 years old you should have that choice!). Funnily enough, I can go to a retro arcade and play 10p play machines with no problems now. I’m sure this is a cliche in the problem gambling world, but I can easily walk away from those (honest guv! But it’s true).

If there are people with serious problems; I sincerely wish them well. I know it could have been a disastrous path if I’d carried on, but I guess I walked away from the war with only flesh wounds. 

 

*not strictly true, they were a lot less strict when it came to ID checking and there were 2 pubs that’d serve my hairless baby face when I was 15....

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6 minutes ago, BlindHaze said:

 

Growing up at a seaside town would be one hell of a challenge not to get sucked in to be fair! Theres loads of different things growing up anywhere that essentially drills gambling into young heads.. and even worse with these new snowflakes of children growing up being pampered to the max. Could be a huge problem in years to come!

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4 minutes ago, LiamJ said:

Growing up at a seaside town would be one hell of a challenge not to get sucked in to be fair! Theres loads of different things growing up anywhere that essentially drills gambling into young heads.. and even worse with these new snowflakes of children growing up being pampered to the max. Could be a huge problem in years to come!

Fully agree. I do sympathise with anyone who is struggling with gambling, I was to an extent too. It was strange, I remember a long while back that I decided to knock the things on the head. If I were on my own, I’d do it out of boredom/compulsion, although when I was with someone then they wouldn’t even interest me. One day many years ago, I was meeting my brother in the pub, I’d just arrived and he text me saying he’d be another half hour or so as he’d been held up. There I was, standing on my own, and the pull to the fruit machine was almost overwhelming. I couldn’t take my eyes off it. It was calling me and everything fibre in me seemed to be saying ‘play it’. I was actually quite scared but resisted. And when he turned up, I had no problem at all. I’ve never had a compulsion that strong since, but if I ever get close then I just take myself back to that moment and think ‘you don’t need to’.

I guess I have an addictive personality, it’s the same with drink when I’m in the pub (not at home). I have 2 beers, I want 4 beers. Then I want 6 beers.... I put that down to me sitting in the pub and the bar being closer than my house is though.... Before anyone thinks me a complete wastrel, tonight’s my first beer in 2 weeks... but now I’m off for a cigarette!

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A great honest insight.

I also live in a seaside resort and started playing fruit machines as soon as I could reach the coin slot at the top! I watched my stepdad play and instead of using my £3 on 2p machines I started choosing Donkey Kong, The Mob, Fight Night and a few other great classics! I was only 10 when I started to understand the game and how to win. I think by the age of 12 I was starting to go to the seafront with friends for a "punt" 

It definitely planted the seed for me and if I could have the clocks turned back I'd rather have never learnt. I have problem gambled on and off for 20 years depending on what's going on in my life at the time.

Thankfully I have a good job and can set myself a limit, enjoy some games (or get really annoyed!) By annoyed I mean I got 6 bonues out of £100 sesh on eye of horus last week and didn't get any higher than £10 on £1 stake 🤬 I didn't chase it but I left seriously annoyed for a while ha!

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Hey Guys

Only moved to the UK in 2016 but I can say FOBTS have really messed me up in that time aswell as a long period of online gambling which now I've totally self excluded from mainly cos my wife found out and I've realised how many thousands I spunked away!!I'm generally skint most of the time but find when I've won or come into some cash it all goes into a fobtin the space of a week or even days.just before the limits came in I lost £300 in a few days on these shits but not been in the bookies in 2 weeks.thing that annoys me is I can be quite good at picking out footy singles or small accas and think tomyself Il put £50/£100 on that but don't have the balls but Il pump in £100+ into a machine without batting an eyelid.I for one an pleased the stakes have changed as my issue was always going on tilt trying to win the initial £20 that had gone in the machine!!Will solely try and bet just footy now.

On a side note I joined gamstop about 9 months ago now best thing I ever done takes all the temptation away!!

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I’ve had the problem for longer than I can remember. It flares up when I’m bored or frustrated. The best remedy is to steer your life away from gambling stimuli. I shudder to think how often I’ve said, “I’m just going to see what I can get for a tenner, and then I'll be on my way,” so sure I can control the urge, only to find that after losing ten my hand goes automatically to my pocket for the next ten, or twenty, or fifty...

It's like popcorn, it's like kissing, it's like food. Trying to leave without a win is like switching off your favourite song on the radio halfway through when nobody is forcing you to.

I'm not saying I won’t gamble again, I know I will. But I think if we “saved up” to gamble rather than poured whatever random amount we have in our wallets into a machine, we'd lose less and start to regain some control. And maybe even enjoy it more. 

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On 4/10/2019 at 10:57 AM, caubeck said:

I’ve had the problem for longer than I can remember. It flares up when I’m bored or frustrated. The best remedy is to steer your life away from gambling stimuli. I shudder to think how often I’ve said, “I’m just going to see what I can get for a tenner, and then I'll be on my way,” so sure I can control the urge, only to find that after losing ten my hand goes automatically to my pocket for the next ten, or twenty, or fifty...

It's like popcorn, it's like kissing, it's like food. Trying to leave without a win is like switching off your favourite song on the radio halfway through when nobody is forcing you to.

I'm not saying I won’t gamble again, I know I will. But I think if we “saved up” to gamble rather than poured whatever random amount we have in our wallets into a machine, we'd lose less and start to regain some control. And maybe even enjoy it more. 

I fully understand this, boredom or frustration is a real stimulus for a ‘just a tenner’ bet. All I can say is that it does get easier. I used to carry a lot of cash with me but don’t anymore, that seemed to really help. Also finding a distraction is a great aid too - I’m currently in a Wetherspoons having a pint, leaning against a fruit machine and have no desire to play it. Maybe if I didn’t have an iPhone and wasn’t interacting on here, it’d be different. I think it’s a personality thing, I need something to do - and fruit machines are always there.

Phone apps can help too; I’m an easily bored person so will do anything rather than nothing. Pick a game you can get in to and then you’re not sitting idly craving distraction in your down time. I currently play Clash Of Clans and it’s simple but you can spend years playing it with a good bunch of people.

Oh, and yes I realise it’s midday and I’m drinking in the Wetherspoons, but I work nights, been up since 17:30 yesterday and I’m drinking Carlsberg 😉 

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Swapping one addiction for another is a good idea, as long as it isnt a bad one! I find getting into a gym regime, running, getting mates together for things like a social drink, cinema etc. Just other things you can spend your boredom time on! Possibly even xbox/ps4 but that can become a slightly toxic habit anyway. Quitting gambling is never easy, but no ones ever alone in it unless they choose to be!

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I to grew up at the seaside and all my childhood and teen years have embedded memories of fun in arcades, the flashing lights, the pusher machines, the red, green, blue etc roulette wheel or the wheel em in machine.

Time spent on the beach, in the sea, on the pier, in the sand dunes.

The screams from the fun fair, the smell of candy floss and toffee apples, the crowds in the summer, and later in life the girls the place used to attract and the tranquility of the place out of season.

I loved my upbringing I feel I was blessed, I always felt safe and now in my latter years I love going back to the seaside and visiting arcades mainly because they remind me always of happy times. I’m lucky to have had a good career that has given me the resources to do a 90 mile round trip most weekends to a resort and the finances to be able to spend a few pounds in the process.

Win or lose (lose being 99% of the time) I always come away happy, recharged and ready for the next week in the office.

I think I have my gambling in the fun zone still.

But having read these posts you can’t help but feel for the people who end up over the line and it becoming a problem. I don’t ever go into bookies so I don’t see the FOBT’s but they are on everyone’s doorstep… So how do you escape from them.

I hope these places you see advertised in arcades etc offering support really deliver help and it is not just soundbites from the industry.         

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Disagree swapping addictions is a good idea. Better to look at finding the cause of a problem than merely shifting the focus elsewhere. 

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By swapping addictions, I purely mean for something like the gym, golf, running etc.. not something that's actually an addiction but it keeps an addictive personality at bay. I know that from experience myself! I consider it swapping to another addiction otherwise I'd be thinking I've beaten an addiction and then maybe I could have a quick shot in the bookies 😂

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Personally I think people gamble because there bored I purchased a fruit machine from eBay and gave the keys to my dad I put loads of spare change in it and more importantly took my mind of gambling online or going to the bookies

anyway the boring misses made me get rid of it after 6 months and I ended up taking £345 to the bank 👍👍👍

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