A Blast From My Past. My Days Writing For InRecovery Magazine! A Special Interview With Arnie Wexler a Gambling Recovery Expert, Advocate, and Author.

A Blast From My Past. My Days Writing For InRecovery Magazine! A Special Interview With Arnie Wexler a Gambling Recovery Expert, Advocate, and Author.


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An Article I Wrote All About Arnie Wexler for and Courtesy InRecovery Magazine and An Amazing Book You Need to READ . . .


THE AUTHOR’S CAFÉ ~ 
By Catherine Townsend-Lyon, Columnist
InRecovery – June 30, 2017

 

Awhile back, the Powerball lottery drawing was for an ungodly amount of money and went a couple of rounds without a winner. I was chatting with a dear friend and fellow author, Arnie Wexler. I call him “The Grandfather of Gambling Addiction Recovery,” as his last bet in the mad world of sports betting and horse track betting was back in the 70s.

He’s never looked back. Instead, he has helped scores of people return from the abyss of gambling addiction. He co-wrote a book titled, All Bets Are Off: Losers, Liars, and Recovery from Gambling Addiction with veteran sports journalist, Steve Jacobson, in which he shares how his gambling addiction drove him and his wife, Sheila, to the edge of life.

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“Steve Jacobson is what’s known in baseball and journalism as a seasoned pro, a man of credibility, conscience, and caring. Arnie Wexler? There’s a reason why for the last 35 years, he has been the news media’s go-to guy on issues of addicted gambling: He has saved at least as many souls, including his own, as Mother Teresa.”
– Phil Mushnick, Sports Columnist, New York Post

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An advocate of gambling addiction recovery like me, Arnie has shared his expert advice on various media outlets and as a speaker for Fortune 500 corporations. He has appeared on numerous radio and television programs, including Nightline, the Today Show, Good Morning America, Inside Edition, 48 Hours, Crossfire and Oprah.

He is the past executive director of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey and is a certified compulsive gambling counselor and recovery coach. He and his wife set up the hotline 1-888-LAST-BET that continues to help addicted gamblers today. I’m happy to say he’s also a good friend and my #1 recovery supporter.

Now, back to our chat about the Powerball lottery. Arnie was telling me that many in his Gamblers Anonymous group (GA) either bought tickets for a chance to win or had others buy them tickets. I was also encountering this on my online GA meetings and gambling recovery chat rooms. We both agreed that either way the tickets were purchased, it was still gambling.

 

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Image result for free images of powerball tickets

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See, Gamblers Anonymous defines gambling for the compulsive gambler as “Any betting or wagering, for self or others, whether or not for money, no matter how slight or insignificant, where the outcome is uncertain or depends upon chance or ‘skill’ constitutes gambling.”

According to this definition, all forms of risk or chance such as raffle tickets, scratch tickets and flipping a coin are considered gambling; though many people don’t like to include lottery tickets in the list.

Addiction is addiction no matter what your gambling preference. Arnie and I were brokenhearted as we heard about all the people in long-term recovery who had bought tickets. Even this seemly innocent purchase could be dangerous for gamblers; gambling addiction has one of the highest suicide rates among addictions.

What is your take on this? Do you think buying a lottery ticket constitutes gambling?

How about those who had someone else buy tickets for them? Is that gambling?

Should they lose their recovery time over a Powerball lottery drawing?

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I know GA
is not the only way to recover; many of us decided to have professional treatment including rehab, recovery coaching and even one-on-one therapy aimed at helping addicted gamblers. After doing some online research, however, I discovered that most recovery sites advocate GA’s guidelines for persons in recovery from gambling. This disease cost me way more than the year’s of wasted money, it almost cost me my life twice from suicide.

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Even though they were failed suicide attempts, 1 in every 5 problem gamblers will try suicide. Gambling addiction now affects 2.9% of our population as problems with gambling. AND? Gambling Addiction is now the #1 addiction claiming lives by SUICIDE over drugs and alcohol combined. By Suicide. Google it if you don’t believe this FACT.


Lastly and finally, the word about addicted gambling is getting out and is a hot discussion all over social media – but the way Arnie and I see it?

If a recovering gambler has someone else buy tickets for them, they gambled. Gambling is gambling.   www.aswexler.com

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Arnie Wexler is one of the foremost experts on compulsive gambling in the country, who has spent the last 30 years helping other compulsive gamblers to recover. He’s a certified compulsive gambling counselor, and he was the Executive Director of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey for eight years. Arnie has appeared on many of America’s top television shows, including Oprah, Nightline, and 48 Hours.

 

He’s been quoted and profiled in literally hundreds of magazines and newspapers. He presents workshops and training sessions internationally. He has spoken to many gaming industry executives, Fortune 500 companies, legislative bodies, and on college campuses across the nation.

Since 1994, both Arnie and his wife Sheila have trained hundreds of professionals working in addiction treatment centers, including Sierra Tucson and Betty Ford Center. In addition, they have provided extensive training to casino personnel, and have written responsible gaming policies for major gaming companies.

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Meet Tiffy Rose. She Is The Author of Her Debut Release “The Big Trap: Just One last High.” Interview Courtesy ~ Off The Record …

Meet Tiffy Rose. She Is The Author of Her Debut Release “The Big Trap: Just One last High.” Interview Courtesy ~ Off The Record …

Hello and Welcome Recovery Friends and Visitors,

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Please meet my special recovery friend Tiffy Rose and she is also a fellow author as well! She is about to release her second book soon, but I have her first book on my “Goodreads List” and is my next book to read. I have been hearing some amazing book news of her debut release titled “The Big Trap: Just One Last High.”

And cannot wait to begin reading it. I decided this year I am going to start sharing more recovery authors and the books they write just as I do over on my “Cat Lyon’s Reading & Den Blog” 

I hope you all will support Tiffy by ordering a copy and make sure you leave a review on Amazon like I will when finished … I hope you enjoy learning more about her!

~Catherine Townsend-Lyon, Author/Advocate

 

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MEET AUTHOR T. ROSE and INTERVIEW by “Off The Record”

 

First off, tell me about yourself?

I am a mom of two; my daughter has two boys and one girl. My son has two girls and they all are the light that warms my heart daily even when I am unable to see them.  I love gardening around the house I bought 4 years ago, a gift to myself on my twelve-year Sobriety anniversary. I also enjoy sitting at my favorite restaurant Oceanside and staring out over the expanse of the ocean to the horizon reflecting on how grateful I am for the life I have today.

I am blessed with over sixteen years in recovery, after a twenty-five-year addiction to cocaine. I am a Recovery Advocate and Life Coach helping those still struggling to find their way through the waters of recovery and the entire stigma that comes along with being an addict. Writing has become a meaningful and deeply satisfying way to meet others and fulfill a strong conviction to help other souls on their life journey.

 


What made you want to become a writer?

I began writing my personal story to explore and understand my life events and make sense of ‘the how and why’ things happened as they did, and the how and why I became addicted to cocaine. A simple daily journal I had begun writing early in my recovery as a self-therapy tool, ultimately became the framework for The Big trap. From what appeared at first a random array of unconnected personal life events and impulsive choices, steadily emerged recognition of interconnectedness and cause and effect of my addiction and the life I had chosen to maintain it.

Writing out the steps and then later reading professional psychology and addiction literature revealed commonalities between myself and others I had known in and out of recovery and I began to strongly believe I could offer something of timely value and benefit to those in need. The question of why I believed I could and should write a recovery book was answered by the majority of people I had shared some part of my story with over the years who lamented, “You should write a book. Thousands need help.” They were right and I knew there was no turning back and a writer was born.

 

Tell me about your book The Big Trap: Just One Last High?

The Big Trap is a metaphor for addiction maintenance. Addicts telling themselves and wanting to believe it as well, the immediate act of getting high right now is this last one, the last high, and then no more, we stop. The story recounts my life events from earliest childhood memories and facts I could accurately verify as the path, the stepping-stones more or less, to my ultimate addiction. It reveals early traumatic events, the horrors of abuse I suffered within an extended alcoholic family, and being a child rape victim. It illuminates the subtlety of neglect, isolation, and the harsh environments to create lifelong conflicts and anxieties that untreated or ignored undermine normal healthy development and often result in efforts to self-medicate that are far too often the origins of destructive addiction.

I engaged that path as a teenager with alcohol and followed with marijuana, largely at first because it reduced the mental anguish and softened the effects of physical injuries. Ultimately, my judgment being too poorly developed to be wary of the seemingly perfect man I later married and trusted to protect me, introduced me to cocaine after self-imposed abstinence from alcohol and weed had steadily improved my life quality. He said; “Just once, just try it please… if you love me you will just once.”  

I was hooked without any idea of how powerful and life-altering the shiny little lines of white was. Up to that point, my earnest efforts to be a good wife while being the successful career woman at the forefront of the emerging personal computer revolution were extremely productive and financially rewarding and the book illuminates the good and bad choices so many of us make and why.


I had worked my way through college while holding down a full-time job by night to become the sole woman Electrician and Electronic Technician in a male-dominated field. Within the picture-perfect family life and career of two professional go-getters moving up that everyone on the outside looking in only seen two functioning addicts hiding the big secret. Casual occasional recreational coke use had steadily become addiction chaos and all the success tumbles down line by line within a year of that first fiery nose burning line.


The monster of more and more drugs took over landing me on the streets for ten years chasing… more! It takes the reader through the days and nights of those living our here, dealing drugs, using drugs and all the violence it holds. After multiple overdoses and seizures almost daily in the end, it was that last trip to jail that I realized I needed to stop. I requested the in-house jail rehab program for my housing stay during that one-year sentence and began what is today my complete recovery.

 

How do you feel it was received?

The reviews I have received from those who have read my book are great, I’m grateful that I was able to touch them with a story that gives a clear picture of the destruction addiction causes and the hope that can be found in recovery.

 

Now that it’s published would you do anything different or change anything?

I have changed some of the verbiage in the current edition that is available. In the first edition, the scenes where the rapes occur were much more violent and they have been toned down to allow placement in Juvenile Detention Centers, Adult jail facilities, Rehab Centers, and Sober Living Houses as aids and facilitation tools, as well as useful guidance in an easy good reading format.

 

I believe you self-published; tell me about that and more about why you went down the self-publishing route?

Yes, I did publish my own book, though I didn’t use the traditional self-publishing route. I created my own publishing business, Tiffy Rose LLC-Publishing, for the current title and those in the process and those planned.  I chose this route after I tried the traditional way of publishing my work without success. I did like so many others send out hundreds of query letters to Literary agents but I received either no response or agents telling me these types of stories are rarely picked up by the mainstream publishing houses.

At 56 years old I determined I didn’t have the luxury of time to wait for unknown people or entities to decide my book was worth their time and investment, so I invested in myself and away I went self-taught into the book publishing arena. I bought the required legal copyright and distribution marking criteria, the publishing software and here I am. Like a Publisher and owner, it allows me access to placement anywhere worldwide, and owning the copyrights I don’t have to worry about who else gets a say in where it goes from here.

 

Have you written anything else and if so where can people find it?

I am now in the final stages of finishing up my second book as a sequel to Trapped. The Big Trap is more about how I got there and the second book is about, how I and others make it back. It is focused essentially on the steps of recovery and sobriety and how to get there and stay. I illuminate the variety of myths and pitfalls of outdated perceptions of addiction and how harmful they can be if taken as gospel when current research and subject trails define newer methods of treatment that are more often effective short term and long.

My sixteen years in recovery I utilize to define how to search out well hidden or ignored cause/effect relationships that often underlie the addiction cycle and how to navigate the problems every addict trying to recover likely will encounter. I explore how to deal with many types of stigma and discrimination usually encountered and the tools I have learned along the way to share with others trying to find the right recovery path and its steps and conquer the obstacles.  A third book, a true life mystery has been outlined and I will publish it in early 2020.

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The Big Trap: Just One Last High!

About The Book ~ The Big Trap: Just one last High
Details:

  • Print Length: 206 pages
  • Publisher: Tiffy Rose LLC; 2 editions (March 5, 2018)
  • Publication Date: March 18, 2018
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B07B8WS8PD

How does a demure hard-working young Southern Belle climbing the corporate ladder at the forefront of the computer revolution get trapped in the dark underworld of drugs, crime, and prostitution?

This is the true story of Tiffany Rose Baker’s long journey from the hot West Texas plains to the executive boardroom by day and the shimmering club scene by night in sunny South Florida. Smile with her as years of dedication and hard work conquer the highest mountains and cry with her when misplaced trust and a line of cocaine leads to the depth of despair and self-destruction.

The Big Trap is an intense and thought-provoking examination of the dark secretive world of drugs and vice and the high price of substance abuse.

The Big Trap… Just One Last High, is the voice of one but the story of many who live day and night in the shadows of a pharmaceutical wasteland.

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A Message From The Author:

“I wrote the Big Trap as an extension of my research into the how and why I became addicted and stayed high about twenty-five years. It wasn’t enough to just know, I wanted to fully understand with certainty because at the time I first got straight again I wasn’t at all sure I would stay that way.  If one person gains control over substance abuse destroying their lives, or if only one person gains insights into their own path to certain success from The Big Trap, then my journey to the bottom and back and sharing it with others has purpose and power.”

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Feel free to Connect with Author, Tiffy Rose on Social Media …
#engagethesolution

Website:  https://www.tiffyrose1recovery.com
Facebook-Personal: https://www.facebook.com/tiffy.rose.984
Facebook-Publishing: https://www.facebook.com/tiffyrose1recovery
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Rose_recovery
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/t.rose.rcvry
Medium: https://www.medium.com/@tiffyrose1recovery