Dear Gambling Addiction, ~ It’s My Final Goodbye…Part Two and Forever.

“PART TWO ~ MY FINAL GOODBYE Gambling Addiction”

 

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I still remember the days when you taught me well about trying to control my gambling and you also taught me to be in denial of having a problem, to use blame and entitlement to make me believe that gambling was so much easier than to try and stop and stay in recovery. Your sick so-called  ‘friendship’ was dripping with shame, guilt. You had stripped me of self-worth, confidence, and took much life from me. So much so, I looked at myself in the mirror and only saw an empty shell of a woman that used to be so fun, humorous, loving, vibrant, and beautiful inside and out.

Yes, you taught well. And this time you were even more “cunning and baffling” to me. And when the money was gone,  you made me think it was ok to “Lie, Cheat, Pawn, and Steal from someone as to get rid of all Tom and I worked hard for. You were building an even bigger wedge between my husband and me to the point I was going off the friggin rails emotionally again!

You brought me back to that dark place again. Because you had talked me into thinking I was normal in recovery and didn’t need to take my medications for my mental health. As a matter of fact, things got so out of control again for the second time in 2006, that you made me feel as though it would be best to just “DIE” than face the consequences of this round of poor choices and financial strains.

Of course, you are going to say; “those were all my choice’s I made, they were mine alone, but you know you had a hand in ALL OF IT! Your nasty old habits and addicted thinking came back and swooped right in my thoughts again when I learned I was still missing more work in my recovery, and the financial pressures became too much and again I woke up in a mental/addiction crisis center ~ via the hospital a second time.

NO, I didn’t want to take all my medications all at once, but I just didn’t have the courage or strength, after everything I had been through being arrested and being humiliated in the local newspaper because I stole from a friend. The best thing she ever did was press charges. Even though I was feeling I had to start recovery all over again, and even though I wasn’t gambling. I just didn’t have it in me to keep going to court hearings and just all of it!

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But, I did start over again, along with my higher power by my side (God). I remember hearing these whispers in my ear while in the hospital for the second time. They were faint, but I heard them. I know it was that “Power Greater than Myself” telling me that I have too much to do here on earth and was called to fulfill my higher purpose of what God want’s me to do here. He would not let my journey end like with Suicide. Not even a second try! In that moment, I felt something shift and change inside me.

Many may say that’s bullshit, well I’m here today to tell you it’s NOT. I had prayed for years asking “God” to help take away all the ‘Triggers & Urges’ away from me, and that I would do the rest of the work. Well, it is true when they say; “it happens in God’s, time not ours.”  Good things started to happen.

The triggers and urges became less and less as I worked hard in my recovery. It took time, treatment, and a lot of one on one meetings with my addiction counselor, and gamblers anonymous meetings, so many meetings. It took journaling daily to see my growth and my week areas. It took reading a lot of books and so much more. I then worked with a specialist for a year who really saved my life! Soon I was adding up my days, months, and years away from you. Being more of recovery service to others. That is what helped me stay in recovery too! All the while hoping I was hurting YOU as much as you had hurt me through the years of my undying love for you…

So that is my purpose today with this letter old friend. It is my letter of “Closure and Healing.” Just as writing my book was. It is time for me to say a “Final Goodbye” to you forever. It has taken me a long time to make amends with myself, to forgive myself, to love myself again within my recovery and life’s journey. To release the past and old damages of my gambling addiction and the old friendship with you.

Because of you, I’d hurt and lost many people in my life along the way. Yes, we had many good times, but the bad has outweighed the good. I have come to a place in my life and in my recovery to know I’m no longer a victim of what happened to me as a little girl anymore. It was not my fault of all that happened to me. I have learned to process, forgive, let go and let GOD. He alone is the one, my savior that steers the wheel to my heart and this vessel.

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I’m strong enough today to know I was a very sick addict and know it was not all my fault. My past doesn’t define the woman I am today.

I have taken my power back and NO LONGER ALLOW YOU IN MY LIFE! I Walk By Faith and not by Sight Alone.

WHY?

Because all that time you used me. You also used my past and childhood pain and trauma against me in our friendship, and “REAL FRIENDS” don’t do that. Do I have times I wish this could be different? Of course.

I no longer need to think of you anymore. You see, real friends love, care and support you in life. My life today is so happy, fulfilled, and blessed that I’ve been making all my “DREAMS” come true without you. So many blessings and doors have opened for me since I exposed the truth about you in the release of my book. So others can have an inside in-depth look at how ugly you really are. How deadly you can be and how easy you take over.

Now, 10+years it has taken me to write this and part from you forever. I really never thought this day would come for me all those years ago. I can still and always will remember the worst of our times together, as it keeps me from becoming “complacent” in my recovery.

I remember when I could not tell myself I will NEVER GAMBLE AGAIN. I never need step foot in another casino in my lifetime. Every time I did, you made me want to. You’d make me long for you. No, no, not any longer. Today I have the courage and bravery to say NO to you! Many say God doesn’t perform miracles. They use the excuse that they can not believe in something or someone they can not see.

 

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I pray for those people who say or feel this way daily. And for those still stuck and suffering from the insanity of the “cycle” of this addiction.

WHY?

Because “GOD” does perform “Miracles” all around us. You just need to LOOK, Listen, and Hear them!

I AM one of his “Walking Miracles In Recovery.”

So Goodbye Gambling Addiction, I Don’t Need You Anymore!


“Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow ~ I no longer suffering in Silence”

 


Catherine Townsend-Lyon, Author/Freelance Writer

Guest Article by Author, Emma Reynolds of News.com.au

Hello and Welcome Recovery Friends,

 

“As we all know in the gambling recovery communities, the problems we face here in America with problem gambling also happens in many other countries like Ireland, The UK, and with our friends in Australia.”

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So when I can across this article from another website I was visiting, I had to go read and investigate. It is a great example of showing that “gambling addiction and expansion” of it is happening all over the world, not just here in the US. Now, you all know I have no ill will towards those who gamble for the true fun and entertainment, but the reason I advocate about this destructive addiction is that the public needs to be aware how many of us can not gamble normally. So the more expanding of casinos, state lotteries, and Internet gaming, and sports betting venues, the more problem and addicted gamblers there will be.

So let’s read how this crisis is affecting our friends in Australia.

Emma Reynoldsnews.com.au@emmareyn

“THEY occupy a privileged position in Australian life, but these sleek establishments play a major role in the nation’s biggest problem.”

Casino gamblers are three times more likely to have a problem than those who play at pubs or clubs, experts say, yet they are enticed into increasingly reckless behaviour with intoxicants, incentives and rewards.

While Australia’s 13 casinos all follow policies intended to encourage responsible gambling, no one is holding them to account, according to the University of Adelaide’s Michael O’Neil, lead author of an alarming report into the industry.

“There are some practices of casinos that some might say don’t fit with responsible gambling service,” Associate Professor O’Neil, executive director of the South Australian Centre for Economic Studies, told news.com.au. “Their practices are not particularly failsafe.

“You can be gambling too much but get incentives like credit points. They’re cultivating people to come and spend money.

“Casinos are secretive, on the basis of protecting people’s privacy. They talk a lot about what they do in terms of responsible gambling, but they can’t speak for the effect or the outcomes.”

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Excessive gamblers are more likely to be offered rewards and incentives to enable their habit, experts say. Picture: Dylan Coker

(Excessive gamblers are more likely to be offered rewards and incentives to enable their habit, experts say. Picture: Dylan CokerSource:News Corp Australia)

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The report, the first detailed snapshot of Australian casino gambling, found that all venues had practices in place to prevent excessive gambling — including information and counselling services, betting limits, restricting access to credit, withdrawal limits at ATMs and staff training and intervention.

But Prof O’Neil said there was “little to no evidence available to indicate how effective these provisions are in casinos.”

He admitted that “casinos can only do so much”, but said excessive gamblers often found themselves rewarded with special privileges that enabled them to indulge their habit further.

These may include bonus credit or access to private rooms where they can smoke at the tables.
The staff at The Star in Sydney told the researchers they would only intervene with a suspected problem gambler after someone had played for 24 hours. “That’s just not consistent with responsible gambling practice,” said Prof O’Neil.

The popular casino recently faced controversy because of its exemption from the NSW lockout laws, and an increase in violence around the neighbourhood.

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Staff at The Star Casino in Sydney will not intervene over a possible problem gambler until they have been playing for 24 hours.
(Staff at The Star Casino in Sydney will not intervene over a possible problem gambler until they have been playing for 24 hours. Source:news.com.au)

“Casinos are big operations, open 24 hours with huge numbers of people going through every day,” said Prof O’Neil. “That’s why in a sense they became crime spots. People who want to rob people know they’ll have money on them.

“You get the lockout laws too, encouraging people to move from Adelaide’s Hindley Street or Sydney’s Kings Cross to the casinos. It’s attracting people who have already consumed a fair bit of alcohol.”

And it’s different to being at a hotel, he added. “You don’t find many young men sitting there for a long time playing electronic games in a pub.”

The report found that casino table gamblers are more likely to be male, under 35, more highly educated and with higher incomes. They are typically accustomed to betting on sports and horses and playing online games on their mobile phones — “what they think is skills-based gambling,” says Prof O’Neil.

They are also the demographic most likely to be at risk of problem gambling. The electronic gaming machines at casinos are more likely to be used by another problem demographic, older women aged 45-70.

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Punters at Crown Melbourne require a loyalty card to access “unrestricted” gambling for more money.
(Punters at Crown Melbourne require a loyalty card to get access to “unrestricted” gambling for more money.Source:Supplied)

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Adelaide Casino told the researchers they had recently had to remove a group of young men who were playing large amounts of money at the tables every night.

Casinos do have the ability to monitor how people are gambling using loyalty card data. At Crown Melbourne, you need a card to play “unrestricted” — i.e. for larger amounts of money — but the establishment is required by the state to look at the information for unusual patterns.

But other casinos don’t bother, according to Prof O’Neil. “They won’t do it by themselves,” he said.

The researchers emphasised that casinos are very different from state to state. The Star and Crown Casino are world-class venues that attract high-rollers from overseas, while casinos in Tasmania, the Northern Territory and in several Queensland locations have a mainly domestic clientele.

One thing they have in common is their money-making prowess, a lack of accountability and a strong influence on one of society’s big concerning issues. .  .  .

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“I feel the very last sentence of this article written by Emma Reynolds is very significant. “The Casinos money-making prowess, and a lack of accountability.” That statement is very true for all countries battling the gambling expansion epidemic that is happening today all over. It is no wonder 1% of our population are now problem gamblers. This crisis and this number will rise if something isn’t done. AND? Gambling Profits are NOT the way to go when our country is broke and now using gambling profits to fill budget short falls”  . . .


Want to know what is happening in your communities with gambling throughout the US? Go visit my friends at Stop Predatory Gambling The Movement and see how they are keeping States and the Government Honest . . . .

Check your State Here: http://stoppredatorygambling.org/in-your-state/

 

 

 

HAPPY Caturday Recovery Friends!

 

SO don’t GAMBLE or Place a BET for ANYTHING!!

Funny Cats Escape Plan

FOR when those Urges & Triggers HIT!! HIDE!!

prince of the jungle

AND Always be a Mighty CAT when it comes to RECOVERY!!

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funny cat vet

Not The WORD VET ….. The WORD GAMBLE!! This Happens!

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Aargh! The Potato LOOKED at me!
AND? Always Be Excited You Found RECOVERY!

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Happy Caturday Recovery Friends!! ODAAT . . .