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$55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

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$55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby kwarden13 » Mon Dec 11, 2017 10:32 pm

Just like the title says. I have $55k in credit card debt to gambling on slot machines. It all started when I hit for $15k in the high limit room a couple months ago. I kept going back to play more and started losing. Every time I would think my losing steak has got to end, but now I am over $50k in debt and shocked. Sometimes, I think this is all a bad dream.

Every time I say I won't go, I end up going because the mountain of debt just seems too great to climb. I keep thinking if I could just hit even $10k that would help. I lost hope of hitting $50k as that probably won't happen. What's even worse, is the biggest hit I have had playing between $5-45 a spin in $2k. That's very telling as these machines really are rigged against people and there to just make money.

I need to accept this debt and stop so I can move on with my life. I have a great fiance who does not even know the half. I also have a great job so can pay this off in one year if I stop now (I make over $100k).
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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby NewSunRising » Tue Dec 12, 2017 1:39 am

Welcome kwarden13 .

I have copied this topic to the Gambling Addiction forum , as you will likely get more responses here .

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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby NewSunRising » Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:30 pm

I am also addicted to slot machines . I know all too well how bad they hook you .

If you haven't already , please check out our Strategies thread at the top of the page for advice and ideas on how to deal with the urges in the beginning of recovery .

One of the things I can tell you now is that you need to have a plan in place to combat the urges to gamble . Willpower is seldom enough .

Try not to focus on the money that's been lost . The debt is easier to overcome than the addiction .
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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby Aries411 » Tue Dec 12, 2017 9:19 pm

Welcome kwarden13,

I am sorry to hear that you are struggling with addiction and I just wanted you to know that you are not alone. Many of us understand your story and know what you are feeling and thinking.

kwarden13 wrote: I keep thinking if I could just hit even $10k that would help


Sadly, this is what keep us going. Thinking that the solution to our huge debt from gambling is MORE gambling. In the end, it just makes our debt larger. I know that we may think that the $10K or even $20K would help fix our situation, but it only gives us more hope that we can break even through gambling which is not possible. The thing we should HOPE for, is to stop this addiction in its track and prevent it from continuing to ruin our lives.
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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby Knoxious » Tue Mar 27, 2018 8:30 pm

I know how you feel - i lost $5,000 in a week on scratchers, and i don't even have a job.

The things that kept me going were the fact that i lost so much, i was bound to win eventually. Which never happened. And also this ticket has a second chance drawing, so every losing ticket could potentially be a winner.

I am still hooked on this and will be spending the majority of my next check on the same game. Going to the ATM hurts and sometimes i wish it blocked my account even when i'm pulling money out. Sometimes i wish i lose the games just so i can go home as opposed to replay.

I need help, but honestly i'm not sure that i'm ready to give it up. Maybe after the second chance drawing has been completed, which is to be determined as of now.
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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby NewSunRising » Wed Mar 28, 2018 2:09 am

Knoxious wrote:The things that kept me going were the fact that i lost so much, i was bound to win eventually. Which never happened. And also this ticket has a second chance drawing, so every losing ticket could potentially be a winner.


That's the bait for the trap - that you have a chance . That some cosmic karma will get you your money back as long as you keep trying . The truth is that you have way more "potential" to lose thousands of dollars more before you ever see a return , and even if that happens , the addiction will only use it as justification to keep gambling .

I remember playing slots one day and watching the lady next to me feed over 2 thousand dollars into a slot machine . Her friend came up and tried urging her to leave . She kept repeating that it was bound to start paying any minute now , that she had been playing it for 6 hours and it was "due" to hit . A passing attendant overheard her , leaned in and said " Lady , I've seen these things go for DAYS before they paid anything out . "

That was an eye-opener for me .

Gambling addiction traps us in a vicious cycle of gambling to get back the money we lost gambling . The "chance " it offers is a lie that we desperately want to believe is true . The reality is very , very different . You are spending thousands of dollars trying to get back the thousands of dollars you spent . How on earth does that make any sense ?

I hope you can break free of this twisted logic . It's hard , it's uncomfortable and it's a long process . But it's not impossible . There is freedom from this trap and you will have to fight to get out of it . We will help you all we can when you are ready to say " I'm done with this ."
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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby Knoxious » Wed Mar 28, 2018 2:21 am

Sometimes i feel like i just have better luck than other people.

I see someone next to me scratching and losing and think, "what a sucker", meanwhile i'm in the same situation, but spending 10x more than he is. I always tell myself i need to go big or go home, but what i really need to do is just go home.

The "chance" is actually pretty good, though. I checked online, and several of the top prize winners also won a hundred dollars, which has 1,300 winners. So, if they can hit a 1,300 winner prize AND a 1, 5 or 10 winner prize, there must be a relatively low number of participants in the second chance drawing, relative to total scratchers in general.

I know what you're saying about the flawed logic, but i just can't help but feel like my efforts will eventually pay off.

I think another problem is i just don't care about the money. My therapist asks me, "Then why are you trying to win money if you don't care about it?", to which i reply, my current lifestyle is very low cost, i don't have a significant other or family, and yada yada but she does have a point. I do care about it. I feel the pain when it's over. I just mask the pain with, "next time".
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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby NewSunRising » Wed Mar 28, 2018 1:36 pm

So what's your end goal ? Something brought you here , to an addictions forum . We all had a million reasons for why we gambled . Nothing happened until we found a bigger reason to stop .

I figure I wasted close to $200 grand over 7 years , telling myself every day that I could afford it . If I had that money now , I'd be retired and living a good life . Gambling addiction obliterated all vision of the future for me . I never looked farther ahead than the next paycheck . Even now , after 3 years of recovery and working 2 jobs to make up all the savings I could "afford " to lose , one critical illness or major accident will wipe it all out in one fell swoop , in spite of my having pretty good health insurance . I'm better off than I was , nowhere near where I should be .

I justified my gambling in every way possible . It wasn't until I realized on my own what a bunch of BS I was spouting that I began to regain control over my life and my compulsion to gamble . It was a moment of real self-awareness . Not very pleasant , but very necessary .
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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby Aries411 » Wed Mar 28, 2018 2:12 pm

Knoxious wrote:I know what you're saying about the flawed logic, but i just can't help but feel like my efforts will eventually pay off.


Its funny how our minds work. We logically all know that over the long run, if a gambler continues gambling, we will eventually lose all our money. If we able to win in the long run, no gambling establishment would be able to make money. However, we come up with the strategies that gives us a sense of empowerment that we are special and can beat the odds and it causes us to continue gambling. We continue this cycle until we dig a hole so deep that we have no other alternative but to quit and seek help, or do something worse. The endless cycle is best illustrated with you last remark.

Knoxious wrote: I feel the pain when it's over. I just mask the pain with, "next time"


I can't even count how many times I masked the pain of the loss with another stint of gambling. We then lose more, then chase and gamble again. Repeat for 17 years. Eventually, there comes a point where we see what gambling has really does to us and how it has crippled us and hurt the ones we love and we make decision to not 'mask' it anymore, but accept it. It is so much easier said than done, but accepting those losses help a great deal in recovery and I hope that you find that acceptance sooner than later.
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Re: $55k Gambling Debt in 3 Months

Postby Knoxious » Wed Mar 28, 2018 2:38 pm

NewSunRising wrote:So what's your end goal ? Something brought you here , to an addictions forum . We all had a million reasons for why we gambled . Nothing happened until we found a bigger reason to stop .


My end goal is to stop buying scratchers after the second chance drawing is over. I just hope i can hold off, because i really have always wanted to win big enough to go to the main lottery building and cash in ($1,000 or more). And also my cost of living is very low. I'm already in $5,000 credit card debt, but i'm just ignoring that and hoping it goes away (let alone the 5k of savings i blew).

The bigger reason to stop for me would be a family, which i am no where near producing.

Aries411 wrote:If we able to win in the long run, no gambling establishment would be able to make money. However, we come up with the strategies that gives us a sense of empowerment that we are special and can beat the odds and it causes us to continue gambling.


This makes a lot of sense, and is very true for me. Of course they make money.. they make tons of it. Sometimes i forget that. And not just feeling special, which is true, but even knowing that you play more often than the average gambler. Which logically would mean that you simply lose more as well.

Aries411 wrote:... accepting those losses help a great deal in recovery and I hope that you find that acceptance sooner than later.


Thanks.

I think i'll be able to accept the losses since i don't have much i need the money for anyway (which i know is just an excuse), but i am still in the mindset of trying to win big enough to regain my losses. Like NewSunRising said, i just need a bigger reason to stop.
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