In this blog: J talks about the daily struggle of keeping his gambling a secret. He shares how he lied to himself and others; how he needed a payday loan to continue to feed his addiction (and the realisation that that wasn’t normal); and how accessibility to gambling and the enticements venues offer (loyalty programs and cheap drinks) only add to the problem. Read more...
It’s hard to say when I first realised that my gambling was a problem. I had been lying to myself for so long that the line between truth and lies was blurred. I know that when I lived in Australia my gambling had escalated, and at the time I recognised that the need for the odd payday loan to keep feeding the demon wasn’t ‘normal’, but I was always able to add a few extra lies to calm my suspicions that these behaviours were moving in a harmful direction. Little did I realise – I was laying the foundations for an addiction that would one day end in crisis.
And then there are the clubs. Clubs that claim to build themselves on the bedrock of sports with ‘discount’ dining to boot. You know the ones; awash with walkers and canes and adorned with the familiar waft of a fragrance that says come one, come all – bring your pension you’ll have a ball! Make your way through to the dining room if you dare, as to get there you will need to negotiate the cavernous hallways, all with multiple access points to the dazzling dangers of the gaming room. But before you do, why not sign up with a ‘free’ loyalty card to access the dining discounts and oh and by the way, the card can also be used to accrue points when using the gaming machines, what a deal!
Did we forget to mention that the drinks are cheaper here than any other pub or club around, but then of course they are… the bar is right next to the gaming room and after you’ve had a few, we just know that the first place you’re headed is to that plush leather chair perched in front of that gleaming, singing genie of hope!
I can tell you that without a doubt… it won’t.
Enter – the casino gambler.
If you're worried about your gambling or someone else's please contact the Problem Gambling Foundation on 0800 664 262 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for free and confidential support.
Written by: J