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Gambling Relapse

It seems I spoke too soon when I wrote the entry about My Gambling Addiction a couple of days ago. I waited until I was sure I had it back under control before I wrote about it but it has grown stronger than I realised.

I posted the entry about the bad manners I ran into when I went to do my Christmas shopping today then I decided to go buy a burger for dinner. It was late but not too late or so I thought.

When I arrived at the burger joint the door was open and the sign said they were open so I walked in. The staff behind the counter smirked at me and said they were closed. I said nothing. I simply turned the “Open” sign on their door to “closed” as I left.

As I walked away I spat the dummy and had an internal temper tantrum. When I lose my cool all the old thinking floods through my mind and I become quite childish and unreasonable.

The negative self-talk began.

It’s all just too much. The discovery over the past few days that I was ripped off by General Electric and an eBay seller, the day had been too hot for me to catch up on my sleep so I was tired, I was still smarting from the bad manners I had run into when I went shopping today.

As soon as I started focusing on the negatives my mind spiraled downwards.

I knew, as I walked to my car, that the man I pine for would not be having a burger tonight. He would be having his 50th birthday party and I was pretty certain he would not go to bed alone after it. Someone would be making it a night to remember for him. As for me – I couldn’t even get a lousy burger let alone birthday cake.

The negative self-talk continued.

“I know where I can get a damn burger AND have some fun!”

I tried to fight back.

“You don’t want to do that. You have your eftpos card with you so it could get out of control.”

It was no use. I was having a temper tantrum and I don’t listen to anyone when I am spitting the dummy – not even me.

I drove to the pokie (slot machine) venue. They were out of burgers so I ordered nacho’s and I played. I played and played and played until I was tired and bored with it. Only then did I leave and come home.

When I got home I decided to write this. I wrote that I had lost 150 dollars and then thought I better check my ATM slips to see if that was correct. It was not. I lost a hundred dollars more than I thought I had lost. I lost 250 dollars and it’s money I can’t afford to lose.

There is an overwhelming temptation to tear strips off myself. The words “stupid” and worse are hovering in the back of my mind. I want to beat myself to a pulp for this but I know that won’t help anything. If I give in to the temptation to say those things to myself I am likely to start thinking all is lost and there is no point even continuing to try.

I’m telling myself it was another lapse but there is a nagging worry in the back of my mind.

How many lapses can you have before you admit you have relapsed?

As a therapist I know it is not a relapse until I stop trying to give up but tonight I didn’t even try to stop myself.

Oh – yes – of course hehehe.

Tonight was not a lapse at all – it was a full blown relapse! I gave into the addiction 100 percent. I made no effort to control it at all which is why it blew out so badly.

That means I am no longer in the maintenance stage of the stages of change – I am back in the action stage.

That’s the plan anyway. I can’t stop trying. I can’t afford to stop trying. This is a set-back but I can get back on the wagon. I can give up gambling again and I will – now.

One thing I do know. I gambled tonight but I did not have fun. I do not enjoy losing my money. That is no fun at all.


  • lindah

    Hello Kim,

    I have posted the link to your site at (Link removed as it no longer works)
    an online support group for gamblers seeking recovery, through support and sharing with others going through the same problems.

    Thank you for your honesty and for sharing your experiences via this website.

    owner GettingPastGambling

  • Kim

    Thank you LindaH,

    I’m sorry it took so long to approve your comments. I had to do it this way or the site would be flooded with porn and medication links!

    All genuine comments are welcome and, regardless of opinion, they WILL be approved as soon as possible.  You only need to register once to comment.  After you have been approved all your comments will automatically appear.

    I must go now and take a look at your site 🙂

  • lindah

    Thanks Kim,

    I hope you find the site informative and perhaps even helpful.

    You may also like to look at

    (link removed as it no longer works)


    (link removed as it no longer works)

    I am 3 years into serious recovery work, with 2 lapses, each 12 months apart. I did a lot of soul searching about why this happened when it did, as each time it was around the same time of year. I found there was a definite trigger, an event that occured in the past that impacted me emotionally, plus numerous other issues, but once I pinpointed the possible reason, the same time next year I was prepared for the uneasy feelings that arose and was able to handle them in a completely different way.


  • Kim

    Hi Linda,

    The links are there – if you mouse over they will show up. I hope you don’t mind if I delete your additional comments as all those duplicate links may cause the search engines to think the page is spam.

    Your site looks like a very helpful one – thank you for sharing it.  Sounds like you are doing very well in your recovery and I take my hat off to you because, as we both know, it is not easy beating an addiction.

    Cheers – Kim

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