I have been gambling for a very long time. At first it started as a game of fun but it seems to be my venting point when I feel stressed or require escape 😦 I went to the pub with the notion of maybe using $50 but instead played about $650. I woke up feeling sick & I feel so stressed by it all. I am at my wits end there is so much more to my story but this is all I want to say for now :-0
Lisa, thank you for speaking up and sharing your story. Sometimes it does feel like gambling, and all the stress that it brings, just takes over. Although it is meant to be an enjoyable form of entertainment, for many people gambling goes hand in hand with stress. Gambling is sometimes used as a way to relieve stress as it provides an opportunity to switch off, to distract, or to avoid a stress or a worry. And for a few times, it probably did the trick – that’s why we often go back. However, this relief is only temporary, and very quickly gambling becomes the cause of even more stress due to the likelihood of accumulating debt through gambling, or though the damage it causes to our relationships, our self esteem.
Even though gambling is the cause of this stress, people often turn to it to distract themselves from the difficult feelings, they use it as a way to switch off from the problem. This can lead to a repetitive cycle in which stress and gambling are both the cause and the result of each other.
So how can this cycle between stress and gambling be broken? It can be helpful to identify the sources of stress in your life, the things which you are seeking escape from, and develop ways to address them without gambling. Learn new ways of finding relief from stress and find alternate ways to manage stress. You were right with your intention to set yourself limits with your spending – sometimes it takes a few gos to find the strategies that work best for you.
Remember – if gambling is causing or adding to your stress, it is not the solution.
If you ever want to talk more about what’s happening for you, please feel
free to contact Gambling Help on 1800 858 858 or via the website
www.gamblinghangover.nsw.gov.au – support is available 24/7.