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An introduction, my story and hopefully the answer to a couple of questions

Discussion in 'Online Casinos' started by millseyboy, Feb 9, 2016.

    Feb 9, 2016
  1. millseyboy

    millseyboy Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Financial Adviser
    Location:
    UK
    Hi all,

    I am a lurker and reader on the site, but only recently signed up - the main reason I did so was that I've had something on my chest for some time now and I wanted to get it off - but also as having started reading the forums and therefore being privy to some of the inner workings of online gaming (especially that of bonus wagering requirements), it brought up a question.

    My story started about 4-5 years ago before I was earning enough money to be truly comfortable. I used to play a lot of online poker, then the casino games started after busting out a couple of times playing poker. As a result, I started using the roulette wheel to try and recoup losses. This worked pretty well for a while, mainly because I had a half-decent amount of savings and therefore could always use a bit more to try and get back to black (I guess this is how a lot of peoples stories start). Over the course of about 2 years, I ended up doing quite well between poker and roulette, and was circa £3-4k up which was useful money at that time. I wasn't using any bonus' but purely my own monies, and I never had any trouble with withdrawals etc (aside from making the odd reversal which never did me any favours!)

    As you can probably imagine, the inevitable happened one (drunken) Sunday night just after my missus' birthday. I didn't even want to do it. I knew that because I couldn't bear to be down, I would keep going until I either wasn't down any longer, or I had nothing. I'm not sure why it seemed that being down was so unacceptable - I couldn't seem to see that being a small amount down was far preferable to a lot down. I was also starting to get to the stage where there was absolutely no fun in it anymore and all I got was the most horrendous gut wrenching feeling every time I was depositing/playing. Nevertheless, I did deposit - just £100 to start. My usual tactic (and I'm not claiming it was a good one!) was to wager on 2 out of the 3 'third' boxes, giving you just under a 2 in 3 but obviously doubling up losses when it didn't come in.

    £100 disappeared in a couple of spins, followed closely by my next deposits of £500 and £1000. This was not money I could really afford to lose and therefore I was rapidly progressing to a degenerate status. By the end of the evening, I'd managed to lose circa £14,000 (my entire savings) plus another £4,000 which I'd saved and earmarked to pay a looming liability (not gambling related) giving me a sickening overall loss of circa £18k.

    I didn't know what to do. I was hyperventilating and panicky. The worst thing was that I was alone in the house as my other half was away for the weekend. So, I did exactly what any self-respecting, cowardly mama's boy would do and called my mother. She's fairly well off but as I hadn't taken anything from her for a good number of years, I didn't like doing it. But, needs obviously must and I borrowed the £4k. It left me completely brassic - I did not have the preverbial pot for urinatory purposes.

    The worst thing was that I couldn't admit to anyone what I'd done. Not my missus, my parents or friends. To this day it remains a secret between me - and now all of you. There wasn't much I could say as to how I'd lost the money so I told my parents that I'd made a poor investment that had lost me everything. The weird thing was that I wasn't sure which sounded worse as I work in the finance industry and would never have made that investment, but I simply couldn't admit to anyone what I'd done. No one even knew I was playing during the whole time that I was. To this day, no one aside from my missus and parents knows I even lost anything.

    The next thing to happen was that the casino (can I name them?) then emailed me to offer a bonus of $2k, presumably after seeing how much I'd lost and trying to keep me playing - not realising that they already had everything! Anyway, I went on to play the bonus. I've never felt as sick in my life as playing on the wheel again - it was making my physically retch (honestly - it was like the scene from a Clockwork Orange when, after the 'treatment' they show violence to the protagonist and monitor his reaction!) I managed to turn that $2k into circa $3k whilst completing WR (betting in exactly the same way as I always had - on 2/3 thirds). After completing, I immediately made the withdrawal, fully expecting them to turn around and tell me that I'd been using a low risk betting strategy, that I couldn't play roulette or something similar, but within 48 hours the money was in my account (circa £1,850 - which softened the blow very slightly). My first question is what you think their reasoning was likely to be for the prompt payment and not questioning anything. Would this have been because they saw how much I'd lost previously and figured I was a good client to hold on to, do you think?

    This was now about 16 months ago that this all happened and I'm happy to say that aside from the bonus foray, I've not touched either an online or bricks and mortar casino. I've worked and saved hard and have managed to replenish about three quarters of my savings as well as pay back my debt to my mother.

    I guess you could say that the story has a happy ending(ish) but it does lead me to another question. Without telling anyone/talking about it, will the problem go away long term? I guess it is what you would call a problem, even if it's now been a while - and obviously I can't risk it happening again. There really would be no way around it if it did. I promised my father that I wouldn't 'do the same thing again' - obviously we were talking about different things but I still view it as a promise I made to him - even if he didn't know exactly what I was promising. That's a promise I intend to keep and I really hope I'll be able to. Do you know anyone who has had a problem and managed to conquer it without ever talking to anyone about it? I do feel like I've kept it to myself for long enough - it doesn't weigh anywhere near as heavily as it did a year ago but I do still have 'oh my Lord, what an idiot' moments.

    I guess I'm reaching out to you for advice more than anything - but do you know of anyone who has had issues with gambling in the past and managed to deal with it entirely themselves and never go back down the dark road? Or do you think it likely that sometime, somewhere, somehow, unless it's dealt with properly, it could/will resurface?

    Anyway, this is becoming a bit of a novel and whilst I do love waxing lyrical, my intention was not to bore you!

    Any responses would be much appreciated - even just to know that someone has read what I've got off my chest would help, I think. It's been a heavy weight and a rough 16 months.

    Many thanks to you all.
     
    24 people like this.
  2. Feb 9, 2016
  3. Tirilej

    Tirilej Still a Lady CAG

    Occupation:
    Breathing
    Location:
    Sweden
    Nice read and thanks for sharing :thumbsup:

    If I believe there is a risk it will happen again?
    That's a tough question and one I can't answer. Only you can do that. It's your decision.

    What I can say is that one way to prevent it happen again is to never forget what you did and how it felt. You can start by printing out your own post here because that's a story that can remind you.
    By writing it down and share it with us I think you feel relieved. That's good because you shouldn't kick yourself more.
    Just never forget. Ever! :)
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. Feb 9, 2016
  5. lockinlove

    lockinlove Staring into the sun PABaccred

    Occupation:
    I work :D
    Location:
    Canada
    good read.

    My advice would be to never ever touch gambling again. My inclination is you still have that urge to play because you are following a gambling forum. If I were you I would talk to GA, tell them how you feel. The honest truth. Get their feedback and go from there.

    Youve done well so far building everything back up and keeping control...but your lurking here is what concerns me. Youve also shown you can lose control and blow away large amounts of money. Gambling can be very dangerous and turn some people into something they never intended or wanted to do.



    As for the casino sending you $2000. They knew exactly what they were doing. They saw you push and push and not stop. And they figure over time you will lose it back plus more. Most casinos love players like you. Thats why they gave you money. They know that next time you get the urge, you will return to them and lose a mountain of money again. Why? Because they made you feel better and appreciated when they gave you that money. Its a sense of possibility and a positive impression left.

    Look at what it did do you. It made you feel the most helpless you ever felt. You lied to your loved ones and lost alot of hard earned money. It made you feel shame you've never felt. Always remember these feelings as a way to turn you off of the urge.
     
    5 people like this.
  6. Feb 9, 2016
  7. osulle

    osulle Ueber Meister CAG mm4 mm1

    Occupation:
    life
    Location:
    Northern hemisphere
    Thanks for sharing your story. I have known a person who has had issues with gambling in the past betting horses which didn't work out well for him. He stopped completely years ago and doesn't gamble anymore thankfully. So if someone had a problem like you had in the past I would think it would be safe to assume should that person gamble again then that dark road will be re-visited again in the future.

    I commend you on your hard work in replenishing your savings and restoring your finances. My hat is also off to you for realizing that you had a problem early on enough to stop before it completely wrecked your life.

    Gambling like any other addiction can be detrimental to peoples lives. Again congrats on your recovery and keep it up.:)
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Feb 9, 2016
  9. Jono777

    Jono777 Meister Member CAG mm4 mm1

    Occupation:
    Self- Employeed
    Location:
    Wolverhampton
    Great Read!

    Picking up on the stronger positives from your OP...

    You recognised the problem, did something about it and have been 'clean' for 16 months, has to be a HUGE step in the right direction surely?
     
    2 people like this.
  10. Feb 9, 2016
  11. millseyboy

    millseyboy Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Financial Adviser
    Location:
    UK
    Many thanks for your responses. I understand I cannot 'like' posts until I've done a few more but rest assured I would have 'liked' all of them so far.

    Lockinlove - I think perhaps 'lurking' was the wrong word for me to use - it does have negative connotations! I've always been a big reader and for a long time I've loved reading books by Michael Konik, Richard Marcus, Ben Mesrich etc - I think like most people, I loved reading stories about people having 'got one over' on the casino - naturally it's not quite as cut and dry as that but that's why I've always read these type of forums - especially the complaints sections!

    Jonmincher - absolutely, I'm happy with the progress etc - to be honest I wanted to get it off my chest because I've been carrying this weight around for a long time now - and as tirilej says - I feel relieved to have written it all down. What I can't get over is how within minutes of posting, there were already replies and messages of support. I think this site (and other forums) are priceless and you don't know how much it's helped within minutes of my post. For that I am incredibly thankful.
     
    1 person likes this.
  12. Feb 9, 2016
  13. hedgehok

    hedgehok Meister Member mm3

    Occupation:
    self-employed
    Location:
    Germany
    Hi millseyboy, thank you for sharing your story.

    When I was a young lad and serving in the military (2005-2006) I started playing online Blackjack after a Vegas trip the previous year. The fool I was back then I squandered roughly €3,000 with a martingale strategy (similar to yours, basically doubling your bet-size when you lose) in one day. I felt like a complete idiot, well not only felt I WAS an idiot. It didn't ruin me, I had enough savings and I didn't tell anybody back then.

    I started reading books about gambling and realized that the more you know about it the smarter you can play. Nowadays I have no issues telling anybody about my bad start with gambling. It was a good wake-up call. I have never ever cancelled a withdrawal or done anything foolish since (for 10 years now).

    Talking about it is certainly a good first step. You ask if you can be a gambler without being addicted and risk financial issues. I can tell from own experience you can! Gain as much information about gambling as possible. Read books, read the forum and don't shy away from asking if anything is unclear. During my studies I was quite interested in statistics and probability calculation which helped me enormously in understanding basic principles of gambling.

    You appear to be a smart guy and you work in the financial industry. I guess you can do similar like I did. I wish you all the best and hope to hear/read more from you.

    P.S. It's not prohibited to name the casino you played at ;).
     
    2 people like this.
  14. Feb 9, 2016
  15. millseyboy

    millseyboy Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Financial Adviser
    Location:
    UK
    Hi Hedgehok, thanks for your post.

    I'm not sure if I'd ever return to 'spin of the wheel' type gambling, even if I felt I could without risking anything - either financially or my state of mental health! I haven't even played poker since and I was a fairly regular player - not brilliant, not terrible. I read a lot of books on poker strategy, pot odds and statistics and found that incredibly interesting. I'm a logical, statistical type of guy in 'real life' (as you say, I'm in finance), but as soon as I was on the wheel, all of that went out the window. For that reason, I wouldn't trust myself playing casino games, certainly for the foreseeable future.

    It's helping already just to talk about it though. I pride myself on my logic and analysis as a rule (it's important for me in terms of work), but given my story and the fact that somehow it took me 16 months to divulge my secret to anyone, that's questionable!

    P.S. I was playing at Party - which started from poker and then I never moved on.
     
    1 person likes this.
  16. Feb 9, 2016
  17. dunover

    dunover Unofficial T&C's Editor Staff Member CAG PABnononaccred PABnonaccred PABinit mm3 webmeister

    Occupation:
    International Money Launderer
    Location:
    the bus shelter, opposite GCHQ Benhall
    Think how much you hated yourself, and the graft you had to do to replenish the losses. Do it again, and you WILL become that person you hated. Remember the stress, stomach acid and guilt and worry.

    You pulled yourself back from the abyss. Many don't.

    It's clear that like an alchy you ARE addicted and can't stop once you take the first gambling 'sip' so-to-speak. So don't do it at all. You are in recovery, and always will be. Stay that way.
     
  18. Feb 9, 2016
  19. millseyboy

    millseyboy Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Financial Adviser
    Location:
    UK
    I think you're absolutely right. Thank you.

    It's all too easy to think you're not addicted, and for a long time I believed that. 16 months ago I admitted to myself that I was. I guess my question was really 'do I need further help or can I manage this on my own?' - so far I've done ok, but I guess only I can answer that question.

    It seems so odd to be addicted to something. Makes me feel a bit like one of the cool kids I never was when I was at school...except with less hair :)
     
  20. Feb 9, 2016
  21. mac72

    mac72 Senior Member

    Occupation:
    gamble
    Location:
    n ireland
    One thing i notice is you say that it was a "drunken" sunday night. In my opinion you shouldn't beat yourself up too much about it but with drink as a factor anything can happen.I'm no psychiatrist but if it wasn't an issue up to this then maybe drink was the problem or rather the mix of drink and gambling.Nothing wrong with drinking same as theres nothing wrong with driving but mix the two and you can have major issues.
    I asked the ewallet companies about this before as being irish drink is something i have to factor into the equation when gambling online.I'd love to be able to hit a "going for a beer" button on my ewallet and have my account locked until a predetermined time.Its pointless locking your casinio/poker account as they just reopen it immediately, and whereas the take a break option is useful your not going to use it for every operator every time you go on a session so in my view it would have been better to lock down your funds and thats it, job done.
    Some will say sure you'll just open another account using bank card etc and it dosen't solve the issue.Not really as for me anyway i keep a certain amount of my bankroll on my ewallet and everything else in accounts that only have branch access, no cards or internet access.I'm prepared to lose that portion of my bankroll and it won't affect me (though it does annoy me if i lose it stupidly at 3am on a sunday morning when i can't bite my finger) and i'll top up again a day or two later.
    Regardless of "having a beer" impulsiveness can be a major issue when gambling online as for a lot of people the money dosen't feel as real as if you were in a bookies handing over cold hard cash (probably one reason why they give you chips in land based casinos)and the way i deal with all these issues is as stated.I too lost large sums in the early days but i've been very happy and relatively successful this last 6-7 years following the above. I've also lost count of the amount of horror stories i've heard from people who have emptied accounts in a few hours "chasing" and then had to deal with the consequences over many years.Had they not had instant access to those funds clearer heads i'm sure would have prevailed given a small amount of thinking time.
     
  22. Feb 9, 2016
  23. millseyboy

    millseyboy Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Financial Adviser
    Location:
    UK
    Absolutely.

    It was a drunken night - but to be totally honest, and much as I'd like to be able to blame it on the beers, it had happened previously whilst sober (just not to the same degree - i.e. I finished up before going bust - the most I'd ever been down previously, before getting back up again was circa £2k) - purely as a result of me never being able to accept being down at all. As you say, chasing.

    It is nice to know that I'm not alone though.

    Thanks for your response, is much appreciated.

    M
     
  24. Feb 9, 2016
  25. mac72

    mac72 Senior Member

    Occupation:
    gamble
    Location:
    n ireland
    If it happened sober that might be a different thing completely but you seem to be handling it well.Your obviously intelligent and have had access to funds since that didn't make their way onto the wheel.
    Your system isn't one you were alone in using.I play a lot of poker and after a bad session its very easy to hit the wheel hoping for a quick hit instead of grinding it back over a period of days and where that does work a lot of the time you will get cleaned the odd time.I suppose for me using my "controls" that is limited to what i'm comfortable with and if i do have my ewallet cleaned out i'll go back to the daily grind in a day or two when i'm over it.
     
  26. Feb 9, 2016
  27. dunover

    dunover Unofficial T&C's Editor Staff Member CAG PABnononaccred PABnonaccred PABinit mm3 webmeister

    Occupation:
    International Money Launderer
    Location:
    the bus shelter, opposite GCHQ Benhall
    To be honest with your story I'd request getting your account moved to the non-gambler's section, and you will not be tempted by any big-win screenshots/videos on here. The fact you're even talking to current gamblers like us is risky IMO. I am not saying you will necessarily cave in but I'd feel more comfortable for the future integrity of your savings etc. if you chatted with those presently refraining from gambling, like yourself. :thumbsup:
     
    4 people like this.
  28. Feb 9, 2016
  29. Tirilej

    Tirilej Still a Lady CAG

    Occupation:
    Breathing
    Location:
    Sweden
    I agree!

    Some are addicts, some can learn to control it, and some will always be able to control themselves. Why take the risk?

    You're a strong person but things can weaken you.

    I also want to say to everyone who gives advices, that what all addicts wants to hear, is that they maybe can keep going anyway, that maybe it wasn't so bad, that maybe....
    Be careful always when telling someone else that they maybe aren't so addicted, cause that can be all they needed or wanted to hear, and it can cost them their lives.
     
    2 people like this.
  30. Feb 9, 2016
  31. millseyboy

    millseyboy Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Financial Adviser
    Location:
    UK
    I take your point. To be honest I've limited my exposure to the site to the complaints section mostly reading about casinos not paying for various reasons - I think it's my sometimes misguided and mildly anti-establishment sense of justice and indignance. It also acts a reminder when I read other tales of woe.

    I'll keep my eyes away from the 'look at my big win' section :)

    I was just after some thoughts really as I've been impressed with some of the ways members of the site respond to and deal with issues - and I've not been disappointed.
     
  32. Feb 9, 2016
  33. Deeplay

    Deeplay New World Order CAG mm1 webmeister

    Occupation:
    Works For Self
    Location:
    The biG Eu
    Very honest post OP. And no one can truly say if "you" would go back - but those terrible sick feelings you had when gambling - they are your friend - remember them. Its a fail safe if the urge comes back strong. Which it could - like any addiction. You did though recognise this was not something or someone you wanted to be.

    I wont go much to my own story as do not want to trigger anything in you. But in brief I used to be a hopeless gambler - having lost 10000s and made many an affiliate a good commission no doubt.
    But I love the game too much to give it up. And yep I tried loads of times to quit. So I went for middle ground of responsible gambling - which against all odds worked for "me" and has done the past 2 and half years or more.

    Get the mindset right - and the rest will follow. And I personally enjoy my vice so much more now. Same as no doubt you yourself enjoy NOT partaking. Your asking good questions of yourself and if you stick to what you know is right for you - then no reason in the end why you would go back.

    All the best to you :thumbsup:
     
    1 person likes this.
  34. Feb 9, 2016
  35. mac72

    mac72 Senior Member

    Occupation:
    gamble
    Location:
    n ireland
    Thats a fair point Tirilej but its hard to establish if someone has a problem when the original post was about one drunken night.
    You could also go as far to say that anyone who uses "responsible gaming" has to be an addict and has a problem as they obviously can't control themselves.
    People just do stupid things sometimes and controls are all over the place to try and stop them- police checkpoints for drunk drivers,gun control etc etc. its human nature.This forum is littered with people who complain about reversing withdrawals,playing for too long etc. you can't throw them all in the "addict" pool.
    In my opinion in the world today there are far too many "diseases" and once you class something as a "disease" you can disempower the individual from being able to deal with it themselves which the OP seems to be doing quite well with by themself?
    The OP may be the biggest degenrate gambler ever to walk the earth and shouldn't ever go near it again or they may just be someone who fucked up a couple of times through greed/drink.One thing is for sure the only person who can decide what they are is him and he is best placed to deal with it.Anyone who would openly tell him to "go back its not an issue" would be a fool but it would be foolish to push him the other way either when you hear from someone like Deeplay who with the right controls now enjoys his little vice:)
     
  36. Feb 9, 2016
  37. millseyboy

    millseyboy Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Financial Adviser
    Location:
    UK
    This is incredibly helpful - I don't think I could play the game recreationally in the same way you can - you're different to myself in that you enjoy it - and you're right, I'm not sure I ever did. In time I will perhaps get back to poker but on a 20 quid home-game level!
     
  38. Feb 9, 2016
  39. Deeplay

    Deeplay New World Order CAG mm1 webmeister

    Occupation:
    Works For Self
    Location:
    The biG Eu
    Hi glad you found some of what I wrote of help but the above is a kind of a worry - thats how a back slide for a person who can not gamble within there means can happen.
    Choosing a set game - low stakes - it is a very very slippery slope. If you feel you can control it and stick totally to your budget fine .... but you said yourself above you
    dont think you can play recreationally ... which is what you are telling yourself you might do with the poker. Its still gambling - same as an alcoholic saying they
    will drink "light lager" as opposed to the heavy stuff. The end results are the same in the end.

    Hope you dont take the above in the wrong way. But if your worried about staying quit because you could not control yourself then the last thing you wanna
    consider is a "Harmless" \£20 on a poker game. So often in my past a harmless £10 leap frogged to horrible amounts. Until I learned (the hard way)

    What you ever decide hope its the right choice for you :thumbsup:
     
    1 person likes this.

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