Problem Gambling – Peter Byrne

Problem Gambling – Peter Byrne


We started to have a lot more fights about
money and we hardly ever had fights previously.
She was more standoffish, didn’t want to
be near me, didn’t want to talk.
Which made it rather unpleasant … and I
suppose that was what she was trying to do.
She didn’t want to talk about the money.
We discussed it and eventually she came and
told me that she had a problem with the poker
machines and my simple solution was, well
just don’t go, but of course, it’s not
that simple.
I mean the money is important but it wasn’t
the biggest issue, because it was our relationship
and who she became when she was gambling destroyed
our relationship. She was just changing as
a person, she wasn’t the person I’d met
and fell in love with and married. I was very
close to getting a divorce. It’s not only
the person with the addiction who has the
problem, it was me, it was our kids, it was
our local hairdresser, it was the small businesses
that Gabbi normally would have gone, the delicatessen
where we use to spend a lot of money. Instead
of spending money there on some German sausages
or whatever it would go into the machines.
Instead of having a nice haircut, it would
go into the machines.
And, I think once the problem had been recognised
and that I’d understood that it was more
serious than I’d thought, the fact that
we were able to talk about it then together
to work on it and I could see that there was
some progress being made. And, I found that
as long as there was two or three steps forward
and then occasionally one step back that I
could live with that.
Other people did help us, but it was mainly,
well, mainly Gabbi’s efforts and I just
assisted where I could as far as helping her
to make the jump and to make the change. And
it was a slow process, it didn’t happen
overnight.
I’m extremely proud of what she’s been
able to achieve and it hasn’t always been
easy and it’s been a long journey, but it’s
not over yet … there’s so many people
affected by one persons’ addiction and that’s
what we’re trying to reduce and trying to
help them as much as we can.

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