In this section, people talk about their recovery journey and provide messages to others who are experiencing difficulties.
Once entrenched, the addiction is very hard to overcome. People describe how they hid their difficulties out of shame and fear of how others would respond. They ended up in crisis or at breaking point. This meant that harm was extended and deep.
Recovery was a long process that continued beyond stopping gambling. It involved rebuilding their sense of self and reconnecting with others. Dealing with the legacy of harm to them and those around them was hard. People struggled to get practical support and come to terms with the damage to their lives. Many describe how the support from others who had experienced gambling difficulties was extremely important because they felt so little understood anywhere else.
People wanted others going through gambling difficulties to know there was hope and that they could recover. The most important thing the people we spoke to wanted to pass on was: tell someone – from the moment they had, things got better. People should do this early so as not to experience the amount of harm they had. They wanted the public to know that those with a gambling addiction were suffering, and addiction meant their behaviour was not a rational choice.