I waited until the end of our third date to ask him about the post I’d seen on Facebook. The third date, in Lewes was going so well I didn’t want to spoil it. We had a few drinks and a meal I paid for with Tesco vouchers, again sensing he had money problems and by now guessing that he was unemployed. I wanted to make things easier for him.
Sipping our last drink, at The White Hart I finally plucked up the courage. This wasn’t something I could ignore, I had to know the truth.
‘I saw something on your Facebook. Do you have a problem I should know about?’
‘Yes, I’m a compulsive gambler,’ came his upfront reply without the briefest of pauses, as if glad to get it out of the way.
I didn’t want this to be our last date and wanted to hear that he was dealing with his addiction and that it was behind him.
‘You should probably walk away,’ he said, matter of factly.
‘Why didn’t you tell me before? Were you even going to tell me? How long did you think you could keep that to yourself?’ I felt so let down, conned even.
‘We were getting on so well, it never seemed to be the right time, but I was going to.’
‘How serious is it?’
‘I haven’t gambled since August,’ he lied.
I should have walked away at that point but he led me to believe that he was controlling it and I had strong feelings for him and wanted to help him. The more he talked an idea hatched in my mind for a next novel. I didn’t know anything about gambling addiction and was intrigued to find out more. A niggling worry entered my mind. I knew that I would never be able to trust him. What if he stole money from my bag? Or worse, stole my details and applied for a credit card? But as time went on and I learned more about gambling addiction I realised that you can’t label all gamblers as thieves. Each person is an individual with their own unique story and their own morals. There’s a lot of fear and scaremongering surrounding gambling addiction – most gamblers are perfectly safe around other peoples’ money.
It wasn’t easy dating a gambler though, I’ll admit that, as you will find out in ‘Gambling Broke Us.’ https://www.amazon.co.uk/Gambling-Broke-Us-moving-family-ebook/dp/B07NDY1M4R/ But at the back of my mind just live for the moment, enjoy his company, but move on one day when you get fed up with it. I accepted that I’d be footing the bill when we went out, but that was fine, I didn’t mind, we just wouldn’t spend very much and would avoid expensive dates. At the end of the day I was never going to live with this guy. How could I? I wouldn’t be able to trust him and what sort of start would that be? He’d sink me if I let him.
Thank you for reading!
Go to Part 4 of blog:
Link to ‘Gambling Broke Us’
If you are affected by gambling you may find the following links helpful: