First Thing In Gambling Recovery? Have Another Manage Your MONEY …Guest Shares by Gambling Counsellor Sam.

First Thing In Gambling Recovery? Have Another Manage Your MONEY …Guest Shares by Gambling Counsellor Sam.

“Yes, I enjoy much fun with a ‘Dash of HUMOR’ these days while maintaining and managing my recovery journey, hence, the  featured post Photo of me holding a coffee can of money while speaking at Big Jim’s Ride Around America this past April 2019 at the Arizona State Capitol with many  of my recovery friends sharing Awareness and Hope from all Addictions” …

But Why IS My Above Photo So Important?

WELL, There was a time I was NOT TRUSTED WITH MONEY AT ALL while deep within my gambling addiction. And gaining trust back is very important as it was a big part of my recovery work those years ago when first entering treatment and starting my journey. As starting treatment and counseling, the first thing I had to do is give up all control managing our money, bill paying, the bank accounts, and all the ATM, Debit, and Creditcards. All of that went to my husband to handle in 2002.

And, NO, I did not LIKE IT. Especially when my early career and still at that time I had worked in the banking field and then a debt collection company for three years right before my first suicide attempt and entered treatment then November of 2002. I hurt like hell to not have any control or money … PERIOD.

But I had to do it or I am sure I would still be active with problem and addicted gambling today. It’s the first thing that should be done and care of and taken away from the gambler entering treatment. It is also one main way for the spouse or partner of an addicted gambler to SAFEGUARD themselves and the finances.

That is why I wanted to share a few posts by my dear friend ‘Counsellor Sam’ as he does a lot of counseling with gamblers and their family about this topic and many others. He has a few articles on his site that you may find informative and helpful around being picked to handle a recovering gambler’s money and finances.

We had met through our blogs and social media and I can tell you he is very knowledgable in many areas of gambling recovery.  So without any more delays, here are a couple of shares from Gambling Counsellor Sam about being asked to help handle “The Money”…

BOTH OUR BLOGS ARE THE BEST FOR Education and Recovery from Problem Gambling…   ~Advocate, Catherine Lyon


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If a friend has reached out to ask you to help them manage their money, you may be confused about why and don’t quite know what to do. Asking a trusted friend or family member for help to handle money is a common strategy that many people use to stop or reduce their gambling.

It’s important for you to know that helping someone manage their finances can provide wonderful support and peace of mind for them if they are affected by problem gambling, but it can also add an extra dimension of difficulty to your relationship.
What do you need to consider before saying “yes, I will help you manage your money”?

  • First: If the person has any debts, consider whether a financial counselor be consulted.
  • Next: Discuss how long you each expect you will have to manage the money. How will you both know that you are no longer needed and that your friend or relative is able to manage alone? Be as specific as possible about what signs and indicators will make it clear that it is time for them to manage their finances on their own.
  • Make sure you talk about what their specific goals are in relation to gambling. Are they planning to slow their gambling or stop altogether?
  • Make sure you have a talk about what they hope to achieve. Agree on what will happen if they are not taking the steps you have agreed upon to achieve these goals.
  • Write down any agreements you make so the plan is completely clear to you both.
    And Lastly:
  • Have times scheduled for regular reviews of the plan so that you can discuss how it is working for both you and the recovering person …

Helping someone manage their money can contribute greatly to breaking the cycle of gambling.

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Many people find it useful to have someone temporarily manage their money while they are trying to change their gambling habits. When it works, this is a fantastic strategy, but there can be times when this approach harms more than it helps.

Whether you’re helping out a partner, friend or relative, controlling access to their money might be stressful for you and cause strain in your relationship — especially if they continue to gamble or repeatedly break the agreement you have with them.

It might come to the point where you can no longer help them manage their money.

So be prepared for the possibility that they will react negatively. You can increase the likelihood of a positive outcome by planning your conversation with them.

Here are some tips:

  • Time it wisely: Are they a morning or evening person? Where do your best conversations with them happen? Consider past conversations you’ve had with them at different times and situations and think about how well they have gone. It’s best to raise the topic at a time when they are calm and not in the heat of an ongoing argument.
  • Define your limits clearly:  Let the person know exactly why you are no longer able to help manage their money. Be specific and explain why you feel it would be best if they sought help with their money from someone else. Refer to the agreement you made with them when you first agreed to help them. Call Gambling Help, who can refer them to a Financial Counsellor.
  • Remind them you are still there for them: It can also be helpful to let them know what types of continuing support you are able to provide. Let them know you still care and want to be there for them in other ways.……

Deciding to stop managing your friend or loved one’s money can be a difficult decision and stir up uncomfortable emotions. If you want to have a conversation about whether this is the right decision for you and your friend or loved one.

NEED more support to approach this conversation? It’s Free, Confidential, and Professional counselors are available 24/7 on 1-800-858-858 … 

LEARN ALL About Counsellor Sam by a visit to his helpful blog “About Counsellor Sam” and begin your recovery from problem gambling today!

~Advocate Catherine Townsend-Lyon

YES, There Is Such A Thing As “Addicted Gambling Hangover”….

IT IS:, Feelings of anxiety, regret and sickness following a gambling binge. Originally introduced in 2008 as part of a NSW (Australia) Government advertising campaign aimed at young male problem gamblers. Created by Sydney agency The Campaign Palace on behalf of the Responsible Gambling Fund. More info at
Wow! I’ve got a heck of a gambling hangover – I dropped $300 at the casino last night….


I just happen to come across a “New Addicted Gambling Help” website that I found extremely fantastic. They have an area for others in recovery to “Share” your story of your experiences with problem and addicted gambling. And as many of my blog friends here know, I can NEVER PASS on sharing my testimony of what I went through with my own gambling addiction. Even having long-term recovery, when we share with others, it’s an excellent way to keep US from ever becoming lax or complacent even in my own recovery and helps keep “Relapse” at bay.
We all seem to use addiction for one reason or another. I remember my mom telling me onetime when I had started my addicted gambling treatment for the first time, yes….it took me a couple tries,…LOL… and after I told her that I was in treatment and therapy for gambling, and because some of my childhood punishment was very physically & verbally hard on me, ( not to mention the sex abuse )  she said to me, “I don’t know why those things are bothering you, they don’t bother your brother and 2 sisters,”..I was thinking in my head, YEAH RIGHT!
My older brother had “Anger & Drug” issues, my older sister became an “Alcoholic” with 5 DUI’s racked up, and my younger sister also has “Anger” problems, has an Evil attitude, and over indulges with “Alcohol.” Right, none of your OTHER kids had any problems, OK mom, what ever you say. My father too was a pretty heavy drinker back in the day.
I happen to get an email from a man who is part of the Gambling Help website named, “Counsellor Sam,”….and he let me know that they added my story of Addicted Gambling & Recovery to their website. He also said some very nice things to me. So if you have sometime on your hands, I’d love for you to go to their very “Informative and Helpful website,” and read what I had submitted to them. It is up and listed as, “Catherine’s Story.”
I’ll also be adding their site to my “Gambling Recovery Resources Page,” “click on Read Stories” and mine will be there.
Also, Counsellor Sam’s blog here on WPress, He is always blogging good info about addicted gambling.
Here is just a sample post from “Counsellor Sam’s” fantastic blog!;

Shame and Gambling

People experience a complex range of emotions while gambling. Some emotions are undeniably positive such as excitement, surprise, and hopefulness – and individuals may gamble in the hope of experiencing such feelings. Unfortunately another emotion is also often experienced while gambling: shame.
Shame has been defined as a painful feeling of humiliation or distress caused by the feeling of having engaged in wrong or foolish behaviour, or finding oneself in a regrettable and unfortunate situation. It is an uncomfortable emotion that we want to escape from as quickly as possible. This can be dangerous, as we can then find ourselves stuck in a trap, whereby to rid ourselves of the feeling of shame we engage more frequently in the behaviour that is driving it. This is often the case with gambling.
Tony* has played the pokies ( slot machines) with increasing frequency over the past six months. As he loses more money and keeps more secrets from family and friends, his feelings of shame increase. This leads Tony into a cycle of shame and gambling. The cycle starts with Tony bargaining with himself – “If I can just recover my losses, I’ll never gamble again and no one will ever knowWhen Tony loses more money the next time he gambles, he starts to have negative thoughts about himself – “There is something wrong with me and I should know better” – which leads him to gamble in order to escape the negative thoughts he is experiencing. This cycle continues and Tony finds himself increasingly trapped between feelings of shame and a desire to escape through increased frequency of gambling.
This shame cycle contributes to increased social isolation, further financial loss and may act as a real barrier to seeking help. If you or someone you know want to beat the cycle of shame, confidential and expert help is available around the clock by calling Gambling Help on 1800 858 858.
So go take a peek at Sam’s blog, especially if you or someone you know maybe a problem gambler. We can beat this ugly illness as the very 1st first step is to “admit to yourself and another the Gambling has you licked”! “HELP is only a Phone Call Away”….
Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon