Want to know about gambling? Please Read

Every now and then you hear about someone you know having an addiction to something and it’s always the same damn thing that sucks or that’s his fault. Well, I wanted to share my own battle of gambling addiction that almost spiraled out of control, almost!? Well, it did for a little bit. Sometimes people laugh about it but it’s as real as it gets and probably worst than drugs. Your saying how can it be worst than drugs? It can be, please follow me as I try to write down how it all happened and how I am doing. Follow me, through me highs and lows then my path to recovery.

I believe it all started back in October 2007, only because I remember picking up my new Lexus, which was all wheel drive from the dealership. I had bought the car to replace my rear wheel drive Lexus is300 and at the time I also had a Honda s2000 also rear wheel drive, both weren’t that great in the winter time especially in New England. After making a couple months of car payments on both cars and insurance, I felt strapped for cash to do leisure things like go out with friends or just buy random crap. At the time I had a paintball team and if anyone knows it’s quite an expensive hobby, as I collected a few paintball guns ranging from $1200-1600 and I put one or two on my credit card. I also had car hobby was pricey as well, so since I was living at home at the time it didn’t really affect me until I made a few months car payment, CC payment, paid for insurance, gas (worked 45 minutes away) and going out. I turned to buying scratch tickets (we had a machine at work), even though I knew it was bad. I would hit a 100 dollars on a 10 dollar ticket here and there but I would just throw the money back into the machine and lose it and keep repeating the cycle, it got so bad that I was buying scratch tickets with my cell phone bill money that month and I recall hitting a 1000 dollars on a 10 dollar ticket. I was super excited that I won my money back and had an extra 600 bucks. It was on a gambling high, saying how lucky I was.

One night after work, during that same week that I won the 1000 bucks, I decided to drive to Foxwoods casino late at night, the restaurant closed at midnight so I made it to Foxwoods in CT by about 1:20am trying to play Texas holdem poker but the wait was so long I went over to the black jack tables. I knew how to play blackjack but not like the casino way or playing with the table and all that crap, it was an interesting night to say the least. I started off with 600 bucks, betting fifty dollar hands and no matter what I was getting I was winning. It took about an hour for me to figure out the game as in building a strategy in bets, taking risk on splitting cards, and doubling down. Before you know it the rush of winning hundreds of dollars in a few seconds was fucking awesome and unbelievable. I’m almost positive I left at about 7am and about 15,000 dollars richer. Singing to myself on the way home even though I haven’t slept in about 24 hours but it was no big deal because I was still on that gambling high.

First thing I did when I got home was tell my family I won a bunch of money gambling and the feeling was awesome. My mom approaches me and said Minh “Gambling is bad, try not to go, I know you won money and that’s great but don’t go anymore.” Obviously I shrugged it off. After my shower, I hopped on the computer to pay both my car insurance for the year, 3 months car payment on each car, pay off my credit card, and took a nap right after. After waking up, I jumped to the computer and started making some serious purchases for my cars with the left over winnings, I purchased a set of Volk wheels, lowering springs, a Ing’s lip kit and a HKS exhaust for the Lexus, which set me back at around 5600 dollars. I said to myself no big deal. In my head I kept saying wow can’t believe this happened. So the weekend rolls on and after work I told myself why not chance it again and took that long drive to Foxwoods and once again everything happened to roll my way and I walked away with 9000 dollars, super excited obviously. Get home, still high off the gambling, I start buying Work wheels , a comptech supercharger kit, T1r exhaust and (forgot the name)JDM body kit for the Honda s2000. It put me back about 8000 probably a little over because I bought some ridiculous stuff that I knew I couldn’t afford without saving for a few years.

It’s about March/April and everything starts arriving in big boxes at my parent’s house and starts filling their basement the boxes took up half of the basement. I tell myself” Fuck I didn’t leave any money for installation or money for body work”, and the idea of going back to Foxwoods automatically rings a bell in my head. All while I was getting crazy comp points to lure me back to Foxwoods to use the points and gamble. It definitely worked as I had complied some serious comp points. I used the comp points to get an apple ipod touch, and probably about 1000 dollars worth of Mobil gas cards. The first time back since winning big money, I lost 500 bucks, shrugged it off and went home. The comp points they were giving me was about 300 points for every week that I showed up, it was a 4 week promo for me. It got me to return every week, that’s for sure obviously. LOL! I won 4/5 thousand here and there. Making 4/5 trips to Foxwoods a week bringing average of 500 to 1000 bucks with me but now I was losing more money than I was winning. Paintball tournament season kicks in and my trips to Foxwoods cut back to 2/3 days a week but now when I went I was bring more money with me to try and extend playing time. Only the problem with winning money upwards of 10 thousand you don’t really settle for winning a couple thousand that was the problem. I didn’t want to walk away because I was so accustom to winning big money and in turn losing what I started off with and running to the atm machine.

 (June 2008)I recall one night I started off with 500 dollars and won about 16 thousand and I had to be at work for 9 am and it was 7 am as I was looking at my phone. I was told myself “fuck it go home big or go home crying!” so I start laying down huge bets taking risk on double downs on which I shouldn’t have and playing stupidly inconsistent with the table with my bets, before you know it I blew 15800 in 10 minutes. It was a shuffle check and I sat there in total disbelief like wow I am a total fucking idiot. As he finishes shuffling I said fuck it threw in the 200 and kept pressing, I was winning consecutive hands so I just kept pushing the chips back into the betting circle, after about 5 hands I was back up to 3200 dollars all in a matter of 4/5 minutes. Starting making 500 dollar bets and the cards went my way for a few more minutes and ended up getting up and leaving with 7200 dollars. Walking out I was saying wow can’t believe this shit, it was fucking intense today. I only left because I had to be at work, make no doubt if I had stayed I would have probably lost it all.

The winnings pretty much brought me back into good standings financially because of the 4/5 trips I was making during the promotion period they had put me on. The more I was going the less promos and comp I received. I would make random trips after work or during my days off from work to Foxwoods but I wasn’t winning anymore, losing 500 dollars every time I was going, which hit the pocket pretty good. I remember going to Foxwoods with my friend Adam and wife (gf at the time) and lost a quick 1000 bucks in let’s say less than 5 minutes. So angry that I didn’t make it through a shoe of cards I went to the atm to with draw more money, only problem my atm card only allowed 1000 withdrawals a day and I had used my debit card earlier for the 1000 dollars I brought. So I whip out the trust citi platinum saying oh ill take out a quick 2000 dollar advance and pay it back when I get home. Got the 2000 dollars and lost it in a mere 10 minutes and my friend Adam and wife said it was time to go but I wanted to stay. Then, I started to get aggressive and angrily wanting to try and win my money back but they kept saying you’re not right, your pissed off and angry and your making stupid bets, I agreed with them and we took off and went home for the night.

Went home, never paid my citi card, and the next day went down with the 2000 dollars that I was suppose to use for the credit cards and gambled it away. Shrugging it off like it was no big deal as I was saying I’ll just makes big payments a month until it’s gone. Stopped gambling for a week and had the itch to go and see if I can win any money. That was the beginning of winning a couple hundred dollars just to lose a couple thousand every other trip down there. I was making all my monthly cars payments no problem as well as the credit card but as I ran out of cash I was taking cash advances on credit cards, so naturally it opened more payments a month on a few cards because I would go from one card to the other. August/September 2008 I was making just min payments to credit cards and I was saying to myself, “stop before I can’t handle the monthly payments and lose my cars and have horrible credit”.

It was about the same time my wife (gf at the time) tells me she was pregnant with our son and automatically I say I need to man the fuck up and take care of my son and girl. I decided to keep the Lexus and sell the s2000 and parts, thinking that I could save it and use it to pay off my Lexus or maybe a future down payment on a house for us. Plus I still had all the parts I had bought for the Lexus so I knew it would at least look good and it was more of a family orientated car. As I sold off the parts to the s2000 I lost money on parts that were brand new, I had bought the supercharger kit and exhaust new and when I went to sell anything, everyone kept low balling the shit out of me saying you know how it is, brand new from a person (private seller) isn’t the same as brand new from company, so I settled for hundreds less then I paid originally for parts. Only the problem was I knew that as well. As I sold the parts I had the cash and wanting to make up for the difference so I went to Foxwoods late nights again to see if I can make any money to help save money faster or buy stuff for the baby. As my mom sees the car parts and a set of wheels disappearing she asked me “hey where’s all the money going?” and I told her I was gambling it away.

She flips out beyond belief, whose mom wouldn’t right? She tells me I need to get my shit together especially with a baby on the way blah, blah, blah, saying that when I sell the car that I should give her the money to hold so that I wouldn’t spend it, and the day came when I sold the car and I gave her the cash to hold on to. But now I knew I had money saved, I would go to Foxwoods to spend my paychecks knowing that if I lose I had money, I had money at home. As you can imagine it got out of hand and I pretty much took cash advances on 4 different credit cards, borrowing money from my sister to stay afloat and asking my mom to just write checks for my cars because I didn’t feel like it. She didn’t think anything of it because sometimes I would ask her to do that for me. Stressing the fuck out on the inside and looking calm on the outside not many people knew at all except my sister. I can hold it down on the inside without breaking a sweat…lol. By this time if I didn’t mention, I blew through the money I had gotten from the car sale and the parts.

As the holidays approached I felt like such a epic failure as I couldn’t afford to buy presents like a loser, a friend of mine calls (won’t name names because I don’t want ppl to be involved who don’t want to be) and ask me if I wanted to go to Foxwoods, I was like no at first because I didn’t have any money, but called him 5 minutes afterwards to say I’m down to roll out. I had 480 dollar which was my Lexus car payment and took a chance. That night I ended up winning about 2500 dollars I believe, so excited we went out to a nice place and treated our self to some nice lobster surf and turfs, appetizers, bottle of grey goose, bill came out to like 4/5 hundred dollars and I was like wtf. When we were done eating, we were smashed, none of us could drive home and lucky us since I was the heavy gambler I was able to get us free hotel rooms for the night. Wake up in the morning because we both had to be at work for 9 and let me tell you holy huge hang over! I made it through the day and went home, sat in my room saying wow this has been a crazy fucking year and couldn’t believe that I won a little bit of money, I pay my sister back so she could have money for shopping and I was able to buy a few things for the loved ones.

Click to read Part 2


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