Struggling with enabling my gambling addict husband
I have been married less than a year to a recovering alcoholic. I had no idea that he also gambled. I foolishly helped him with financial debts and thought he was just "bad with money" but now I'm fully aware that he is also a gambling addict. He asks for cash and gets nasty if I don't give it to him. I'm currently in counseling to address my enabling behavior and to learn how to set boundaries so that I don't end up homeless because he isn't able to control himself. For reasons that began when I was a child I feel responsible for him although I know intellectually that I don't have to be. It's that "care giving" mentality that I'm sure he saw all over me.
He charged over $20k to my credit cards and has not given me anything towards that debt. Because these cards are in my name I'm responsible for them. I've changed the account numbers on these cards so he doesn't have access to them but he still has two of my cards that he charges food, gas, gifts for his grandchildren and meals with his friends.
Recently I told him that I feel comfortable with a limit of $50/kid for Christmas and if he wanted to get gifts for the numerous other family members he was going to have to pay for them himself. Needless to say he got upset.
I'm becoming more and more hardened to his outburst however and I find that the longer I feel manipulated and used the less I want to have anything to do with him. I know that I'm feeling depressed over his verbal abuse as well as his using me for his own selfish needs. My own needs and desires are not being met in any area of our life together.
For the record I'm his fourth wife, his other marriages didn't last related to his drinking. I'm so sad, depressed really, over not receiving any affection or any acknowledgement of my needs and desires. My daily thought is that I want out of this marriage. I can't take much more of this "roommate" arrangement. All I'm doing is providing a roof over his head with food, laundry, board provided but I receive nothing!!
I've talked to him about dissolving the marriage and he has threatened to get an attorney to get his "fair share" out of me. What a despicable human being!! That is part of why I don't kick him out. It's my house but I worry that I will lose if he goes after me. I suffer from an eating disorder and have gained 15 pounds since the wedding directly related to my extreme unhappiness.
His family is aware of his gambling. It would have been nice if they had warned me before we got married! I feel that they let me walk into this with blinders on. Now of course they share information with me about his past behavior. Thanks people!!
I miss my late husband every day. He wasn't perfect by any means but he showed me love and affection every day. I knew that I was loved by this man. I regret getting married again, I regret every day!! The love that I felt for this man is mostly gone, I'm just afraid to move in the direction that I know I must and my counselor agrees I should seriously consider. Thank you for reading this.
Click here to post comments
Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Enabling Behavior Discussion Forum.
Start a Video Conference with Don or Angie
We try to be available for TeleMed calls as often as possible. We are also very busy working with clients so it is not often that we will be available. If you have trouble catching us online for a Free 20 minute video conference, please make an appointment for your consultation above. If we are available, please enter the waiting room below. We will be notified and join you as soon as possible.
(When indicator is Green=Available, Red=Busy)
Or Visit Us on Facebook!