Awareness and prevention
Written by: Kieran
I was 25. My life was good. I always had a big interest in tennis and loved watching Federer on TV.
I was 25. My life was good. I always had a big interest in tennis and loved watching Federer on TV. During the ad breaks I noticed betting companies advertising. I had my iPhone and one day for whatever reason I started betting on the thing. I bet 40 euro on Nadal and he won. I couldn't believe it. I had never gambled in my life before. I was fascinated that I could make quick cash just for pressing buttons on my phone. I became very good at it. Results always went my way because in tennis it's relatively easy to predict the score. Djokovic for example is rarely going to lose the first or second round of a tournament against a weak opponent. I thought I was in control of it. I'd put down 1,500 euro and make a profit of 75 euro. It was easy to predict for me.
As the months moved on it really just got out of control. I started putting down bigger money like 3,000 and Federer might have a bad day and lose. I began chasing loses. Certain matches like Djokovic losing to Vesley this year I thought he was a certainty to win - he lost - another 2,000 gone. I also began betting on the women's tennis like Serena williams but it was always the same outcome even if i won i was still in considerable debt and continued to gamble to win my money back.
It was horrifying because in the very beginning I was winning and over time the money accumulated into big profits but the problem is you can't stop, you have to keep going and sooner or later the losses arrive. In total I lost somewhere in the region of 30,000 which was all of my savings. It was money put away for my future and my college education. Having to tell my mum was hell. It broke her heart and I have now destroyed the relationship we had. the damage it has caused is unreal. If I hadn't started gambling in the first place I would be much better off now, but I'm afraid it's a miserable life at the moment for me and my family.
There are many ways to seek professional and anonymous help for your own, or your loved one's problems with gambling.
If you need immediate help, please call Gambler's Help on 1800 858 858 or Gambler's Help Youthline on 1800 262 376 (from within Australia only). This service operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is free and confidential.