He’s addicted to gambling

My boyfriend is so addicted to sports betting, he once checked his phone 25 times during a movie. What can I do?

Our elder has experience of a loved one’s addiction — and thinks it might be time to make the break.

Dear EWC

Hi, my boyfriend and I have been together for almost two years now. A year after our relationship, I started to notice that he has been doing a lot of sports gambling. He doesn’t bet huge amounts and doesn’t lose all his money; it’s the fact that he’s constantly on his phone, checking scores, and texting with his betting group. We go to the movie theater, and he takes his phone out during the movies; I counted one time, he took it out 25 times! We go to dinner, and the first thing he does when we sit down is checked his scores; we don’t talk much during dinner. Any activities we do together, I see him following me and checking his phone. I eventually got fed up and confronted him about it. I asked him to not do so much sports betting when I am there. (We do not live together and only get to hang out on the weekends.) Not once did I ask him to stop completely, just to not do it when I am over, which I thought was reasonable. The first time, he said he would try to stop doing it; he kind of tried but still couldn’t stop his addiction. I asked him many times after as well but nothing has changed. He doesn’t want to compromise and actually finds nothing wrong with it. He admits that he has a gambling addiction but he’s OK with it. He doesn’t want to change. I tell him I feel as if he’s too busy to hang out with me; he says it’s not like that. But it is like that… he’s so consumed with his betting, he literally checks his phone every other minute. I don’t know what to do anymore. I love him but I am so fed up that I am ready to leave. What do I do with a boyfriend who is addicted to sports gambling?

Lawry replies

I would be happy to answer your letter. I was sorry to read about your boyfriend’s addiction. Addiction is a difficult problem. My husband had one for years. Unfortunately, it took a life-threatening illness to stop him.

My advice to you would be to stop seeing him. As long as he is addicted and not interested in doing anything about it, you aren’t going to get anywhere with him. I think making a clean break and making peace with yourself for doing that will allow you to meet new people. You deserve better and you need to remind yourself of that. Granted it won’t be easy to walk away, but it sounds like you have had enough, so the timing is right.

I hope that this has been helpful to you, and I wish you a great deal of luck in resolving this situation. Think positive. I am a great believer in that. I know this won’t be easy, but you can do it! Wishing you happier times.

I would love to hear how things work out for you. I’ll be thinking of you.

Letter #: 417464
Category: Dating/Relationship

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