I attended a gambling group and although we all had gambling in common, that’s where it ended. I spent the first few months thinking someone would be able to help me with some key knowledge I must have missed along the way. I wanted desperately to know how I could be fixed. I gained valuable insight into myself but sadly no cure. At times I felt a renewed sense of hope for my future, than at others I felt sad when I felt like I was never going to be able to get off this roller coaster of pain.
Education about what our vital needs are as humans, and breaking down stigma and judgements is crucial to create a safe space for people’s pain. This education will help people to be open to receiving help and act as an early intervention when problems arise. That in using this information they would be able to catch themselves in that moment or urge to do something that isn’t going to contribute positively to their life ask themselves ‘What is my body trying to tell me right now? What am I not aware of?’ Am I AWAKE?
Am I – Aware what is going on, of the pressure I am under right now?
Do I Know – What my actual needs are ?
Am I Being – Authentic?
Am I – Keeping my eyes forward?
Am I being – Everyday mindful of my vital self care?
This checklist very quickly helps the individual be able to pinpoint the area of blindness in their life and be able to self correct.
I think that we need to move towards a model that makes it ok and more desirable to walk away and leave those in judgemental tear down roles to have to stand alone if they want to throw stones. When did we move as a society to the other end of the spectrum from – if you have nothing nice to say, then don’t say anything at all! If it doesn’t affirm, build or encourage then don’t say it!
We can do this, It is so important, the legacy of shame and fear has to stop. When I embraced my ultimate fear, the fear of exposure, it wasn’t comfortable in the moment, but every moment since then has been worth it. Years ago I decided I would have to protect my children from all of this, I thought that it would completely screw them up to know their mother was addicted to Pokies. I was wrong. The moment I admitted to being human to my children by saying I had made mistakes and I was sorry. I was not only forgiven but met with the words from my 12 year old’s mouth ‘ Mum everyone makes mistakes!’
What I didn’t realise in that healing moment, was that I was also creating a safe passage for pain that they may one day need.
I will be there for them always and without judgement, as I am there for all who disclose to me now, because of the way I vulnerably speak about my struggles. It provides an access to a person’s inner workings, when pain is met with understanding.