It can start during a trip to the track with your Dad, or a weekend getaway to Vegas with your friends. You spend a few hundred dollars and have a good time. Then you go for a second time and a third and you win BIG. Experiencing a big win early on in your gambling history can be a major step on the way to getting hooked. Compulsive gamblers can experience a similar “high” that drug addicts or alcoholics describe, and is a feeling gamblers face on the way to becoming a true gambling addict. Unfortunately, debt can add up very quickly, especially if you have an internet gambling addiction.
Let’s say you have made it into recovery and are rebuilding your life. What do you do about all of the unpaid bills and those constant phone calls from creditors? The situation may look bleak, but you do have choices. You can choose to not answer these calls and letters, but rest assured, they will not stop and can cause constant anxiety…not good for the recovering compulsive gambler. Fortunately, there are ways to manage these money problems. If you choose to ignore the problem it will catch up with you sooner or later. A recent article discusses what could happen if you do that. You may start having disrupted sleep. Furthermore, your energy, thinking and overall well-being will be negatively affected if you make this choice. Many people who have debt think, “Well I can’t afford to pay these insurmountable bills so what’s the point”? That is a normal thought. Creditors certainly would like you to pay these bills in full, but will often be open to negotiating a payment plan that you can afford.
Medical bills, credit cards, and utility bills can all be worked out. Even the dreaded IRS will be willing to make payment arrangements with you. The IRS, in particular, will surprise you with their accommodations. But it is important that you do not ignore any correspondence from any creditor. They understand that making a call to them can be difficult and will appreciate your reaching out to them. Not only will this provide you some relief, but the constant phone calls and letters will decrease or in most cases will even stop. As mentioned earlier, your payment agreement will be within your budget. Oftentimes, creditors will ask what you can afford to pay. If you make an agreement, be sure to hold up your end of it. So, if twenty-five dollars a month is what you can afford, then by all means make that payment religiously! Before long you will be back on the right track and financially secure once again.