Banbury man opens up with gambling struggles to help give others hope

A Banbury man has opened up about his struggles with gambling, and shared how he marked his three-year 'gamble free' anniversary with a special tattoo.

Monday, 11th October 2021, 2:09 pm
Updated Monday, 11th October 2021, 2:18 pm
Banbury man, Calvin Findlay, speaks out about his struggles with gambling (pictured: Calvin, his daughters - baby Rosie and Hollie - and his fiancée Laura)

Calvin Findlay aims to help give others dealing with a gambling addiction hope for the future by sharing his experience.

He said: "I'm 38 years old and started gambling a few pounds a week on football pools when I was 19.

"At first it wasn't an issue, and was just a bit of fun. However, in my early 20's I started gambling online to the point of being completely out of control. Every Friday was payday, and I would wake up in the early hours knowing my wages had hit the bank and gambled the majority of my wages away.

A Banbury man - Calvin Findlay - has opened up about his struggles with gambling, and shared how he marked his three-year 'gamble free' anniversary with a special tattoo.

"Even if I won a substantial amount of money I would just keep going until I lost everything. I racked up £1000s of debt due to my gambling, and my mental health really suffered. I would often just look in the mirror and scream at myself, but still I just continued in the cycle of self destruction.

His gambling addiction had a massive impact on his family and relationships.

Calvin added: "I attended my first Gamblers Anonymous (GA) meeting in my early 20’s. While attending meetings, my gambling stopped and I thought I was cured so I stopped attending meetings.

"However, the gambling soon started again. I attended GA again in my late 20's and early 30's, but just didn't learn from the past and stopped attending, which led me back to gambling.

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"I realised on the 20th September 2018, that I needed to go back to GA as I couldn't live my life like this anymore and needed to do it for myself and my daughter, but this time I needed to continue attending as that's the medication I need to stay gamble free.

"My life now has never been better. I'm now engaged to a lovely lady and have a three-month-old baby girl, and of course my eldest daughter, Hollie."

"I decided to get a tattoo with my last gamble date, and also the GA logo as a constant reminder to myself to not become complacent in my own recovery.

"I wanted to open up in the hope others with a gambling addiction or any other addiction know they aren't alone, and you can turn your lives around and there is help out there."

There is a local Gamblers Anonymous (GA) meeting in Banbury see its website for more details