Just wanted to introduce myself to the group. I'm a 31 year old male, married with one daughter. I have a really good job as a carpenter, I am well paid, and I get to live in Hawaii. Yet, I feel the need to throw away money and pay myself with mental anguish by playing online poker. It all started with a few social games with friends, and soon after I started buying poker books and reading up on all the odds, probabilities, and strategies to the game. I found internet poker more accessible and started to play the nickel and dime tables. Small stakes and just a little bit of fun right? I decided to up the ante one day when I found out my wife was going to be off of work for two weeks right at xmas time. I turned my small $100 wager into $1700. I felt like a hero,"The year dad saved Christmas" I would be telling my daughter years down the line. It was the worst thing that happened to me winning that money. I started to really become delusional about my abilities as a poker player and what I was going to do with all the money I was so sure to win. I increased the stakes of the games I was playing and began my quest to become poker elite. And I was winning, 2x,3x,4x my buy -in, I was on my way. Yet, I just couldn't seem to cash out. What ever I would win just didn't seem to be enough, and as you all know if you stay in too long you lose it all. I started digging my self a hole that kept getting deeper and deeper. Why is it that digging a hole could be so thrilling and exciting? Soon it wasn't about the poker, it was all about the thrill and the rush. I was stealing money out of our savings and paychecks to finance my habit. Maxing out credit cards, racing home from work to get 20 minutes in before I had to pick up my daughter from daycare. Is this really who I am? Well, I am glad to say I have finally listened to my conscience, that little voice that had been telling me to "stop" this whole time. I'm lucky, I have only lost money, the amount doesn't matter, but it was finally enough to hurt. I'm lucky, I still have my wife and daughter, job, home, and possessions. I am lucky to have found this site, before I wrote this I was fighting the urge to give it one more go, just a $300 buy-in on a Friday, the internet tables are sure to be full of fish, I could make a killing. But I wrote this instead, so I thank all of you. Two days without gambling and I'm looking forward to a third day.
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