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Michaela's story

In 2001, we had just moved back to Australia and I had a six month old baby. And that's when we had another episode with my husband's gambling.

And look the money was actually the least of the losses. The biggest lost really was just the family unit that we had. When an incident would occur, we would talk about it.

I naively thought that my undying love was going to be enough to cure it and of course, it's not enough.

I spoke to a counsellor after it all and had some really good friends as well. A couple of really good friends in Ballarat.

I remember one day thinking I really couldn't continue, you know, it was all just too much and ringing a girlfriend and she came straight over and sat with me.

And I guess what I would say to anyone watching is that you've got to reach out to those friends even if you're not ready to reach out on a professional level yet.

There was no judgement from any of my family or friends they just wanted to be there and support me. And I'm really thankful that I was able to do that.

I think that if you internalise and hold on to that kind of anger and grief it doesn't really go away. Don't be absorbed with guilt, don't be overwhelmed by it.

There is real hope it can be managed. There's certainly a positive future for gamblers and people that are affected by gamblers, just keep going.

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