I’m Ditching the Term “Recovery”

by Feb 27, 2019Opinion Pieces


That’s always been the term I’ve used to describe my days since becoming a non-gambler.

At first, it felt like a proper term to use. I had destroyed my life and there was undoubtedly a recovery process from the trauma my gambling caused.

But over time, it has started to feel a bit more clunky. “Am I still ‘in recovery’ over eight years later?” I’d ask myself. It didn’t quite feel right, but it was the term everyone used so I continued along with them.

It’s Time for a Change

The term recovery no longer suits me. It just doesn’t fit with how I feel and therefore I’m no longer going to use it.

So what phase am I in then?


I’m in the life phase. In fact, I think I’ve always been in the life phase.

Part of living is growing. We grow as we learn new things, have new experiences (both good and bad), and make our way on this journey through life.

Maybe I just hit pause on my growth for a few years.

Or maybe—and I think this is most accurate—I never left the growth stage. Sure, I had setbacks. But growth isn’t a straight line up.

I’ve often said that my struggles have helped me to grow the most and therefore they can’t simply be eliminated from my personal growth story. And they can’t be eliminated from my life.

By removing the “recovery” label, I feel free again. It’s a feeling that I’ve chased for a long time. In fact, chasing that feeling is what got me into gambling in the first place.

In reality, this changes nothing. I’ll still continue to do the things that make me a better person. I’ll just do so by calling the day-to-day stuff life, not recovery.