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Gambling - an emotional rollercoaster

Discussion in 'General Vegas Talk' started by vegasmeister, Feb 8, 2016.

  1. vegasmeister

    vegasmeister
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    It's probably safe to say that most of us have had sessions and trips where we get up big and lose most/all of it back, as well as other sessions and trips where we have been down big and made an epic comeback. When either of these situations happens to me, it just takes a toll on me, mentally, emotionally, etc.

    What does it do to you mentally when you are up big and start giving a lot of it back? Do you chase your losses (and go on tilt) trying to get back to that high point you were at? If you are down big and make an epic comeback, how satisfying is it to you to get back your losses?

    Or, if you are down big and make most of it back, but not all, how hard is it for you to accept a (smaller) loss and stop gambling vs. trying to get back to even?
     
  2. shifter

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    I could write a book about the trips where I had great luck early and was up huge and dumped it all back plus some. locking in the win has been my biggest challenge forever.

    when it starts to turns and I start losing, I often press and say just one big bet and I'll get it back. then pretty soon I'm down 4 or 5 big bets and now we're talking about a lot of money. so now I definitely don't want to quit and book the huge loss, so I keep trudging away.

    pretty soon I've given away my entire win and now I'm really pissed and tilting. being even feels terrible, so I keep playing and pressing to try to get my win back. pretty soon I'm stuck good, so now there's no turning back. I'm going to play until I've lost my whole BR or I get out of the hole.

    on the flip side, if I get stuck big early and then climb out of the hole, I have no problem quitting and counting the break-even as a huge win. but I have learned that sometimes you have to be happy to get most of it back and accept a small loss rather than chase the entire loss. too many times I've been one or 2 bets from getting out of the hole and it all turns and I end up giving it all back.

    the whole back and forth is a ton of stress for sure.
     
  3. vegasmeister

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    I agree that it sure feels great to break even once you've been in a major hole. If I'm up a decent amount and break even it feels like I lost the amount that I was up to at the high point (not even sure if it's possible for me to break even after being up big as I never quit at break even, because, like you, I am willing to blow through the BR trying to get back to where I was). It's a psychological thing that I've been trying to get better at.

    It seems like on losing trips, I have been up pretty substantially at some point on probably 75% of them, and couldn't/wouldn't book the win. For the other 25% of losing trips, there was just bad luck from the get-go as far as I can remember.

    The whole rollercoaster thing with the swings is very stressful like you said. I'm surprised I haven't seen more medical emergencies on the casino floor to be honest (including my own).
     
  4. VEGASBJ

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    Yeah, I find if I am coming back from being buried, to even or almost even a win as it saves the bankroll for a quicker return trip, or at least saves some negative energy associated with a loss. I have learned over the years that if you are almost even they is good enough, as Shifter noted there were many times that trying to make back that last 5k ends up costing way more than just accepting a small, but manageable loss. That was a lesson hard learned. I haven't had as many times where I am up big and dump it back as I also learned over the years to lock in the win. Yes, I maybe didn't maximize my win, but you need to lock in winning trips to cover all the losing trips. The has been many trips where I get up good 5 figures first night and quit for the weekend. When my host mentions my lack of play, I respond with "oh well". He understands as well though and knows we need to book winners now and then. No one can survive constant losing trips
     
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  5. RockyBalboa

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    The emotional side of gambling interests me almost as much as the business side of casinos.

    I didn't start going to Vegas until 2010 and was pretty gun shy because I didn't know the games well enough to go too in depth. Over the years I've become comfortable and my bankroll has increased so I'm able to enjoy it quite a bit more.

    In all my trips up until last July I never started off with a big first day. I was always digging out of a hole - or trying to. Sometimes I would get even or a bit up right before I left and like you guys said that feels like an accomplishment. Going home a small loser or even is fine. Several times I've had to bust into the "in case of emergency break glass" portion of my budget and lost so I would leave my whole gambling budget behind.

    Here's the thing - I'm competitive and take losing hard. It doesn't matter what I'm competing in if I'm losing I hate it. I'm not a sore loser or anything but it burns me up something fierce. So if I lose a customer to a competitor, lose at craps, watch a Philly team lose (that happens a lot - you'd think I'd be used to it) or whatever...hate it.

    Last July I started off big the first night. I cashed out $5k in chips after a helluva craps run and a Spanish 21 run. Being awake for 30 some hours didn't even phase me. Got back to my room finally and felt like I was on top of the world. I'd almost doubled my trip roll in one night! The first night! I took that and put it in the safe with some of m pay normal roll so even if I did lose my plan was I'd go home with exactly what I brought.

    The next couple days continued well. I couldn't lose at craps. Even playing on the table alone I was killing it. Towards the end of the trip I started leaking chips as I went in more aggressively while trying for a huge win. The final couple days were a bitch bc I couldn't hit shit. So after a small late run I ended up going home with a nice chunk. But those last two losing days burned my ass.

    I've also quit playing during trips out of frustration. I understand variance and even if I expect to win every time I know that ain't happening. But when you're playing craps and it is nothing but PSO after PSO and you're down $2-3k before getting a buzz it sucks the enjoyment out of it for me. I'll shut it down and go watch sports and shoot for some big time parlays (I like putting $20-50 on 6-10 teamers). Or go play $25 blackjack or Spanish. The trip when I went for the Broncos - Seahawks SB I lost my ass on the game and stopped betting entirely for the trip. Sucked the life out of the trip.
     
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  6. riders

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    I so resemble that comment. I am very competitive and hate to lose. My kids even know that if we play any game (cards, board, outdoor, etc), they better come to play because I am not holding back. If they win, they know they were better.

    With that said, I hate losing trips to Vegas. Most of my trips end up starting down by the end of the first day. Some more than others but generally down. I will start to chase and the bigger the hole the more I play. When I find myself back even or up a little, I will continue to play but maybe not as aggressive. However, when I find myself up more than a little (say 50% more than my BR-which is small portion of some on here), I start playing bigger and pushing for that huge win. This almost always ends up bad for me but I have yet to come to that realization while I am in Vegas (seems to only set in when I get on the plane home). So instead of booking a 50%+ BR win, I end up even or losing again and that sucks.

    I don't play with money I can't lose, so losing doesn't really take an "emotional" toll on me even if I hate it ... but the realization that I was up and blew that win kills me .. not sure why but that takes an emotional toll on me for a couple days after the trip .. then I get over it and look for the next trip.
     
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  7. GlenBaccarat79

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    Please take this advice and adhere to it. It has haunted me years ago and the last time I was subscribing to the 'get even and call it quits for the trip/session', here is what happened. I was in Atlantic City and bought in with $25k. Won and lost most of the night. Not any type of win that would allow me to stop. (usually don't even think about stopping unless I double my buy in at least) Up and down and finally made the decision to get even and stop. I was usually a win or lose the bankroll type of player for years.

    Well that night I was down $20k. I made the decision and said back to $25k and go home. I aggressively built back up and was going to stop. I got to around $18k back out of the $20k lost. Went down again by at least $10k and built back up. I got up to $19.600.00 after paying commissions on several previous hands. Well, yep. Correct. I tried for a $500.00 additional win and then went south from there. Gave it all back over a stupid $400.00. Never did that again.

    Gut wrenching and sickening, doesn't matter with me if the money was earmarked for gambling or not, if I needed it or not. It was mine and earned and all mine. I risked it. All good it I lost it in a regular sense, meaning straight loss. But to win, either straight win or win a come back, and then give it all back, something just stabs me and keeps stabbing me about doing that. It plain sucks.
     
    #6 Feb 9, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2016
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  8. RockyBalboa

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    I'm with ya. Because my Vegas money sits in its own separate account (call it my slush fund and I use it for any gambling, unnecessary purchases I want but don't need) if I did lose every cent of it then it wouldn't affect me financially other than having to rebuild the account up and being pissed I lost. I'll curse myself for being stupid or playing one game while I should've played another but I will shake it off.

    I started the separate account because several years ago I hadn't perfected bankroll management. I ended up spending money that I had earmarked for another trip and I was mad at myself. So now every expense check I get plus a monthly stipend and any other miscellaneous money gets dumped into this account and it has worked nicely.

    There have been a few times when I get down to my last few buy ins where I get gun shy. I won't play as aggressive because I won't want to cab to Chase to make a withdrawal or even hit the ATM. Once I was not playing my normal style at craps and I was on the rail for a hot roll and cost myself money from being reluctant.

    Hopefully next month I can come out of the gates swing in and get up again. That was nice to experience for once!
     
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