Hello. My Name is Karey and I'm a Recovering Gambler

About a dozen years ago, a family acquaintance told us of a foolproof way he had eliminated his family's debt, saved a substantial amount of money and supported his family, all before nine in the morning. This left the rest of his day to spend quality time with his family, do worthwhile things and spend his significant income.

It sounded great. We wanted to know more. The formula turned out to be simple. Open an account with the Chicago Mercantile Exchange ($5,000.00) and start trading futures.

Isn't that a bit like gambling, we wondered? Oh no, not if you follow the formula. You get online when the market opens at 6 a.m., you look at the yen and based on it's first couple of moves, you can tell whether you should buy or sell. If it turns against you, you get out immediately. If it's working for you, you ride the wave until it dies. If you follow this plan without deviation, you'll make far more than you lose.

So we decided to practice. At 6 a.m., I met with a couple of my brothers and we did paper trades. Some days we got out almost immediately (on paper) and somedays we made huge sums of money (on paper). We did this for a couple of weeks to be sure the system worked. During those weeks, we made a lot of money--thousands of dollars, enough that if the trend continued, we'd be able to pay off houses in months rather than years. Did I mention that all of this was on paper?

It worked so well that we couldn't wait to get started. I sent in my $5000.00 to open my trading account and excitedly waited to start trading for real, earning real money that would pay off our house, take us to Norway and New Zealand (the two places I want to visit most in the world) and buy us a new car.

Monday arrived. I got up at 5:30, anxious to get to work. I went down to the basement, where the computer was set up and opened the CME page. The markets opened. I followed the formula. According to the first couple of moves, I needed to buy. So I did. Thirty seconds later, I'd made $24.00. Then it shifted. Following the sure formula, I sold. By the time I got out, I'd made $12.00 that day. Not the beginning I'd hoped for, but hey, now I had $5012.00 in my trading account.

That was the last day I turned a profit. I followed the formula exactly. The second day, I lost $36.00. The day after that, I lost $60.00. I don't remember specifics beyond that. It's all a desperate gambler's blur. Each morning, I'd check in with my brothers. We didn't understand why it wasn't working. Our mentor couldn't help us either. It just wasn't working.

Sick at losing money every day, I wanted to stop. But I couldn't until I at least got the $5,000 back. I had to break even. After all, that was money paid to me after a terrible car wreck. I didn't want it just flushed down the toilet. So feeling like a desperate man at the poker tables, I kept trying.

Several mornings, I made my trade, and then prayed, closing one eye and keeping the other on the screen to see if my prayers were being answered. I didn't like the answers I kept getting (which I now believe was, "Get the crap out of the futures game!) so I kept trying and praying and failing, finishing my agonizing mornings by crawling back up to bed, only to lay there crying, wondering how I was going to get out of this mess.

It was hopeless. I lost almost all of my investment before I finally called it quits. It was a very dark time. I clearly was not cut out for games of chance and speculation.

I'm just glad I don't live in Las Vegas or anywhere near an Indian reservation!


Lisa said...

ugh. dark times.

Scott / Lori said...

That must have been a really great plan. So sorry for your agony. Glad you are fully recovered now.