Phil Mickelson Talks Responsible Gambling and Addiction in Social Media Post
Golf legend Phil Mickelson has candidly opened up about his struggles with problem gambling, shedding light on the profound impact it had on his personal life and relationships.
This week, the six-time major winner took to social media platform X to elaborate on his lifetime gambling experience.
The post comes after a detailed account of Mickelson’s betting habits in a recent book by sports betting legend and convicted insider trader Billy Walters.
The book alleges that Mickleson gambled more than a billion dollars in a 20-year period, including an attempted $500,000 bet on his own Team USA to win the Ryder Cup.
A Personal Stuggle
Mickelson, 53, took to social media to share his personal journey with gambling, highlighting the emotional toll it took on him and his loved ones.
“Most of you will enjoy this football season with moderation while having lots of fun and entertainment,” he said.
“I won’t be betting this year because I crossed the line of moderation and into addiction, which isn’t any fun at all.”
While financial security was never a concern for him, the addiction’s emotional and psychological impact was profound. He confessed to being so engrossed in gambling that he often wasn’t “present with the ones I love,” causing significant harm.
“‘You’re here but you’re not with us,’ is something I’ve been told often throughout my addiction,” the post said.
Betting expert Billy Walters, in his autobiography Gambler: Secrets From a Life at Risk, made claims to the extent of Mickelson’s gambling habits. Walters says that the golf star had placed bets amounting to more than one billion dollars over the past three decades, including many examples of betting on golf.
Support in Testing Times
“It’s like a hurricane is going on outside and I’m isolated in a shelter oblivious to what was happening. When I came out, there was so much damage to clean up that I just wanted to go back inside and not deal with it.”
Amidst the turmoil, Mickelson’s wife, Amy, emerged as a pillar of strength and support.
“She has loved me and supported me through my darkest and most difficult times. I couldn’t have gotten through this without her,” he said.
“I’m so grateful for her strength in helping us get through the many challenges I’ve created for us. Because of her love, support, and commitment, I’m back on track to being the person I want to be.”
Path to Recovery
Mickelson’s journey towards healing has been marked by professional help and a commitment to abstaining from gambling.
“After many years of receiving professional help, not gambling, and being in recovery from my addictions, I’m now able to sit still, be present in the moment, and live each day with an inner calm and peace.”
The golfing legend has not only been in the headlines for his sports betting escapades in recent years. He controversially dropped out of the PGA Tour to join the rival Saudi Arabian regime-backed LIV Golf Tour, and then proceeded to bad-mouth his previous employer publicly while encouraging its golfers to join him at LIV.
Mickelson did apologize for his public outbursts, saying he would take time to “self-reflect and learn”.
It seems that has also been going on with his problem gambling behaviors.