It all starts out so innocent, but living with someone with a gambling problem becomes a financial strain. They become irresponsible not caring about relationships, or work. Nothing matters as long as their able to gamble even to the point of stealing to settle gambling debts. There is addiction help, but the person has to admit they have a problem first. Admitting a person has a gambling addiction problem is the first step to addiction recovery and taking back control of their life.
Addictive gambling is also known as a compulsive gambling impulse control disorder
They can't control their selves and no matter what you say or do, they will not change. Problem gambling is any kind of gambling addiction that begins to tear your life apart. They will beg, borrow, and steal just to gamble. A person may spend countless hours at the local indian casino, or when at home on the internet playing online casino. There are other kinds of gambling addictions.
Two types of gamblers
Escape gamblers are looking to rid themselves of the emotional pain they are going through. They want to numb themselves from the pain they feel from worry, loneliness, grief or anything else.
Gambling is silent; it's considered a hidden illness
There are no obvious physical symptoms nor is it alcohol or drug related. They will hide their problem, are sneaky or lie about it often not telling their loved ones they have a gambling addiction. The symptoms are suttle, but here are some to be aware of: secrecy of finances; A need to control finances; unpaid bills; unexplainable cash advance or loans; lack of money; unusual credit card activity; borrowing money; internet casino, jewelry, assets, or cash is missing; savings or assets dwindle; missing credit card or bank statements; collection phone calls; unexplained cash & unpaid bills.
Four phases of gambling addiction before they seek treatment
2) Losing phase- borrowing, lying, or losing work and then they try to recoup their losses.
3) Lose control and turn to desperation, feeling ashamed and guilty.
4) Hitting rock bottom, they are hopeless not wanting to live or die, sometimes turning to drugs or alcohol.
Admitting to gambling
addiction and getting treatment
Owning up to gambling addiction may take a long time, but when they do then addiction treatment would be the next step. Addiction recovery is possible, but it is not easy and you have to be ready and stick with treatment and have the support you need. A focus on unhealthy gambling habits, Emphasis on how to fight the urges of addictive gambling, and solving work, financial and relationship problems. Gamblers Anonymous a 12- step program, for addiction recovery is effective for compulsive gamblers. Sometimes they go through depression and may need medication to help.
- Take over the family finances
- Review bank and credit card statements
- Request credit reports from the three main credit bureaus
- Monitor Internet use to see if the person is gambling online
- Be honest about how the gambler's behavior makes you feel
- Get counseling or join a support group such as Gam-Anon
- Encourage the person to go to Gamblers Anonymous
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK.