The Gambler’s Rock Bottom
As with most addictions, the individual will only become motivated for treatment after they have reached rock bottom. Consequences of their behavior have reached a breaking point. Rock bottom differs for every gambler. It is usually threats of divorce, jail , threats from a bookie (the gambler’s equivalent of the “dope man”), or chasing of large losses that results in depression. Even worse, it can result in unemployment, bankruptcy, fighting off creditors, and mortgage foreclosure. However, family support is available.
ARE YOU LIVING WITH A COMPULSIVE GAMBLER?
- Do you find yourself constantly bothered by bill collectors?
- Is the person in question often away from home for long, unexplained periods of time?
- Does this person ever lose time from work due to gambling?
- Do you feel that this person cannot be trusted with money?
- Does the person in question faithfully promise that he or she will stop gambling; beg, plead for another chance, yet gamble again and again?
- Does this person ever gamble longer than he or she intended to, until the last dollar is gone?
- Does this person immediately return to gambling to try to recover losses, or to win more?
- Does this person ever gamble to get money to solve financial difficulties or have unrealistic expectations that gambling will bring the family material comfort and wealth?
- Does this person borrow money to gamble with or to pay gambling debts?
- Has this person’s reputation ever suffered due to gambling, even to the extent of committing illegal acts to finance gambling?
- Have you come to the point of hiding money needed for living expenses, knowing that you and the rest of the family may go without food and clothing if you do not?
- Do you search this person’s clothing or go through his or her wallet when the opportunity presents itself, or otherwise check on his/her activities?
- Does the person in question hide his or her money?
- Have you noticed a personality change in the gambler as his or her gambling progresses?
- Does the person in question consistently lie to cover up or deny his or her gambling activities?
- Does this person use guilt induction as a method of shifting responsibilities for his or her gambling upon you?
- Do you attempt to anticipate this person’s moods, or try to control his or her life?
- Does this person ever suffer from remorse or depression due to gambling, sometimes to the point of self-destruction?
- Has the gambling ever brought you to the point of threatening to break up the family unit?
- Do you feel that your life together is a nightmare?
Often family members make the initial contact to the GCPG 888-236-4848 helpline. This is usually when the family has reached their breaking point from betrayal, deceit and financial losses and bailouts. The gambler and their family member become estranged as more time is spent gambling, thinking about gambling, or devising plans for covering and chasing betting losses. It is important to note that these are symptoms of addiction and when successfully treated the deceit, betrayal and out-of-character behavior usually ceases as well. Be assured that even if your family member does not want to stop gambling and is resistant and combative against help, our staff at our bilingual gambling helpline 888-236-4848 are well trained to provide family support in a variety of ways. For, example, the Georgia gambling helpline can also send you printed materials including workbooks to help you cope with their addiction until they make the decision to stop.
Family Support Groups
Support groups can offer some comfort and guidance until your family member is ready to seek treatment. Gam-Anon provides family support for those affected by gambling. It is an emotionally supportive environment where you can share your personal experiences, get advice, as well as obtain educational material and other helpful resources on gambling addiction. You can learn about what your loved one is struggling with, how to regain financial control, and how to best support them. You don’t have to suffer in silence. Gambling hotline help is available. 888-236-4848
The Georgia Council on Problem Gambing: The Voice for Relevant and Breaking Information on the Social Impact of Gambling Addiction.