Gambling, that’s an addiction? Why did they lie to me? How come they’re never home? How come they didn’t talk to me? Why don’t they just stop? How could they do this to themselves, and to us?1
If you have a loved one with a gambling problem, you may have asked these questions – and a thousand others. You may be suffering through sleepless nights, held awake by the fear of more broken promises. You may be suffering through feelings of isolation, sadness or despair. You may be devastated by financial problems and the deterioration of relationships. You may feel alone, or as if nobody could understand what you’re going through.2
But you are not alone: there are people who understand and can help.
Unfortunately, no matter how much you wish you could, you cannot make someone stop gambling.3 Gambling addiction, like other addictions (alcohol, drugs, etc.) is an illness which causes the addict to feel “uncontrollable” or “irresistible” urges. And like other addictions, the effects can be devastating and widespread, impacting the gambler, their family and loved ones, the workplace and society.
But there is help for you, and hope for the gambler. Gambling addiction is a treatable disease which – with the support of their families and friends – people can and do recover from.