Problem gambling affects the partners, children, parents, friends and employers of the gambler. This addiction takes charge of the gambler's life, often causing devastating emotional and financial fallout for loved ones.
You may need help if...
- Thoughts of gambling begin disrupting your usual routine
- You rely on others to help you with financial issues as a result from gambling
- It takes more money to experience the same excitement while gambling
- You are having trouble managing your gambling, even if you want to stop
- Gambling becomes an escape for problems or you gamble to relieve difficult emotions
- You regularly gamble to earn back money you've already lost
- Gambling causes you to lie to friends and family
- You begin to experience issues at work, school or at home due to your gambling
- You steal or borrow money to continue gambling
Help is available
Spouses, partners, and family members of problem gamblers often feel frustrated, angry, sad, ashamed and isolated. Even if your loved one isn't ready or willing to get help, you can receive free services through Oregon Problem Gambling Resource, or call 1-877-MY-LIMIT (877-695-4648). Help is free, confidential and effective.
Protecting yourself and your family
To help a problem gambler, you must also help yourself. This means protecting yourself and your family as much as possible from the negative consequences problem gamblers will often bring on themselves. The more you are able to do this, the more effectively you will be able to bring about positive change.
- Keep track of all money that is spent and owed.
- Consider safeguarding bank accounts and other assets to that the gambler cannot access them. If possible, only give them access to money for daily necessities unless the situation improves.
- Do not rescue the gambler by paying off debts. This will only enable the person to continue their behavior.
- Seek professional help for financial advice, counseling and support.