Problem gambling is not just an individual problem, but can disrupt entire families. Help is available and recovery is possible for families who are dealing with a gambling addiction.
- Preoccupation with gambling
- Unexplained debt or other financial problems
- Unaccounted for mood changes
- Isolation and withdrawal from family and friends
- Overdrafts, secrecy about bills, bank statements and other financial data
- Missing personal items such as phones, jewelry, other valuables
- Borrowing of money from family friends or employer
- Erosion of financial security
- Decreased trust
- Increased isolation
- Increased stress, anxiety and depression
- Increased tension and conflict
- Disruption of closeness and intimacy
- Learn about gambling addiction, help and recovery.
- Begin an open conversation with the entire family about gambling as entertainment and negative impacts of gambling on the family.
- If you suspect someone in your family is gambling excessively, speak to them one-on-one in a calm and non-judgmental manner.
- Don’t blame yourself or other members of the family. It’s no one’s fault.
- Know where your money is and develop a plan to protect the family’s finances.
- Learn to say “no” when asked for money.
- Seek support for the whole family from professional counselors and other support groups (Gam-Anon).
- Remember, help is available and recovery is possible.
Does someone you love have a gambling problem? Our staff, who themselves have a loved one with a gambling problem and have been trained to help others, are here for you. Learn more.
Source: The Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling “Gambling and the Family” rack card.