Not a Random Roll of the Dice
Many times family members of gamblers begin to eventually understand that the broken promises to change aren’t enough and a professional gambling intervention might be necessary. When gambling turns into a compulsion it can destroy lives. Much like an alcoholic or drug addict, a person suffering from a process addiction to gambling seeks the “rush” they experience from gambling. They are always looking for their next big score, certain that it is right around the corner.
Getting Professional Help
A proven method used by caring family members to help a family member or friend suffering from this addiction is to seek help from a professional interventionist. A gambling intervention is a tried-and-true method for expressing deep concern for a loved one in a loving and supportive way. The goal of an intervention is to get the addict into treatment. The sooner a gambling addict is rescued from the downward spiral of addiction, the earlier they can start down a positive path to heal relationships and restore financial well-being.
A Gambling Intervention is Often the Only Thing Left
It is important to understand that a gambling intervention is performed differently than with a traditional substance abuse intervention. While gambling does not necessarily put a person physically at risk like drugs and alcohol dependency, it does put them at higher risk for suicide. There are definite signs that a person’s gambling is out of control. When family members see several, or even one of these symptoms of the addiction, they should consider the possibility of seeking outside help.
A rule of thumb to discern addictive behaviors is whether the behavior is interfering with the addict’s life. For instance if gambling is interfering with relationships, job security or financial stability, then the problem is likely an addiction issue. The symptoms below are common warnings.
Warning Signs of a Gambling Addiction
- Increasing debt
- Preoccupation with gambling
- Borrowing money to gamble
- Spending money needed for living expenses on gambling
- Inability to cutback on gambling
- Inability to quit gambling
- Deceit about gambling activities
Gambling Intervention, Treatment and Recovery
Once a professional gambling interventionist is called in, then the family has taken the first important step to helping the addict recover. The interventionist will set a date and time when family members and friends can meet with the addict. A meeting is also set prior to the actual gambling intervention to discuss possible scenarios that can arise during the intervention.
The Role of Family and Friends
Family members and friends rehearse what they will say ahead of time. This meeting is an important preparation step to ensure that all people involved keep their emotions in check and remain cool in what can be a passionate exchange. A professional gambling interventionist is an expert at predicting possible scenarios. He can manage the gambling intervention producing the best possibility for success.
After the gambling intervention the addict will go to treatment for the period of time that is agreed upon. The next step is on-going recovery. Whether it be a twelve-step program, religion or other on-going support group, recovery is a life long process. It should envelop the addict for the first year of sobriety while they grow emotionally and learn to cope without the gambling process.
Process Addictions Explained
Gambling is a process addiction. Process addictions alter the brain chemistry in the same way alcohol and drugs do. During the height of the addiction, the addict’s emotional maturity will stop and even regress. It is these base emotions that make the addict want to go back to their old ways, as, for them, the addiction is a safe place.
We Can Help
Intervention Services has been providing interventions for over 10 years for a variety of addictions, including gambling interventions. Contact us to speak to us about your loved one and begin turning chaos into order. An intervention isn’t the end of the relationship between you and your loved one. Intervention Services, Inc. is here for on-going support and counsel 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Contact us today for more information on how we can help.