Download a copy of this factsheet here
Do you know of or are you supporting someone who is experiencing gambling harm? It’s estimated that for every person who has a gambling problem another seven people are adversely affected.
Caring about someone who is experiencing gambling harm can be distressing, and at times overwhelming, for family and friends.
If savings, property or belongings have been lost, family and/or friends may feel scared, angry or betrayed. This can be especially distressing if unpaid debts have left them in financial difficulty as well.
Feelings of loss, betrayal and lack of trust can cause people to be overwhelmed and not want to be close to the gambler. People cope with emotional stress in different ways and seeking help can assist.
Physical and mental health concerns
This can include anxiety, depression and stress-related problems such as poor sleep, ulcers, bowel problems, headaches and muscle pains.
Increased risk of abuse, loss of trust and communication problems in a relationship can create longer lasting issues.
Young people can feel forgotten by the family when the focus is on the gambler, or they may believe they caused the problem and that, if they are “good”, the problem will stop. They may also try to behave in ways that draw attention away from the gambler. These behaviours would not be needed in a safe and balanced home environment.
Ask for support
Sometimes you just can’t do it by yourself. This is why it’s important to find someone who can help change your thinking about gambling. This support is for your family and friends affected by your gambling too.
Arm yourself with knowledge
There are some fantastic resources out there including on this website and at Gambling Help Online. The more information someone has, the more help they can be to themselves and their loved one experiencing gambling harm.
Click here to take a quick quiz about the effects of gambling – how much do you know?
Also check the related topics:Gambling