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Is someone you know…?

  • Preoccupied with gambling (i.e. reliving past gambling experiences, planning the next venture, or thinking of ways to get money with which to gamble).

  • Secretive about his/her gambling habits, and defensive when confronted.

  • Increasing bet amounts when gambling in order to achieve the desired excitement (high).

  • Trying unsuccessfully to control, cut back, or stop gambling.

  • Restless or irritable when not gambling.

  • Gambling to escape problems.

  • “Chasing” losses with more gambling

  • Lying to family and others about the extent of gambling.

  • Committing crimes to finance gambling.

  • Jeopardizing or losing relationships, jobs, education or career opportunities because of gambling.

  • Relying on others to bail him or her out to relieve a desperate financial situation caused by gambling.

What are the warning signs?

  • Gambling more frequently or for longer than intended

  • Lying about where money goes

  • Declining work or school performance

  • Borrowing money in order to gamble

  • Increasing preoccupation with gambling

  • Distancing or isolating from family or friends

  • Unable to pay bills or cover expenses

  • Chasing losses, or returning the next day to win back what was lost

  • Have you committed or considered committing a crime to finance your gambling

  • Have you made repeated unsuccessful efforts to control or stop your gambling

Concerned about someone?

  • If you think someone you know has a gambling problem, it can be difficult and uncomfortable considering how to talk to him or her about it. Knowing how to start can help you find the courage to have the conversation.

  • First, choose a comfortable place where you feel safe and will not be interrupted.

  • Then, keep it simple and straightforward.

  • Tell the person you care about her and you are concerned about how she is acting.

  • Tell the person exactly what he’s done that concerns you.

  • Tell the person how her behavior is affecting other people – be specific.

  • Be clear about what you expect from him, “I want to talk to someone about your gambling”) and what he can expect from you, “I won’t cover for you anymore”).


Source: Oregon Problem Gambling Services

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