Soul Killer- Compulsive Gambling
Why is it that something that starts out as an enjoyable pastime or fun thing to do with your friends, ends up ruining so many lives? The answer is simple; winning is great, but gambling long-term is a sure loss. As the saying goes, the house always wins. Losing is not fun at all!
So often, a compulsive gambler is chasing lost money and before they know it, he or she has forfeited all sense of the real value of money and any true enjoyment they ever had at a casino or watching a sporting event. In addition, this type of gambling isolates people, takes all of their hard earned money, and destroys families and friendships. No wonder the human spirit of a gambler like this eventually becomes so broken.
Compulsive gambling is a very secretive disease, because unlike alcohol or drugs, there aren’t the obvious signs of abuse, such as the smell of alcohol, dramatic changes in behavior or DUIs. A person could be gambling on their phone or computer and no one would even know. Furthermore, they might say they are on an overnight business trip, but have really snuck off to a casino. There may be small signs a loved one notices, a look of irritability or stress, but these can be easily chalked up by the gambler to a long day at work. One of the saddest things about someone who has become a compulsive gambler is that although the signs might not be so obvious, the person is certainly struggling inside.
Eventually, the stress of these losses causes an internal fight for the gambler. How are they supposed to confide in another person? Typically the addict is ashamed and afraid to ask for help. Moreover, he or she might have the notion that one big win can get them out of their financial mess. But when that win never comes, the person can fall into more of a rut and their sense of well-being erodes. The feelings of depression, anxiety, hopelessness and shame set in. The cycle continues and typically gets worse over time as debt accrues. For the gambler this is a very scary place to be. Their human spirit is truly broken. A recent article discusses how gambling can cause so much unhappiness in a person’s life.
If you are unhappy because of your gambling, don’t give up hope. You can turn your life around and be free of the anxiety, stress and fear brought on by this insidious practice.