Do you like to gamble on games of chance? Maybe you have someone in mind that is sickly addicted to gambling. We take a look at seven signs that confirm gambling is becoming a problem and not a fortune in your life. Let’s take stock of your gambling situation.
1. You can’t stop
Just as an experienced poker player knows when to “hold ’em or fold ’em,” those who gamble for fun limit themselves and their bets. Compulsive gamblers struggle with both the time and money they’re spending. Betting takes over their life, and they find themselves constantly wagering. They try to quit, but can’t.
2. You gamble with money you can’t afford to lose
Problem gamblers don’t stop with “fun money” set aside for betting. They use money budgeted for bills, savings, or their kids’ education. Sometimes they squander not just their last penny, but borrowed money as well.
The psychologist Stacy interviewed said one of his patients had borrowed money from sources so unsavory, he’d put his family’s safety at risk.
3. Your bets go beyond entertainment
Recreational gamblers play for fun and spend a few dollars to have a good time. Gambling addicts place bets for reasons other than entertainment, often trying to escape anxiety or other problems. Whatever issues you face, gambling isn’t the solution.
4. You attempt to recover losses by gambling more
Have you repeatedly tried to get back money you’ve lost gambling by betting more? Problem gamblers may see more betting as the solution to financial loses rather than what it is – throwing good money after bad.
5. You gamble with more and more money
Like many addictions, pathological gambling can start small. But problem gamblers won’t be content keeping the stakes low or setting limits. They need to bet more and more to experience the rush.
6. You go to extremes to find money to gamble
Pathological gamblers don’t stop gambling when their bank account runs dry. Instead they go to extremes to find more money. While this may stop with borrowing, some problem gamblers resort to theft, forgery, or other crimes to feed their habit.
7. You put gambling before more important things
Problem gamblers allow their habit to take priority over other parts of their lives. A gambling addict might skip watching her child’s soccer game or miss time at work to hit the casino. Careers are put on the back burner and relationships deteriorate at the expense their habit.