|Posted on 31 May, 2017 at 21:50|
Sometimes, family and friends will spot the problem first, because the gambler might be convincing him or herself that everything is fine when really it isn't.
Let the gambler know the reason you're concerned is that you care about them. It's also helpful to use positive communications rather than being confrontational or critical. You could try talking about how you're feeling by using 'I' messages to lessen defences and keep lines of communication open. Below are some examples, but it's important to be genuine and talk to the gambler in a natural way.
"You're my friend and I'm upset because I see you doind things that are really risky"
"I can see you're not happy at the moment and it upsets me. I want to help"
"I love you and I don't want you to hurt yourself. Talk to me about what's going on"
Once you've started the conversation, listen carefully to their response. Don't jump in or cut them off mid sentence, as this might drive them back into their shell or make them defensive. Being calm and caring is really important, but don't allow them to make excuses for their gambling and certainly don't help them out with money, as this could make the problem much worse.
For more help and advice about talking to a problem gambler, please contact us and all correspondence is treated in strictest confidence.