How to help a loved one who gambles
If you have a friend, spouse or family member whose gambling habits are causing you concern, there are ways that you can support them — and yourself. On this page, you’ll find practical advice and services recommended by experts.
Try to understand what they’re going through
If someone close to you is struggling with gambling they may have tried to hide it from you, causing you to feel hurt or betrayed. Gambling can be an addictive behaviour, and gambling disorder is a recognised medical issue. Often, the person who is struggling with gambling may feel they have little or no control over the situation.
The best way to start a conversation with them is to show empathy, and reassure them that you’re not going to judge them. It's also important to understand that they may have hidden their gambling due to the stigma attached to it, which makes it more difficult to open up.Understanding someone who gambles
Take care of yourself too
If someone close to you is struggling with gambling and they've kept it from you, it might have caused you to feel hurt and betrayed. These are difficult emotions to deal with when you’re trying to show compassion, but they are completely normal, so try not to give yourself a hard time about it.
Remember: it’s not your job to fix someone else’s behaviour. There are many support services available for both them and you.
You can only take care of someone else when you’re looking after yourself too.Looking out for you