Frequently Asked Questions: Protect Yourself From A Family Members’ Addiction

Frequently Asked Questions: Protect Yourself From A Family Members’ Addiction

How do you protect yourself when a family member is addicted to gambling?

Gambling addiction can be all consuming for both the person suffering with the addiction and for those around them. If you have a close family member with a gambling addiction, it can be life altering in so many different ways.

We’ve tried to think of some helpful answers to questions you might have on how to protect yourself when a family member is addicted to gambling. Because as much as you should be supporting them to overcome their addiction, it’s of the utmost importance that you keep your mental health and financial well being in check too.

Protect yourself when a family member is addicted to gambling: FAQs

Do I need therapy if my family member is addicted to gambling?

The answer to this depends on the person and the situation. But if you find the worry of a family member’s gambling addiction affecting your daily life, you should get support.

There are lots of different types of support you can get. You can get one-on-one counselling or therapy, or you can group support. Usually group support involves meeting people whose family members are also affected by gambling addiction.

It might take time to find the right type of therapy for you. But it will always be worth it once you do get it.

How do I protect my finances if my loved one is a gambling addict?

Gambling addiction and financial problems unfortunately often go hand-in-hand. Sometimes people who are addicted to gambling can run up huge debts. And they may even result to stealing to feed their addiction.

Limit access to cash, credit cards and debit cards as soon as you can. Keep your passwords and pin codes secret. And you should put in extra protection to your joint accounts.

It’s also a good idea to monitor the post coming into the house to make sure they’re not applying for loans or credit cards.

Take control of the household budget and make sure you keep a close eye on the outgoings.

Can small things help me deal with the addiction of my family member?

Doing small things for yourself really can help you in the day-to-day. Here are some ideas of straightforward things you can do that might help:

  • Talk about how your feeling to a trusted friend and confide in them about the addiction. It might not be your addiction, but it is your life and it’s important that you share what’s going on
  • Establish boundaries with your loved one. Have a frank conversation about what behaviour you will not put up with
  • Take some time out regularly for yourself and your hobbies. It might be taking some exercise, drawing a bath or even just going to the cinema. But this will help you get your head straight

Getting help for a gambling problem

If you’re worried about gambling addiction for either yourself or a loved one, you need help from someone else. Be Gamble Aware is an excellent UK-based organisation full of advice and places to get more help.

Here are some more responsible gambling articles you might find helpful:

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How To Limit The Time You Spend Gambling

How To Limit The Time You Spend Gambling

It’s a good idea for everyone and their sister to limit gambling time to a certain extent.

There are only so many hours in the day and we’ve all got responsibilities, interests and hobbies. There’s no way anyone can spend all their time gambling.

But having said that, it can be easy for time to pass us by fast when we’re engrossed in something like gambling. And before you know it, your quick session has turned into several hours. You’re tired, you’re frustrated and you’ve wasted your time (and quite possibly money).

Why should I limit my gambling time?

As we touched on before, gambling for a prolonged period of time can have negative impacts on a lot of things. It can simply mean you have less time for other things, including other hobbies, relationships, family time, study time and even work.

Losing track of time spent gambling can be really annoying. But another major element of it is that you are more likely to spend more money. Gambling isn’t free, after all. And even if you are sticking to your gambling budget, it can still be annoying.

Plus, when you gamble for a long time, you’ll start to get sloppy. You might get tired, you might get frustrated, perhaps you’ll start wanting to chase your losses… All of that leads to bad decisions and, quite often, bets that you regret.

Ways to limit your gambling sessions online

Most decent gambling websites make it relatively easy for you to limit your gambling time online. You can set up pop-up notifications to remind you when you’ve spent a certain amount of time gambling. On some online gambling sites, they’re called reality checks. You can change them to be more frequent at any time. If you’d like them to pop up less frequently, usually you’ll have to wait 24 hours for that to come into effect. However, they don’t always cover poker. So if you’re a poker player, look into other ways to limit your play there.

Another option is to set up time outs. These are short breaks from online gambling, which can last up to 30 days. You can set a time out to last the duration of a holiday period, for example. Or just if you feel like taking a break. Alternatively, you can set custom time outs and, if you like, make them recurring. For example, some people don’t like to gamble during the working week. Time outs are perfect for that.

For a more long-term break, there’s also the option to self-exclude. These breaks can last from a couple of months to forever.

Limit your gambling time in person

If you’re going to a betting shop, a casino or a card room, sometimes it can be more difficult to regulate the time you spend gambling. But there are a few ways you can do it.

For example, if you’re going with a gang, agree a time you’ll all leave together. It’s easier to leave when everyone has a set time.

You could also set an alarm on your phone to go off at a certain time, to remind yourself to leave.

And if you’re leaving via taxi, how about pre-ordering one? That way, when the taxi comes, it’s time to leave. No ifs or buts about it.

Getting help for a gambling problem

Of course, setting a limit on gambling time isn’t really going to help if you think you have a gambling problem or you suspect a loved one does. It’s important to get help from an external organisation who are specialised and trained to support you.

Visit Be Gamble Aware for support groups and detailed advice that you can use to overcome your problems.

And if you’re interested in our other responsible gambling articles, you can find more of them here:

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Frequently Asked Questions: How Do I Budget For Sports Betting?

Frequently Asked Questions: How Do I Budget For Sports Betting?

Do you want to know how to work out your betting budget? Well we’re here to tell you that it’s one of the best things you can do.

Darts fans often like to place a wager on a big tournament. And maybe your interests move out of darts and into other areas, like other sports, bingo, casino or poker. If you add up all of those bets, it could turn out to be quite a pretty penny.

As long as you aren’t a problem gambler, placing the odd bet is fine. But of course, you need to make sure you can afford it. And that’s why it’s so important to work out your betting budget.

Frequently Asked Questions: How do you work out your betting budget?

What is the first thing I need to do to work out my gambling budget?

First things first, figure out how much you spend in total on gambling. This could be per week, month or year. Remember, be honest with yourself. Look at all angles of this, from sports, casino, poker, bingo. Online and offline. Everything you spend counts.

Some months you might spend more or less. Best to work out the average over a period of time to see how much you tend to spend. It’s easy to find out your transaction history on online betting sites, just go to your account for the rundown.

Then for offline spends, take a close look at your bank statements and receipts to add up your spends there.

How do I work out my disposable income?

The amount you spend on your gambling budget depends heavily on your disposable income. To figure out what that is, you’ve got to add up your gross income (after taxes). Then you also need to take out major living expenses, including rent/mortgage, bills, grocery shopping, insurance, pension, utilities, loan repayments, childcare, education fees, and all the other non-negotiables you spend money on.

Then add up all your discretionary spends. This includes money you spend on hobbies, gym memberships, cinema trips, socializing, going to restaurants. All that fun stuff.

And you’ve also got to figure out how much you want to save every week, month or year. Remember, everyone should aim to have 3-6 months of savings readily accessible in case of an emergency. Especially if you’ve got a big expense on the horizon or you want to splash out on something in the future.

What you’re left with is the absolute maximum you could spend on gambling. But this isn’t what your gambling budget should be, necessarily. Add a little bit more into your pension fund and savings until you’re left with a figure you’re comfortable with.

Get the help you need with a gambling problem

Even if you never spend over your gambling budget, it’s still possible to have a gambling problem. It’s a scary reality, but it’s true.

The good news is that there are lots of professional organizations that can help. In the United States, you can contact the National Council on Problem Gambling on the phone at 1800 522 4700 or online. If you’re in the United Kingdom, you can talk to Be Gamble Aware at 0808 8020 133 or online.

Alternatively, there are lots of other organizations around the world that you get help from.

For more responsible gambling guidance, take a look at:

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