Many clients come to us at counselling after having committed criminal offenses. They were ordered to attend counselling by a judge or probation and parole. But problem gambling never starts out this way, and you don’t need to be in these kinds of circumstances before you consider counselling. For many clients, their gambling started out as social, they enjoyed being out with their friends, but eventually gambling saw them losing their whole pay and getting into trouble.
When we talk, my clients always recall feeling on top of the world when they won and they are always looking for that buzz. They remember the high and rush of adrenalin that winning brings, but in reality they were probably only breaking even at best. Now they need to look at new ways of beating the boredom or getting their buzz from other things that cause a lot less harm to them.
Counselling is not a magic pill or easy cure, but by understanding why you gamble and then learning how to make changes to the way you react in certain circumstances you can make the changes that YOU decide are needed in your life.
Most people who come to counselling are looking for an instant fix or cure for their gambling. Unfortunately it doesn’t work that way. Quite often people struggle along for quite a while having lapses and relapses. But with a counsellor on their side, they have someone to talk to who is non-judgemental and can understand all the feelings and urges to gamble. Having a counsellor means that instead of having to lie all the time and pretend that everything is OK, even when it’s not, you can really talk about what is going on. Together, with willingness, openness and honesty you can work on removing excessive gambling from your life.
Geoff and James share their stories, Take a look.