Musings of a gambling counsellor

One of the heart breaking things I've seen working as an intake officer and counsellor at a gambling clinic is coming across the people who called the help line, but just couldn’t bring themselves to come in for that first session. Or those who showed up for the first session, and for whatever reason, dropped out. It [...]

Have you learnt the art of urge surfing?

Are you trying to stop gambling but finding it hard because you keeping having cravings to gamble? Don’t worry, this is very common! Experiencing cravings or urges to gamble is completely normal among people trying to give up gambling. Sometimes it may feel like your urge is so powerful that you have to give in. [...]

What randomness really means in poker machines

You have all probably heard about poker machines operating randomly, though what exactly does that mean? In gambling, random means that we are unable to accurately control or predict the outcomes that will occur next. Randomness also means that each outcome is independent of one another. That is, the outcome of each spin on a [...]

Why is gambling so hard to kick?

It’s been months since a win, your partner fights daily with you over it, you struggle to have enough money to fill the car with petrol and the red letters are now coming weekly threatening to take away your beloved car.  As you leave another session empty handed, broke and filthy with yourself you might [...]

The role of positive early experiences

People that struggle with problem gambling often ask themselves “Why me? Why can’t I stop?”. Many view it as an addiction, while others view it as something they’ve inherited in their genes especially when parents or other family members have been heavy gamblers. Others again berate themselves as being ‘so stupid’ and just unable to [...]

To tell or not to tell

Problem gambling can be a very isolating experience. Initially you might have started gambling with friends or family. It was a fun experience, social and quite enjoyable. Now you find yourself gambling alone for several hours chasing those losses. Hoping and praying you can make back what you’ve lost. A lot of people experiencing difficulties [...]