Sometimes you wonder – Am I impulsively gambling when I’m drunk or do I drink so much because I am gambling? Gambling can become an addiction and it is very difficult to overcome. Alcohol is also a very dangerous substance and people can get very addicted to it. The problem will double its forces when a person is not only addicted to one of these. Being addicted to both gambling and alcohol at the same time can be disastrous. But, “There is a fine line which makes distinguishing alcohol abuse from alcoholism.” Dr. Howard Samuels, PsyD. said.
When gambling and alcohol mix together…
“Gambling addiction is a growing problem as games of chance become increasingly more accessible in society.” Cami Renzoni, a certified mental health aid provider explains. Some people can handle a bit of poker with a limit on their chips and social drinking altogether. But there are others who just can’t seem to control both vices. There is indeed a link between alcohol consumption and gambling as proven by many addicts:
- They drink more alcohol while playing their cash games.
- They spend a lot of money losing their games as they drink some more.
- They will stay at the gambling site for a very long time.
- Their mood and behavior will alter because of the effects of gambling – for example, he will be very irritated if he is on a losing streak; and drinking alcohol – he can be violent, moody or just different from his regular self.
Time and money can’t be traced after a night of drinking and gambling…
“My husband comes home drunk every payday, except that there is nothing left in his envelope. Every time I ask him where the money went, he would say – The guys and I played from Roulette and drank a bit of wine. It was my turn to buy. – And it’s always been that way every two weeks, like clockwork. One day I have had enough and told him to man up and stop his vices – OR ELSE. $1000 every two weeks for his “games and wine” is not just overboard. It is totally crazy!” A 35-year-old woman from New York reported that about her gambling/alcohol addicted husband.
When a person is drinking, his hang-ups are reduced and hence, it makes him feel better to gamble while having a beer on his hand. This becomes a habit, though. Before he gambles, he drinks to feel “relaxed” or when he feels the need to relax, he orders a glass of wine or a shot of Tequila, which goes on and on and on. When the drinks start pouring in, it is possible that he will lose on his bets. Upon waking up the morning after, money is just gone since it was paid on the overpriced alcohol and well, he lost it on the table.
Is alcohol with gambling “activity” a problem?
What do you think? Your wife is very disappointed with you because you come home late and all drunk. The kids won’t come near you because you are always grumpy and annoyed. Your hard-earned money can’t be traced as to where it went – you just know that it was spent playing and drinking. You and the wife are fighting because your money is gone and you’re always hungover. So, yes. It is a very big problem. When you become addicted to your vice, it is then a mental health issue.
What is the solution to this alcohol consumption and gambling problem?
No one can make you stop your vices. Only you have the power to change this addiction and turn yourself into a stronger and better human being. You need to step up and hold yourself accountable for all the wrongdoings you’ve done in the past – quitting the alcohol and gambling addiction, giving value to your money, and making amends with the people you’ve hurt. As Navdeep Kang, PsyD used to say, “The first step was to understand that our goal was to mainstream addiction treatment into the general delivery of health care.”