Why Gambling Can Destroy Your Marriage

In any marriage, you face some hurdles along the way. However, some barriers become big obstacles, and they even tend to get in the way of your marriage. Gambling, for example, has been one of the leading causes of marital problems. 

“Couples often feel that they know and understand their partner, and are compatible on most issues. However, this is a mistake.” –Dr. Chantal Gagnon PhD LMHC

Source: pexels.com

In fact, gambling increases the likelihood of divorces, because it makes the person who gambles a financial burden. At the same time, partners who gamble may tend to deceive their other half as well as their family, at the expense of getting additional money for their gambling addiction. 

“Compulsive gambling is a serious addiction that can cause severe consequences.” Natalia S. David, PsyD explains. Because of this, the family’s financial status worsens, which forces the other half to carry all the burden by himself or herself. However, how can you control the occasional gambling? Moreover, when would you know that it is already destroying you and your marriage? 

When Is Gambling An Addiction? 

Gambling is any betting or staking that have either zero or high gains. A gambler is conscious that the outcomes may not be in his or her favor. However, he or she still hopes to gain something in the end. Gambling also comes in different forms, such as horse racing, poker, slot machines, and even lottery. However, some types of gambling are riskier than others because some of them face the issue of legality in most countries. 

To know if you are already experiencing gambling addiction, you may notice that you find it hard to resist your impulse in quitting a new round of the game. You get excited every time you gamble, and you anticipate that you can win back everything you lost if you join the next game. However, this can lead to a series of unfortunate decisions, like getting bad loans, using assets as collateral, and so much more. 

How To Stop Gambling Before It Ruins Your Marriage 

              Source: maxpixel.net

Quitting any addiction is a hard thing to face, and gambling is no different from that. You may find yourself relapsing at some point, but stopping is not as impossible as you think. For any addiction, the first thing that you can do is to decide that you want to stop for good. It is not only for the sake of your marriage but also for your welfare. 

The next step is to undergo therapies with your doctor. Make sure that you include your partner in the sessions, as they can provide the support that you would need at this time. As for the partner without the gambling problems, it is best to give support to your partner since this time will be a critical period of their recovery. 

“Online care is not for every patient or practitioner. Clients with more serious mental illnesses or addictions likely need more treatment than digital therapy can provide. And some clinicians may find certain telehealth modalities difficult,” –Nina Barlevy, PsyD.

It may mean extending a little more of your patience, understanding, and love for them. Spend more time with them, and make sure that you go with them in their therapy sessions. It will not just help your partner finally quit their gambling addiction, but as well as improve your overall relationship with them. It can renew the trust once broken, and even rekindle the flames of your love for them. 

Here’s How You Can Effectively Talk To Your Partner About His Addiction

People with a compulsive gambling addiction may neither admit nor know about their addictive tendencies until it is already too late. Usually, it is the people around them that notice it, especially the suspicion caused by the simple manifestation of the adverse effects of gambling on the everyday lives of these addicts.  

          Source: flickr.com

The chances are high that your partner may not be aware that his simple and casual gambling is already turning into a problematic addiction. The bugging question now is, how can you confront your significant other about his ‘hobby’ that is slowly affecting your lives and relationship negatively?  

Here are some helpful ways to adequately confront your partner: 

Educate Yourself First  

“Gambling addiction is often referred to as the “hidden illness” because there are no physical signs or symptoms that accompany it as is the case with many alcohol or drug abusers.” –Jeremy Frank PhD CADC

Know about the different aspects of gambling addiction – from its causes to the simple signs of concealed addiction. You may not be aware that maybe your spouse is going through a hard time. Hence, gambling. You may not know it, but perhaps, your lover has experienced abuse in the past that may have to lead him to gamble.  

            Source: pxhere.com

Read and browse online forums where people also tell their experiences about this type of problem. Be informed of their compulsive behavior and the addictive nature of gambling. With these, you can think of other ways and hobbies to steer your partner away from gambling.  

Know When It Is The Right Time To Talk 

“Why talk about your problems including mental health challenges? Just talking about your situation to someone can reduce your stress and help you feel better.” –Dr. Aaron Kaplan, PsyD 

Compulsive addicted gamblers have shifting moods most of the time, depending on the result of their gambling session. Learn to be sensitive about you and your partner’s stability of emotions for the hour and don’t let these intense feelings hinder your communication this time. Both of you should feel comfortable and calm to have a clearer mind to process serious issues that are going to be talked about.  

Don’t Look At Him In A Judgemental Way 

Gambling addicts sure have underlying reasons for their addictive behavior. Moreover, the addiction itself will not go away overnight if you do not fix the said reasons first. Doctors and counselors will always say that their recovery is the most effective if they are not abandoned, judged, and blamed for everything that has happened to them.  

Be Ready For Many Denials  

Don’t give up easily if your partner tells you that he does not have any problematic gambling behavior. Remember that it is usual that they deny everything at first. While it is okay that you give him the benefit of the doubt, it is not always right that you fall for more of his lies (denials this time).   

Never Hesitate To Ask For Help 

Get help either from a professional counselor or even a close family member to talk about this problem before or after the confrontation. Especially if you are close to the family of your partner, it is better to open up to them about this kind of issue as they may have better solutions in mind. After all, you also need support for yourself as the discovery of your partner’s gambling addiction is not easy and in fact, depressive.  But note that “Counseling is an investment that requires commitment. You will be spending time, money, and emotional energy to process and/or solve problems.” Sarah Rumpf, MA, LPCC said.

            Source: pixabay.com

Other people would opt to leave their spouses and partners upon the discovery of addiction. They would think that every addiction is already beyond repair especially if it is already causing damage to both of them and their relationship. It will not always be the best answer.  

However, you can bring back your partner from the hands of gambling through counseling. Alternatively, do a small confrontation as soon as you spot these subtle signs of addiction to prevent further ruckus for both of you.