It is perhaps rather surprising that one area hitherto ignored by gambling research in Hong Kong is gambling amongst the elderly.
For the children, gambling is a constant, often invisible, presence in the family. Sometimes it brings a happy surprise and sometimes sadness or an angry outburst to the home. Inconsistencies and tensions impact on the lives of the children. Like other families that experience financial problems, there may be frequent moves.
A move from a house, to a new neighbourhood and school, again, and again. Household items appear and disappear. However, unlike growing up in a neighbourhood where poverty is endemic, in the home of a problem gambler the child knows that even though it remains unsaid someone is to blame. What secrets do the children learn to keep from neighbours, grandparents, their parents and each other? He just takes me to the mall so he can stand at the lottery kiosk and scratch his tickets.
The children of problem gamblers exhibit guilt and shame and a lack of emotional stability. They overvalue money and materialism. There have been highly publicized cases of child abandonment and neglect by parents who have left their children unsupervised in order to gamble. After decades of public education, substance abuse and recovery are generally understood and a family experiencing such troubles can usually find understanding and support. As problem gambling is a new phenomenon to many, it is rare for families of problem gamblers to find sympathy and consideration for their experience in their community.
She and her siblings were receiving family counselling. Her father was attending Gamblers Anonymous ga and was soon to enter a treatment program. A project about addictions was assigned to the high school class. She planned her project on problem gambling. Clarifying the goals of counselling with the gambler often overcomes that barrier.
The goals are: The genogram is a useful clinical tool with young people as well for they respond well to visuals. Children quickly identify family roles and loyalties. To what degree is the child drawn into the role of pseudo-parent? As with family roles that may develop when a parent has an alcohol problem, there may be an overly responsible child in the family of problem gamblers. One child may become the confidante of the non-gambling spouse.
He or she may attempt to comfort the non-gambling spouse and be privy to many of the family secrets. Frequently this child is torn between loyalty to parents. If parentification is identified, the parent can be educated about the impact on the child and be encouraged to build more appropriate support systems.
As the gambling parent attempts to re-establish his adult role in the family, the children may present him with resentment and anger. This dynamic is not unfamiliar in family counselling. Refer to the local child and family services when necessary. Children scratch tickets with their parents and teen girls play cards and bingo with mothers and aunts. Boys bet with their father on sports they watch together, or sports they play together such as golf and tennis.
What is their understanding of gambling and what are their beliefs about winning and losing? Preventing future gambling problems can be accomplished during all aspects of your work with families of problem gamblers, by educating them about the risks to young gamblers. Counselling options for the children When the gambler and the spouse are both preoccupied by the gambling, the children experience physical and emotional abandonment. The gambler is absent for a birthday celebration or the Big Game.
But when the gambling parent is present, he is preoccupied and irritable. Working with the Lutheran Social Services of North Dakota, Dawn Cronin casinos near west va turnpike Lisa Vig have produced an activity book entitled What About Me, Too?
In eight sessions, children are given the opportunity to express their feelings and learn skills to compensate for parental detachment. Am I being taken care of? Sometimes I have to be good to myself. Working with children in a clinical setting demands special skills. Gam-Ateen Gam-Ateen, the self-help group for teens affected by problem gambling a similar group to Alateen has not yet become established in Ontario.
Anecdotal reports indicate that teens of problem gamblers do not easily identify in Alateen. Particularly if ga and Gam-Anon are active in your community, perhaps your agency can facilitate initial meetings of Gam-Ateen by providing advertisements, space, and other initial support.
Click here for more information about working with GA and Gam-Anon Individual counselling with the teen may be an option. If the teen is particularly concerned about confidentiality and you are counselling the gambler parent, it may be advisable to have another worker in your agency meet with the teen. Viewing the video, with family or in a group of teens, has been effective in gambling problems and the elderly discussion in some counselling settings.
What resources are available for the teenaged children of the gambler? Can your agency prepare an information package directed to teens that would include education about problem gambling and its impact on the family? Topics such as self-care, coping with strong feelings and setting boundaries could be covered. Information about youth and gambling could be included. Be creative in developing educational and supportive materials geared to the youth you are seeing. Network with your colleagues in the area of problem gambling.
This is a relatively new and under-resourced field. Investigate funding available to develop and evaluate counselling tools and programs directed to the children of problem gamblers. The challenges are as great as the possible rewards. Or, gambling may be the new secret pastime of the widowed mother. In retrospect, the adult child admits she overlooked signs of problem gambling. Very likely the adult child contacting you is struggling with other family pressures — balancing a young family and a demanding job.
This person may be angry and confused and has little emotional or physical energy left to deal with the gambling parent. Other issues may be: Older persons may be managing on a combination of pension, CPP savings, and subsidized rent. With moderate expectations they manage money — as they have done throughout their lives — very well. However, once gambling becomes a problem, the money will not stretch to cover expenses. Perhaps there is not enough money for food or medication.
The older spouse is usually unaware of the degree to which savings have been spent. Frequently, older people believe that after years of scrimping and denying themselves, they deserve to win the jackpot. Assessment Use of the genogram will be informative to both the clinician and the children of the older adult as family history, connections and patterns are identified.
During the assessment, the clinician must rely on information provided by the adult child. Based on clinical experience and the information available, the clinician may decide to access medical or psychiatric consultation or intervention. Older adults experience many losses. Loss of role, of reliably good health, often of neighbourhood and friends and of independence.
It is not gambling problems and the elderly that some seniors experience depression. The gambling may have been a maladaptive response to the depression. As the gambling behaviour is addressed, the gambler may face another loss — that of the pleasure associated with the gambling action. As well, an existing depression may escalate as the damage of the gambling is tallied.
If the counsellor meets with the gambling senior, the potential for depression can be assessed. If the family member is your only contact, this person can be educated regarding signs of depression in the elderly. If there are concerns, contact the physician. A goal of counselling is to engage the older gambler in treatment. In most treatment settings, the client must initiate the contact. That is, contacting the gambler at the request of the family member is not gambling problems and the elderly. The concept of counselling is unfamiliar to many seniors.
Perhaps the family will take information about your service, stressing the confidentiality, the fact that seniors use this service, etc. An initial home visit gambling problems and the elderly be necessary. Like people of all ages, seniors are vulnerable to the seduction of gambling and the inherent cognitive distortions that can occur.
However, once engaged in counselling, seniors can benefit from typical treatment strategies. As with all age groups, seniors are reinforced for positive change with support, recognition of the change and reward. Financial gambling problems and the elderly legal implications If there are legal concerns regarding property, inheritances or the responsibility for care of a financially dependent parent, the client is advised to seek legal counsel.
The older parent is also advised to seek independent advice. Vulnerable persons are frequently the focus of schemes such as offshore mail order lotteries, gambling problems and the elderly. It can be difficult to have names removed from international mailing lists, but the family member can be informed of the ruse. Family dynamics may be such that a neutral Trustee ought to be appointed for the gambling parent. The Trustee, not the adult child, takes responsibility for the parental finances and the parent retains her independence from family.
The Problem Gambling Helpline and outpatient services for problem gamblers report telephone calls from concerned parents. Perhaps a young man has come to his parents, in crisis. He appeals to them for a financial bail-out. Sports betting may have led to his owing a bookie thousands of dollars.
The young gambler is under pressure to pay the debt and is obviously frightened. Parental reactions include shock, fear, shame and disappointment. This time… The second time… The parent, often the mother, telephones the Problem Gambling Helpline for advice and a referral for counselling. Can they do nothing and watch their son and perhaps his wife lose their home over gambling debts?
Can they see the grandchildren suffer? Parents look for an explanation of the situation. What is the family history of gambling? If there has been a history of family gambling, there may be accusations and feelings of guilt by the parents.
Siblings may become involved, or conversely, family secrets entrenched. In many cultures it would be unnatural to seek help beyond the family. The clinician may have only telephone contact with one parent, or with the eldest daughter, who acts as cultural translator for the parents.
Financial issues A family copes as it is able. Whether from the schoolyard bully, the bookie or from bankruptcy and legal prosecution, most parents want to help their children in trouble. If they are able to help gambling problems and the elderly, they want to help. But aging parents may feel pressured to provide the gambler with money even when to do so would jeopardize their own financial future. Elderly parents may feel bullied and threatened if they refuse to bail out adult children.
The clinician can advise parents of their legal and financial responsibilities. Parents may need support in coming to a consensus regarding their response. Agreeing on boundaries can be difficult. Parents can be assisted in their decision making. Young gamblers struggle with the concept of total abstinence.
Most young people are unwilling to consider never placing a bet again. Parents may be confused and unsure of what to expect, and can benefit from education about problem gambling, and the concepts of harm reduction, abstinence and models of treatment. With information, parents will be able to set boundaries, limits and consequences. The older parent or in-law who lives with the gambler is particularly vulnerable to demands for money.
Seniors have been forced by a desperate gambler to hand over their debit cards and to withdraw money. Assess for elder abuse. Be sensitive to this issue when you speak with the older parent of a problem gambler, because shame and fear may inhibit him or her from exposing the situation.
Through education, the public will be made aware of the potential impact of problem gambling. That the elderly are vulnerable will be understood by physicians, caregivers of the elderly, banking employees, etc. Seniors often confide in professionals, who will be alert for the signs of problems. Seniors are vulnerable to the enticement of gambling and vulnerable to the threats and coercements of family who are problem gamblers. Legal issues Parents of young gamblers have concerns regarding their rights and responsibilities.
Clinical challenges and issues include establishing trust with people who may be new to the concept of counselling; educating about problem gambling; acknowledging and reducing feelings of responsibility; introduction of boundary setting; assessing for safety; and family dynamics. What of her level of depression, anxiety, isolation from friends, difficulty with eating and sleeping.
Is the doctor aware of the family situation? Has there been a recent prescription for benzodiazepines? Assess for alcohol abuse. Has the teenage son begun to spend more time away from home? Has the teenage daughter aligned with the non-gambling mother and become her confidante? Has the youngest child become a defender of gambling and frequently absent Dad? Bibliotherapy Currently available books directed to families of problem gamblers are Behind the 8-Bal l Berman and Gambling problems and the elderly, and Losing your Shirt Heineman, and When the Other Woman is Lady Luck.
Books provide validation, education, encouragement and strategies for the families of problem gamblers. If they are not readily available in your area, consider contacting local bookstores and the library with the request that they stock these books. As you recommend these books to your clients, note that some spouses have been offended by the suggestion in these books that they are the product of unresolved addiction problems in their family of origin.
At this point, we will understand that obsessive compulsive behaviour, acting cherokee hotel casino tulsa map and game playing is symptoms of a serious illness….
After years of accumulated hurtful experiences it will be difficult for us to give up anger and resentment. The recovery program of Gam-Anon offers help in working through and in resolving these feelings. Approved by Gam-Anon Board of Directors Meeting Currently there are few meetings of Gam-Anon beyond large metropolitan areas. However, just as new meetings of Gamblers Anonymous are forming, so are new meetings of Gam-Anon.
When a new self-help group begins, there may be few members with a deep understanding of the principles of the program. There may be no one to sponsor a new member. Clinicians need to be aware of how Gam-Anon functions in their area before referring clients. With mutual respect and understanding, between Gam-Anon and the treatment centre, clients are offered a network of services and supports. Whether viewed in group or individually with your client in your office, it opens areas for discussion.
Several videos are available: Contact the video desk at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health for recent videos about problem gambling. Sign In Sign Out. Getting Help Information for Teachers Information for Primary Health Care Professionals Information for Financial Counsellors Information for All Helping Professionals Ontario Treatment Services Clinical Tools. Long Description Children and Parents of Problem Gamblers.
The Children of Problem Gamblers. What does embezzle mean? Assessing the children The gambler may deny that gambling has affected his or her children and may resist including the children in counselling. CAMH does not provide diagnostic, treatment or referral services through the Internet.
CAMH accepts no responsibility for such use. Technical enquiries: webmaster problemgambling. Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. Getting Help Helping Professionals Information for Teachers Information for Primary Health Care Professionals Information for Financial Counsellors Information for All Helping Professionals Policy Development Courses and Training Ontario Treatment Services Clinical Tools ProblemGambling.
The genogram is a useful clinical tool with young people as well for they respond well to visuals. Place a check in front of each sentence that tells how you can be good to yourself. Click here for more information about working with GA and Gam-Anon. Individual counselling with the teen may be an option.
Gambling problems and the elderly Children of the Senior Gambler. Wheeling downs gambling casino issues may be:.
Older persons may be managing on a combination of pension, CPP savings, and subsidized rent. The older gambler is often deeply shamed by the consequences of the gambling and may continue to deny there is a problem. It is, therefore, important that the family understand the phenomenon of denial. Initial goals of counselling are:. To allow the son or daughter s to vent and acknowledge that this is a complex issue.
There may be conflicting feelings of anger and concern. The adult child may resent having to intervene with this problem. To explain that childhood patterns may be triggered by the current conflict with the gambling parent. For example, personal and financial privacy may have been a strongly held family value. Initially the senior gambler may have turned to gambling as a social activity, which then became problematic. To clarify responsibilities and expectations.
The adult child may be reassured that support and a range of interventions are available. Approved by Gam-Anon Board of Directors Meeting Currently there are few meetings of Gam-Anon beyond large metropolitan areas. Several videos are available:. Compulsive Gambling and Recovery Mike Brubeck.
Unresolved Anger Ernie Lawson. Contact the video desk at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health gambling problems and the elderly recent videos about problem gambling.Problem gambling (or ludomania, but usually referred to as " gambling addiction" or "compulsive gambling ") is an urge to gamble continuously despite harmful negative consequences or a desire to stop. They also completed the Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI) of the Canadian Problem Gambling Index. Most senior gamblers (n = 15) were non- problem It is perhaps rather surprising that one area hitherto ignored by gambling research in Hong Kong is gambling amongst the elderly. Gambling among the elderly can influenced by numerous factors. “Results from this study also suggest that disordered gambling is associated with mental and physical health problems in older adults.