As intelligent human beings, we are in control of our lives. Having the capacity and ability to decide for ourselves, we have our way of catharsis in dealing with the demands of life. When we feel like life is already consuming us, diversion activities become our go-to hideaway. Giving oneself a break is not bad at all. It helps in maintaining a balanced life. In modern times, this can be achieved by taking a vacation, buying new clothes, a car or an expensive phone, and going out with your friends occasionally can give you a pleasurable feeling and these can even inspire you more to go on with life.
“Addiction is a non-medical term that refers to a wide range of mental disorders called Substance Use Disorders. There are a variety of different types of Substance Use Disorders, including Alcohol Use Disorder, Stimulant Use Disorder, and Cannabis Use Disorder, just to name a few.” –Hailey Shafir, LPCS, LCAS, CCS-I
But when someone’s diversion activity becomes a habit, and the norms of life are already compromised, this is no longer a healthy catharsis. This is what happens to people dealing with addiction. They do not realize the dependence until withdrawing from it becomes a struggle and later find themselves on the losing side of life.
You’ll never know until you’re on the losing end.
Everything in excess or too much of what we do becomes an addiction, and this creates an adverse outcome in our lives. Gambling per se is an example of an activity that can lead to addiction, and it can happen to anyone. At first, it may start as a pastime – for fun- a harmless diversion, until gradually you become hooked to it. Winning or losing in gambling can consume a person.
Winning any amount from it drives someone to keep going because it’s an easy way of earning money and when you lose, it doesn’t stop there. The more a person loses, the more he is determined to continue because the person wants to win back what he lost. Getting even is not an option for gambling.
This is how gaming becomes an addiction because the person can no longer control his urge to gamble and when he cannot have his way to it, the person may even manifest destructive behaviors towards others or worst, self-destructive behaviors.
Gambling addiction can also be a pathological condition under specific criteria. It is not only money that you are losing in gambling, but more than that is losing your life in the process.
Winner takes all.
Ironic as it may seem, life is a gamble that we have to take the risk for; it’s all or nothing because, in the end, the winner takes all. Gambling is not a healthy way of winning back in life, especially when you are dealing with emotional or financial problems.
Asking for help and finding a support group is a more robust way of dealing with life’s challenges. You cannot bet your life in gamble because you’ll never win in it. Gambling gives a person momentary pleasure, and it will slowly consume him until he can no longer take back everything he lost. But note that “Admitting you have a problem is the first step in treating your addiction. However, due to the nature and the danger of this disease, simply just stopping on your own is highly unadvisable.” Dr. Howard Samuels, PsyD said.
A person who is suffering from this kind of addiction should be saved because more than the money or properties lost through gambling, the life of a person is still worth saving. Addiction to gambling is treatable. It takes an honest commitment from the person that he needs to stop the habit and will change for the better. He will also need support from his family and friends as he goes through this process.
According to Navdeep Kang, PsyD “The first step was to understand that our goal was to mainstream addiction treatment into the general delivery of health care.” If you know of a person suffering from this condition, it is vital to help them realize as early as now of the impending problems that they are about to face if they are not able to stop gambling right away.