All in the Family: Help-Seeking by Significant Others of Problem Gamblers

Nerilee Hing, Margaret Tiyce, Louise Holdsworth, Elaine Nuske

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Problem gambling can significantly affect the lives of concerned significant others (CSOs) of problem gamblers, especially family members, but little is known about their help-seeking activities and experiences. This paper explores help-seeking by CSOs of problem gamblers and their related motivators and barriers. A telephone interview was administered to 48 CSOs who called an Australian gambling helpline seeking assistance for themselves and/or a person with gambling problems. Key motivators for seeking help (through helplines, non-professional sources, and self-help measures) were concerns the gambling might become a major problem, negative emotions, problems maintaining normal daily activities, concerns for dependents’ welfare, and health concerns. Barriers included wanting to solve the problem on their own, and shame. Findings highlight the need to better equip CSOs to assist both the person with gambling problems towards treatment and recovery and to protect their own physical, emotional, social and financial wellbeing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)396-408
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health and Addiction
Volume11
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

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