Although gambling often provides a fun distraction from the cares of everyday life, a certain number of players end up discovering that they can’t just take it or leave it. Those who develop gambling problems frequently end up disappointing and maybe even hurting those they love, and it can be a hard road back to regaining their trust and respect. Following are several strategies designed to help you get started on your journey with rebuilding these relationships as a part of your recovery plan:
Acknowledge Your Responsibility
This is often among the most challenging steps in the recovery process because many people feel ashamed of their behavior during their time with problem gambling. However, acknowledging this behavior and accepting responsibility in your role in damaging relationships is essential if you’re going to move forward with recovery.
Simply Say You’re Sorry
Thoughtful, sincere apologies can go a long way toward mending damaged fences. Even if causing the other person’s pain wasn’t intentional, the apology should acknowledge that the pain nonetheless resulted from specific behaviors. Effective, healing apologies don’t include excuses or rationalizations — keep them simple and heartfelt.
Make Things Right
Making things right may not always be possible, but doing all you can to make amends can go a long way toward repairing damaged relationships. For instance, if you borrowed money from a loved one to gamble, paying that money back should be at the top of your list of priorities, even if you have to do so a little bit at a time. However, if reaching out to someone to make direct amends would result in even more pain for that person, it’s best to leave them alone until and unless they make the first move.
Many people find that they struggle less with making amends when they’ve got the advice and support of their peers. We help those with gambling problems find relevant resources designed to help them move forward in their lives in a positive direction.
Please don’t hesitate to contact 800-GAMBLER at your convenience for more information on how problem gamblers can get their lives back on track.