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How do I know it is a problem?

answered 08:04 AM EST, Wed September 26, 2012
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anonymous anonymous
If my husband is hiding how much he is gambling and losing from me does that mean that he has a gambling problem. I just found out that he has lost more than 3000 from our retirement savings. I never check this but then I saw that he had kind of hidden our statement which I thought was weird and which is why I looked.

Jill Edwards Says...

I would imagine that someone who lost 3000 from my savings would be having a relationship problem with me and this would be a lot worse because it had been hidden from me. I think you probably feel surprised, angry and perhaps hurt. I think you need to attend to your own feelings as they may be a good guide to your responding to this situation. As they say about addiction to alcohol, if it is costing you more than the money, then it is probably an addictive issue. Clearly if you have millions then 3000 is not an issue, but I suspect this is not the case.

Clearly, if his gambling is causing him to hide his behaviour and is taking from your joint future security this is a serious issue which needs to be addressed with some professional help for him and open financing where you know what is happening to your joint money. I suspect that this is not the first time that you have been concerned about gambling, or perhaps with other addictive behaviours. You will do well to let him know that you have seen the figures and to discuss with him where you and he want to go from there. I do not know him, so I have to check with you that he will not respond in any way where there may be a danger to you. Otherwise you would need to have someone there to support you.

It is quite a difficult job supporting someone whose behaviour is in a sense out of control, and it would be good for both of you to contact Gambling Anonymous for support. For you issues around supporting someone who needs to become independant and manage their own life effectively arise as well as wanting to care for someone, when in fact some discipline, some understanding of the consequences of the actions they take are also part of a healthy relationship.

I would be very happy to support you by e-mail and telephone meetings. You may like to look at my website at www.invitationtotalk.co.uk and contact me from there.

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Page last updated Sep 26, 2012

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