Sun, May 5, 7:27am by Kevin Pitstock
In the continuing political debate on gaming trends between industry advocates, anti-gambling groups, and lawmakers, what often gets lost is the personal impact on the individuals involved. At least as early as 1997, when industry-run GamCare formed, the online gambling industry realized it was in its own best long term interests of their industry to fight against gambling addiction.
Short term profits harm the long term health of the business. When horror stories are told about mounting debts and broken families, people are moved to action. Political action tends to create more restrictive laws.
To avoid this cycle, it’s best to provide a fair and equitable game with a reasonable amount of regulation and oversight. This way, lawmakers continue to support the legal status of the gaming industry. Insiders understand the result of Victoria’s newest study on the ban of ATM machines or the limitation on money deposits at online pokie casinos might well count more to the bottom line than some immediate windfall.
With that in mind, it’s important to limit the worst excesses of gambling addiction by giving help to those in the greatest danger. Several groups are less concerned about passing laws and more concerned about helping people in the community. “Fight For You”, a support group for problem gambling, has issued a 100 Day Challenge program for people wanting to change their habits.
The program challenges players to be honest with themselves. To get things started, Fight For You recruited four problem gamblers: Aleks, Anna, Dan, and Matt. The challenge is currently in its 48th day.
These four people provide almost daily accounts of their own struggles, as they try to stop gambling excessively. Each person has a different goal, whether it’s to control their tendencies while continuing to gamble for recreation, or to end their habit for good. In each case, these average people want people to know about their innate goodness, their love of the family around them, and the love given by their own family unit.
The idea behind this challenge is to show people the progress of a few addicts like themselves. It’s believed this will inspire others to take the same steps. The hope is to see many people take the same hundred day challenge. No rigid program exists, but a variety of suggestions are made. Below are just a few of those tips.
Recovering addicts need to set personal goals they can achieve. Gamblers need to calculate how much money they spend gambling. People with gambling issues can learn about the free help they might access, while also learning about the counselling options at their disposal. You might record a private diary, whether in writing or video form. Finally, it’s important to ask a family member or a friend to support you.
As the program continues, if a person registers at the FightForYou website, that person will be sent a variety of tips to your email address. Advice is important, so people understand all the various methods used by others to avoid problem gambling. No one technique works for everyone, because each person has their own habits, their own inner psychology, and their own story to tell. To start the program, go the website and click “Join Now”. The rest is up to you.
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