If Someone You Know Has a Problem Here's Where to Get HelpThese are general ways to approach a conversation with someone you love when you are concerned about their gambling behavior. A problem gambler doesn't necessarily need to "hit bottom" to decide to get help. For more advice, call the Problem Gamblers' Help Line toll free at 877-770-7867.
- Tell the person you care about them and you're concerned about how they are acting.
- Tell the person exactly what they've done that concerns you.
- Tell the person how their behavior is affecting other people - and be specific.
- Be clear about what you expect from them ("I want you to talk to someone about your gambling.") and what they can expect from you ("I won't cover for you any more.")
- After you've told the person what you've seen and how you feel, allow them to respond. Listen with a non-judgmental attitude.
- Let the person know you are willing to help, but don't try to counsel them yourself.
- Give the person information, not advice.
- Encourage them to call the help line at 1-877-770-7867.
There are many state-supported problem gambling resources across the state. In fact, Louisiana is one of the few states in the nation offering a comprehensive variety of compulsive gambling treatment programs, from support groups to inpatient treatment centers.
You can visit the Department of Health and Hospitals' Office of Addictive Disorders' Web site for a complete list of Compulsive Gambling Treatment Programs.