I’ve Got A Confession To Make…

By Christine
May 23, 2024
Talk about addiction

Finding it hard to talk about addiction? You’re not alone.

Discussing your gambling problem with the people you love is probably one of the most difficult things you can do. Having said that, it’s also one of the most important things you can do too.

When you talk about addiction, you’re freeing yourself of something. You’re stepping away from stigma and making another important step in your recovery. Even if you haven’t gambled for weeks, months or even years, the ability to talk about addiction can help you stay away from the world of gambling. And it can help the people you love most understand you more too.

When you talk about addiction, it can help you grow in both your relationships and personally. And we’re going to give you a few pointers on how you can get ready for these potentially tricky conversations.

Fully get to grips with your addiction

If you haven’t already yet fully accepted that you are addicted to gambling, it’s time to get down to the brass tax of what that really means, how it’s already affected your family and how it’s affected you. This is huge. So get support, go to Gamblers Anonymous, block online gambling sites, rebuild your finances and do anything else you can to recover.

Of course, you don’t need to have done all of these things before you talk about addiction to your family and friends. But it helps to make a start. For useful resources in your area, you can start here:

Figure out exactly what you’re going to say

It’s hard to talk about addiction. It can be uncomfortable, it might be scary, it’s almost definitely going to be emotional. So to take the pressure off yourself, plan this conversation. Choose somewhere to talk that’s quiet and comfortable for both of you. Make sure there are no distractions (not a good chat to have in the zoo, for example). Then try to land on a time where everyone is pretty calm and collected.

We’d highly recommend writing down a few of the key points you want to share with them, so you make sure you tell them exactly what you need. It’s so important to be as clear as possible and leave no ambiguity.

Make sure you take responsibility when you talk about addiction

Chances are, if you were close to these people during your addiction, they’ve been affected by it in some way. So taking responsibility shows respect for what you’ve put them through. There’s no point in trying to shift the blame. More than likely, that will blow up in your face. Instead, say sorry and tell them from the bottom of your heart that you’re trying to change.

Wear your heart on your sleeve

This isn’t a time for a stiff upper lip. When you talk about addiction and how it’s affected you, be up front on how it makes you feel too. You could be struggling, you could be afraid. It’s important that they know all of this. And being as honest as you can about it can help them understand you more and support you too. And if you feel like you could do with a little extra support, definitely ask for it. They might be reluctant to help if you’ve already put them through a lot, so be open to a no. But it’s a good thing to ask.

Talk about what happens next

When you talk about addiction, think of it as the beginning of your next chapter. Tell them what you plan on doing going forward to keep your recovery on track or, indeed, start it. This shows them that you’re mature and committed to changing your ways.

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