The Scenario
What's your approach to gambling as part of your recovery?
Sam Savings Sam

Savings Sam

When I first started going to AA I was still going to my favorite sports bars to drink soda and bet with my buddies, but there were several times I ended up drinking beer instead. I learned pretty quick that if I wanted to stay sober, I had to stay out of those places. So if I want to bet on games, I do it at home. I need to be very aware of that connection between gambling and drinking.

Bonnie Balanced Bonnie

Balanced Bonnie

I used to party pretty heavily with friends at the casino, and our drug use was a big part of that. The first couple of times I went back to the casino after stopping the drugs, I noticed that I was getting the same kind of feelings I would get when I was using. So along with changing my friends, I also had to change my casino habits. Now I limit those outings to a couple times a year.

Ian Impulsive Ian

Impulsive Ian

I’ve got all this time on my hands, and since I can’t be working full time, I have been going to the casino and playing the lottery to try to supplement my income.


Part I

Financial vulnerability, particularly in early recovery, may involve having accumulated unpaid bills and debt during times of active substance abuse, or finding it difficult to obtain employment. It may be tempting to think of gambling as a quick and easy way to make money or a harmless way to deal with boredom or having too much time on your hands. It is important to recognize the potential risks of looking at gambling in this way. As will be seen, thinking of gambling as a way to make money is one indicator of high risk gambling that is likely to make you more vulnerable for developing gambling problems.

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