General Article Why do people gamble?

Topic Selected: Gambling

This question is often asked by relatives and friends as they cannot understand why gamblers are putting themselves and their loved ones through such pain and unhappiness. If something is causing such a problem, why not just stop and be happier? A similar question is ‘why are some people able to gamble within their limits without developing such problems? Does it demonstrate a sign of weakness, or the inability to cope?’ However, the truth of the matter is rarely so simple. Gambling problems are often experienced as being completely outside of the person’s control, and ‘just stopping’ isn’t felt to be a reasonable option.

Additionally, many people find themselves unable to explain why they continue to gamble despite the problems it causes in their day-to-day lives. The most obvious answer is ‘for the money’, but perhaps you can challenge yourself here: when you win, do you spend your winnings on more gambling? Do you continue to gamble until you have little or no money left?

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