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Health

Just Once More: The Face of Addiction

Gambling and other addictions strike too close to home, according to our exclusive survey of Hispanics 40+. Just ask our writer, whose mom is addicted to the slots.

Slow Process

I wish that I could end this wrap up with a tidy, happy ending about my mom, but she’s not ready to confront her addiction. A couple of years ago, I persuaded her to sign paperwork blocking the use of her ATM card at local casinos, but she found other ways to get cash. I have access to her checking account, and through online banking I can see the evidence of her despair in one ATM withdrawal after another. I have offered to pay for counseling, but she refuses.

As someone who is a problem solver, I feel helpless in the face of this addiction but take heart from the advice of Gam-Anon, a sister organization of Gamblers Anonymous for family and friends of problem gamblers: “Recovery is a very slow process for the gambler. Give the gambler your encouragement and have faith.” By writing about it here, my wish is that more people will seek the path to recovery that I hope my mom will pursue one day.

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