Some people recognise their gambling is a problem by themselves, but others don’t realise it until family and friends intervene. That’s not an easy thing to do, especially if the person they care about is not ready to hear it.

Having this conversation with a family member or friend can be confronting and unpredictable. Hearing what you have to say can be an important first step towards change, but they have to be responsible for the next step.

Being prepared for that conversation, can keep you and the person you care about safe.

First, look after your own physical and mental wellbeing so you are in the best position to help. Exercise, meditation, mindfulness, sleeping and eating well, talking to supportive friends or a counsellor are all effective ways to look after yourself.

Focusing on yourself can be hard when their gambling is taking a toll on you. Try to find practical ways to reduce the impact on you and your family — a counsellor can help you.

For a free and confidential chat to a counsellor any time, day or night, call the Gambling Helpline on 1800 858 858.

Go to Looking after yourself for tips to keep healthy and manage stress.

Reach out for help for the person gambling and also for you. It can take courage to share your personal and sensitive information with someone you don’t know. Counsellors are professionals who listen and don’t judge, and they’ve heard it all before — and sometimes it’s easier to talk to someone you don’t know. They can help you and your family using researched and tested strategies.

Find out more at Know your help options.