Connection, Social Support And Recovery
Strong connections with family, friends and the community provide people with happiness, a sense of security and purpose. Having a connection with people who can offer support during difficult times is essential for people working towards their recovery. People who feel supported can cope better with stress, feel less anxious and experience an improved mood and self-esteem. When gambling has been a focus in someone’s life, their connections to people who are important to them may be neglected. Support is important, particularly in early recovery.
Early recovery is the time people are starting to become accustomed to life without gambling. For many, this means dealing with the associated issues that we commonly see when people enter therapy. These issues include trauma, depression, stress, anxiety, boredom, grief and loss. Gambling can provide an escape from the distressing consequences of gambling which fuels a vicious cycle of gambling many find challenging to break without support. These painful experiences can trigger relapse back to gambling. It is at this time that professional support is essential. At SAIGHS we have a specialised team trained to help people deal with these painful and often overwhelming issues, so it is easier for them to leave gambling behind.
If you would like to chat about this with our team, call (08) 8232 3333. We can help you begin your recovery process and provide the best treatment options for all your psychological issues.
Additional support from someone you trust in your life is also an integral part of recovery. Reach out to people who you consider to be a support. Rebuilding trust is possible but takes time. A good start to gaining trust from people close to you is by showing them you are committed to recovery and positive and healthy behaviours instead of gambling A good start is to let those close to you know you are in the process of getting professional help to address your gambling issues and that you would like them to be part of your recovery.
When you communicate, be straightforward. Don’t be afraid to share your feelings with people you can trust. Listen and respond to the people you care about. For example, take time to acknowledge your gambling behaviour and how it has impacted your relationship. Take responsibility for your behaviours and that you would like to move forward with this person in your recovery.
Reach out for professional help. Our SAIGHS team can help you get started to reconnect to those important to you and keep the connection going.
Expanding your Social Connections
Make time for friends and family. A simple phone call to say hello can be an excellent start to reconnect with friends. Once connected, make a date to have a catch-up. Developing a new interest or reconnecting to an existing interest is another way to increase your social circle. Consider joining an interest or self-help group to meet others who are dealing with similar challenges.
At SAIGHS we have a treatment support group – people in this group are in our therapy program or have completed the treatment program and offer peer support / mentoring. The group is facilitated by a senior gambling clinician from the SAIGHS team. In this group environment people feel comfortable to talk openly about their gambling and also be inspired by those who have overcome their gambling problems. Call now to see how you can be a part of this supportive community.
Not all relationships in your life may be healthy and positive. For example, people who may encourage your gambling when trying to stop may not contribute to your recovery. At this time it is important to reevaluate your connections.