Joey Barton, the often-controversial Burnley midfielder, has announced his ‘early retirement’ from football following an 18-month ban by the Football Association due to betting offences. In a lengthy statement after the announcement of the ban, Barton admits to having a gambling addiction. He says: “I have fought addiction to gambling and provided the FA with a medical report about my problem. I’m disappointed it wasn’t taken into proper consideration.”
He continues that he feels that his ban was overly harsh punishment considering the environment of betting and gambling that exists in football. Barton said, “That all means this is not an easy environment in which to try to stop gambling or even to encourage people within the sport that betting is wrong. It is like asking a recovering alcoholic to spend all his time in a pub or a brewery.”
The midfielder continues in his statement, saying that the Football Association (FA) is dependent on the betting environment and betting companies for sponsorships and other financial gains.
When Do You Have a Gambling Addiction
Barton stated, “Betting for me, is less about how much money I win or lose, and more about whether I can correctly predict the outcome of the game I’m watching. I hate losing more than I like winning, and this mindset has helped prevent me from placing big bets, for fear of losing big.”
For gambling addicts the urge to gamble is irresistible. They get caught up with the urge to place a bet, play the slots machines, or play ever increasing odds with little or no real gain from the bet. Typically, an addict will be spending many days and nights at the casino or gambling online. Those are the first symptoms that you need to look out for in yourself or someone you care for that you suspect of having an issue. You will also be spending more money than you can afford on placing bets. You will be very concerned with winning, and you will place increasingly high bets to cover your losses.
What Do I Do If I Have a Gambling Problem?
Like Barton, you need to first acknowledge to having a gambling problem. Then you need to find help as soon as possible. There are inherent risks in being a gambling addict. As with Barton’s situation, you could lose your job due to your gambling behaviour. You could also risk running up massive debts to cover your bets and the losses that you suffer. Like most addicts, your behaviour will be unacceptable to your friends and family in that you will become secretive, deceptive, and often lie about what you do with your money. All of this needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.
Your next step is to give us a call. Recovery Lighthouse has experienced and skilled staff who are available 24/7 to answer your questions as well as help and guide you through your recovery process. We will help you formulate a recovery plan and, if needed, can admit you to our rehabilitation clinic for inpatient treatment. This will depend on your personal circumstances as well as the severity of your addiction.
Another treatment option is to come for outpatient treatment. This means that you attend therapy and counselling sessions at the clinic during the day, but that you return home when your sessions for the day are over. There are also support group sessions that you can attend either as an outpatient or an inpatient.
Once you have completed your formal recovery programme, we will offer you aftercare to help you through the process of staying ‘clean’ after treatment. This means that you will have access to support group sessions, individual counselling as well as some therapy sessions (where needed) while not being a patient at the clinic.
We also offer help and support to your family throughout your recovery process. They need to understand your condition and learn how to deal with you and the underlying issues that have caused you to become a gambling addict in the first place.
Your first step is, therefore, to admit that you have a problem. Then give us a call so that we can help you overcome this challenge in your life.