Studies show that an adult is more likely to develop a gambling problem if they gamble as a child. Therefore, it’s important to be watchful for signs that your child is gambling. The following questions can help you determine whether your child may be at risk for gambling addiction. (Source: Gam-Anon International Service Office, Inc.)
- Are you concerned about the amount of time your child spends on the computer, on mobile devices, watching sports, playing cards, etc., or how often these activities distract from family activities and sleep?
- Are you uncomfortable with your child’s friends or their activities together?
- Are you aware of bets your child is making with friends or classmates?
- Has your child lost interest in activities he or she once enjoyed?
- Has your child’s grades slipped or does your child miss school or classes?
- Does your child work but never seem to have money?
- Does your child have more money or unexplained money, or does your child spend money beyond his/her apparent means?
- Have you experienced money or items missing from your home? Do you suspect your child might be stealing?
- Has your child asked to borrow large amounts of money?
- Do you find yourself rescuing your child from financial crises resulting from gambling?
- Does your child have an intense reaction during sporting events when one team is either losing or winning?
- Does your child promise to never gamble again—and then gamble?
- Have you noticed changes in your child’s personality, including mood swings?
- Has your child become secretive?
- Does your child lie about money or about gambling activities?
ESBR (Entertainment Software Rating Board) offers a tool that rates all video games and enables parents to set up a variety of limitations. www.esbr.org/tools-for-parents/parental-controls