Football is back in season as fans gather together to cheer on their favorite teams. Some fans go so far as to participate in Fantasy Football. Fantasy Football, according to the Oxford Dictionary, is a competition in which participants select imaginary teams from among the players in a league and score points according to the actual performance of their players. While something like Fantasy Football can be a fun and an innocent pastime, for some this can be an entry to a gambling addiction.
Fantasy sites such as Draft Kings allow for people to participate in daily and weekly paid sports contests. Instead of drafting and maintaining a single team all season, Draft Kings allow for the ‘rapid fire’ approach that gives users ample amount of opportunities to collect winnings from the prize pool at the end of the contest. This can lead people into making continuous monetary deposits, in order to gain credits, keep playing, and create more teams. As a result, this generates an addictive environment for those that have a propensity towards gambling and fixated on the thrill of winning.
A gambling addiction can cause people to spiral down a dark hole. They continuously try to win back losses, but most of the time it does not work. Instead, people rack up a massive amount of debt, which affects not only them but their families’ lives as well.
Recently, the Supreme Court retracted a federal law mandating states to ban gambling on sporting events. Now that betting on sports events is legal in every state, the number of people betting will increase. Increased betting can lead to an increase in the number of those addicted.
Surveys report that millions of Americans suffer from gambling addiction according to Scientific America, affecting peoples personal and work life.
Below are some tips for those who are struggling with gambling:
- Remove yourself from situations that may trigger an urge to gamble, such as being in sports bars when games are on, watching big games with large groups of friends or participating in conversations about things like Fantasy Football.
- Politely excuse yourself from participating in any type of gambling pool at work or among groups of friends. If you feel comfortable, explain why you’d rather not participate, and see if there is anything these groups can do to distance the opportunity to gamble from you.
- Keep emergency numbers with you, such as the national gambling helpline 1-800-522-4700, your counselor or a friend who understands your situation, in case of overwhelming cravings to bet. The support of others can help keep your recovery on track when you have the urge gamble.
- Find other ways to enjoy the football season. If you enjoy watching the games, find a friend or group of friends who are happy to enjoy the games with no gambling involved.
Endless lies, staying out late or not coming home at all, threats, and manipulation due to gambling addiction all contribute to the dissolution of family ties. Many addicts feel shame, avoid friends, keep secrets and try to hide the pain further. This can magnify the isolation that family members feel as the gambler’s behavior gets more and more out of control.
If you need assistance with legal issues that arise from gambling addiction or any other legal issues, then please contact Miller & Wynn. Our locally-based attorneys have decades of experience. Call us at 770-942-2720 to make an appointment or visit www.MillerWynnLaw.com.