November is Military Family Appreciation Month, which is a time of year dedicated to recognizing and supporting the individuals who make the sacrifice to serve our country, along with the families who support them in that endeavor.
In recognition of this important time of the year, Before You Bet wanted to take the time to highlight the reality of gambling among military members and veterans and provide resources if you or someone you know might need them.
There’s a connection that runs between the military and gambling that civilians might be unaware of. While in the military, it is common to play card games, scratch-off tickets, and the lottery to pass the time. Some international military bases even have slot machines on-site. Gambling can be seen as a way for individuals to relieve boredom and provide a break from the stressors of their duties.
Once service members return home from active duty, this could potentially result in them being at risk for unhealthy gambling behaviors.
Not sure if it’s a problem with gambling? A few signs to look for include:
- Gambling more often or with more money
- Withdrawing from relationships
- Hiding gambling behavior from friends and family
- Borrowing money to relieve financial distress
- Gambling more to make up for previous losses
If you believe you or someone you know might have a problem with gambling, free resources are available at BeforeYouBet.org/get-help/ and by calling the free, confidential, 24/7 helpline at 1-800-589-9966 or texting 4HOPE to 741741.