Growing up from a poor family, my parents’ combined income was about $500 to $600 a month. There were five of us, including a sister who was mentally challenged. My parents were very loving and cared for us. I don’t recall how it started, but I remember Mom gambled daily. She would tell us when she won, but was silent when she lost money. Over time, she started to borrow money from our saving accounts that she had helped us to save. Later, I noticed she pawned jewelry she had been given by my dad. As time progressed, she started to lie about her gambling habit.
I was very sad to see my mom who was so devoted to her children and her husband ensnared by this so-called ‘harmless entertainment.’ I loved my mom dearly and I knew that she couldn’t stop herself from this gambling addiction without help.
I shared this experience with my children when the issue of gambling came up — how something that looked harmless can hurt them and their loved ones.
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