Gamblers Anonymous-Helping a Friend

Nurses General Nursing


Last night one of my co-worker was sitting and crying. As I walked to check on her, her tears fell upon the note she was writing in her native language. It didn't take much for me to figure out she was either writing to her husband or to her mother. I sat down next to this wonderful lady, put my arms around her and listen as she poured her heart out to me, gambling has ruined her life.

She had gone down to the casinos and lost all of her paycheck!

I listen as she told me her husband had thrown her out of their home and had filed for divorce. My heart was breaking for her as she told me she was a bad daughter to her father (who has been dead for quite awhile), a bad wife to her husband, and a bad mother (he is an adult and a good man).

I let her vent all of the feelings she has been bottling up and then she said she knew she had a problem and was powerless over it! She took the first step in recovery! I stopped her right there and told her she had done just that! Her tears stopped for a moment.

Now, here is my quandery, I told her I would help her find a local Gamblers Anonymous and would go with her to the first meeting.

Did I do the right thing? Should I just find the meeting place and let her go on her own or should I do just as I promised?

I want to see her beat this addiction and rebuild her life. I know she is a strong lady and very smart. You see she came to this country over 20 years ago from the middle east and she was an RN in her native country, but has been unable to get her licence in the USA because she has trouble with the language.

bagladyrn, RN

2,286 Posts

Specializes in OB.

Of course you did the right thing! If your support is what it takes to get her through the door the first time, it's wonderful that you are there for her. I'm sure she must be feeling incredibly lost right now and walking alone into a meeting of strangers might hold her back from getting the help she obviously is seeking.


279 Posts

Wendy, i think you did the right thing. yes, I would go with her is I promised that I would. Check out :


1,244 Posts

Wendy, I'm proud of you.((((((prayers and hugs to you and your friend))))))


310 Posts

Wendy--there's no question that you did the right thing. Your co-worker is very fortunate to have a friend like you!


78 Posts

Thanks all. I just don't want to do anything wrong that will interfere with recovery.

I hope as she starts on her journey that it will end with her rebuilding her life and finally getting her RN licence here in the USA.

micro, RN

1,173 Posts

Hey, helping someone is never wrong........

through the door for the first time, if that is something that she wants to do, not you......never wrong........

but it is up to her............

being a friend.....sometimes is all that you can do............

you can't fix it.........

addictions of anykind are a difficult "beast" to beat..........

micro no wisdom here



173 Posts

I would help her find the meeting then offer to her that you can go with her. That way if she is uncomfortable with you being there she can let you know.

My brother is a compulsive gambler. I went with him for months to meetings but went to the Gamanon meetings (like al-anon) while he was at his meeting.

Good luck to your friend, it is a long journey to recovery.

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