Pathological gambler is a term coined with despise in our daily lives. People usually associate it with greed, aggressiveness, vanity and eager to get rich without working hard. Yet there was no known gambling gene. Then how is a pathological gambler formed?
A property commercial emphasized that your purchase of a luxurious mansion with a sea view and a band 1 school net would indicate you are a successful parent and it would help your children be more successful than you. Bestseller books in bookstores also kept sending messages of being a rich parent and thinking like a billionaire were the prerequisites of having a Harvard child.
Gradually, it was common to hear parents said, “if you can’t study, you would be useless. Look at Uncle David’s son! He was way brighter than you!” Teachers also joined by criticizing, “It is very disappointing that you had dropped 10 ranks this semester. You are demoted to class B next year.”
Can anyone imagine how our children will be when they hear these comments every day for 20 years? What would their values to people, money and success become? The so called reality did not teach our children to persevere through hardship and learn from failures. It did not teach them alternative goals other than getting rich in life. It did not teach them that even when they were not as strong as Uncle David’s son in academic studies, he still deserved to enjoy dignity, personal worth, and unconditional love from parents.
Decades later, these children who yearn to be recognized by the monetary social values became pathological gamblers. They were despised and hated by others. In the sea of gambling, it was not that they could not control the cravings but the hidden gene to get rich fast. The city seems to be open to gambling. It only deters those who lost in gambling. It was not to speak for gamblers. Abstinence from gambling is good and should go on when impairments emerge. Not to mention the hurts gamblers did to his various relationships. Sincere apologies, remorse and responsible problem solving for debts were needed from the gamblers. However, what are the responsibilities of the society? Some may sigh and believe that they could do little to change the social norms. Similarly, gamblers’ journey to quitting gambling was not easy as well.