Women and Problem Gambling

Therapeutic insights into understanding addiction and treatment

By Liz Karter

© 2013 – Routledge

154 pages

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415686372
pub: 2013-03-14
Hardback: 9780415686365
pub: 2013-03-14

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About the Book

Addiction is much misunderstood. Women and addictive gambling even more so, and for many years women have suffered in silence. This book explores how lonely, troubled lives and damaging relationships lead to the trap of problem gambling, the anxiety and chaos whilst locked inside, and then offers realistic hope of a way out.

With the significant increase in women gambling problematically, Women and Problem Gambling aims to answer the often asked question 'who is to blame?' the text covers:

  • the role of the gambling industry
  • the role of society
  • women’s relationships with others and themselves
  • what ' hitting rock bottom ' truly is

Case studies illustrate how gambling begins as harmless escapism and how stressful and sometimes painful lives, combined with spiralling debts, lead to desperation to avoid thoughts, feelings and the reality of life in chaos. Women can, and do, stop gambling, and the author shares anecdotes from patients, and discusses therapeutic models and practical strategies to demonstrate how this is possible.

Women and Problem Gambling is based on the author's research and theories developed throughout her extensive practice. The insights will be of value to anyone wanting to understand or work with problem gambling in women; from a woman with a problem herself, thorough to family, friends and any healthcare professionals or therapists involved in her care and treatment.


"The book is logical and self-explanatory, covering the role of the gambling industry - the role of society - women's relationships with others and themselves - and what hitting rock bottom is. …Excellent short and precise case studies take readers in to the person's experience. Karter shares her experiences and work. She explores assessing reality, creating a therapeutic experience, ambivalence and relapse prevention. It is accurate and precise, while offering opportunity for reflection. I recommend it to addiction counsellors for their library of reference material. Patients will also relate to so much of it that it will motivate them to recovery." - Peter J Davies, Addiction Today, 2013

Table of Contents

Growing the Problem. Why Take the Risk? Sliding into Trouble. Escaping to a Trap. Rock Bottom. Assessing Reality. Creating a Therapeutic Experience. Ambivelence. Understanding Why. Relapse Prevention. One Woman's Story. Reflections on Practice. Referrals.

About the Author

Liz Karter is a therapist in private practice, working exclusively in the field of problem gambling.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychopathology / Addiction