I was at the easy child's game and I was approached by one lady who is worried about her son. There is of course nothing I could do to help her. I did reference her to local gambling addiction website and told how she could contact the person who treats young gambling addicts in local health station. But I just feel so bad for her and her family. And her son. I don't know about the situation in the NA but here gambling problems are getting out of hand. And culture around gambling is certainly not helping. When idiot teen girls want to be reality-tv-stars, our idiot teen boys dream on being poker or betting millionaires. And that is seriously glamorized by even mainstream media. Few years ago they wrote a lot about poker millionaires, now they wrote just as much about sport betting wins. Local laws forbid most of gambling advertising, but it doesn't matter, because betting and poker companies are so very good at advertising through social media and in other more current ways. Many of our most notable sport reporters and other sport personalities are walking betting advertisements. They keep awfully lot of noise about their bets and bet with thousands of dollars a week. And they totally deny that they are in fact playing on betting companies money even though it is very, very likely. But our idiot kids don't understand that these popular, cool sport characters are paid to bet, not betting with their own money. Young men's Twitter account are full of betting and the more risky betting and more money used, cooler it is. Poker is little bit less trendy now than it was few years ago (when difficult child got addicted.) Maybe because many have started to understand that even the poker stars are not doing that profitable business. And many engineering students who few years ago boasted how they made money worth whole four month summer internship in a week have noticed that it wasn't quite like that. But now it is more about sports betting. Idea is, that you can not be invested watching the game if you haven't bet on it. Young men take very expensive short loans to 'create a betting account', loans they can not pay back, if they don't start winning right away. And not a small loans. For example the son of the lady I spoke today, had taken almost 20 000 dollars worth loans and started betting with those loaned money and being sure he would quickly double his 'investment.' And when they keep loosing, they keep betting more, because they want to win back the lost money. We don't even have personal bankruptcy, they are saddled with the loans rest of their lives even if they stop gambling. Unfortunately for too many that rest of their life isn't that long. Suicides are scary common among gambling addicts. There are, very seldom, but at times stories about problem gamblers in media, but those are so far from the world of these idiot kids who are now in worst risk. They tend to be stories of elderly people who loose their retirement to slot machines. Or older people who have done horse betting for a long time. They are not stories kids like my son would ever feel any connection to. What these kids see, when they think of gambling are these young, cool twenty-somethings who wear sunglasses also indoors and win poker tournaments or are 'insiders' to the sports. But at the same time these kids, even if they don't end up gambling addicts, can cause themselves serious, long term, life altering financial problems. And then there are those, like my son, who get addicted and end up stealing, scamming, loosing all respect others may have had for them. There are times when I almost hope difficult child would tell his story publicly. But it wouldn't change anything and it would be too hard for him yet. Maybe some day. But of course everything in his appearance tells other kids that he is a 'looser', 'freak', 'nerd', 'simply stupid', unpopular and always uncool. So it wouldn't help, because of course those kids who are in risk on this think themselves as smart and cool, not like difficult child with whom the only cool factor is that because of some freak accident he happens to be very talented athlete. But I can't help but feel heartbroken for all those other mothers and their families who are currently on their way to this same he** we have been with our kid. And there are so many of them in just my country I can't even think of it. And we have been one of the lucky ones because difficult child has so much still going for him and he has worked so hard for the recovery and done well with it. Most are not likely to be that lucky.