Gam-Anon 20 Questions

The following is a popular tool used to assess and educate people about problem gambling.  Please note that the gam-anon 20 is not recognized as a scientifically valid diagnostic tool.  This screen is better thought of as an educational tool for raising awareness of problem gambling behaviors.

  1. Do you find yourself constantly bothered by bill collectors?
  2. Is the person in question often away from home for long, unexplained periords of time?
  3. Does this person ever lose time from work due to gambling?
  4. Do you feel this person cannot be trusted with money?
  5. Does the person in question faithfully promise to stop gambling: beg, plead for another chance, yet gamble again and again?
  6. Does this person ever gamble longer than he or she intended to, until the last dollar is gone?
  7. Does this person immediately return to gambling to try to recover losses or win more?
  8. Does this person ever gamble to get money to solve financial difficulties, or have unrealistic expectations that gambling will bring the family material comfort and wealth?
  9. Does this person borrow money with which to gamble or to pay gambling debts?
  10. Has this person’s reputation ever suffered due to gambling, even to the extent of committing illegal acts to finance gamble?
  11. Have you come to the point of hiding money needed for living expenses, knowing that you and the rest of the family may go without food or clothing if you do not?
  12. Do you search this person’s clothing or go through his or her wallet when the opportunity presents itself or otherwise check on his or her activities?
  13. Do you hide the gambler’s money?
  14. Have you noticed a personality change in the gambler as his or her gambling progresses?
  15. Does the person consistently lie to cover up gambling activities?
  16. Does this person use guilt induction as a method of shifting responsibility for his or her gambling to you?
  17. Do you attempt to anticipate this person’s mood to try to control his or her life, seeking some stability in your own?
  18. Does this person ever suffer from remorse or depression due to gambling? Somethimes to the point of self-destruction?
  19. Has the gambling ever brought you to the point of threatening to break up the family unit?
  20. Do you feel that your life together with the gambler has become a nightmare?

-Gam-Anon International Service Office, Inc.

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