12 September 2023 at 8:18 pm #181465velvetModerator
I’ve brought this old topic back up to the top for Salt – I hope it helps.
It has been quiet on the forum recently, giving my little grey cells time to ponder. Please respond if you agree or disagree with my thoughts.
Around an active compulsive gambler there are many people who are hurt. The people who love them most are usually at the top of the list but a group that really do have a lot of pain to deal with are the siblings.
We have had very few siblings on the forum and I think that is relevant – they deal with it in other ways and see things from different perspectives. They see ‘their’ parents being hurt; they see themselves being used; they see themselves ignored by parents who are not noticing ‘them’; they see concern which they feel is undeserved being given to their sibling: they suffer massive disappointment as they struggle with their own problems and feel neglected. Parents, wives, husbands, sons, daughters, partners seem to take more of an interest in the ‘whys and wherefores’ of the addiction and have a better chance of finding understanding and closure but in the meantime the sibling, who has watched the whole action and felt the tsunami or emotions without anybody recognising their interests, is underwhelmed by talk of recovery.
In my opinion, it is important to be aware that a sibling who has been close to the core of the addiction to gamble can have problems that show themselves in other ways.
I think a sibling’s pain is often considered to be jealously which is not a socially ‘likeable’ attribute – they cannot attack the root of their pain because it is being unconsciously protected by those who feel themselves closest to the drama.
How does the sibling understand the scenario that unfolds before them? It is not of their doing but they feel their lives have been devalued, not just by the CG, and there is nothing they can do about it. They blame the CG but are possibly not allowed to vent that blame and so they are left with mixed emotions and confusion. I think many siblings turn the blame on those who they consider to have given the CG priority. I imagine if my brother had been a CG and I had lost my equal standing with my parents I would have cried ‘what about me?’ and possibly been told that I did not have a problem and therefore I should understand.
I know I have generalised but we have only ever had a couple of siblings write on here before but many members have mentioned siblings of CGs and so I have taken their stories along with my own experience and feel that I am somewhere near the truth.
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