Whether you’re visiting the world famous casinos in Las Vegas or trying your luck online with the casinos listed at Zamsino, the point of gambling is entertainment. But because playing casino games and gambling with real money can bring you so much joy, it’s easy to get carried away.
We’ve compiled a list of several successful entrepreneurs and celebrities who developed an affinity for gambling, became addicted, and then managed to overcome their gambling addiction.
Jeremy Kyle is an English journalist, TV broadcaster, and writer. He is arguably best known for hosting his tabloid talk show “The Jeremy Kyle Show” from 2005 to 2019.
In 2009, Kyle released his first book “I’m Only Being Honest” in which he details his struggles with gambling addiction. According to Kyle, when he was in his early twenties, he was gambling every day and continued to do so even when it was no longer enjoyable for him.
He was finally able to face his problem head-on after admitting he was so far in debt that he owed more money than he was bringing in. For too long, he had played beyond his bankroll and chased his losses until he was no longer in control of his habits.
Fortunately for Kyle, he was able to turn things around and overcome his gambling addiction. His show continued to run until early 2019 and he aims to help raise awareness about gambling addiction, including how those who are addicted can get the help they need.
David Bradford saw his past struggles with gambling addiction as an opportunity to help others. At the age of 62, Bradford and his son Adam created The Safer Online Gambling Group. The non-profit strives to raise awareness of online gambling addiction and provide support for people who are addicted to gambling.
The Safer Online Gambling Group also aims to work alongside the government to create stricter gambling policies that will protect players who are more vulnerable to addiction.
David Bradford has been open about the devastating effects his gambling addiction had on his life. He hid his addiction from his family for 30 years until he landed himself in jail by stealing from his employers to fund his gambling habits.
Despite drowning in debt and seeing his family life fall apart, Bradford managed to overcome his addiction and, with the help of his son, create an organization that can hopefully prevent someone else from experiencing the same turmoil he did.
Simon Perfitt is another former gambling addict who recognized his personal struggles as a chance to help others.
Perfitt became hooked on fixed odds betting terminals and blew so much money in a single decade that he went from a well-paying job to living on benefits. In 2001, Perfitt was living the high life. He loved his job, drove a Porsche, and had just moved in with his girlfriend. But he quickly became addicted to roulette, spending up to 12 hours a day on the FOBT machines, and lost it all.
By 2011, at the age of 55, Perfitt hit an all-time low, emotionally and financially. He sought help with the Gordon Moody Association; a decision Perfitt says likely saved his life.
He was able to walk away from the roulette wheel and give up his life-ruining habit. But just that wasn’t enough. Perfitt created a charity called Rethink Gambling to provide resources about the dangers of gambling.
Even “The Empress of Soul” Gladys Knight wasn’t immune to the temptations of gambling. The American singer, songwriter, author, businesswoman, and actress admitted during a 2011 interview with the Los Angeles Times that she had battled an addiction to gambling.
Knight has shared details of her struggles, including the moment she called Gamblers Anonymous immediately after losing big at a casino. Knight was incredibly lucky that for her, it took just one meeting over two decades ago to stop her gambling addiction in its tracks.
Spencer Christian became a household name as the weatherman of American TV network ABC’s “Good Morning America” but what few knew was that he was living a double life. Away from the TV camera, Christian battled a severe addiction to gambling.
Christian spent 30 years of his life gambling his life away. He faced bankruptcy twice and had his name sprawled across tabloids. It was his daughter who finally forced him to face his demons. As his daughter planned to get married, she asked her father to consider if he was living a life he wanted to be remembered for. Christian was so unhappy with and ashamed of his lifestyle and gambling habits that he walked away from his three-decades-long attachment to gambling.
Spencer Christian now endorses Gamblers Anonymous and similar programs and wrote a book “You Bet Your Life” about his personal experience, hoping to share his story with people who feel isolated because of their gambling habits.
“I hope my story shows recovery is achievable,” Christian stated.
Gambling is meant to be a hobby, occasionally enjoyed by those with the means to do so. Being able to casually enjoy FOBT slots or French Roulette is great and all, but the moment your gambling habits turn into an unhealthy obsession, you are faced with severe consequences. If you are unable to control your desire to gamble, even when it has a negative effect on your life, you are in the throes of a serious gambling problem.
However, no matter how bad things are there is always hope. The people we mentioned above experienced severe lows because of their addiction to gambling, yet they still managed to come out on top.
Their stories serve as both inspiration and a warning to current gamblers, to re-examine your habits and seek help if necessary. It is never too late to turn things around.