Although the stereotype of a gambling addict is always an old man, it is clear that young women suffer from this problem too!
In 2020, British hairstylist Christine Toleini played slots for four hours. During this session, Tolaini was lucky enough to win the Rainbow Riches jackpot. However, she ended up with over £70,000!
This incident highlights how severe the problem gambling among young women is and what regulators need to do to curb the problem.
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Last updated: 1 June 2023
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Because of her gambling problem, Tolaini lost two years' salary and the jackpot!
She wasn't sleeping well and was feeling excessive anxiety and insomnia so she wasn't fully focused.
What Was the Story?
The Mirror published the story of Christine Tolaini, a 39-year-old British hairdresser that blew her salary for 2 years in a short gambling session!
Tolaini decided to gamble online using her smartphone. At first she was winning and losing until she hit the jackpot of Rainbow Riches, however this was clearly not enough for her addiction as she kept playing.
In just four hours of playing, Tolaini used 20 credit card balances to make her deposits at online casinos, and her total losses amounted to £70,000, which is twice her annual salary!
Prior to this incident, Christine Tolaini had sought help from Gamblers Anonymous since the beginning of 2017. But it seems that the help was ineffective as she was gambling with more money each time she decided to stop.
Tolaini says she has lost more than $120,000 in the past five years. This money came from her savings, salary, but the bulk of this money was from her credit cards.
Perhaps this story was so poignant that, a few days later, the UKGC banned gamblers from using credit cards entirely. And required gambling sites to set limits on deposits and withdrawals.
Tolaini noted that most of the gamblers who attended the sessions were men, but added that more women were participating in support groups.
Gambling Addiction Rates Rise Among British Women!
Although the Tolaini incident might lead people to believe that gambling is more common among women than before, correlation does not mean causation; More women seeking help does not mean that gambling is more common among women!
According to a report published by GamStop, the percentage of players who asked to exclude themselves from gambling was 70% of males, and 30% of women. Although males are still the majority, the proportion of women is rising.
In the latest report published by GambleAware, it stated that 25% of gamblers are between the ages of 18 and 49 and that they spend more money on gambling.
Studies show that women use gambling as a way to escape boredom, loneliness, and anxiety. In fact, men can overcome such feelings by working or doing other work. But women who fall prey to these feelings cannot act; They use betting as a form of coping. And as an escape from stress feelings. On the other hand, there are plenty of other studies that reflect the vital role of peers. Influencing the motivation behind women's gambling addiction.
Other recent research by the GambleAware revealed that one in four women aged 18 to 49 expect the frequency of gambling to increase as inflation rises and the UK approaches an impending cost-of-living crisis. This research was conducted as part of a campaign to combat the stigma. Women may face while seeking support for problem gambling.
The research also indicated that 38% of women spent more money than they initially intended, however, 21% of female players chased their loses.
What Increases Rates of Problem Gambling?
With the increasing of financial difficulties, the exacerbation of the living crisis, women are gambling more frequently online. On the other hand, stigma can play a major role in preventing women from seeking help!
In fact, the harms of compulsive gambling can affect anyone in any area of life. For example, compulsive gambling can cause stress on relationships, Affect work and, if not addressed in time. Can lead to an enormous burden on savings, work, relationships, and physical health.
On the other hand, stigma can prevent women from seeking support with gambling-related issues.
What Actions Has the UKGC Taken to Tackle Problem Gambling?
The UKGC has been closely following the news around problem gamblers. And is taking quick decisions to prevent more problem gamblers from losing money.
After this case spread, the British Gambling Commission completely banned the use of credit cards in British gambling sites. In addition, it has imposed fines on gambling sites that allow self-excluding players to resume playing with them.
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