Despite substantial evidence that problem gambling is associated with a wide range of family difficulties, limited effort has been devoted to studying the negative impacts on family members as a result of problem gambling and how they cope and function under the impacts of problem gambling in Chinese communities. Among the very few Chinese-specific gambling-related family impact studies, none have examined how gambling-related family coping responses are related to gambling-related family impacts. Based on a sample of treatment-seeking Chinese family members of problem gamblers, this study aimed to explore: (1) the demographic characteristics and health and psychological well-being of the family members; (2) the gambling-related family member impacts (active disturbance, worrying behavior); (3) the family coping strategies (engaged, tolerant-inactive and withdrawal coping); (4) the relationship between gambling-related family member impacts, psychological distress and family coping strategies. It was hypothesized that positive significant relationships would be found between family member impacts, psychological distress and family coping strategies. From March 2011 to February 2012, a total of 103 family members of problem gamblers who sought help from Tung Wah Group of Hospitals Even Centre in Hong Kong were interviewed. Results showed that a majority of family members were partners or ex-partners of the gambler with low or no income. A large proportion of participants reported moderate to high psychological distress (72.6 %), poor to fair general health (60.2 %), and poor to neither good nor bad quality of life (61.1 %). Family member impacts were positively significantly correlated to all family coping strategies and psychological distress. Tolerant-inactive coping had the strongest relationships with family member impacts and psychological distress. Strong relationships between family member impacts and psychological distress were also found. The results provide preliminary support for aspects of the stress–strain–coping–support model in the Chinese culture. It is suggested that family member-specific treatment groups targeting family coping are required to alleviate the level of negative impacts of gambling disorder on family members.
|Number of pages||12|
|Journal||Asian journal of gambling issues and public health|
|Publication status||Published - 2016|
- Family coping
- Impact of problem gambling
- Hong Kong