Pharos-Tribune

Local News

March 8, 2013

Meeting addresses high stakes of gambling

It has been more than 12 years since Chuck Bovis’ last wager and he is doing his best to keep it that way.  

Bovis, a recovering addict and certified gambling counselor from Indianapolis, spoke at a town hall meeting Thursday night at Dessert First in Logansport about his recovering gambling addiction.

Four County Counseling Center, who sponsored the meeting, was one of three agencies in the state offering a program during National Problem Gambling Awareness Week, which is March 3 to March 9.

Bovis, who said his gambling was unconscious, gambled daily from his late 20s into his 40s.

“I’ve hit many rock bottoms in my life,” Bovis said. “There’s always a trapdoor to take you down another level, just like any addiction.”

Four County Counseling had the meeting to discuss gambling addiction and the fact it’s apparent everywhere, Kathy Coffing, gambling counselor at Four County Counseling said.  

“Gambling addiction is a newly recognized addiction and is a fast growing problem,” Coffing, who has been counselor for two years said. “We want to be able to make the public aware of the gambling problem, that is an almost hidden problem.”

During the meeting, Bovis discussed two types of gamblers, action and escape. He described an action gambler as someone who talks about their wins and is more about the bells and whistles and an escape gambler, someone who hides and doesn’t want people to know about it.

When most people think about gambling they think poker, casinos and the lottery, Coffing said. They don’t think about Bingo, Bunco, pull-tabs and athletic bracket competitions like those used in the NCAA tournament, she said.

Jose Flores, of Avon, spoke at the meeting about the damage caused by gambling. He discussed how people can lose everything when they gamble.  

“Those addicted to gambling aren’t bad people, they’re sick people doing bad things,” Flores said. “When people look from the outside they can’t understand why the person doesn’t just stop. It’s a lifelong program.”

Flores referred to addiction as an illness.

In 1978, there were only two states that had legalized gambling and in 1998, 20 years later, there were only two states without some form of gambling.

“It’s easy to see gambling events as a social event,” Coffing said. “We don’t want to give the message anyone who plays will be addicted because not everyone who participates are at-risk. But there are people who will have those impulsive, compulsive behaviors.”

Six million adults and 500,000 teens nationwide meet the criteria for gambling addiction, Coffing said.

Four County has offered gambling services for about six years and has been recognized as the state provider for services in the state of Indiana for the past two years.

Four County Counseling offers free services for people dealing with gambling addiction and their families.

Coffing said she has seen families fall apart because of an addiction to gambling where the person addicted gambled money away and lost relationships to people surrounding them. Four County Counseling offers help to not only those addicted, but their families as well.

Dick Farrer, of Four County Counseling Center, said they want to let people know there are ways to get help before they hit rock bottom.

“Communities have made it so hard to get help for an addiction,” Farrer said. “There might be people who didn’t attend the meeting because they didn’t want to show they have a problem. We can and want to help.”

Bovis closed the meeting by talking about the support that can be found at meetings like the one Thursday for gambling addiction.  

“There will always be a stigma with attending meetings and getting help,” Bovis said. “But it is better than it used to be and it is now accepted as an illness.”

For more on this story and other local news, subscribe to The Pharos-Tribune eEdition, or our print edition

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Board approves gravel pit in Walton Homeowners in the area of a proposed gravel pit and other interested Cass County residents packed the commissioners hearing room Monday night to voice their concerns over the pit that local firm Engineering Aggregates Corp. wants to dig, only to have

    July 28, 2014

  • Cass Co. deputies assist in high-speed pursuit

    An Illinois man driving at speeds of 120 mph led officers from three counties on a high-speed chase Sunday before crashing into a utility pole.

    July 28, 2014

  • Illinois man leads police on high-speed chase PERU — An Illinois man driving at speeds of 120 mph led officers from three counties on a high-speed chase Sunday before crashing into a utility pole. Peru police say Isaac K. Hoefling, 31, Lamont, Illinois, was first pulled over by Howard County dep

    July 28, 2014

  • Teachers worry about revamped ISTEP test INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana teachers heading back to classrooms starting this week are facing the daunting task of preparing students for a standardized test that's been retooled for the third time since 2009. Some teachers and district administrator

    July 28, 2014

  • Police Blotter: July 28, 2014 Have a tip? Anyone with information on a crime is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could lead to a reward of up to $1,000.

    July 28, 2014

  • NWS-PT072814 McKinley Mortar Work on Logansport senior-living facility continues The transformation of a building on Logansport’s north side that formerly accommodated children is expected to be complete this fall, when it will start catering to those on the other end of life’s timeline.Indianapolis-based Crestline Communities ha

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • History, carnival set for Delphi DELPHI — One hundred and fifty-nine years ago, the founders of Carroll County gathered together to catch up and connect, as it was one of the only ways to do so back in 1885.Referred to as the Carroll County Old Settlers’ Meeting, it still lives on t

    July 28, 2014

  • Eric Peters Veteran on cross- country mission PERU — Eric Peters is on a 2,700-mile mission.As a 23-year-old Army veteran who served in Afghanistan, Peters is used to missions. But this one is personal.Thirty-five days ago, he started a cross-country trek from his home in Clark, New Jersey, that

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Purdue corn specialist: Cool weather's effect on crop could differ from 2009 WEST LAFAYETTE — The next two months will determine whether the Indiana corn crop produces high yields as expected or is significantly damaged by any unforeseen, drastic changes in weather and diseases, Purdue Extension corn specialist Bob Nielsen sa

    July 28, 2014

  • Late-season herbicide may be ineffective, scientist says WEST LAFAYETTE — For farmers seeing weeds in their crop fields this late in the growing season, hand-rouging and pulling them by hand may be the best way to remove them, more so than using a herbicide, a Purdue Extension weed scientist says.“The majo

    July 28, 2014

Featured Ads
More pharostribune.com
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Poll

Should grocery and convenience stores be allowed to sell cold beer?

Yes
No
Unsure
     View Results
eEdition