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Jerome García May 2, 2023 3 min read
Sydney Gambler Reconsiders Suicide after Thinking of His Cat
Thinking about taking his own life, the man reconsidered after remembering his pet cat and immediately asked for gambling addiction treatment services
Australia is currently the country with the highest number of gambling machines per capita in the world. Poker machines, popular as pokies, are everywhere. People can engage in betting on those machines in pubs, bars, clubs and even hotels. This widespread availability helped increase the popularity of the pokie machines and sadly, results in millions in losses monthly or billions on an annual basis.
With losses to gambling comes problem gambling and gambling harm, issues that represent a serious threat to many Australians. When chasing gambling losses, some punters resort to theft or other crimes. Others, fearing the punishment they may receive or out of desperation, even consider suicide as a final solution, which is shocking, worrying and scary to say the least.
Different organizations help people suffering from problem gambling in Australia. There are helplines and counseling, as well as options for self-exclusion. Sometimes, if all of that fails, a furry feline friend may be everything a person needs, and this is what happened to Tim Gray.
The man from Sydney, who suffered from problem gambling was luckily rescued by his pet cat, Crystal, the Daily Telegraph reveals. Gray had periods when he didn’t gamble but revealed that he always struggled, considering the temptation and incentives he was offered that included free food, soft drinks or even beer. Out of every AU$ 50,000 ($33,400) he earned, the man would gamble away AU$ 20,000 ($13,400), he admitted.
Feline Friend Saved the Man’s Life
Recognizing that he had a problem with gambling he even considered taking his own life. The young man was thinking about suicide by hitting his car into a tree. And this is when Gray thought of his pet cat. He asked himself who will feed Crystal if he kills himself?
“It was close to midnight and I was going to commit suicide by running my car into a tree. But then there was a moment when I thought: ‘Who’s going to feed the cat?’ So Crystal was the turning point for me and I made contact immediately with support services.“Tim Gray
This life-changing thought enabled the man to turn his life around and seek help. Now, the man dreams of having a small house for himself and his pet cat, the same one that stopped him from doing the unthinkable.
Lawmakers in Australia are trying to implement effective changes that seek to curb the rate of problem gambling and reduce the money lost to the activity. Yet, gambling remains an important revenue stream for local governments despite the harm it brings.