Statistics indicate that kids first look to their parents for advice and guidance. Understanding the facts about gambling and starting the conversation early means kids will be better prepared to make responsible choices once they become 19. It’s never too early to start the conversation with kids about gambling.
Before you begin the discussion, prepare yourself with the facts – how gambling works and the common myths. Find the correct time to address the topic of gambling, such as when watching poker on TV or during the announcement about the latest lottery winner.
Create a series of questions to get the conversation started; perhaps ask how they’d feel about betting, and losing, one of their prized processions. Ensure that your children know your expectations about gambling, and your reasoning behind your words.
Explain to them about the difference between skill-based games such as sports or video games, where practice can pay off, versus gambling where the outcome is random and chance-based.
Adults sometimes purchase lottery tickets as gifts for kids. Just remember, it can send the wrong message about gambling and promote it at a younger age. St. Eugene and BCLC encourage people to refrain from giving lottery tickets to anyone under 19.
Remember, actions speak louder than words. The best thing you can do is demonstrate responsible gambling habits!