Martha Frankel's gambling addiction began in her 40s, when she began playing poker on the Internet. Jean talks to Martha about her addiction to gambling, which she chronicles in her book, Hats & Eyeglasses: A Family Love Affair with Gambling.
Martha says her addiction, which began with a simple game of online poker, quickly escalated into a problem that took over her life. "I sort of gave up working and stayed home in my pajamas and dealt out hands," Martha says. After a year went by and she lost what she estimates to be around $50,000 to $60,000, Martha realized she had an addiction problem.
What was so appealing about gambling to Martha? "It's the immediate rush," she says. "There is something very sexy about it. It made me feel incredibly powerful." Martha says she suspects many women feel the same.
While she did try therapy, Martha says it didn't work for her. Instead, she concentrated on treating herself. In order to cure her addiction, Martha started slowly. "For me, I just stopped playing slowly and slowly until one day, probably a year after I hadn't played, I said to myself, 'I am done.' And then it was so over for me."