According to Gamblers Anonymous, over 15 million people have some sort of gambling problem. With internet gaming and gambling, the number is rising among teenagers: 42% of 14-year-olds, 49% of 15-year-olds, 63% of 16-year-olds and 76% of 18-year-olds all gamble. The high percentages among teenagers’ shows that by the time they are adults, they may have compulsive gambling addictions. There is help: Gamblers Anonymous has meetings all over the world. History Gamblers Anonymous began in 1957 when two men discussed the problems they were having as direct results of gambling. They knew they needed to continue ongoing meetings in order to prevent relapsing. On September 13, 1957, Gamblers Anonymous was born, and has continued to grow ever since. Compulsive Gambling Compulsive gambling is an addiction. It is not something you can overcome by yourself. You need help to beat it. Desire to Change For Gamblers Anonymous to work, you need to have a desire to change and be committed to the program. Keywords Honesty, open-mindedness, and willingness are the three keywords Gamblers Anonymous is built upon. Characteristics of a compulsive gambler The inability to accept reality, emotional insecurity and immaturity are characteristics compulsive gamblers all share. They tend to hide behind the addiction. Compulsive gamblers have dreams of what they will do when they finally "win big," but they often lose big with the addiction to continue trying no matter what. 12 Steps Gam-Anon is for family members or friends of a compulsive Gamblers Anonymous works because it utilizes the 12-step program many other support groups use. It has been proven successful as long as you have a desire to change. Gam-Anon gambler. Compulsive gambling, as with any addiction, affects everyone--not just the one doing the gambling.