“I started gambling around 21, on slot machines in bars. I would spentd my whole paychecks on those machines. My entire life revolved around online casinos, I thought about it day and night. And one day, I had nothing left, I was almost out on the street. I lost everything: my job, my girlfriend, my friends, my apartment. Even my family cut me off. I hit rock bottom; I didn’t know how to get out… And then I finally talked about it and asked for help…”
Anthony, 28 years old

“I never drank much, but when my husband left me, I had a really tough time. I became depressed and tried to numb my desperation by drinking. Alcohol became my only friend – and quickly turned into my worst enemy, following me everywhere. I had to reach out for help…”
Sophie, 52 years old

Freeing yourself from dependence

Dependency is the inability to cope with everyday life without a crutch. A crutch can be many things for example cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, pornography, or anything else. A person may use a crutch when they feel particularly upset, or sometimes just as a means to make it through their day. In the moment it might feel like the crutch is helping, but it is just a bandaid solution and often part of a larger problem the person is avoiding.

For example, the “Direction de la Santé publique de la Montérégie”, from data collected by the “Institut de la statistique du Québec”, revealed that “62% of students in high schools aged between 12 and 17 years drink alcohol. Furthermore, 15% of them are at risk of developing a dependency, as they drink at least once a week.” (Christian Lepage, Journal de Saint-Bruno/Saint-Basile, March 19, 2014.

There are three main forms of pathological dependency:

• to alcohol
• to drugs and prescribed psychotropic medication
• to gambling

Do something for yourself

When a dependency controls a person’s life, he or she must first speak about it with someone who is trustworthy. Calling Tel-Aide’s active-listening line allows you to confide in total anonymity and confidentiality. Our service is available 24 hours, 7 days a week.

The next step is seeking help. Numerous resources offer free interventions, in individual or group formats.

Having problems with dependency?

See the help resources available