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Voices In The Family

December 2011

Gambling Addiction: Risk, Harm, Healing

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Gaming halls in and around Philadelphia are prevalent and easy to get to. Some are within walking distance or a short ride along Interstate 95. Close proximity keeps Pennsylvania gamblers in-state, entices others from other states, generates money for Harrisburg, and creates local jobs. That's all well and good, but what's it all mean for the compulsive gambler?

Calls to gambling hotlines have been increasing, and the people who call could be old or young, male or female. But they all have one thing in common: they feel their lives are out of control. On the next Voices in the Family with Dan Gottlieb: gambling addiction in a gaming tolerant landscape. Who's at risk? How it harms and how to heal. Dan's guests include Jim Pappas, CP Mirarchi, and Marilyn Lancelot.

Jim Pappas is the President and CEO of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of Pennsylvania. C.P. Mirarchi is a clinical psychologist who counsels patients with addictive behaviors. CP was a compulsive gambler himself. Marilyn Lancelot has written about her life as a compulsive gambler. She's dedicated her life to helping women with gambling addiction. She maintains the website www.femalegamblers.info

Welcome, Troops

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As American servicemen and women return from Iraq, they bring with them stories of combat and a life we cannot understand. Some now live with emotional and physical wounds. Many will need help finding work and adjusting to new routines established in their homes while they were gone.

What do they need from you and me? Maybe it starts with 'thank you' --followed by understanding and compassion. On the next Voices in the Family with Dan Gottlieb: welcoming home and supporting those who've served with guests Lt. Samuel J. Console and Lori Maas.

Lt. Sam Console is an author and veterans advocate. He's a former Pennsylvania Guard Officer and Army Combat Engineer Officer and alumnus of the Wounded Warrior Project. He's written Service and Sacrifice: Memories of Operation Iraqi Freedom with a Veterans Mental Health and Resource Guide. Lori Maas, LSW, manages the Philadelphia VA Medical Center's Returning Combat Veterans Program.

Following the airing of this edition of Voices in the Family, we heard back from our guest Lt. Sam Console, seen posing for a photograph with his children in the above slide show.  He shared with us a personal message of how his appearance on the show led him to some deep reflections on his war experiences and on how much his life has changed since becoming a soldier. View his letter to Dan Gottlieb »


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The holiday season reminds us that we Americans live in a material culture. Our economy depends on how much product we make, buy, and sell. So far, so good. But now, "Occupiers" around the nation point to our country's top 1 percent as greedy moneymakers who use their wealth to their own advantage, at times at the expense of others.

In the U.S. $150 billion is spent every year to embed consumer messages, the essence of which is this: that the good life is available through the goods life. Conversely, research indicates the road to happiness isn't about how much we have or what we have -- it's about how much we love and how much we share. Without buying and selling goods, our economy collapses. But unchecked consumerism produces suffering. Is it possible to find a balance?

On the next Voices in the Family with Dr. Dan Gottlieb: greed. What is it and how does it affect us? And how does generosity serve as an investment that can yield satisfying friendships and marriages -- and strengthen communities. Dan's guests include Tim Kasser and Polly Young-Eisendrath.

Tim Kasser is a professor and Chair of Psychology at Knox College in Illinois. He writes and lectures extensively on the topics of consumerism and materialism. His most recent book is The High Price of Consumerism.

Polly Young-Eisendrath is a Jungian analyst, a psychologist and an author. She is Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Psychology at the University of Vermont and Consultant in Leadership Development at Norwich University. She's written The Self-Esteem Trap. Her next book will be about mindful love.

The Story of Beautiful Girl and Inhumane Institutions

Originally aired 6/27/2011

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Rachel Simon’s new novel The Story of Beautiful Girl is not only a portrait of great love, it tracks the inhumane treatment of developmentally and intellectually disabled individuals who were institutionalized in the 20th century. On the next Voices in the Family with Dan Gottlieb, we discuss the book and the institutional treatment of some of our most vulnerable citizens with novelist Rachel Simon, researcher Jim Conroy, and self-advocate Jean Searle. Simons has written The Story of Beautiful Girl, which is her first New York Times Bestseller, and the 2002 memoir Riding The Bus With My Sister, which was a national bestseller. Her work has been adapted for film, television, radio, and stage. She lives in Delaware. Conroy is the founder and president of The Center for Outcome Analysis (COA), a non-profit firm founded in 1985 to perform evaluation, research, and demonstration projects in the human services and health care services. Searle was institutionalized at age 12 and released years later only as a result of the judge-ordered closure of the Pennhurst State School and Hospital for the Feeble-Minded and Epileptic (Spring City, PA). She is co-president of the Pennhurst Memorial and Preservation Alliance and is working on her memoir. To view Suffer The Little Children, the groundbreaking 1968 NBC10 expose on Pennhurst State School by reporter Bill Baldini, visit www.preservepennhurst.org.