Peeblesshire – Castle Craig is about 40 kilometers south of the Scottish capital Edinburgh. The special thing about the castle from the 18th century: Here people who are addicted to trading in crypto currencies are treated.
The clinic claims to be the first in the world to include the treatment in its program about three years ago. According to experts, those affected show the same type of behavioral addiction as gambling addicts.
„Cryptocurrency addiction is the crack cocaine of gambling because it goes so fast: it’s available 24/7. It’s on the phone, it’s on the laptop, it’s in the bedroom, ”senior therapist Tony Marini, 56, recently told the BBC.
Marini himself became addicted to gambling, alcohol and cocaine as a teenager and was only able to change his life 16 years ago. He only deals with the world of cryptocurrencies in his job.
Most of his patients are men between the ages of 20 and 45 and come from all over the world. Many are referred to the clinic for drugs or alcohol. Other addictions often come to the fore during treatment, and crypto addiction is an increasingly common one. In the past year, the number in the private clinic has increased tenfold.
He described the classic path to addiction to the “Guardian“. Accordingly, those affected initially act only occasionally. When the cryptocurrencies are doing well, investors are in the “winning phase”. The fantasies begin about what to do with the money. More is being invested, some are going into debt.
Marini: “Then you start losing money. Isolation begins. You start to lie. They can’t stop playing so borrow more money or do something illegal. You stop paying household bills. They feel guilty, ashamed, or resentful. They start to blame other people or they panic. ”That could have catastrophic consequences.
He recently treated a man who lost the equivalent of almost 1.8 million euros in cryptocurrencies that he had embezzled from his company. Another ex-patient lost almost 2.3 million euros. “I know guys whose partners try to take their phones away and they start shaking. It’s a withdrawal. You can’t have your phones with you. “
Marini worries that only success stories are told. “We don’t hear about the people who have lost a lot of money,” says the therapist to “Decrypt“:“ People are so ashamed. You feel so guilty. You don’t want to talk about it. You feel stupid. “