Mother's little helper: Internet addiction
This seems like an odd topic to bring on up on a parenting blog, but some psychologists are worried that moms are spending too much time online. CNN reports that there's a movement among psychiatrists to recognize Internet addiction as an official mental disorder like alcohol dependency. And a recent Stanford University national survey found alcoholic-type behaviors, like the fact that 14 percent of Internet users find it hard to stay away from it for several days at a time; 9 percent try to hide their "nonessential Internet use" from their loved ones; 8 percent admit they use the Web as a way to escape problems.
So do we go runnin' for the shelter of mother's electronic helper too much? People who spend an inordinate amount of time online, getting emotionally involved in chat rooms are trying to fill a void, the experts say. Then it becomes a vicious circle when the avoidance of errands or the mess the house has become while Mom is online only increases the stress that sent her Web surfing to begin with.
Think you are hooked? Trying going off the grid for a week. I did it for just a few days over spring break and was surprised by how much time I suddenly found myself with, and I was reluctant to go back. But, alas, here I am again. My name is Sharon, and I'm an Internet addict. *Hi Sharon*
-- Sharon Kennedy Wynne