Internet addiction is very much a real thing.
So, I got a computer when I was about twelve, from my techie uncle. I quickly realized that besides the Pages documents for all my writing, my biggest computer-related love was definitely the Internet. I started going on a lot, finding all my favorite sites. It was fun at first, but quickly escalated from there into something that took up a whole lot of my time.
By the time I was in college, the Internet was the single biggest suck on my time aside from writing. I would find excuses to be on there even when I didn’t really have any reason to be. At one point, my level of obsession was such that it’s embarrassing for me to admit. I’m talking hours, every day.
I found a lot of other people who joked about their level of Internet obsession like me. Most of these people were at the least self-deprecating, at the most very seriously depressed. I found a little niche for myself among these people.
Most of you who follow this site will know that I am bipolar and it was around college when this really hit me. I went through a period where I was very mentally ill, both physically and psychologically. I needed to be taken out of school temporarily and I completely reorganized my life. This includes very little Internet time. I went from spending hours on the Internet to spending almost no time on the Internet at all.
I’m writing about this now because just recently, I spent a long boring day on the Internet, and I experienced some very interesting and rather alarming symptoms seemingly as a result. These include fatigue, achy head, lightheadedness, and other problems like distraction, increased worry and mood swings, and what I would term withdrawal symptoms.
Looking up and rereading this entry, you will find that you could replace some addictive substance with the word “internet” and suddenly you are reading a much more expected story.
I say this because I know a lot of people with Internet addiction who find the whole thing a big joke, who see the term “internet addiction” as something psychologists invented to suck on people’s money. But it is, I believe from experience, a real thing.