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Has anyone.....

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Has anyone here ever had someone in their family that was so totally addicted to the internet and chatting with others that it is affecting them and their family? I have a 19 year old that is a kind of shy, unmotivated but very artistic person, great artistic ability and she graduated high school in 2002. She knows she has to go to college and do something with her life and keeps putting it off and it seems all she wants to do is be online, weather it be playing games, chatting, maintaining her website, drawing etc. I'm kind of at the end of my rope, and am going to get rid of the cable modem for a while, since she wont do anything else. We gripe at her constantly about it and she thinks she is doing nothing wrong. She just got a job and is starting tomorrow, but only because her Dad and I told her she has to take it. I feel like such a bad parent because I have let it get this far. I dont know what I should do but get rid of the internet here at home, so I wont be on here very much. I would do anything in the world for her, and to make her realize she should be going to school and doing something besides sitting behind a desk all the time.
I feel like such a failure for having a kid that is so unmotivated. I just wish she would wake up!!
post #2 of 19
i dunno.. but i have been through such stages where i didn't want to move out of my computer chair and my parents were pretty frustrated at me... eventually i just realised i couldn't sit here and stare the pc the whole day... give her some time... maybe she just wants to space out for a while...
post #3 of 19
There are alot of people who are addicted to the Internet. I know we have a member here who was addicted when she was younger sockie's mom I believe? I know of a woman who spent so much time on the internet that her own daughter started to email her from her (the daughter's bedroom) Perhaps your daughter would like to go to school to learn to be a graphic designer or something along those lines using the computer, but not the Internet per se. I know of families that have pitched the computer in the attic, turned off and unplugged their television set and tried to get back to being a family without electronic interference.
post #4 of 19
Yes i had aserious problem and it almost ruined my marriage. Try to get her help thats all i can advise.
post #5 of 19
I'm on the internet alot but I can remove myself... I could understand your daughters addiction if she was addicted to TCS! I'm sorry you are going through this , I'm not sure how to help.. I can wish you lots of luck though
post #6 of 19
I have a niece who is like that (19, doesn't have a job, dropped out of college). She wants to be a writer, I think. Her mom (my sister) is thinking of giving up their internet access for a while. In the mean time, I have tried to give her ideas about more productive use of her online time, like starting an online journal. I sent her a bunch of links to journals and blogs for writers who use their online writing as part of their portfolio for jobs.

Its a horrible addiction, but I don't think that parents are completely responsible; my one niece has some problems with it, but her two younger sisters don't care about the internet at all. So its partly the temperment of the child too.
post #7 of 19
I used to have a bit of a problem with the internet. I have to say I do use it at least once and day. I just kind of stopped myself when I got bored with the things I was doing on line.

Now I have a few sites I regularlly go to and that is about it.

Good Luck.
post #8 of 19
Maybe the computer is her safety net. Perhaps she's not ready to go off to college or has fears about leaving home. Or maybe she has some deeper issues such as anxiety or depression that's holding her back.

Be thankful that she completed high school!
My 15 year old son is a computer addict (more than the internet). . . he likes to tear them apart and work on them. . . and use them to get car repair help and has a network of car buffs that he communicates with - a site much like the Cat Site only for Saab owners. . . (has made many good friends, some of which we've met personally).

Give her time. She's young yet.
If she's not ready for college or chooses not to go, then she should definitely be working to help pay her expenses while home with you.
You may have to set some hard rules to get her off her duff, but if you take the pressure off her going to college, perhaps she'll let off the brakes. Be thankful that she's home. . . not out on the streets. . . hanging out with the wrong crowd. . . using drugs or taking care of a child of her own. . .

Good luck!
post #9 of 19
I agree maybe it is her safe haven or something. Dont try to push somebody into doing something. I remember right after high school, my parents pushed me into going to college. Almost a year later, I met my husband, and decided I wanted to work to have money. Yes, I do understand, it is the key to a better education and a better career, etc. But, at the same time, a 19 year old should be able to make their own decision. I'm 27, and still dont have a college degree. Some parents push their kids way too hard for their own reasons, and not whats interest in the best for their child. Maybe some on here dont agree with me, but this is my opinion.
post #10 of 19
My s/o is so addicted to gaming that is all he does during the hours he is not working. He gets out of bed, goes straight to the computer, and stays until he has to get ready for work. Then he comes home, sits with me for a few minutes, (I can tell he really does not want to be there) until I finally ask him if he is gaming tonight. He usually eats at the computer, too. He almost never plays his guitar any more, and he was the same way with it. At least he doesn't mind me being in the house when he is gaming. I guess going back to school was the best thing I could have done for myself, because I am alone most of the time otherwise. Sometimes I would like to both computers. He put one together for me just to keep me off his. I would give it up to have him back.
I love my kities, but they don't have a lot to say!
post #11 of 19
I don't know of anyone personally but i've seen them on
talk shows,they're family life has been ruined because
of it
post #12 of 19
I have a friend in Florida that is addicted to the computer. She has 2 sons that get her attention in between the 12 IM sessions she has going at the same time. It was an escape for her. On the computer she can look like anyone she wants to be. The guy on the other end of the keyboard couldn't see if she was 5'0" or 6'10". He couldn't tell if she was 120lbs or 220. Online she has a great personality cause she's not looking into anyone's eyes. Unfortunately, she is on the computer more than she is in real life. One month she logged 600 hours online. At 30 days a month, thats 20 hours a day. Weekends she would fall asleep at the keyboard for 24 hr days. She had her most significant relationships with men across the country. I had to talk her out of leaving her ex-husband for men in other states more than once. (The divorce wasn't due to the PC)

Once my friend had added responsibility and started making real life friends, her computer time dropped significantly. Now that your daughter is starting a new job, you should see the same thing. If you don't, there is help. Its a real addiction with support groups.
post #13 of 19
You might try setting up restrictions. If you're using Windows XP you can set up individual profiles which include internet time restrictions. On the other hand, behavior "addictions" are quite different from chemical ones. Behavior issues are generally a symptom rather that the problem itself. She's at an age when things can be pretty frightening, with the structure of required schooling behind her and everything in front of her depending on her own choices. It might be helpful to get her some professional counselling to help get her over the hump (career guidance, psychologist, minister, etc.) This doesn't necessarily mean there's anything wrong with her, just that she's at a point where a little extra push and guiding hand might be the right thing. Sometimes a parent is just to close to be the person to provide that help.

Good luck.

post #14 of 19
She is also at risk of repetitive strain injury if she's spending many hours at the computer without breaks.

Can you allow a set amount of time at the computer each day? She could set a timer, and get up & do something else when it goes off.

Might be time to disconnect the Internet if she can't give it up - it does sound like she might be using it to escape the stress of reality & the changes she's going through in life - facing adulthood & responsibility can be pretty scary, but it must be done. I'm glad she's going for the job. Perhaps she can start volunteering somewhere, to help her get out & start interacting with others more.
post #15 of 19
I am on the computer a lot, but then, it is my livlihood at the moment. But the worst thing (and the best thing) IMO about the Internet is it never closes. I have met some wonderful people online, and even had the opportunity to meet some in real life, and they turned out to be just as they presented themselves to be on the computer in real life, making for lasting friendships. I have also know of the most bizarre behaviors going on with people. But if someone is lonely, there is always a chat room open somewhere that you can go into and find whatever it is you might be seeking.

Although the internet is a big part of many lives, it is not Real Life. It is just a substitute for some-
post #16 of 19
Is there any way of setting a strict time limit on using the computer...say no more than an hour a day or so? I don't know how easy this would be to enforce, though...but it might be an alternative to having to get rid of the computer altogether. Let us know what you decide.
post #17 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thanks for everyones replies! I didnt think I would get that many. I hope the job helps cut down on her time on the computer. She does have a few friends online, she has hardly no friends in real life, just a few and they are going to college and she does have a boyfriend, who is by the way a computer tech and a great guy. The thing is with the computer, she draws, computer graphics, etc. and she is so good at it. She makes money selling prints, and draws logos for websites for alot of money, just last month she made 400 dollars for about 3 drawings she did for a japanese foods website.It didnt take her very long at all to do that, just hours. I just want her to realize she cant depend on this forever, she needs a degree and a social life besides who she is friends with on the internet. She thinks we are getting all in her face about it for no reason, since it is kind of a job for her, but it wont last forever. Got to think about the future. She is supposed to be starting school in the spring so hopefully that will help. Her talent as an artist is way to good for her to just not do anything with and its something she loves to do. It's like she is in a safe zone here and not having to think about the future or anything else and it cant last forever. She graduated in May of 2002, so its been close to 2 years and no motivation.
post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 
Well things have to change around here for a while, so I think we will be losing the internet access for a while. I found out she has been talking to someone she met on the internet and I'm having our home phone turned off today, we dont need it anyway since her Dad and I use cell phones mostly anyway. Cant get this person to stop calling the house, its a girl at least but still. I thought about blocking the number but they can still call via a calling card, etc. I found out through someone else she was thinking of moving out, with this person she met on the internet. We are not mean to her, she has had everything a kid could want. The only thing we ask is that she work or go to school. Not just sit around doing nothing.
I'm so mad!!! Why must teenagers be so difficult? Never really had a problem out of her until now! She isnt a bad kid but I dont know what else to do right now but take away her access to the internet and phone. I am definatly thinking of a counselor for her, I'm calling today to make an appointment for her. I know we will get through this. It will just take some time. Thanks for everyones help.
post #19 of 19
Have you considered restricting internet access through electronic means? You could set up profiles which restrict internet accesss, either partially or completely, depending on who's using the computer. This way you can control her access, but still not have to cut yourself off.

I know it's got to be a very tough thing to deal with. I wish you the best of luck and hope everything turns out well. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

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