Im mental

I always knew that there “s something wrong with checking email and blog aggregators at least 20 times a day. Now it “s official ndash; I am a mental case. Do not be so happy, cause you might belong to one of these well-guarded institutions too.

According to this article published in the American Journal of Psychiatry

“Internet addiction appears to be a common disorder that merits inclusion in DSM-V. Conceptually, the diagnosis is a compulsive-impulsive spectrum disorder that involves online and/or offline computer usage and consists of at least three subtypes: excessive gaming, sexual preoccupations, and e-mail/text messaging. All of the variants share the following four components: 1) excessive use, often associated with a loss of sense of time or a neglect of basic drives, 2) withdrawal, including feelings of anger, tension, and/or depression when the computer is inaccessible, 3) tolerance, including the need for better computer equipment, more software, or more hours of use, and 4) negative repercussions, including arguments, lying, poor achievement, social isolation, and fatigue rdquo;

After reading this paragraph I was wondering, what “s DSM-V? So I went straight online and in less than a second Wikipedia returned me this definition:

“The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is an American handbook for mental health professionals that lists different categories of mental disorders and the criteria for diagnosing them, according to the publishing organization the American Psychiatric Association. It is used worldwide by clinicians and researchers as well as insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies and policy makers. rdquo;

The good news is that we, Web freaks are not dangerous to the society. Or so it seems to me. I “m not violent regardless of what I read online, I don “t spoil the air with fumes while browsing the Net, I don “t make noises that bother people surrounding me.

My wife has no medical degree, but she “s pretty good at diagnosis. She just listens to her inner voice, and often uses an old reference manual for registered nurses. That “s all she needs. My wife was telling me for years that I was crazy spending so many hours in front of the computer. I was hoping that at least this diagnosis was wrong. Nope. She did it again.

What about you? Should we set up something like an AW Club for Anonymous Webogolics? This can be a place where people can meet and share their experiences in fighting this disease. Suggested topics for monthly meetings are :

“How I reduced checking my emails to 10 times a day rdquo;.

“How to unsubscribe from an RSS feed rdquo;

“How to turn off the Blackberry for an hour rdquo;

“Say lsquo;No ” to iPhone rdquo;

“How to spend more time with your family instead of writing stupid blogs(like this one) rdquo;

Would you join such a club? There is one clear advantage, since it “s a disease included in DSM, we need to come out of the closets to be able to file short term disability claims with our employers. Would you mind having another week of vacation spending it in one of the nice resorts somewhere by the ocean? Just make sure that the hotel you choose offers a wi-fi connection.

P.S. Do not show this blog to your spouse as the only reaction you can expect is “Told ‘ya! “.

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