From the Publisher
The first book to identify the problem of Internet addiction, and to offer help to "online-aholics." Caught in the Net reveals that the behavior of excessive on-line users fits the behavior associated with clinical definitions of established addictions such as alcoholism and excessive gambling. The book explores the problem of Internet addiction in lively detail and provides answers to questions such as: Why is the Internet so seductive? Who gets addicted to it? What are the signs of addictive behavior? and What can you do to help yourself or your loved ones break the addiction?
From the Inside Flap
"I don't even help [my children] with their homework in the evening because I'm in the chat rooms, and I don't help put them to bed because I don't realize how late it is. I also don't help them get ready for school in the morning like I used to do because I'm checking my e-mail. And I just can't stop myself." -Raymond, an Internet addict Internet addiction is real. Like alcoholism, drug addiction, or compulsive gambling, it has devastating effects on the lives of addicts and their families: divorce, job loss, falling productivity at work, failure in school, and, in extreme cases, criminal behavior. The problem has already reached epidemic proportions in the United States, and the number of "netaholics" continues to grow rapidly as more households and businesses go on-line. Yet, until now, no one from the mental health community has come forward with a specific description of Internet addiction and its effects or a strategy for treatment and recovery. In Caught in the Net, Kimberly Young shares the results of her three-year study of Internet abuse. Often using the words of the Internet addicts themselves, she presents the stories of dozens of lives that were shattered by an overwhelming compulsion to surf the Net, play MUD games, or chat with distant and invisible neighbors in the timeless limbo of cyberspace. Why is the Internet so seductive? What are the warning signs of Internet addiction? Is recovery possible? Dr. Young answers these questions and many more. She provides a questionnaire to help Net users determine whether they are addicts, and offers concrete steps to help problem users regulate Internet usage and devise a more balanced place for it in their daily lives. For Internet addicts as well as their parents, spouses, friends, and employers, Caught in the Net offers guidance on where and how to seek help from counselors, therapists, and other professionals who take this affliction seriously. For mental health professionals, this book provides insights into the nature and causes of Internet addiction and encourages counselors and therapists to expand their addiction recovery programs to address the specific problems of Internet addicts.