Emailers Anonymous

Our Internet has been iffy lately. I have had access to my hotmail and could read my messages, but lately it has decided to take it’s smoke breaks during my attempts to reply. It would always return, however begrudgringly, back to work. 

The other day, I trudged upstairs, balancing my daily cup of joe in one hand, reaching for my chair with the other before my bounding, and obviously more-of-a-morning-person-son, could beat me to it. I turned on my computer with my toe and waited for it to warm up, feeling jovial enough to scoop the wiggling child onto my lap to wait with me.

I was completely denied. My husband troubleshot here and there, clicking on all sorts of updates and Internet cleansers, but to no avail. He shut down both computers, rambling on about changes to a firewall something or other and declared, “Don’t even bother trying to get on, you’ll just get frustrated.” He left for work, leaving me standing there with an empty mug and a cold heart.

My name is Amy. And I am an Internet junkie. Hello Amy. It’s been ten years since I started using. Since then, I check my email daily, if not three or four times a day. Ok…maybe more…I’m still in denial. And its not just email. I do it all. I MUST check my blog stats, do a little bump of research, take a sip out of my Wetpaint pages, a couple hits off other’s blogs, oh, and the shared photos Snapfish account, free base the news headlines, maybe lace it with a little celebrity gossip…and ohmigod, the weather, WHAT ABOUT THE WEATHER? I may start convulsing.

I have always had an obsession with communication. Plain and simple, I am a highly communicative person. I am, at times, overly communicative. Just ask anyone who has had the pleasure of my company. Before computers, it was the phone. When I was in junior high I began to fixate on the telephone. I could talk for hours. If I was waiting for a call, or even thought I should be getting a call, I would stare at the phone, willing it to ring using my highly untrained Jedi mind tricks. Limited or no access to the phone left me uneasy and incomplete. In need of a fix.

I didn’t listen to my husband. I had to confirm at least three times (okay, maybe more…) that day that yes, indeed, I still had no access to any of the above. He knows me well, I became frustrated. I was listless, incomplete. It was a full Day Without Access.

Obviously, in reading this, you can see we are back in the land of the surfing. (my husband still has “Wind Beneath My Wings”  ringing in his ears) I could tell you all the things I got done in The Day Without Access. I could go on about the quality of family life without the distractions of technology. How The Day Without Access served as a little wake-up call as to how reliant on the Internet I’ve become. That I now spend the days doing nothing frivolous, but improving myself, my household and my community. 

OR, I could be grateful for the tool that allows me to start projects, write, keep in touch with friends and family who live thousands of miles away, educate my son with interesting facts at our fingertips, provide me with a much-needed escape, and help us prepare for rain.

Yes, I think I’ll pick the latter. Why deny who I am? My name is Amy, and I am a proud and proficient user of the Internet.

Now I better go check the weather. There’s an exciting front moving in.

2 thoughts on “Emailers Anonymous

  1. I have been increasingly troubled by my internet addiction. At first it didn’t seem so much as an addiction as an enjoyable pastime then slowly but surely I began to see even the most menial task on the Net as having way too much importance in my life. While spending more than 10 hours a day on the Internet I began to realise that actually I could only get less than half the things done that I used to. Productivity and work are all suffering not to mention my relationship with my wife.

    Trouble is I know I need some sort of help but am at a loss for what to do? I tried looking at professional psychiatric help for addictions but I don’t know if I am using a sledgehammer to crack a nut. And it takes way too much time and costs way above my means. I have also tried scouring the net and managed to pick up a lot of reading material such as Dr Young work on the subject which has been quite helpful and detailed. I also came across a neat piece of software which automatically stops you from surfing too long on specific sites which has been rather good at stopping me being addicted for too long you can find this product at http://www.internetandaddiction.com well worth a try. But the fact remains that this problem has not been taken seriously enough by the people who really matter i.e. the ISP and Major Internet players for obvious reasons you might think but isn’t it about time they did ??

    Would love to know how others cope with the same issues and what people think of Dr Kimberly Young suggestions and the software mentioned above.

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