Addiction 106

This entry adds my series on entries on Addiction. (In February 2005 I wrote several consecutive entries on addiction in the Culture category, starting with Addiction 100). This morning, the Free Press carried a story from CanWest News Service about an article in the latest – that would be the June 2005 – issue of The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry publishing a study of Internet addiction as a mental health issue. The idea that internet use can be considered an addiction has been kicked around since at least 1996 when Kimberly S. Young presented a paper at the American Psychological Association’s convention. That issue isn’t online yet, so my comments will have to come later.
The Journal has a public online archive of recent issues. A review of a book on self-help groups and addiction fit with some of what I had been saying about addictions and addictions treatment. The review is called Substance Abuse, by Dr. Douglas H. Frayn. The book is Circles of Recovery: Self-Help Organizations for Addictions by Keith Humphreys.
There’s another review at the American Journal of Psychiatry. Dr. William R. Flynn reviews Dr. Robert L. Dupont’s book The Selfish Brain: Learning From Addiction. It makes a couple of points that I found to be true from my own experience. He makes the point that younger people starting to experiment with drugs, with Internet access find pro-drug propaganda on the Internet to support and rationalize their impulses. That was n. in the summer and fall of 2002 and the winter of 2002-2003. He also deals with parents who enable addiction when they believe the excuses and lies their addicted kids throw at them. That’s something that was very hard to manage.