Cyber Addiction and "spectrum" kids.

By Stephen C. Schultz

I was fortunate to spend a couple of days with Christopher Mulligan LCSW. Chris is a therapist in Los Angeles who specializes in treating cyber addiction in teenagers. Many of his clients are teens and families who also struggle with autism spectrum issues.

One of the things that he mentioned, was that many of these socially awkward and emotionally fragile kids gravitate to online gaming and even pornography. They tend to get caught up in some rigid behaviors where family relationships, school performance and peer friendships suffer.

Chris began exploring residential treatment options for those students who need more therapeutic structure as they work through some very difficult issues. In some instances, the patterns of dependence aren't adequately disrupted through outpatient therapy.

So, what is a parent to do when they are concerned about their son or daughter spending too much time on the computer? Often parents feel overwhelmed at the prospect of their teen being "unplugged". Again, what is a parent to do? Chris shared with me,

"The short answer is: 'Anything outdoors!' Such as, hiking, walking, biking, swimming, gardening, washing the car, walking the dog, painting the fence, building a bird bath, collecting sea shells, flying a kite, fishing, sledding, boogie boarding, building sand castles, catching frogs, and so on and so forth."

You can learn more about Cyber Addiction on his blog

Check it out!


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