Hooked

Everyone has their addictions, whether or not they will admit to them. For some addictions there are groups, and 12-step programs, and interventions, but for others there is no established support system. I think it’s because most people think if you’re not addicted to alcohol, other drugs, or sexual deviance, then it can’t be something worthy enough to have its own Anonymous group.

I know someone who is addicted to Mountain Dew. She drinks it like it’s going out of style, she always keeps it stocked in her basement, and she can sing the entire song from the old commercials. There are others like her out there, who “do the Dew,” who could use a support system, but it’s not there for them. That’s the beauty of non-controlled substances. There are still others who are addicted to antique furniture shopping, who go to every single antique auction just because it’s happening. They DVR and store every episode of the Antiques Roadshow just to enjoy what is essential window shopping. But the biggest addiction of all that should have its own Anonymous group is the massively growing cell phone addiction.

Do you feel empty when you leave your cell phone at home? Do you check for text messages every available moment of your day? Can you text faster than you speak? Then maybe you need to think about getting help. Back in the ’80s parents were worried that their teenagers were spending too much time on the phone, back when it was attached to a specific spot in the house. They could monitor what discussions their kids were having, and set realistic time limits on every single conversation. They could even listen in on the other line if they were so inclined. However, with the rise of the cell phone, and with the easy nature of the “family plan,” teens nowadays can have multiple conversations at once, not be worried about parents listening in, and use their phones anywhere inside and sometimes even outside of the house. This convenience has bred a certain reliance, which in turn has led to addiction.

So what do we do about it? We start a group dedicated to helping cell phone addicts re-assimilate into society. All members have to leave their phones in a basket by the door whenever they enter. Sponsors are chosen based on their seeming ambivalence when their phones vibrate. And while you can never be cured (once an addict, always an addict), the progress you make will be tremendous, measured in baby steps all along the way.

Now, if we could only create an app for that.

Sam

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