American Psychological Association

110th Convention
Chicago, August 22-25, 2002


 

[Barak,Fenichel,Suler]
Azy Barak, Michael Fenichel, John Suler (David Nickelson right of podium)
Plenary Session: Cyberspace Travels for Psychological Researchers, Educators, and Practitioners


Please try to relax, sit back and imagine yourself here at this presentation....

This is an effort to both describe the content and re-create the experience of "being here"¹ to hear four different perspectives on the topic of "Psychology Online". A main purpose is to interactively demonstrate how online psychology manifests itself across interests and specialty areas as it increasingly reflects 21st century human experience. As psychologists, we all see reflections of the Internet in our every day personal and professional lives. Whether in our offices, classrooms, or business world, and whether seeking or providing information, treatment or advice, the psychology of every day life now clearly includes life online. From shopping to traveling to dating, IM'ing, flaming, plowing through spam or seeking help with personal problems, the Internet has become part of our everyday lives.

I would think if Freud were around now, he'd probably be busy updating his "psychopathology of every day life" to include online life, for example describing the object-seeking mechanisms of our primordial instinctive drives with libido and cathexis becoming directed towards the computer and bound to its contents and destinations. Further, the object relations folks might well ponder how "cyberspace" promotes or hinders the development of "healthy narcissism", or activates toxic and non-toxic object representations through significant online relationships. Theorists and clinicians might explore the dynamics of how one might engage in splitting online between various part-objects, while all the while cursing at the keyboard or reacting strongly to a misunderstood joke or emoticon. And when does "multi-tasking" mask, promote or contain the process of "splitting"?

We are, as they say, living in exciting times.

Even before the symposium began I was feeling very energized after having heard so many other presenters over the past few days speaking with one voice about how technology is profoundly affecting human experience. Several speakers clearly shared my passion for encouraging psychologists to understand that "life online is but one aspect of life in general", sometimes integrated easily and adaptively across situations, sometimes not.

I was also thrilled at having the opportunity before the presentation began to meet people who had come to see us speak about our topic, some of whom had travelled to Chicago from places like Australia and Japan and the U.K. Not only one, but *two* in the audience were familiar names to me from their e-list participation, and *both* shared with me that they met their husbands online.   :-) One now has an advice website. Someone from Japan mentioned how the Internet is increasingly being utilized by employee assistance plans, and noted that suicide is the #1 killer in Japan for the past 4 consecutive years. Clearly culture is an important component of how technology is integrated into societies. I'd already learned earlier that online the Japanese smile tries to be beautiful: (^_^)   Internet psychology transcends American borders!

I was sorry APA President Phil Zimbardo could not attend -- he was himself presenting elsewhere on the interesting topic of "
why and how normal people go mad". I nevertheless acknowledged gratitude for his having invited us to do this plenary session in prime time, and I felt sure that Dr. Zimbardo, a legendary social psychology researcher, would be among the very first to recognize and understand the many profound ways in which so much of human psychological experience has been impacted -- both helped and hurt -- by the various social and technological characteristics of "life in Cyberspace".

The audience was clearly very savvy. No more questions were asked this year about "what's a browser", and at the end there were some knowledgeable questions about the mechanics of setting up a web page, utilizing the Internet for classroom instruction, complying with laws and regulations, & becoming affiliated with organizations providing professional services.

I quickly decided to go to plan B -- recognizing that the audience did not need much convincing about the pervasive influence of the Internet.

Presenting just a few statistics to illustrate how widespread Internet use is (and how quickly it is spreading):


In some introductory slides, I tried to illustrate how even in "traditional" (offline, in-office) therapy practice, therapists are going to be hearing about online experience, just as online counselors are often consulted about offline, f2f relationships. The world is rapidly changing too, with China closing down Internet Cafes in July 2001 (for political reasons) but now, just a year later, the most populous country on earth is #2 worldwide -- second only to the U.S. -- in sales of computer and Internet-related products. Last year's church scandals were all about "Internet priests", but this year.... well, Internet was not to blame. Yes, anything "Internet" seems to sell news! But it's really now just another part of 21st century life, as telephones and television forever shaped human experience in the 20th century.

I tried also to make the point that while there are hot discussions and debates about online treatment to be sure, that's not the entirety of "online psychology" (nor "online mental health"). Psychologists in every form are impacted by the dominant force which the Internet now plays in our everyday daily lives, and it is imperative to be leading the way in active study and discussion, with ongoing dialogue between researchers and practitioners, exploring the evolutionary ways in which people are actually communicating -- living lives which increasingly include at least some time spent online, socially and/or instrumentally (seeking something and then leaving.) In fact, jumping ahead to a theme I will return to frequently, the integration of online life into our personal, professional and cultural lives...

For several days I had been reflecting on the findings of the Pew Internet & American Life Project, as reported in their third annual report of a longitudinal study of Internet use in America (
http://www.pewinternet.org). They found what they refer to as "a seven minute dropoff" effect, a decline in Internet use which was basically attributed to more efficient use of time spent online, accomplishing more tasks, more quickly. While people were e-mailing more for "serious" purposes (notably for advice), accessing the Net more from work, & complaining more about spam, they did this in 7 minutes less time, on average, compared with the past two years. Why? Perhaps the islands of "newbies" are dwindling and the "gee whiz" experience which can lead to that old "Internet addiction" is seen less widely now, as more people have a naturalness or high comfort level with the technology. Yet not *everyone* experiences this transparency of using the computer, a point I made earlier in cautioning against our own assumptions ("countertransference") when first beginning an online relationship-- therapeutic, social, or otherwise.

The Pew Report (3/2002 summary) makes the point very well:

"The status of the Internet is shifting from being the dazzling new thing to being a purposeful tool that Americans use to help them with some of life's important tasks. As Internet users gain experience online, they increasingly turn to the Internet to perform work-related tasks, to make purchases and do other financial transactions, to write e-mails with weighty and urgent content and to seek information that is important to their everyday lives."

This dovetailed very nicely with the 2001 study by La Rose, Eastin et al (J. of Online Behavior, 1 (2), online at
http://www.behavior.net/job/v1n2/paradox.html ). They revisited the famous "Internet Paradox Study" (Kraut et al, 1998) which delighted the popular media by reporting that college students were using the Net to communicate socially but still suffering from loneliness and depression. What the newer study suggests is that what was reflected in the Paradox study was probably an artifact among the last of the "newbie" generation who arrived in college *without* a computer nor with any prior Internet experience. In *that* sample, subjects were seen as having suffered in their efforts at self-efficacy, neither mastering the joy of computers nor experiencing the thrill of seamless online communication, instead reporting the experience of diminished social contact and thus feelings of depression. The paradox of course was how one could spend time socializing online and yet report feeling lonely. LaRose et al call the conclusion that Internet *caused* loneliness "superficial".

These studies offer excellent examples of how *psychology* has such a wide open new area to research, between social and clinical, educational and addictions psychology, and beyond. Whatever you think of computers and the Internet, and wherever you think Cyberspace may be, the experiences people report, the help they seek and get, the knowledge people gain.... this is *real* human experience, and thus an exciting new area for all who call themselves psychologists to understand and effectively utilize. John Suler has been developing his theories on a holistic psychology of cyberspace, and constructing practical frameworks such as he will talk about momentarily. We all need to have awareness and understanding of the new aspects of daily life, not only in Cyberspace itself but in a world where we are all connected and sometimes disconnected, and it's a fascinating area for students, researchers and practitioners to explore, this new psychology of everyday life, as technology and communications are rapidly and seemlessly integrated into our 21st century experience.

The same is true in education, even in pre-schools -- where I have watched 4-year-olds, even those diagnosed with ADD/H, actively learning at computer stations resembling colorful playground equipment. The Net is routinely used in K-12 classrooms in American schools, sometimes used interactively with other schools and libraries, and also widely used in college lectures (e.g., on whiteboards) and used by nearly all students for comprehensive research across all subject areas. Again, this is normal 21st Century life!

In terms of clinical practice, there is clearly a need for data-based research (such as espoused by the
behaviorists!) and also training, CE, and ongoing study through case presentations such as has been done through ISMHO's Clinical Case Study Group -- now in its fourth year of 24 hours/day peer supervision, support and practice-related discussion.

Even simple analysis of web traffic can be interesting and informative. I didn't get into this (not enough time!) but I'd gotten from APA its web stats for the period of 4/14 to 6/30/02 to see which topics, on a huge scale, were drawing inquiries. Would you believe, after the main indexes, #5 most accessed page was an article on "facial expressions" (nearly 3000 visits) , #7 was teen drinking, and #8 -- viewed longer than any other of the top 10 pages: "Sleep deprivation may be undermining teen health". Hmm. With a huge site like APA's, what does it say that these are the topics site visitors most seek?

Of course there are other large-scale studies being done all the time, but generally applied towards marketing rather than social research. For example, reports of huge increases in online air travel reservations in early August seemed to provide strong evidence that Americans were beginning to feel safer about travelling and/or more eager to take a vacation. Simply analyzing web traffic on many types of large sites, oriented towards teens or business or self-help or whatever, could provide rare and powerful snapshots of what people are doing online in order to benefit themselves offline, in every day life activities. This is happening within advertising and marketing. Imagine all the grist for the mill out there now for social and community psychologists!

Before taking off on a mini-tour of "what's out there" in Cyberspace for psychologists -- practitioners, educators, and researchers (remember the title of this presentation?) -- I wanted to share just one quick historical quote to offer a healthy perspective on how fast technology has been changing and how in the blink of an eye, in single generations, we have been integrating this rapid change into our "modern life". [As I said to the live audience, I just had to use this somewhere!]

      In 1949 Popular Mechanics forecasted the wonders of modern technology in an article which stated that "computers in the future may weigh no more than 1.5 tons".

Imagine that!(My laptop comes close, but ...) A half century later, with texting, cell-phones, PDA's, and more, miniaturization has now really come into its own!

That quote, by the way, is from the NY State Division of Criminal Justice,
Missing & Exploited Children Clearinghouse, which wants people to be aware of how quickly the Internet has been becoming a regular part of children's lives. They report that in 1995 2 million children were accessing the Internet from home, 4 million in 1996, and in 2002 already exceeding 45 million. They project that by 2005 "77 million children will be accessing the Internet".

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Now, as you can see I might easily spend an hour sharing quotes and statistics and trying to relate it all to the phenomenology of "life in Cyberspace" and the implications for online therapy, self-help, research, community-building, mental health support services, and education, to say nothing of how "normal life" we hear about in our consulting rooms and dinner tables is impacted by the existence of the Internet.

Hopefully having made the point -- and fulfilled my obligation to the title of the presentation -- I turned now to a favorite presentation activity, a "virtual online tour" of several sites I've assembled together in one place to stimulate discussion about what the audience might feel are the "good", "bad" and "ugly" of online mental health sites. None of the sites are pre-labelled as such and the choice of proper label is yours alone! These are meant as talking-points to stimulate further examination of what may be desirable or not to have on one's own web-page, or what a consumer may be looking for (and has a right to know).

I distributed as a
handout the actual live tour outline I used for this presentation, and encouraged colleagues to explore further at home and with colleagues, to get a better feel for the diversity out there than I could possibly provide "here and now" in just my remaining 10 minutes.

A quick introduction and explanation followed, detailing how the destinations not covered in today's "virtual online tour" could be explored more fully and leisurely at home by using the same online guide I used for this live symposium, my gift to the audience as a hand-out. (And now online for you!) But please read the overview first...this tour is meant to be guided. :-)

What followed was my annual virtual tour of some online sites to use as illustrations of how "All of human psychology is reflected on the Internet" -- the good, the bad, and the ugly. My main goal, in 10 minutes or less, was to introduce an overview of how a web-based resource page can be used as a discussion tool as well as a teaching, research and practice tool. Some of the sites included in the tour are good examples of why one needs to be an informed consumer, while some illustrate carefully and tastefully-made "virtual offices" meant to educate and also generate income. Others are entirely for self-help or are advertiser-driven or reflect popular culture, pop psychology or the demographics of online activity.


A Cyberspace Tour of "Psychology Online"

I began with a brief overview of my own site, Current Topics in Psychology, which I characterized as simply my own way of accessing and organizing what *I* need during my work day, making it quick and easy to find appropriate handouts for colleagues and supervisees, basic readings for clients, and useful resources for students and parents. It's a tool, basically, using the Internet's web of people and information as a major resource for the practice and study of psychology. The site is not extravagant by any means (as it has a staff of one) but with thousands of visitors a week it is still fascinating to me to see what it is that people come looking for. Lately I've been deluged with visitors looking for information on children & violence, and traumatic response to the World Trade Center Attack, and school phobia. I was getting 5000 hits a day for a while, just on a photograph of the WTC which is apparently easily found by the search engines. Prior to September 11, the "hot topics" on my site ranged from body piercing, self-esteem and peer pressure to personality theory, anxiety, LD, ADD, and online or offline psychotherapy.

I reiterate: The Internet is a channel, medium, or tool which can be used as a powerful means of interacting with our world. Be it evolution or revolution brought about by human technology, it is not inherently evil nor is it bestowed with magical power to heal, in and of itself. It is not an alien phenomenon. It is part of our lives--in some cases an extension of our selves (take a look at your "desktop!")-- and in perspective it is but one aspect of technology which we routinely integrate into our everyday 21st century lives.

Sermon ended now. :-)

[As I describe the online tour
here & now, note that hypertext links to the tour outline will open the pages being described, in a new browser window. While you are welcome to stop and take a look, you can also just follow along with the text description for now, and give yourself a more leisurely tour when finished with this article, recalling the discussion points.]

[See:
http://www.fenichel.com/2002APA.shtml to follow along, or after reading this article.]

These selected pages represent a cross section of psychology & mental health sites offering information via web pages, chat or message board. Some offer statistics on who looks for what online (e.g.,
Google Zeitgeist), and examples of sites which combine several modalities (support, services, communities, information), along with a look at how easy it is to set up an e-mail discussion group yourself (e.g., Yahoo).

[CLICK HERE to open the Virtual Tour guide in a new browser window.]

Note: Some links may have gone dead subsequent to August 2002. If they are now dead, chances are the company has gone out of business.


First slide please....

Some of the highlights of the guided tour:

I noted how one page ("unlicensedtherapists.com") was still online with its magical colored couch, but also with an order to cease and desist providing services -- courtesy of the State of California. (You can see the letter on their site, which I discovered live during last year's APA convention presentation.) Obviously some people found practicing without a license a "bad" thing, and some may view their joking about it as "ugly". Most of the sites on the list, btw, do have "good" features to commend them, but not all. The goal I set out is to encourage discussion of what is good and ethical, and what elements contribute to a positive portrayal of the profession and the practitioner. A secondary goal is to learn from examples what to avoid, and to anticipate the kind of questions consumers may rightly ask.

There are many "traditional" sites for therapists represented here also, basically online business cards with information, perhaps some useful links, and contact information. Take a look and perhaps you'll see some good ideas for yourself, or find details you feel are important or information you feel needs clarification. The tour also includes several "popular psychology" sites like
Queendom.com, one of the most visited mental health sites, offering self-serve "psychological tests" such as the Kiersey Sort personality profiles. (Is this a good thing?) And Google looks at millions of web searches and breaks down what the human (online) race is looking for, longitudinally, month to month across geographic regions and cultural interests. Fascinating, and with boundless potential for expanding our understanding of how diverse the online human race truly is.

One site I always like to include in an online tour is "Ananova" [b.2000 d. 2010]. Ananova is a fully synthesized newscaster with green hair and expressive eyes, who explains her origins on the site (which really requires broadband/hi speed to work at its best). It's on the guided tour, too, so you can visit this and other intreresting sites on your own and hopefully share some of your experiences with others and join the dialogue about what is happening, what is possible, what is terrific, and what causes ethical heartburn.

Back to Ananova... Click on "What Am I?" and you learn (via her voice):

"I am the face of a new kind of new service. I am the friendly face in front of a network of information designed to bring you exactly what you're looking for. I've been invented to do what real human news readers can't do. As a computer I can deliver millions of different news reports to millions of people simultaneously and on demand".

Why a talking head? "My designers thought it would be great if everyone had a personal assistant to make things easier but it was too big a job for one man or woman alone. So here I am, a cross between a supercomputer and a friendly face."

And why a woman? "My designers made me female because research has shown that most men and women respond more positively to a female voice when taking in important information. For some reason, you humans trust an artificial woman more than a man." :-)

(Never argue with a green-haired super-computer!)


So... 20 minutes goes awfully fast but I wanted to use my alotted time to make the point that psychology online takes many forms. And life *offline* may also reflect experience online. In therapy, research, education, and our personal lives, there is incredible potential for integrating the Internet into our 21st Century Lives.

Now you've had an overview, introduction, and mini-tour... You also have the "handout", with which hopefully --after listening to me and seeing the pages I shared to give a sense of "what's out there"-- you'll have a field day (literally or figuratively) using this list to find people and pages you admire, offering support, education or services, or the tools to assist with self-help and growth. Or maybe some things to be wary of, as well.

What you will see are some of the sites I've already mentioned, plus some other sites which generally coincide with the outline headings, and reflect the diversity of "online mental health" related sites which can be found easily via the Internet. Some are quite good, some leave much to be desired. My live -- and now written -- disclaimer: I am making no claims nor judgments about the individual web sites, other than that they are good examples of the most popular and most common types of web pages "out there" at this point in time. Decide for yourself which you think are "Good, Bad, or Ugly". :-)

I only barely touched on formal online education, including "distance learning" which is growing immensely in some aspects, but also has been cut recently from some large universities. Continuing Education (CE) however is increasingly being offered via the Internet. I think the point I'd make is that *psychology* should be a presence in basic online research, educational coursework, and graduate/practicum training, *and needs to acknowledge and further examine the role of technology* in our lives, for good and bad.

Many organizations -- including APA -- have long been active in developing online research, education, and practice tools. Examples on the "virtual tour" include a look at
APA's site, web pages with specific orientations (such as Internet addiction), more generic "advice" groups, and online mental health organizations such as ISMHO (which has guidelines and suggestions for ethical practice, and was formed to promote research and education as well as practice). For the practice-oriented, I'd strongly recommend the articles on "Suitability for Online Treatment", and "Online Psychotherapy: Technical Difficulties, Formulations and Processes", as well as the new in-depth look at "Myths and Realities of Online Clinical Work ", listed on the handout/presentation guide near the end, under "The Future".

Some pages offer good examples to stimulate debate and discussion and some selections were chosen to highlight claims made about efficacy, or ways to integrate information with support or services, or places to report online crime (e.g.,
The Web Police). A few of the big portal sites are presented also, along with some of what were and are and will be the big online therapy organizations.² Finally there are a few links to relevant articles about the nature of specific online trends and phenomena, highlighting for example *adolescent* Internet use (by our future adults!) and exploring the process of "multi-tasking", something we all do, some better and more happily than others. For some it's soothing, for some it's stress.

So much to say and see... but you can continue on your own:

http://www.fenichel.com/2002APA.shtml

Thank you very much. Please give yourself a tour at home as well, recalling what you've heard here today, from me and now from my illustrious panel....

========

Next up, Azy Barak is going to describe one highly-focused *application* of Internet-facilated mental health services. He'll be followed by John Suler, the man who wrote the book on the psychology of cyberspace, literally. Just as I was thinking he's described cyberspace behavior & social psychology almost completely already, he's going to to describe for us today a new model, or program, which integrates a multi-channel, largely self-directed, Internet experience for specific client-initiated "quests", which can be educational, self-help, or therapeutic. Stay tuned for Dr. Suler on more of that. Finally, we are privileged to have with us someone who really can speak with authority about the interface between American Psychology and the Internet, from his vantage point as the APA Practice Directorate's Director of Technology Policy and Projects.

I noted at this point that I easily *could have* used up my entire alotted time just introducing my distinguished panelists, colleagues, friends... 3 individuals who collectively represent a profound connection and contribution to the world of psychology online.

In brief: John Suler is virtually synonomous with "
The Psychology of Cyberspace", his online book being an encyclopedic examination of individual and group experience on the Net, ranging from 3-dimensional avatar-populated environments to e-mail dynamics, essays on disinhibition and the challenges of text-only communication. You name it, he's written about it, several steps ahead of everyone else. Today he is going to talk about his evolving work in finding ways to *integrate* aspects of online life in a coordinated, goal-directed approach will he will describe, and it's great to have him here with us.

Dr. Azy Barak, from the University of Haifa, is well known to researchers because of his prolific writing in the areas of online support groups and many variants of "
Psychological Applications" on the Internet ranging from assessment to group work to a new and exciting project in Israel which totally changed my idea of what can or can not be done online, or what should be... He has been saving lives, in an empirically demonstrable way, in doing online suicide prevention, something which sounds frightening to some, just saying it, but he will describe a program which is working. Finally, to speak about psychology and technology, and a new web-based portal for psychological researchers, practitioners, and educators, Dr. David Nickelson is the man who can speak on behalf of American Psychology and it's technological pursuits, as APA's Director of Technology Policy and Projects. He's been very busy putting together a new and exciting project for APA's practice directorate, which you will hear about today, as well as other new and important information which will effect us as practitioners, especially (such as licensure regulations, HIPAA regs, and so forth).

So now ... without further adieu, it's my great pleasure to introduce Dr. Azy Barak.

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[Note: I'm sorry I don't have more detailed notes on my co-presenters presentations, as I was actually listening and working the computer as they spoke... multi-tasking! But I did take a few notes and I have the slides .... Here goes. Readers are encouraged to visit my co-presenters' websites for more in-depth exploration of their work.]

Emotional Support and Prevention for Suicidal People Via the Internet

Dr. Azy Barak explained that SAHAR is from a Hebrew Acronym. In introducing the topic of suicide, and how prevalent it is, he shared a screen shot of an online (July 14th) MSNBC news story proclaiming that 3 million American teens have either thought about or attempted suicide. [It's also one of the leading causes of death, and THE leading cause of death in Japan!] Dr. Barak next displayed shots of several popular web pages which deal with suicide, ranging from mental health sites directing teens to telephone help lines to a teen site seemingly offering a menu of techniques to effectively commit suicide.

Next Dr. Barak presented the SAHAR site (which is in Hebrew) pausing to make some comparisons between the suicide rate in the US and the rate in Israel, proportional to its population. Israel's rate is very high.

SAHAR was developed as a comprehensive site which offers a complete variety of resources as well as services. Its components include:

Clients in distress contact this program and are from the beginning assured anonymity. In turn they are asked to consent to the anonymity of the helpers as well. However, in cases of clear and imminent risk, working with authorities there have been many emergency rescues, despite the difficulties. The workers are carefully selected, trained (for 16 weeks) and supervised. A data base is maintained along with ongoing outcome research and continuing education. SAHAR now gets about 6000 visits a month which in US-equivalent terms would be about 240,000 visits in a month to a suicide helpline.

Clients are afforded a number of ways in which they can communicate with SAHAR, using either synchronous or asynchronous communication (e.g., ICQ or Human Click for synchronous chat, and using e-mail, message box or forum/Message Board for asynchronous communication). Both individual and group activities take place. There are four separate forums and they get approximately 200 posts a day. Seventy-five percent of contacts are from adolescents.

There is constant communication between staff and an emergency chat channel so there can be continuity of service despite 2-way anonymity. There are also, in fact, procedures for tracing someone if life is clearly imminently at risk. So far 50 documentated cases of life-saving emergency intervention have been recorded.

Some of the challenges encountered thus far include imposters, staff burnout, and technological difficulties. They are constantly striving to study the program and improve it, and very proud of their track record. As they describe SAHAR themselves, this organization is "Harnessing the Internet to Save Lives". And that, dear audience, is one admirable example of new applications for mental health service provision, online, easily found on a computer near you.

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John Suler took the podium next, and introduced his "E-Quest" model, describing a program which facilitates self-guided "quests" for online information, education, and self-help. It also allows for the guidance of a consultant or for its use as a supplement to psychotherapy and/or as an aid to conducting participant-observer research. He described E-Quest's guiding philosophy as including the following elements:


He used some e-mail vignettes, with very typical and enlivening "text-talk" such as smileys and use of *asterisks* for emphasis, etc. to illustrate how it might work; An excellent example of clinically rich and linguistically descriptive text-based online discourse was shared (an actual transcript, in this case used with permission of the client and with a fictitious name). Can anyone doubt that Brian has succeeded in expressing himself and putting both nuance and feeling into his text-only communication?

Jennifer!

The party went well, thankx for asking. Of course, I wish you were there  :-(  A lot of my {{{{friends}}}} and {{{{family}}}} came. *WOW* I was so happy. My favorite gift was a pillow from one of my sisters. It said, "A Brother is a Lifelong Friend" (Aaaah!) My 4 year old {{{{nephew}}}} got into trouble (uhoh) when it was time to leave and he was still hiding.

BTW, Remember the "chocolate pudding pie" dream I told you about (inside joke)? Well, the "chocolate pudding pie" showed up at my party!!! It was quite good ;-)

On a more serious note, we did not serve alcohol at this party. One reason is that some family members have a serious drinking problem. Another reason is that it helps to weaken the association between alcohol and having a good time, in the eyes of children (and adults) :-)

TTYL,
Brian



For more complete discussion of Dr. Suler's E-quest program, with additional links to his online world of cyberspace psychology, please visit his wonderful pages at http://users.rider.edu/~suler/psycyber/equest.html



Rounding out our look at "psychology online", Dr. David Nickelson, attorney and psychologist representing APA's online practice projects, offered a wealth of information. He began by offering practitioners an update on the status of licensure laws, and HIPAA compliance timelines. Dr. Nickelson then introduced APA's brand new web-based practice initiative, highlighting the American Psychological Association's new web portal which was officially launched early this morning at the APA Town Hall Breakfast.

Click Here to See the APA Practice Portal




¹See "The Here and Now of Cyberspace

²If you get a dead link, you'll know something happened to the site since August 2001 when this presentation was first made. As of November 2002 UnlicensedTherapists.com appears to have disappeared, couch and all.

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