one could have imagined 20 years ago, when the internet was just
starting, that it would become the most available, widespread and
largest information provider existing today. From year to year, the
world becomes a small global village reducing and even eliminating
the geographic borders between countries.
a Person seeking
today has the possibility of being assisted by this gigantic medium
with never ending possibilities.
The mental support on the internet
is so available, that you can receive it almost at any place and
time in the world. It does not matter if you are sitting at home, or
in a coffee house and equipped with a regular computer or a laptop,
the spreading of wireless internet allows access to the internet
from almost any place on the globe.
Today people can exchange
conventional treatment in which they would meet with a psychologist
and lay on his couch, with an alternative way of being online the
I will divide the possible support
systems from the most available to the least available.
Support through a chat:
The chat is the internet version
of a normal conversation. It is possible to insert messages, whether
you are writing in an open chat room where everyone can see and
respond to what is being said or whether it is a private one-on-one
conversation without the possibility of the rest of the chat room
members, to view what is being said between those chatting
The response is quick, the
conversations are usually shallow with short and immediate messages.
The chat allows to receive instant mental aid and assistance, from
almost any person we contact in this way. Anonymity is kept, and
this is true to all the methods, so long as a person chooses not to
reveal his private details such as his personal name (he may use a
nickname), place of residence, phone numbers and so on.
This method has disadvantages such
as the usual lack of ability and patience to reach deep places in
the conversation, as well as the need for immediate satisfaction of
mental needs. It is also possible to find chats with professionals
on the internet in which psychologists or psychiatrists will chat
with you and give you an answer to your problems.
Support through forums:
Today on the internet we can find
forums regarding almost any topic which we can think of. From taking
care of cats, to astrology and formative swimming and of course
forums specializing in everything to do with mental help and
The forum managers are usually
professionals in the field or do it as a hobby, but this is not
always the case. The forum members are people like you and I who
find the same main common denominator for which the specific forum
Despite the lack of secrecy, the
forum creates a sense of home, intimacy and exclusivity between the
forum members, even when it is open to the general public, and all
internet surfers can read and participate. The forum is a permanent
place, based on a combination of chat and email. You can correspond
with people in real time, in other words in synchronization, but you
may also respond to messages written in the forum at a later time.
These possibilities are derived from its unique structure, based on
the 'catalogue tree'.
That is to say, the messages on
the forum are designed hieratically, and you may reply to any main
message, and then later respond to any additional response without
limit, and thus is created a structure of a 'tree' with many
branches, where each branch represents a discussion of a certain
issue that appears in the headline of the first message. All the
messages on the forum are saved, and you may read them again at any
Support through electronic mail or messaging:
There are many sites on the
internet that allow its pre-registered users to transfer private
messages between them, in such a way that the messaging system is
similar in its possibilities to a regular emailing system.
electronic mail system allows
correspondence between people almost without any dependency on time
factor. At any time a person can decide to read and/or respond to an
email he has received, even if the other person is not in front of
the computer at that moment.
You may also attach different
files such as pictures, movies or website links to the email. The
email actually replaces the traditional letter in many ways and
almost every computer in the world enables sending. This method is
not very suitable for those looking for an instant response because
of the above mentioned reasons.
Written by Ronen David ©
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