A teenager is to undergo psychiatric treatment after becoming addicted to her mobile phone. Like the worst type of addicts, Caroline regularly blows all her spending money. “I know it sounds like a silly addiction but it is real to me”, she said. “When I hear my phone beeping with a text message I am all smiles and it makes me happy. When I don’t have any credit left I become depressed. I haven’t got enough money for proper food and I have to borrow it”. Her parents have become so worried that next week she is due to begin a course of treatment from a specialist. She first revealed her craving to her doctor, who advised her to switch the phone on the silent mode, put it in a cupboard and forget about it. But he has now referred her for more psychiatric care after the scale of the problem became apparent.
Caroline said: “I have become protective of the phone. I can’t let anyone take it from me and I check where it is every two minutes”. A leading psychologist has classified Caroline’s plight as “technology addition”, in which sufferers experience a “high” when they receive a message bleep from their mobile. “It is like the first flush of love when you receive an e-mail or text, you feel good”. Caroline became hooked at 12 after her parents gave her a mobile for Christmas. Since then she has spent all her pocket money on phone cards.
I. Answer the following questions using your own words but taking into account the information in the text.
a. What is the meaning of “technology addiction”?
- The expression “technology addiction” means having an obsession with technical gadgets that reach the point of dependence and compulsion.
b. Why does Caroline call herself “protective” of the phone?
II. Are the following statements true (T) or false (F)? Identify the part of the text that supports your answer by copying the exact words on the answer sheet.
a. She'd rather eat than phone.
b. Her parents sent her to a hospital when she was 12.
c. The sound of an in-coming message makes Caroline feel good.
- TRUE: When I hear my phone beeping with a text message I am all smiles and it makes me happy. (line 4-5)
III. Find a synonym for each of the four words below from these six options:
flush plight top preoccupied nonsensical mute
IV. Choose a, b, or c, in each question below. Only one choice is correct
1. Caroline's addiction is a silly one for her...
- a) because she can cope with the money she has
- b) because she can afford the 40 pointless calls plus some more messages.
- c) she thinks it is silly but a real one to her.
2. Her doctor recommended her to...
- a) give up having mobiles.
- b) put the phone away for a while.
- c) to put all her money in a cupboard and forget about it.
3. Caroline was sent to a specialist...
- a) because she didn’t put her mobile in a cupboard.
- b) because her addiction was very serious.
- c) because she smashed her mobile against a wall.