I often wonder how I existed before the internet. I remember the days before we had internet access, I remember when almost no one had it & if they did it was CompuServe. We watched TV, played games on the computers we had, read and some days I was even bored. Now? I can find out anything I may be curious about, from what Chrysler 300 accessories are available, to how to knit (I did teach my self to knit my using videos on the internet) or cook.
It's an amazing resource, especially if its used that way. It can also destroy lives. I know, because it very nearly took everything I love & damaged my relationships with Troy & the kids for a long time. I was addicted to IRC (or Internet Relay Chat) and spent every waking moment on one IRC channel or another, preferring to be with my online friends over my real life family. I was having a hard time adjusting to a lot of changes in our life & it seemed like no matter the time of night or day, someone was always online to chat with. Troy had just started the job he has now, and I wasn't used to being at home alone at night, I was depressed, lonely and having problems dealing with the kids by myself. I know those are excuses, but to me they at least help explain (to me) why I started to rely on the internet so much.
It took a long time & a lot of heartache, but we got through it. I don't chat anymore. I don't even like internet chat anymore, as a matter of fact. I'm able to see the losers and users for what they are now, and I wasn't back then. I do IM with my friends, most of them are people I know in real life or people I never knew on IRC. We do still have a very close relationship with a friend we met there, but we also know him in real life now, too, and have for many years, he's one of our best friends. I'm pretty sure he doesn't chat anymore, either.
These days, I use it for so many other things, information, entertainment, shopping, ideas, but never for easing my loneliness, when I need a friend, I go visit one.