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Test for Spouses/Partners of Internet Addicts

How do you know if your partner may be addicted to the Internet? Impairment to real life relationships appears to the be the number one problem caused by Internet Addiction. Internet Addicts gradually spend less time with real people in their lives in exchange for solitary time in front of a computer. Partners first rationalize the Internet-obsessed user's behavior as "a phase" in hopes that the attraction will soon dissipate. However, when addictive behavior continues, arguments about the increased volume of time and energy spent online soon ensue, but such complaints are often deflected as part of the denial exhibited by Internet Addicts. Internet Addicts become angry and resentful at others who question or try to take away their time from using the Internet. For example, "I don't have a problem," or "I am having fun, leave me alone," might be an Internet addict's response. These behaviors create distrust that over time hurt the quality of once stable relationships. The following Internet addiction test will help you determine if you may be dealing with Internet addiction in your home. Remember when answering, only consider time your partner uses the Internet for non-academic or non-job related tasks.

Please answer the following questions using this scale:

1 = Not Applicable or Rarely.
2 = Occasionally.
3 = Frequently.
4 = Often.
5 = Always.

1. How often does your partner desire or demand his or her privacy when on-line?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

2. How often does your partner neglect household chores to spend more time online?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

3. How often does your partner prefer to spend time online rather than with the rest of your family?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

4. How often does your partner form new relationships with fellow online users?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

5. How often do you complain about the amount of time your partner spends on-line?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

6. How often does your partner's work or employment suffer because of the amount of time he or she spends online?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always




7. How often does your partner check his or her e-mail before doing something else?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

8. How often does your partner seem withdrawn from others since being online?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

9. How often does your partner become defensive or secretive when asked what he or she does online?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

10. How often does your partner try to sneak on-line against your wishes?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

11. How often does your partner ignore spending romantic evenings with you since discovering the online world?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

12. How often does your partner receive strange phone calls from new "online" friends?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

13. How often does your partner snap, yell, or act annoyed if bothered while online?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

14. How often does your partner come to bed late because he or she stays up late online?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

15. How often does your partner seem preoccupied with being back on-line when off-line?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always




16. How often does your partner lie or try to hide how long he or she spends online?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

17. How often does your partner choose to spend time online than doing once enjoyed hobbies and/or outside interests?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

18. How often does your partner prefer to spend time online rather than making-love?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

19. How often does your partner choose to spend more time online than going out with friends?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

20. How often does your partner feel depressed, moody, or nervous when off-line which seems to goes away once back online?

1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Frequently
4 = Often
5 = Always

Your Score:

After you've answered all the questions, add the numbers you selected for each response to obtain a final score. The higher the score, the greater the level of your partner's Internet addiction. Here's a general scale to help measure the score:

20 - 49 points: Your partner is an average on-line user. He or she may surf the Web a bit too long at times, but seems to have control of their usage.

50 - 79 points: Your partner seems to be experiencing occasional to frequent problems because of the Internet. You should consider the full impact of the Internet on your partner's life and on your relationship.

80 - 100 points: Scores in this range indicate that Internet usage may be causing significant problems in your partner's life and your relationship. You should evaluate how the Internet has impacted your relationship and address these problems now.

Underlying such addictive on-line behavior can be a cyberaffair that is about to come between you and your spouse. To learn more about how to deal with cyberaffairs, please read our exclusive new booklet, Infidelity Online: An Effective Guide to Rebuild your Relationship after a Cyberaffair. And if your partner has scored too high for your comfort, please refer to:

Caught in the Net - to read about being a Cyberwidow and Co-dependency related to Internet addiction.

Our Virtual Clinic - for immediate consultation on how to help your situation.



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APA Reference
Staff, H. (2008, December 31). Test for Spouses/Partners of Internet Addicts, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, August 9 from https://www.healthyplace.com/addictions/center-for-internet-addiction-recovery/test-for-spouses-partners-of-internet-addicts

Last Updated: June 24, 2016

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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