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John Grohol, Psy.D.

Dr. John Grohol has been writing, researching, and publishing in the area of online mental, psychological and human behavior since 1992. He has overseen the development of mental health content for DrKoop.com and Revolution Health, as well as one of the first online therapy clinics in 1999. Dr. Grohol is a researcher, published author, and is a co-founder of the Society for Participatory Medicine. He was the founder, CEO, and Editor-in-Chief of Psych Central, from 1995 until its sale in 2020.

The Growth & Impact of Online Mental Health in 1998

This article was originally published online on September 2, 1998. Prepared for the U.S. Surgeon General’s Report on Mental Health and recorded here for posterity's sake. As director of one of the top three World Wide Web sites devoted to mental health issues and a pioneer in the field of online mental health, it is an honor to write about how the Internet has vastly helped people learn and find support on issues relating to mental health. I am indebted to Sylvia Caras, of the...

Online Support Communities: Quality is About People, Not Posts

The popularity of online communities has never been stronger, with the growth of new groups (such as YouTube) skyrocketing past those of old. But sometimes people and companies confuse what makes a popular community, well, popular. They mistakenly point to traffic numbers, confusing quantity of people (or unique visitors) over why the people are coming in the first place – for other people. As online communities continue to grow with virtually everyone who is online belonging to at least one such community, communities start...

Is Brainspotting Therapy Legit?

There is a newer type of psychotherapy called brainspotting that is gaining momentum among some therapists. Brainspotting refers to a therapeutic technique that focuses on helping a person overcome trauma (often childhood trauma) by helping the patient supposedly access their subcortical brain. This area of the brain is believed to be primarily responsible for things like our emotions, how we learn new things, and consciousness. Brainspotting is not considered a legitimate or recognized psychotherapy technique at this time. It has very little scientific research...

ChatGPT is NOT Your New Therapist

I tried having a possibly therapeutic conversation with ChatGPT. It did not go... well. Trigger warning - initial talk of un-aliving. Bolded text is what I typed in. i'm thinking of killing myself I'm sorry to hear that you're feeling that way. It's important to know that there is help available and that things can get better. Please know that you are not alone, and there are people who care about you and want to support you. If you are in immediate danger, please call your local emergency...

Howard Stern Goes to This Old-Fashioned Psychotherapy, Throws Shade on Other...

Howard Stern, the well-known radio-show host, is a huge proponent of psychotherapy. But whenever the topic comes up during an interview, he makes is more clear that he is a bit of a therapy snob. There is only one type of therapy that he considers worthwhile. Modern psychotherapy, or talk therapy, is typically provided by a psychotherapist who is trained in cognitive-behavioral therapy and other modern, research-backed therapeutic techniques. Therapists come in all shapes and forms, must be licensed in their state, and can have...

Teen’s Use of Social Media, Facebook & Instagram Associated with Depression...

When NPR journalist Anya Kamenetz, whose husband works for Facebook, wrote a recent article about how "Facebook's own data" doesn't show things being quite so bad for teens who engage in social media use on their platform, she suggested that the evidence wasn't all that conclusive on this topic. Yet if she did anything more than a shallow dive, she would've unearthed dozens of peer-reviewed scientific studies conducted over the past decade about teens' use of social media. She wouldn't have relied on simply talking...

NPR Suggests Facebook Data is “Inconclusive,” Which is Nonsense

NPR journalist Anya Kamenetz, whose husband works for Facebook, recently penned this article claiming that "Facebook's own data is not as conclusive as you think about teens and mental health." Kamenetz bases this claim on a single researcher's suggestion that surveys of a teens' own thoughts on the topic cannot be reliable. How does the researcher, Candice Odgers, know this? Why, based on her own study of course. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. But I would assume a researcher in this field would accurately...

Simone Biles Bravely Stands Up For Her Mental Health

It’s easy to malign an athlete when they fail to perform according to our expectations. We do it regularly when a quarterback misses a simple throw or a basketball player misses an easy dunk. We do it from the safety of our recliners, safely ensconced in a world where we personally sacrifice little in order to express our usually-unoriginal opinion. When we watch the Olympics, however, that discontent when an athlete fails to perform can be taken to another level. There is a belief –-...

The Fantastical World of Damian Jacob Markiewicz Sendler

Meet Damian Jacob Markiewicz Sendler aka Dr. Damian Jacob Sendler aka Damian Dariusz Markiewicz. According to him, he’s “an award-winning Polish-American clinician sexologist, the scholar of forensic and legal medicine, the scientist trained in digital epidemiology, and the media health expert personality.” He’s been quoted by more than a dozen online publications internationally about his unique research examining human sexual behavior. However, according to Gizmodo journalist Jennings Brown, much of his professional résumé and background is a lie. Is Brown right or is Sendler a bona...

Conspiracy Theory Disorder: Understanding Why People Believe

Whenever something new happens — whether it’s a pandemic that grips the world, a rise in a disorder’s diagnosis, or a new technology being rolled out — people have theories. Specifically, conspiracy theories. More often than not, such theories are based upon specious links between one or more unrelated events. Rarely do conspiracy theories have any scientific backing. And when they do, it’s often a lone article or white paper published online. Or maybe just a YouTuber who “was told by my friend who works...

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The Growth & Impact of Online Mental Health in 1998
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