Our expert says:
Dear concerned mom,
It's far from unusual for young men or women to become much involved with the internet, whether or not they also choose to access porn or char sites. It happens ; and if they have access at university / school or work, they have the possibility of access without parental supervision, unless their host has imposed some restrictions.
And yes, some folks do get a bit too absorbed, not simply in sexual material, but in the interconnection chatting and relating to others, which can fel ideal for a shy person, as online he can be whoever he chooses to pretend to be. This can actually, to some extent, be a setting for him to develop some conversational skills and confidence.
The important distinction, as Belinda suggests, is the issue of whether it becomes an addition to and facilitator of a real-life social life ( which would be good ) or a substitute for it ( which would not be so good ).
OK, you feel sensitive about raising the question. How about yourself starting to show a much greater interest in the internet and how it can be used ? Chat with him about this, how he finds it, what he finds good and not so good on it, what he would recommend to you, and let him show you ways to explore the web yourself ( though I gather from your having posted a question here that you're probably rather familiar with it already --- in which case swop experiences. Try some of the chat facilities, and ask him what he'd suggest you try, and discussing your own experiences can be a way to open discussion about his experiences.
Similarly, just talk calmly, not naggingly, about how you worry about him appearing to be solitary and isolated, and explore with him what options he has to join clubs / societies / activities at University, to meet others with similar interests/ Avoid putting too much pressure on him, guys like this usually turn out just fine, if they're able to take their time about getting comfortable with other people and forming relationships.
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