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Parents and "Advanced Technology"

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
I was just wondering If I am the only one with Parents that are technologically challenged?

My poor, dear mother cracks me up. Just an example, everytime she goes to get gas, she has a serious fight with the pump. She stands there talking to it and cussing it out. The whole idea of sticking a piece of plastic into it and it giving you gas is just way over her head. She comes back up to my window, and asks me, what am I doing wrong? While I sit there trying to not laugh, she is giving me the evil eye as I explain it.
Then she is mad because she is embarrassed. She gets in the car, still talking to herself... asking, "why dont i just take money inside and pay for it." i give her a funny look and say, "omg, gas stations take cash?" To which she ever so sweetly replies "go to hell".

Another example, we are at an ATM... she has no clue what she is doing. She just got the debit card in the mail, has never used an ATM before. She is of course talking to herself and cussing. The ATM made a funny noise and spit her money out at her. I have never seen anyone jump back like that in my life. Of course, I laughed then she turned around and punched my arm.

My dad on the other hand, from what I can tell, has most things figured out. And even if he doesnt, he sits there and makes it look like he knows what he is doing(you know how guys are).

Does anyone else have any funny stories of their parents or grandparents fighting with technology?
post #2 of 22
So tell me (she said sweetly) how old is your mom?

The only problem I had with my mom was when she somehow managed (several years back you understand) to put a CD into a 5.25 floppy drive. I had the dickens of a time getting it out, and of course it was ruined when I finally coaxed it free. This was an older hand-me-down computer from my BIL, and the only thing she used it for was to play games (mostly solitaire) on.

After she did it AGAIN with another CD I taped up the drive with a note on the tape saying in large letters DO NOT REMOVE!!! Of course she was over 80 at the time, she's 88 now and in a nursing home.
post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RoseHawke
So tell me (she said sweetly) how old is your mom?
She will be 41 in November
post #4 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by mferr84
She will be 41 in November
41 is no excuse I think she's just technologically challenged, period !
post #5 of 22
Both of your parents are light years ahead of mine. They do not have an ATM card or a computer!
post #6 of 22
You know how many times I've had to explain the "start" menu to my mom O.o

She still calls me (while I'm at work) to ask me where her word program is, and how to use email. *sigh* she has NO excuse, lol, at 63 -with my dad in the house with her all day to teach her.

on a more interesting note, I got a cryptic call yesterday asking me "What is a Wooz?" A wooz? I had no Idea! LOL.. Finally she said "well, I don't know what your aunt Nona was saying about Altay then! She called him a wooz!" Wuss? Are you trying to say Wuss? "Yes, Wooz!" ugh.. lol
post #7 of 22
my mum n dad are both not technology people they are both 50. my dad can sort of cope with the computer, but my mum... she can't even controle the mouse!!!
post #8 of 22
lol my mother had forgotten how to turn on the computer and open freecell after not using the computer for 3 months lol
post #9 of 22
My mom doesn't even come in the computer room at all. There was one time that I coaxed her into the chair and told her to put her hand on the mouse. She looked confused then scared, got up and ran out of the room. That was about 8 years ago.
The thing that frusterates her the most in the world are the TV's. I can't tell you how many times my sister and I have sat her down to teach her how to use the tv/video button on the remote. She especially has a difficult time downstairs where if someones left it on video you have to push the TV up one channel to get the satallite. I'm not sure why "push this button once" confuses her, but it sure makes her cuss.
I think some people are convinced they can't do or learn the stuff so they don't. Walking into any learning situation saying "I can't I can't I can't" will result in nothing.

On the other hand, my 83 year old grandmother is contemplating getting a computer so she can email back and forth with us and my brothers family
post #10 of 22
Thread Starter 
These are funny. I sometimes wonder how my mom survives in a world so full of all of these technological advances, and she is so... un-technological.
She, thank god, can use a computer. But then again, she has to use a computer often throughout her work day. However, when it comes to PDA's, she just cannot grasp that concept. Whenever me or my brother are using ours, she sits and gawks like it is the most fascinating thing she has ever seen.
post #11 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by mferr84
These are funny. I sometimes wonder how my mom survives in a world so full of all of these technological advances, and she is so... un-technological.
She, thank god, can use a computer. But then again, she has to use a computer often throughout her work day. However, when it comes to PDA's, she just cannot grasp that concept. Whenever me or my brother are using ours, she sits and gawks like it is the most fascinating thing she has ever seen.
I could probably learn to use a PDA if necessary, but I have no use for one. Also my cell is just a bare bones pay-as-you-go model strictly for emergencies as I do not feel the need to be "connected" to the rest of the human race thankyouverymuch!

Part of it is just how interested you are in the technology, I think, and also if you can see a use for it in your own life. I'm something of a "techno geek" being a Science Fiction fan practically from the time I could read (so that'd be over 40 years,) and think the technology is just totally intriguing. But on the other hand I have no wish to learn about the hardware involved leaving that up to the husband figure who has been putting our computers together for years.

I used to have to start people out on the mainframe when I worked outside the home, and one of the things I told them right from the start was "You can't break it, and nothing is written in stone, so don't worry about it!" Also that according to my sister-in-law the teacher there was research proving that something would have to be repeated an average of 17 times for it to "stick". Made people feel better .

If you've got somebody in your family who's a bit intrigued, but intimidated by the computer, one of the best things to do is to find a game they'd like to play and sit them down with that. You also have to remember that it's really a totally foreign language.

Rather like us being put out at sea on a sailing ship and being told "Okay, now plot and sail a course for port!" You see the problem .
post #12 of 22
I bought my mom a computer when I moved abroad, so we could email pix etc. But every time I go home I have to reteach her how to open it and get messages, even though I write it down carefully each time. Now my brother goes over every couple of weeks to show her the pix and stuff I send. But she can use the VCR OK. And after all, she is 93 now. She still uses all her kitchen gadgets including a breadmaker.
post #13 of 22
My mom doesn't like her cell phone. The different ringtones to distinguish whether it's a text message or an actual call, drive her insane. It is always off and although she has it with her, she will look for a payphone when she's out of the house.
post #14 of 22
Several years ago, one of my adult daughters gave me her old computer, after she purchased a new one.
I did not want to learn how to use it. I was actually mad at her for "dumping the darn thing on me."

Finally, I gave in & began feeling it out. I joined a senior's computer club where I was exposed to older people who loved using their computers.

Last year, I bought a new one. I don't know how I ever lived without things like e-mail, the ability to research anything on the net and TCS.

Cindy (rosehawke) even taught me how to center things.
In her earlier post, she had a creative idea about how to get an older person involved with a computer.
I quote her here...
"If you've got somebody in your family who's a bit intrigued, but intimidated by the computer, one of the best things to do is to find a game they'd like to play and sit them down with that. You also have to remember that it's really a totally foreign language."

Good suggestion Cindy.

Older people can learn to love using a computer...
I am a living proof of that.
Lei
post #15 of 22
My parents aren't techno challenged, but my father does have a 'thing' about buying new gadgets. They must have been the last couple in America to buy a microwave, and they only just bought a phone with voicemail 5 years ago. And they bought a new computer maybe three years ago with a Pentuim II and a 20 gig harddrive.

That in itself wouldn't be strange, except that my dad is an electrical engineer. He knows that there are really cool things out there, he just refuses to buy them.

My mother is facinated by new things, though, and keeps him in check. She even convinced him to buy her a computer, so they'll have *two* at their house. That hasn't been the case since my older brother built one with my dad (during windows 3.1 days), and deltree/y'd it. She also goes through scanners at an alarming rate (always asking for the latest and greatest for things like scanning photo negatives), and uses her PDA for everything (which is a good thing, as their house hasn't run out of toilet paper or soap since she got it). I wouldn't say that my mother understands all of the technology stuff, because she obviously doesn't, but at least she's willing to give it a go.
post #16 of 22
My mom (almost 77) could run any office machine. But my computer - she refuses to even sit near it since my old monitor (a dumpster save) blew while we were doing genealogy. Before that, I left to use the potty and told her how to scroll using the mouse. She never got it.

But - if she really wanted to, she could learn the computer and other gadgets.

We have yet to get a cell phone. Can't afford it.
post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by RoseHawke
I used to have to start people out on the mainframe when I worked outside the home, and one of the things I told them right from the start was "You can't break it,
My mom (now in her 70s) started on a little Apple Mac when they first came out. She was getting quite good at the techno speak though she doesn't fully understand it. But when she got her first Windows box and it did the "Blue screen" that Windows does on occasion, she called me up with so much panic that I thought it had exploded on her. Took me a few moment to calm her down and to reboot. And to save what she was working on several times.

But father-in-law tries to understand it but he thinks is should be like a motor and doesn't quite understand how software can mess up something. My mother-in-law called my husband the first two years we were married any time she needed the VCR programmed. She finally figured it when we were out and she really wanted to record something.
post #18 of 22
Hubby gave my family a pc a few years ago with the understanding that he put it together but is by no means a techie that knows how to fix everything on it. My sister has figured it out nicely but my mom's opinion is if she can't get it perfect the first time round she is not going to try...mmmm lol

But now if there is a light flickering somewhere they phone us in panic while I try to explain it is the hard drive working no need to worry. But my favourite is when their stiffy drive broke they thought hubby could just open it up and fix it. In the words of my mom: "He is so good at fixing things that surely he must know how to fix this silly thing!"
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by JakkieS
But my favourite is when their stiffy drive broke they thought hubby could just open it up and fix it. In the words of my mom: "He is so good at fixing things that surely he must know how to fix this silly thing!"
Oh dear, bull in a china shop, hope the PC was OK.

BTW 'Stiffy' means something quite different over in NZ, so the poor Sth African's get hassled at the computer shops about it.

My G'dad turned 92 this year and bought my brothers PC, Mum (56) uses email all the time but G'dad just plays Solitaire. Got his first ATM card 3 years ago, G'ma refused to get one, he said "This is so much easier than writing checks!"

But don't ask the, to do more than that, they just freeze up.

Baby steps I think
post #20 of 22
Ginger's Mum: BTW 'Stiffy' means something quite different over in NZ, so the poor Sth African's get hassled at the computer shops about it.


LOL I can just imagine
post #21 of 22
OMG I thought my parents were freaks, they THE MOST technologically inept people I've ever seen! It's hilarious... They get so mad at me when I laugh at them but I can't help it! My parents can't even use MSN Messenger.. Mom still can't use a VCR! My Dad called me last week sooo excited, he burned off his first CD all by himself! He said he just had to call and tell someone...they've only had their computer since May I try teaching them some stuff but they live in NL and I live in Toronto so it's kinda hard, but when I do they get frustrated and start arguing on the phone back and forth..they crack me up!
post #22 of 22
Let's see neither of my parents can figure out how to use the DVD player. Which I final hilarious but it's not so funny when I get called on a Friday night.

My Dad refuses to touch the computer in the house. He got Satelite TV and had them come take it off because it wouldn't work half the time...now how much of that was the service and how much of it was user error who knows. When I was a kid though, he was the first one to go out and get new technology...I still remember being the envy of the neighborhood with the Atari 2600 and the VCR but something changed along the way. He did however take a like a fish to water to the cell phone I got him. He talks on it more than I talk on mine but then he's a delivery driver and thus it's the only way for anyone to get ahold of him.

I'm betting when I move home he'll take to the new video game systems the same way. I'm hoping at any rate, I think he's have a lot of fun with some of the advances in video games since 1983.
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