Thursday, August 27, 2009


Maybe I should have seen her button-confusion, years ago, for the beginnings of dementia, but I didn't.
Now that I look back, there was always something going wrong with her computer. I just thought it was an old slow computer, but maybe some of it was her.
She has a difficult time with anything that has buttons.
She had a cordless phone, when it rings you have to pick it up and press 'on'. If you want to call out you have to press the numbers then press 'on'. This was too confusing for her. I realized that when I would call her and she would run to the kitchen to answer that phone, "The bedroom phone's not working right." So I replaced her bedroom phone with a corded phone.
She has a electric garage door opener, with a keypad outside, "that thing never works."

She was told by her friends that she should have a cell phone, driving alone in the winter. Yes, I realize it's a nice safety feature, but this is years after she already had one, that she never used, and just paid and paid on it. So some ninny at the phone store sold her a tiny-tiny phone, with lots of bells and whistles. I sat for hours with her, trying to teach her how to use it. Keep it plugged in at all times, when it's not in your purse. "Mom, use it to make all your out-of-state calls, because they're 'free' with this phone." But, here we are again, with buttons for answer, buttons to push after dialing, buttons to end the conversation. We sat at the table together, I'd call her phone, I'd make her call me, back and forth. Next month we'd do it again, practice. If it rings, just open it up. To hang up just shut it. Nope, she could not understand it. I put a list of names in the "contacts". If you want to call me, just go up and down until you find my name - then press the green "go" button. Nope, too confusing. I have tried to cancel this phone contract, but they won't let me, she signed up for two years! Can't you see this woman has never used this phone?! Actually, she cannot even find it now, I believe she put it away someplace "safe". But the bills keep coming. "What is this bill for Mom?" "I don't know."

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