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"I don't need the internet, I don't use it." -My Grandmother

"...nonusers simply don’t feel the need." When I was visiting my grandmother in Colombia she told me flat out, "I just don't need the internet." This article touched on some interesting points about older adults who use the internet and don't. As I read the line, "...nonusers simply don't feel the need", I was reminded of the conversation with my grandmother. Skype made her reconsider her words. My grandmother truly realized how powerful technology can be and discovered a "need" for it. Being able to see her grandchildren back here brought her to tears of joy! No it doesn't compare to visiting in person, but Skype and other great video communication tools make the distance between loved ones not seem so far.

Photo of Lina Padilla
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For reference: http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-04-10/americas-offline-seniors-41-percent-dont-use-the-internet?sf25861709=1

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Photo of Ashley Jablow

Such a great, personal insight Lina! Thanks for sharing. It makes me wonder the underlying reason behind why your grandmother originally resisted: was it because she really didn't see the utility of something like Skype, or for another reason – maybe because she didn't understand it or felt intimidated by the technology? I'm always so curious about why people say 'no' to things, particularly when they say 'no' to offers of help. Excited to hear more of your insights in this challenge!

Photo of Meena Kadri

I'm also fascinated about how older people can view things so differently. Thinking of my parents (both in their 80s) – my mother is driven by the benefits & has jumped into things like Skype, Facebook, texting, etc – learning as she goes... whereas my father likes to perfect things so has been more resistant to platforms which require a dynamic approach. Makes me think about how mentoring requires an appreciation of different learning styles and drivers.

Photo of Lina Padilla

Thank you Ashley! I too was trying to ask more questions to dig out that answer. For my grandmother, I think it just has to do with she never used a computer and never really had a need to. The cell phone was about as high tech as she needed to be. I even said what about shopping? :) To which she responded- oh know I need to go inspect what I'm buying hah!

Meena- You are absolutely right. Mentoring does require a relationship aspect to understand how other people learn and what matters to people. Also kind of "what would sell" them on something! Thanks!

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