I’m not talking about carrying someone here, but the art of some people to belittle or put someone down.
I help Silver Surfers get the confidence to get on line, surf the net, send emails etc. As I’m not a qualified teacher, I do this voluntarily – it’s as good for me to be useful as it is for them to learn.
Many elderly ladies come along, sometimes with hubby in tow, and manage to learn quite easily – often hubby joins in as well and we laugh at the mistakes together, and sometimes I find I learn something new as well.
I had one lady come to see me and I quietly thought of her as an air-head – how wrong I turned out to be. She was totally lacking in confidence and would poke at the computer as if it was a wild animal that was going to bite her.
It took several weeks to get her confident enough to start writing emails, but as “homework” I had challenged her to send me one during the week. Well she did and I congratulated her on her achievement.
She gave me a beautiful smile and what she said next actually made me want to scream! She sat at her husband’s computer, I had set her up her own account on it, and her husband and son with grandchildren who were visiting all stood round her laughing at her, saying she would never do it.
I would have loved to see their faces when I replied saying well done! This made me even more determined to teach her, and now she was over the first hurdle, she progressed slowly but surely.
Her husband then decided that she couldn’t use his machine, so she asked all who would normally give her presents to give her cash instead and put it towards a laptop of her own, which she brought down to me to set up.
There was no keeping this woman down and at her last lesson, she came to me with a grin on her face, I had shown her the local Streetlife web site and the previous evening, she had complained that the local drycleaners was closing down to be replaced by yet another takeaway.
Her family were so amazed that she was now telling them things that they didn’t know that they actually admitted to her that they never thought she would do it.
As I said to her “My work is done” – so don’t put her down, encourage them, you never know when you may need them to help you.