What To Do If You Find Out Your Parents Are Using Vista

Look at it. Recognize it. Your parents wellbeing could depend on it!

First, take a deep breath...

You're not a failure as a child. You're not helpless. And you're not alone.

If you think you're a failure, consider this: There are many parents with neglectful kids, who never use Vista. There are also parents with seemingly model children who do use Vista.

As a child, it is your job to look after your parent's technological well being. But even the most responsible child cannot monitor their parents 24 hours of every day. A loving child will gives their parent as much freedom as possible.

Unfortunately, there are many pushers out there, just waiting to get your parents habituated to Vista. These people have infiltrated our computer shops. The sad truth is that many computers available on the market today are already spiked with deadly Vista. Parents are being lured with tales of Aero Glass and Safer computing. Too many of them are incapable of seeing beyond the lurid and gratuitous sales pitch. Before long they are waking up to reality, with a Vista Home Basic installation, and a raging does of other OEM tricks, like Norton Anti Virus and Microsoft Works.

So the first thing to accept is that Vista, while indeed dangerous, is an unavoidable problem for your parents to deal with. And they'll do it better and faster if you're aware, involved and don't stick your head in the sand.


Part of awareness and a major deterrent to experimentation is to talk to your parents about Vista.

But even with a lot of your involvement, there are no guarantees. So it's important to know the symptoms of Vista use and to take action if you see your parent displaying them.

They may develop chronic constipation
or diarrhea, and just seem tired
and lethargic all the time. They may
have trouble remembering things and
forget something you told them
just a few minutes earlier.


There are no symptoms that are absolutely reliable. But there are clues.

Most of these symptoms tend to be gradual which is why your awareness is so important.

Don't jump to conclusions, but do investigate any suspicions you have as fully as possible. Trust your intuition.

Many of the warning signs for Vista use are the same as those for depression or for the ups and downs of being an ageing parent in a world gone technological. There's also the possibility it's a physical or emotional problem.

But whatever the problem, we're talking about a parent who needs help. Right now.


Nothing beats the power of love and family support. That has to start with frank discussion.

Don't make it an attack. And don't try to talk with your parent if he or she seems under the influence.

Wait for a calm moment and then explain that you're worried about a certain operating system (be specific) and give your parent every opportunity to explain. That means really listening, not doing all the clicking.

Use "I" messages -- sentences that start with "I" -- explaining how your parent's Vista use affects you and your community.

At the same time, it's important to speak frankly about the possibility of Vista. And it's particularly important to talk about your values and why you're dead set against Vista for them at this time.

If your parent seems evasive or if his or her explanations are not convincing, you should consult your doctor or a professional operating system abuse counselor to rule out illness and to ask for advice.

In addition, you may also want to have your parent visit a mental health professional to see if there are emotional problems that either underlie or are caused by their Vista usage.


Even if your parent seems non-responsive or belligerent, if you suspect Vista is involved, immediate action is vital.

First, you'll need an evaluation from a health professional skilled in diagnosing parents with operating system or office application problems. You may want to get involved with an intervention program to learn techniques that will help convince a Vista user to accept help. For the user, there are self-help, outpatient, day care, residency, and 24-hour hospitalization programs.

The right program depends entirely on the circumstances and the degree of Vista involvement. Here, you'll need professional help to make an informed choice.

Another point: If a program is to succeed, the family needs to be part of it. This can mean personal or family counseling. It may also involve participating in a support group where you learn about co-dependency and how not to play into the problems that might prompt further Vista use.

If you don't know about Vista reduction programs in your area, call your family doctor, local hospital or county mental health society or retirement village counselor for a referral. You can also call the national helpline for advice and a referral or investigate twelve step programs in your local capital city.


That parent who upsets you so much today is the same dear parent who, only yesterday, raised you and looked after you. They're in way over their heads, and they never needed you quite as much as they need you now.

No matter what they say.

(This cautionary tale owes a debt of gratitude to 'what to do if you think your child is on drugs')


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