Welcome to the IT department. How may I help you?
"Mom, this isn't working."
"Mom, I need a password for this."
"Mom, I need this app and I need a password for this."
"Mom, can you override the parental controls so I can do xyz."
"Mom, this parental control thing says I've reached my limit but I've only had 15 minutes!!!"
"Mom, the Wifi is out."
"Mom, this app keeps crashing."
"Mom, I want this app but it's only on your side and I want to get it on my side."
"Mom, this Russian man wants my address" (OK, so that hasn't happened yet)
There's like 20 more things, but you get the idea.
Now. There are many, many skills required for parenting in the 21st century with which I am not equipped. I am a lowly liberal arts major. I don't know how to manage people, I don't know how to produce an a la carte menu of healthy yet kid-friendly foods for every meal, I don't know how to run logistics or do the finances of a small company, I don't know how to weld anything or caulk anything or suture any wounds, and I am not a small peasant farmer. I vaguely know how to entertain people, but mostly adults. Children often don't understand sarcasm. I can dress and bathe myself, as long as I am not gripped with deep thoughts.
What I do know is how to be overly self-absorped, dramatic, and prone to overstimulation and anxiety. As I said, I am a liberal arts major.
But most especially, I don't do tech. I mean, I can operate a computer (I am typing on one right now!). I can also navigate the internet (which I have done to get here!). I can even do a very, very basic spreadsheet. Oh, and I can turn a computer off and on, so actually, yes, I can repair an entire computer. I do have some skills.
What I can't do is remember user names and passwords for 57 accounts. I try to keep records/have my computer remember them, but invariably something goes wrong. I can't manage the 5 parental control systems we have going, all of which are either device specific or wifi specific. There is nothing I've found that tracks activity across all the devices whether or not they are connected to wifi. It's all completely out of my control at this point. My children are probably selling CBD oils to Russian bots for all I know.
I also can't fix things or figure anything out. I can work myself into a crazed state trying. It doesn't help that one of my progeny has inherited my hair-trigger tolerance for stress (funny how that happens), and that while I am trying to solve his problem, he is melting down because he'll never, ever again be able to play another video game in his entire life and then he will die a painful death.
I'm kind of done with all this BS. My kids are getting to the age where I feel like their skills outstrip mine. If they can't fix something or hack around whatever supervisory system I've put on that isn't working anyway and if they can't manage the psychological damage of their internet use, then I can't help them (kidding on that last point. Sort of.)
I repeat: I am a liberal arts major. I am a dying breed. Like literally, I am slowly dying as I try to run an IT department here.
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