GrandmotherThere’s nothing like experience and perspective
when it come to raising children. That’s makes Grandmothers very special in the lives of kids. You’ve been to the parenting space before so you have some understanding of what’s important and what’s not. Your developmental knowledge is also invaluable.
Being one step removed from kids makes it easier to be rational and wise. Also children are at time more likely to confide in their grandmother than their mother on a number of personal and family issues.
Strategies for Grandmothering
For someone who is used to being in charge, it can be quite challenging suddenly being thrust in a grandmothering role. Here are seven strategies to guide you as a grandmother.
1. Know when to bite your tongue.
Even though you’ve been there before as a parent, your own children still assume that you know nothing! Little has changed since they were teenagers in that respect. Tread lightly when giving child-rearing advice to your kids who are trying to find their own way as parents. It’s best to wait until you are asked on most matters, and in the meantime, bite your tongue and smile!!!!!!
2. Be a team player.
Remember that there are many people involved in the life your grandkids. Often grandkids can gravitate a little more to maternal grandparents so don’t be surprised if they spend more time with the other grandparents. Be ready to support your children’s new family, but stop short at taking over. You’ll be appreciated more as a team player.
3. Get a life.
You have your life and your children have theirs. Being one step removed and active enables you to keep the perspective and the energy you need to enjoy your grandparenting role.
4. Avoid being an archaeologist.
Know things are different now and doubly so with child rearing. I was strapped at school, whereas corporal punishment was banned when my three kids went through school yet the discipline process they experienced was very effective. Recognise that child-rearing is constantly changing and be willing to listen and learn how your children are bringing up their kids, rather than digging up past ways of parenting.
5. House rules apply.
When grandchildren are in your care then be mindful of their parents’ wishes but also be confident that house rules apply. ‘In our house we do it this way’ is something your grandkids should get used to. Also recognise that grandparents have a natural right to spoil their grandchildren, at least in small doses.
6. Find your special ‘thing’ with each grandchild.
Relationships are built are around shared interests and one-to-one time. So make sure you have an interest in common with each grandchild and make sure that you..................
7. Make the time.
Kids of all ages generally love spending time with their grandparents. Sometimes they’ll invite you into their world, but if not then you can create opportunities to connect with your grandkids either face-to-face or using technology.