If you are about to become a grandparent, you are about to be initiated into one of the most amazing roles that you will ever play. Being a grandparent is a vital role and it is an important relationship for both the younger and older generations. Both benefit from it and stand to gain greatly from the connection. At first though being a grandparent might seem like an unwanted role. Maybe you feel that you are too young for the role or maybe you feel like you were a poor parent the first time around. Whatever your reservations may be, but them behind you and get ready to move forward, here are few thoughts to consider ahead of this new stage in your life.
So many positives
A grandparent gets to do a lot of things that a parent is not able to do. One of the most obvious is the ability to spoil the child with treats and gifts that are maybe beyond the reach of the parents. Parents are generally stretched financially with lots of commitments, while grandparents are at a different stage in life, often with more spare cash and fewer monthly obligations. As such grandparents are often in the position to give the best baby gifts. The slightly extravagant treats that mom and dad can’t afford will come from granny and grandad – revel in it if you can afford to be generous.
Be the patient mentor
Parents are often stretched beyond breaking point. They have work worries, financial concerns and they are often tired and exhausted from the demands of parenting. As much as they love their children, they can often be more than a tad impatient or short. This is where grandparents come in, as they tend to have a bit more time on their hands and a real desire to impart their experiences and skills to the next generation. Many is the child who has learned critical community & lifestyle skills or hobbies from a patient and caring grandparent.
Work with the parents
As much as a grandparent will have their own relationship with a child, it is important to remember that the role is one of support rather than primary parent. As such it is important to take cues from the parents and to support them in what they are trying to do. You might not agree with the way that the parents are doing things, but you must not undermine the parents. Remember that just because your children don’t do things the way you did it doesn’t make them wrong. It also doesn’t mean they are criticising he way you did it. But times change and the challenges of modern parenting, with concerns like screen time and sun exposure and a myriad of others, all need to be dealt with and legislated for. It might seem strange the way your children choose to do it but back them regardless. A unified message and front from the parents and grandparents sends a great message to the child and everyone will benefit from it.