As a parent to a toddler I see the importance of grandparents helping raise grandchildren every day. Unfortunately, my parents live far away- thousands of miles away from Australia in the United Kingdom. This obviously brings challenges, which many parents can take for granted when they have their parents living just down the road. So in this article I want to highlight how amazing grandparents can be at helping raise grandkids and the special role that they place in your kid’s life.
The Grandparent’s role in helping raise grandchildren
Many children have this perception of their grandparents that they are the people they stay with during school holidays or during Christmas and New Year holidays, but their parents know them better than the kids do.
I remember family Christmas’ where we would spend the time at my grandparents’ home in the Welsh countryside with a log-fire, plenty of food and presents and their german-shephard dog. We’d drive to the beach and play freely in the hills.
These special memories were a big part of my growing up- we shouldn’t take for granted the fabulous memories that kids are forming when they spend time with their grandparents. What may seem insignificant in the moment can actually be have a big impact. When remembering the past, we often reflect on the smallest things. We can often forget what we did, but we usually never forget how we felt.
Raising a child is hardly a one-person job and many parents understand this, allowing their own parents to have a hand in the raising of their grandchildren for several reasons. It’s great to be able to give parents a break from their tiring parental role once in a while, giving them a rest and allowing mum and dad to re-invest in their relationship. In this win-win situation, grandparents equally cherish this special time with their grandkids.
Old people are generally known to be wise and it’s only logical because they have the experience of a thousand years. Furthermore, they have already brought up their own children so there’s a lot their grandchildren can benefit from them.
Although grandparents may be physically not as active as parents, they are very effective when it comes to passing knowledge from one generation to another, teaching proper communication and respect and giving advice and encouragement.
In times of need, grandparents are sometimes financially involved in the raising of their grandchildren especially, such as in cases where the child was abandoned or parent is deceased. Sometimes, grandparents take on more of a parental role, which can create a close bond between the two.
Some things are better experienced than explained. If you had great grandparents while growing up, you know what it was like, that priceless bond, thinking about them still makes a tear drop. If you didn’t- don’t allow your own children miss out on this once in a lifetime opportunity.
The importance of grandparents in a child’s life
Early family bonding
It’s not only in the movies, it is true that grandparents tend to connect with children easily and this is seen in the love children have for their grandparents even when they are very young. This depends on the level of closeness of the grandparents and the family but because most grandparents are retired and at home, they have the time to create this bond while the parents are away at work, or elsewhere.
Children learn a lot from their grandparents
Parents tend to be stricter in their dealings with their children compared to grandparents and their grandchildren. Naturally, children do not like being disciplined and it is normal that they drift towards their grandparents when they are available.
Children seem to have more trust and can open-up more to their grandparents who because of their patience and wisdom have enabled these children love them. This is very handy when it comes to teaching children things, as it may be a lot easier for children to accept what grandparents say and follow their advice.
The things children can learn from their grandparents vary widely and may include;
- – Respect and values
The hard things for parents to teach little children without scaring them away are easily done by grandparents because of the acceptance children tend to have for them. Grandparents on the other hand have the time, patience and wisdom to teach them important values like respect, helping others, proper eating manners and the likes.
- – Important life skills
Grandparents are also in a good position to teach children many of these resourceful skills that may no longer be taught in schools anymore. Parents may not have the luxury of time to teach things like baking, gardening, making coffee, sewing, woodwork and simple car mechanics. It could even be a game, a board game like chess or a card game that grandparents play that will help develop the child’s mind and come handy as a skill.
- – Reading
How to read is one of those things a child may learn directly or indirectly from his parents. This comes from telling them stories or helping the children read themselves from a book.
Celebrating with Grandparents
Grandparents love celebrating with grandkids. It could be birthdays, Christmas or any other event. Grandparents also love to treat their grandkids as much as they can. They know how much their grandkids love receiving their gifts and it’s a joy for grandparents to see the excitement and buzz around the place during these events. They are special times that should be cherished.
Choosing a present for a grandchild can be fun but some grandparents might worry that they are not sure what is best to buy. There’s so much choice and finding the presents that will make your grandkid’s eyes sparkle takes time and effort. I can help you here as I have written an article on the great ideas for grandparents when buying presents for grandkids. Please check it out as I’ve searched the stores and the internet high and low to share with you my best ideas and steer you away from the bad ideas.
I hope that you enjoyed this article on how grandparents can help raise grandchildren and it has made you reflect on their important role. If you have any comments, thoughts or questions it would be fantastic if you could leave them in the comments box below. I’m sure that lots of other people will find your idea useful, so please share!