Gransnet forums


free carers of the future

(14 Posts)
rojon Wed 30-Apr-14 17:06:08

Forgive me if this has been discussed before. I know that many forumers have done more than their share of free child care to help their children and/or care for their elders but I wonder who will provide the free childcare for our great grandchildren and care/support for their elders.
Most of our children are destined to still be working when they are in need of mobility or other aids or in need of care themselves.
I had a dream the other night of my daughter unloading a walking frame and a rollercase full of books from the boot of her car then transferring to one of a line of mobility scooters being charged inside the entrance of her school. When I told her she replied that it wasn't too farfetched as she and many of her colleagues in their forties are already suffering from various joint and back problems not to mention chronic exhaustion and don't know how they are going to manage another twenty years never mind supplying free care.

jinglbellsfrocks Wed 30-Apr-14 17:21:59

I worry about my teacher daughter too.(although tbh I don't actually have anxiety dreams about her future)

I'm just glad that she has time to consider adding as much as she can now to her pension so that she doesn't have to work any longer than she wants to.

Pittcity Wed 30-Apr-14 17:37:33

I agree with your sentiments rojon.

But how much of our children HAVING to work is because they expect to have it ALL now? We did without when we were first married just to pay the bills and relied on second hand furniture and an old car...the vicar had to sit on the floor when he visited as we had no chairs!! Even now I don't replace something until it is beyond repair.
My kids drive big new cars, have new furniture just because they are bored of the old stuff, travel abroad and thus run up big debts, not to mention 110% mortgages.

I am lucky in that I should be able to afford to pay for sheltered accommodation and /or a nice care home in the future as I will be spending my children's inheritence, something that my parents have already done.

Ana Wed 30-Apr-14 17:51:12

You're also lucky that your children earn enough to afford the things they spend their money on, too, Pittcity!

DD is a single parent of two girls who are growing up fast, and she's always worked full-time, just taking statutory maternity leave when she was pregnant. Her job, though a responsible one, is not well-paid, and even if her girls don't become parents until their thirties she'll still have another 10 years until she can retire.

I expect things will work out - perhaps the girls will themselves be high earners or marry millionaires grin - but I agree with rojon that our grandchildren won't be able to rely on grandparent childcare so much in the future.

Pittcity Wed 30-Apr-14 18:06:21

I know I am very lucky. My DDs worked their ways up from the bottom and found partners with some steady jobs. This means they are in a position to borrow to fund today's lifestyle.

I do fear for their future and pray that they will continue to be able to pay those debts and I know that free family care giving is disappearing fast

FlicketyB Thu 01-May-14 07:20:37

We are a family that marries, and more importantly, has children late.
I and my mother had our children around the age of 30 so my mother was around 60 when she became a grandmother. DS & DiL were, 40ish when they had children and I did not become a grandmother until I was around 65.

At 6o - 65 both my mother and I were still fit and well and although neither of us lived near our grandchildren we were capable of looking after our grandchildren, if required

However if our grandchildren have children as late as their parents, our children will not be grandparents until they are close to 80 and unlikely to be able give much help with grandchildren, on the contrary, it is possible that they may already need help from their children, leaving their children torn by very elderly parents and very young children.

Pittcity Thu 01-May-14 07:28:52

This discussion shows that those societies where all the generations live together, pooling their resources when it comes to care for the young, old and sick have got a lot to recommend them.

Personally, it would drive me barmy...

PRINTMISS Thu 01-May-14 09:09:14

I am like you Pittcity, although it would be good to live a little nearer to my daughter, if we lived near enough to be in each others pockets, it would indeed drive me potty! I lived like that as a child, and there was never anything private in my life, having said that, there was always someone around to 'take care'.

rojon Thu 01-May-14 12:47:01

I agree Flickety but even if our grand children have children in their thirties the grandparents will still be working until pushing seventy and really many people are suffering from various aches and pains and lack of energy by that age so would be unable to offer more than the odd evenings baby sitting.

ninathenana Thu 01-May-14 23:39:28

DH and I weren't blessed with children until our mid thirties. We are now 60 and 66 respectively. We have two under 5 yrs grandchildren that we adore and do a lot of babysitting for.
However I do enjoy need my child free days.

annsixty Fri 02-May-14 09:25:07

nina my DH and I are 78 and 76 and we also have two under 5 GC. I can cope for a short time but DH finds it difficult to even have them around,but you have a long way to go unless you have more.

FlicketyB Fri 02-May-14 14:13:26

To be honest I am quite glad I live some distance from my grandchildren, although 200 miles is a bit far. The other grandmother lives a few miles away and has been almost a third parent to our grandchildren, especially in the first 2 or 3 years. I would not and could not have devoted my life to supporting our respective children and grandchildren the way she has. We provide school holiday and emergency support and do other things for them, but not the constant on-call help

Fortunately both DS and DDiL do appreciate all she has done for them, and with the children now at school and life becoming less hassled, they are committed to giving her any help or support she may need as she is now in her late 70s.

ninathenana Fri 02-May-14 16:13:19

annsixty you have my admiration smile

It is very unlikely I will be in your position as DD definitely won't be having more. DS is 23 and has never had a girlfriend. But I don't relish the idea if it did happen.

FlickityB that sounds like DH and me. We are only 10min drive away and do childcare at least 4 days out of 7.

FlicketyB Fri 02-May-14 22:25:05

ninathenanny I am full of respect for people like you and my fellow grandmother who can do and do do this amount of care.