Gransnet forums


Feeling redundant Grandchildren growing up

(13 Posts)
jennie123 Tue 16-Mar-21 09:59:00

Retired 8years keep my self busy with activities and friends.
Also was very involved in the care of my three lovely grandchildren.Sleep overs ,school runs,swimming lessons etc. One child now 13 and other two just behind .My role has now vanished as they do not need my input and I’m missing it and it makes me feel sad.I know I’m lucky to have had this time as I have friends who have no grandchildren or they live abroad.Anyone else feel like this ?
I feel that my future looks “empty “.

Calendargirl Tue 16-Mar-21 10:16:46

Our two GC who live nearby, (the other three live abroad), have always seen a lot of us.
I retired 8 years ago, just when DIL started a part time job. Since then I have collected them from school twice a week, given them their tea, taken them to gymnastics, dancing etc.

They are now 16 and 13. Covid and Lockdown has accelerated the start of the end of them needing us. We have seen very little of them the last year, and even when we can meet up again, I doubt they will be bothered about coming for their tea after school. Obviously they no longer require picking up and taking to things!

TBH, much as I love them, I haven’t missed the meals etc, which surprises me. They are no longer our sweet little GC’s, they are young adults.

I think when we do meet up properly, we will all seem quite different.

M0nica Tue 16-Mar-21 10:17:18

To be fair, we live too far away to have ever provided regular child care, but I cannot think of any point in life, whether children going to school, leaving home, grandchildren moving on or anything else, where I haven't had so many things I want to do piled up waiting for me to have time to do them that the space has been instantly filled.

The only redundancy I have had was the voluntary scheme at work that enabled me to retire early without losing any pension income.

tanith Tue 16-Mar-21 10:40:59

I have 7 grown up GC, 2 still small but live abroad, the one who lives closest is now 16 but was so excited when I said we could resume her coming for dinner after school now she’s being tested a lot. As for the grown up ones some are married and I now have 5 GrtGC so things don’t just end because they grow up things change it’s the circle of life. So get on with life and enjoy other things.

grannysyb Tue 16-Mar-21 10:42:40

Mine are 19, nearly 18 and 14. I haven't had to do childcare for a long time. Two older ones will be off to university this year and next year, so I will see even less of them, but that's how life goes, they need to fly the nest.

Redhead56 Tue 16-Mar-21 10:50:39

I helped with my granddaughters for two years until it became too much. I can’t help with my other granddaughter as they live too far away. I will help out when I can after Covid but not on a regular basis arthritis slows me down. Like everyone else only really seen any of them via WhatsApp and rare visit when able to.

To be honest my veg patch flourished last year because I had the time to tend to it. The house got more of my time too which it needed as things were piling up.

I think when we get back to real living when Covid goes we will make more of our time than ever. I know I will there is a lot of time still to dwell on things and feel empty but I think it will improve.

Gwenisgreat1 Tue 16-Mar-21 10:54:46

It will be quite a while before I am in this position, while I am 76, my DGD will be 5 at the end of this month and my DGS will be 8 later this year, because he has Down Syndrome I think he will need is old gran longer than DGD - in fact they will be looking after me!!

crazyH Tue 16-Mar-21 11:08:18

Looked after my 2 oldest grandchildren (daughter’s), from day one basically till the age of 15. One is at University and the other will soon be going. The youngest 4 GC, (from my 2 sons) have stay at home mums, and also younger grandmas on the other side, so I am not needed, except for the odd babysitting.

Hithere Tue 16-Mar-21 11:09:19

You are not empty, you have "you"!

What new adventures would you like to start? New hobbies? Volunteering? Gardening?

A huge mistake women make is labeling themselves as a role (mother, grandmother, etc), losing any other sense of self.

varian Tue 16-Mar-21 11:23:13

We have several grand children in that age range jennie123

The great thing now is their level of IT skills - far better than ours, so apart from helping us with gizmo quirks, we do a weekly quiz online and have a WhatsApp group for our whole family where we exchange news, jokes and puzzles and can make calls, including video calls.

I have also been involved in home schooling at a distance. There are amazing resources online like BBC Bitesize so it doesn't matter that it's a long time since we were at school. I have done a bit of tutoring once a week with each of them (I do try not to actually do their homework!) and this has given me the opportunity to have some one-to-one time, which is lovely.

None of our family are one our doorstep, and some live abroad but with WhatsApp, Zoom, Google Meet, Skype or whatever it has been possible to chat online as much as we like. This pandemic would have been much worse thirty years ago, so we do count ourselves fortunate to be able to communicate so easily now.

I have enjoyed each age of my children and grandchildren. I hope you find that you can connect with them as they become teenagers and your future will not be empty.

Polarbear2 Tue 16-Mar-21 11:29:53

I was warned about this by a friend who had the same experience. I’ve got it in my mind now that although I will spend lots of time with my 2 little GCs there will come a time when they don’t see so much of me. I’m enjoying this time and making the most of it. I’ve learned to think of life as a series of eras. Marriage and kids was one. Divorce another. Work another. Failed relationships another 🙄. Retirement another. GCs another. There’s always something new around the corner. Each teaches me something and leaves me with memories. Enjoy this new era. I’m sure the GCs will be around for quite a time. They’re just establishing their own independence.

sodapop Tue 16-Mar-21 12:29:01


You are not empty, you have "you"!

What new adventures would you like to start? New hobbies? Volunteering? Gardening?

A huge mistake women make is labeling themselves as a role (mother, grandmother, etc), losing any other sense of self.

I agree totally with Hithere this is a new phase in your life when restrictions allow. Enjoy doing things for you jennie you have helped your family all you can now for some well deserved 'me time'. Enjoy it.

Susan56 Tue 16-Mar-21 13:36:07

We look after grandchildren three days a week but have plenty to occupy us the days we don’t see them.In school holidays it is just two days a week as one daughter is a teacher.

Our grandchildren are 5,3 and 1 but I am very aware that as they get older we will see less of them.I cherish the time we have with them but also enjoy the days we don’t have them.

I saw friends of my mum who invested their whole lives in their grandchildren and became depressed when the children didn’t need or want to spend as much time with them.Sadly we can see the same happening with my sister in law.

It is right that our children and grandchildren have their own lives.We can cherish and love them and enjoy the times we are with them but personally I think it’s important we have our own lives too.