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Step Grandparenting

(22 Posts)
GrandmaL Fri 29-Jul-11 23:01:35

How do grandmas cope with being stepgrandmas?

GrannyTunnocks Fri 29-Jul-11 23:13:58

I try my best. My step grandson was 5 when we met him and we treat him the same as the other grandchildren but just don't feel quite as close to him as we would like. He now has a sister and I think at last he is calling us granny and granddad but sometimes he forgets and reverts to first names. He is now 10 and approaching adolescence and it seems to be getting more difficult to communicate with him.

Baggy Sat 30-Jul-11 06:59:45

My DH is a sort of step-grandparent to my GS. I say sort of because GS still has both his genetic grandfathers. DH does very well. He has always been kind to my daughters by my first marriage. I think he sees it, conciously or subconciously, as part of the kindness he owes me, his wife. DH watches my GS with interest and kindly and is always ready to be helpful (e.g. taking the family to SeaWorld), but he does not get as involved as he might if he were directly related.

Gally Sat 30-Jul-11 07:57:27

We have 2 stepgrandsons of 12 and 14 who stay with Daughter No1 and SIL at weekends and holidays and we see them occasionally and are called by our first names. They have a full set of natural grandparents and Ihave absolutely no feelings for them as a grandparent. They are much much older than any of our own grandchildren, but we try to treat them the same for obvious reasons. Mr Gally enjoys doing 'boy' things with them and SIL. Things are now easier for Dno1 as she has her own 2 babies, but I do feel that SIL, because of the 'situation' over compensates by involving them in a huge amount of activities which, had it been a normal situation, he wouldn't have done. Up until recently I felt that DNo1 was always a secondary consideration to the boys and it has not always been easy to keep mum! I know that as they get older, the boys will not always be there as other more pressing appointments with friends and girls take over so it is good for the babies to have their older brothers around as much as possible now.

artygran Sat 30-Jul-11 14:28:07

My son has no children of his own but has two stepsons now in early and mid teens. Like Gally, I have no feelings for them as a grandparent, but they are lovely chaps. I like to think we are good friends and we seem to have some common ground. The older one and I draw cartoons and send them to each other! He also likes my cooking! The younger one is musical and brings his music books when he comes to see us so he can show us how he's getting on on the piano. Unfortunately, they don't live near us so we don't get to see them as often as we'd like. As they are growing up fast, and seem to lead very busy lives, I suppose, of necessity, we will see them less, but I hope they will always have a space for us, as we will for them. My four year old grandson thinks the boys are "cool" and follows them around like a shadow when we get together! They call him the Little Dude!

GrandmaL Tue 02-Aug-11 09:04:04

I have a baby step grandaughter- would love to be more involved but as I am not the "real" Grandmother sometimes feel I have to hold back. But do try to help as much as I can- and hopefully she will enjoy my company and her Grandfather as she grows.

absentgrana Tue 02-Aug-11 09:42:07

Mr absent and I have a slightly different situation as my grandchildren all live the other side of the world and were all born after Mr absent I got married. The eldest grandchild is the son of my daughter's first marriage, lives with his mother and step-father whom he calls buy his first name (although he sees his dad quite often), the other three are the children of the second marriage. My first husband was very forceful about Mr absent not using any grandfatherly names, even ones he didn't want to use himself, so the children just call him by his first name. However, mellowing has taken place and the younger granddaughter when visiting us – and my ex was staying here too – quite often referred to Mr absent as Gramps as well as also calling her actual grandfather Gramps. In fact, she remarked that she was very lucky to have two of them. Meanwhile, elder grandson calls his step-grandparents grana (confusion about New Zealand or English grana when there are phone calls) and his step-grandfather (his absolute hero) by his first name. Are you keeping up? Mr absent has no children or grandchildren of his own and values and loves his step family and he has his own special place in their lives. All families are different. I can't think why it took me so long to get to such a simple conclusion. hmm

absentgrana Tue 02-Aug-11 09:42:59

by his first name, not buy. Whoops.

helshea Wed 03-Aug-11 00:14:06

Don't get me started on this one!!

artygran Wed 03-Aug-11 12:49:16

Oh, go on!

Baggy Wed 03-Aug-11 13:17:39

Yes, go on, helshea! You know we're all dying to know now you've said that. wink

GrandmaL Sat 06-Aug-11 10:43:24

To absentgrana- thank you for the message that all families are different. It is important to keep in mind always- not to wish for what we don't have but enjoy the families we have!

helshea Sun 07-Aug-11 08:23:34

I would be horrified if my grandson started calling his dad's girlfriend grandma... she bl**dy isn't his grandma... thats a fact! I do not mean to sound bitter and twisted but she didn't bring my son up. If we had split up while he was younger I would maybe have felt differently, but as my son was in his 20s when his father and I split up she is not his stepmother she is simply his Dad's partner.

artygran Sun 07-Aug-11 13:20:48

If that is what is happening, helshea it must be very wounding for you, and I can see where you are coming from. I apologise for pressing you earlier; it was crass.

Baggy Sun 07-Aug-11 14:29:39

My DH is not my GS's grandad but SIL says he is "an honorary grandad" so, if GS ever calls him anything, it will probably be in line with what he calls his grandparents: grandad+firstname and granny+firstname. I don't suppose my ex (still on good terms on the few occasions we need to communicate) gives a toss. Why should he? His GS having an honorary grandad doesn't take away any of his grandadness.

Breth Fri 19-Aug-11 15:12:57

Hi we have a step grandson, although our son is not married to his partner, but they live together as a family unit. Our s/grandson has known us since he was 5 and calls us by our first names. He is now rising 12. He has said he would call my son "dad" and us gran etc if they were to marry! My son is not showing any signs of marrying. As his partner is over 34 and has gynae probs it is unlikely we will have any more grandchildren from our son. We love our step g/s very much, but would love to see the couple maike the ultimate commitment if only for his sake.

GoldenGran Fri 19-Aug-11 16:09:07

My first step-Gd is only three weeks old. I have to step fairly carefully as my step-son and step daughter in law are a bit volatile, sometimes terribly friendly, but other times throw what I call verbal hand grenades at my feet! However all is well so far, Amelie is adorable, we will see her tomorrow, apparently she is going to call me Granny April, (possibly not tomorrow although she is , no doubt very talented),but I have to always be a little wary with her parents. She is my husband's first grandchild, and he is besotted, which is lovely to see, so hopefully so far things are going smoothly! Watch this space!(sorry I think I've got too many steps in here!)

artygran Thu 25-Aug-11 17:58:57

My stepgrandson got his GCSE results today - 2 A stars, seven As and 2 Bs. He's beating himself up about the Bs, the silly boy. I couldn't be more pleased if he were my own flesh and blood!

artygran Thu 25-Aug-11 18:36:56

Sorry, I have posted the above twice - here and on another thread. It is daft old bat needs a wine time!

GrandmaL Wed 31-Aug-11 06:58:15

Lovely message artygran!! (Would insert a smile and red wine glass if I could figure out how to!)

gulligranny Sun 13-Nov-11 15:41:52

Reading of others' problems, I think that I am very lucky. All (step)grandchildren have been born in the 5 years since I met, then married, their grandfather. He & 1st wife had been divorced many years before we met; she and I got on well and she was instrumental in ensuring I was accepted as "Grandma" - one of the reasons being that very sadly she was terminally ill with oesophageal cancer, and knew that I would do my best to fill the role for the two small grandchildren she left behind and any future ones (a further 2).

I couldn't love them more if they were really mine, and they have added such joy to my life.

Divawithattitude Sun 13-Nov-11 16:18:22

I have two step children who I have known since they were 6 and 7 years old, I love them both as if they were my own children, both of them have lived with DH and I at some point in their lives, they even send me mothers day cards, as the years have gone by things have got easier with DH'S ex-wife and her partner (who was once his best friend - but that is another story!)

They have three children between them, so far, and in everyone's eyes I am their nanny - the most important eyes being theirs! OK they have more nannies than some of their friends, but nannies who love you, one thing you can never have too many of! Yes it gets complicated at Christmas and birthdays etc but so what!