Gransnet forums


Why so little about Grandads?

(18 Posts)
grandparentsunited Fri 01-Mar-13 21:54:15

I've self-published 'Grandad's Tips for Bringing Up Kids' by Dudley Jones. I'm a retired Uni lecturer with 3 grandchildren. About 3 years ago, I decided to write a book passing on tips I'd acquired as a parent and grandparent and also drawing on 40 years teaching experience in schools and teacher education. As I worked on the book, it seemed as if every week, a new parenting manual appeared. Sue Maushart (Winter of our Diconnect), Pamela Druckerman (French Children don't throw Food) and Amy Chua (Tiger Mum). Clearly a challenge to the laissez-faire, child-centred approach that has held sway since the 60s was happening. I finished 'Grandad's Tips' and then - though I'd previously published 2 successful books - found the publishing climate had become much chillier for authors. I'm happy to start a debate about parenting based on these new books (and even my!) Sorry about not being a Grandma, folks. Am I entitled to be a Gransnetter?

gracesmum Fri 01-Mar-13 22:03:01

Gosh, I don't know, Grandparentsunited - maybe you could start a thread on Gransnet and tell them all about it. It sounds fascinating and I am sure GNetters would be interested. You don't have to be a Grandma to be on GN - look at Pete, Gramps, HunterF and even Ivanhoe (or perhaps not) as shining examples.
So welcome to GN!

grumppa Fri 01-Mar-13 22:10:43

I'm a grandad and happy and comfortable on Gransnet. So far Gransnetters seem happy with me!

j08 Fri 01-Mar-13 22:19:22

Feel free to join. Can 't wait. hmm

harrigran Fri 01-Mar-13 22:21:51

You are plugging your book grandparentsunited hmm

annodomini Fri 01-Mar-13 22:42:50

Perhaps you ought to ask GNHQ if it's OK for you to do this - it does smack of plugging, though I am sure we would find common ground with you as, amongst us, there is a wealth of experience in child rearing and education.

absent Sat 02-Mar-13 07:20:11

One person has already joined Gransnet to publicise a self-published book on multiple threads so I would assume that it's only advertising books published by commercial publishers that is contrary to GN rules.

glammanana Sat 02-Mar-13 08:19:24

Parenting manuals ? when I had my DD nearly 42 years ago my then old family Doctor at my six week visit told me to throw any manuals in the nearest bin and go with my instincts and it was the best advice I have ever been given.

gracesmum Sat 02-Mar-13 12:33:50

My point albeit laced with a touch of sarcasm * harrigran* - but a smile too.

j08 Sat 02-Mar-13 12:44:34

gracesmum you need to add a hmm to show sarcasm. smile #expert

gracesmum Sat 02-Mar-13 13:40:00

Right - oh mighty expert hmm - like this?

Mamie Sat 02-Mar-13 14:16:41

There is a brilliant bit in the book I am reading about Profumo at the moment. The author is talking about the dreadful Childcare and the Growth of Love by John Bowlby which was written in 1953. He says:
"It was a key text in the emergence of a new craft called 'parenting' - a middle-class secular faith, with bogus scientific paraphernalia like Christian Science - which justified competitive egotism by parents and re-iterative fault-finding by parenting experts."

FlicketyB Sat 02-Mar-13 15:52:16

I quite determinedly never bought a parenting book, even though Spock was generally considered essential to child rearing in the early 1970s when my children were born. I have done the same over grand parenting.

A lot of parenting and grandparenting is common sense. Newspapers, magazines and other people's conversation is a mine of information and it is usually quite easy to work out who is talking sense and who isnt. Nowadays a quick internet search will usually find any info you want or need.

annodomini Sat 02-Mar-13 16:38:08

Grandparenting and parenting? You fly by the seat of your pants and usually the kids grow up more or less normal. There is no standard recipe. And apologies for the blatant mixed metaphors.

j08 Sat 02-Mar-13 18:42:27

gracesmum grin

NannaAnna Sun 03-Mar-13 02:04:42

Parenting is not always instinctive, or common sense, or whatever other word one wants to apply to suggest that we naturally know how to do it or how to get by doing it. Not if your mother died when you where a small child. Not if you were left to the mercy of a violent father. Not if you acquired a vindictive step-mother who saw you as slave labour. Sometimes a book can be your lifeline.
I knew that how I was brought up was horrific. I knew that if I had children I wanted their childhoods to be very different. I knew that I had it within me to be the loving mother I had lost. What I didn't know was the 'how'. How can you possibly know the 'how' of what you've never had?
I found my guru in Penelope Leach. Everything she wrote resonated with the mother within me, but I needed to be told that my instincts were right. She did that, time and time again.
Please don't dismiss the value of Parenting manuals. If you were lucky enough to have had a 'good enough' upbringing that enabled you to have the confidence to be a 'good enough' parent, then count your blessings. It isn't true for all of us.

MrsJamJam Sun 03-Mar-13 18:26:01

Well said nannanna. I also feel I learnt a lot about being a parent when I trained as a primary teacher in the early 70s - in those days we were taught psychology, and about how young children learn, all very useful and I'm sure stopped me making a few mistakes which I would have done if only going on instinct. Also find it much easier to be a grandma, just find it a challenge not to offer 'good advice' to the parents of my grandchildren (unless they actually ask, of course)!

Nelliemoser Sun 03-Mar-13 22:40:58

NannaAnna I agree fully with you there! It all depends on how well parented you were yourself.

Despite some faults, my parents were both very able to provide the basic nurturing and stimulation needed for good attachment and basic selfworth. They did not have to be taught this, they learned, probably unconsiously, by
experiencing it.

I see with amusement my daughter now doing the same thing always interacting verbally with DGS, down to the same silly "conversations" I had with my children as babies. She was never actively "shown" how to do it.
but had somehow "learned" it.

There was a program some time ago, I think about social workers ?in Bristol. This showed a father, himself with a very troubled background, who was quite unable to interact with his child during a supervised parenting assessment, he held the child, but did not seem to have a clue about how to talk to him or play with him.

Some of these skills can be taught to parents who lack them. And they do result in improved family relations.