Gransnet forums


Conversations with grandchildren

(22 Posts)
dice4 Wed 21-Oct-15 11:54:58

Hi, I'm very new to the forum so I am a little nervous, but it would be great if I can hear your opinions.

I am currently 72 years old, and I have two grandchildren, a 22 year old girl and a 20 year old boy.

My wife and I do not live together with our grandchildren, but they visit us regularly, at least once a month.

We love them dearly, and I can tell that they care for us as well, but sometimes I am just not confident that they are enjoying their time with us.

I would not want them to feel obliged to visit us, so I want them to enjoy the time they spend with us. Yet, I am sometimes not sure of what to talk with them, and have to look for mutual topics.

What I want to ask everyone is;

- Are you comfortable talking to your grandchildren? Are you confident that your grandchildren are enjoying your time together?

- Are there any times when you feel uncomfortable/awkward talking to your grandchildren?

ninathenana Wed 21-Oct-15 12:05:59

I'm afraid I can't help as my grandsons are only 6 and 3.
But I do want to welcome you to GN. Please don't be nervous, we're all nearly all very friendly smile
I'm sure someone will post soon with some good advice.

Nonnie Wed 21-Oct-15 12:12:01

Hello Dice. If they come to visit you at those ages you must be doing something right! Just relax and enjoy them and if they are boys feed them!

Ask them to help you with something or other on your computer, phone or TV, they will enjoy that. Youngsters love to give advice and help and to feel useful. If they are into something, football, dance or whatever ask them about it. You don't have to find something you share an interest in, just be interested in whatever they are doing. If they are studying ask about that, if they are working ditto.

They love you because of who you are so just let them. smile

Riverwalk Wed 21-Oct-15 12:50:45

You write very well dice4 why would you be nervous? hmm

glassortwo Wed 21-Oct-15 13:01:37

Hi dice welcome to GN.
If your Grandchildren are visiting and spending time with you don't worry they wouldn't visit if they didnt want your company.

I wouldn't waste the time you have with them by worrying. just enjoy it.

jinglbellsfrocks Wed 21-Oct-15 13:31:39

I rarely try to talk to my two. They seem to be on another planet to me. (they are much younger though)

They only need visit me when they are adult if they are going to take me out somewhere nice in their cars. Get them to take you to the local garden centre and buy you tea and cake. Never mind talking.

shysal Wed 21-Oct-15 13:54:29

I find it helps that I enjoy watching TV programmes like X Factor, Big Brother or I'm a Celebrity, always a good topic of conversation. Also, as mentioned above, just feed them!
When the GCs were younger I was always more comfortable doing something practical with them, which they loved, but I know what you mean about possible awkwardness when they are older. I am not a talkative person, and live alone, so it can be daunting to be solely responsible for conversation, not wanting it to sound like an inquisition. I remember how my grandmother used to sit silently in the corner when we saw her, which was embarrassing all round!
I sometimes provide transport for the kids, and on some occasions we will travel almost in silence, on others we chat non-stop. In fact a few weeks ago we got onto the subject of birth control, which I would never have anticipated! blush
I would just suggest that you try not to worry about it, as the more you worry the worse it will seem.

annodomini Wed 21-Oct-15 13:54:53

I have a 23-year-old DGD to whom I have been very close all her life, though now she has moved south. However, when I do see her, we have lots to talk about and if I haven't, she has!

Lona Wed 21-Oct-15 14:00:19

Just talk to them as you would any other adult. That's what they are, not some different species. If they weren't happy to see you, they wouldn't visit.

Nonnie Wed 21-Oct-15 16:04:08

If you do feed them make it something home made and something they don't get at home and possibly isn't even 'healthy'!

chelseababy Wed 21-Oct-15 16:05:01

Don't ask if they are courting!

lefthanded Wed 21-Oct-15 16:34:03

My grandson (I only have the one) is nearly seven, so like a few others here I am not really in the position to answer the OP's question. But my gut feeling is that they must have very busy lives of their own at that age, and if they are going out of their way to see you - even if it is only once a month, then you must be doing something right. It ain't broke - don't try to fix it.

(Oh and by the way - it's nice to hear another male voice in here smile)

Luckygirl Wed 21-Oct-15 16:42:28

I would not worry about what you might talk to them about; better to be a good listener who is open to all topics and does not judge them. There are probably few adults in their lives who do that.

Welcome to Gransnet. smile

tanith Wed 21-Oct-15 17:01:54

Welcome to Gransnet dice , I also have lots of older grandchildren and don't have any problem talking to them, they pop round often and bring their girl/boyfriends and in one case his wife around too. We invite them around for a takeaway or a roast dinner occasionally too or arrange to meet up in a restaurant and we catch up on all their news regarding jobs, holidays and whats happening in their lives. Next year we are all going on an caravan holiday together just like we used to when they were small they are all looking forwards to it immensely.
As others have said be a listener, ours know we don't tell tales and they can tell us anything even if they can't speak to Mum or Dad about it.

I hope you enjoy being here..

rosequartz Wed 21-Oct-15 19:45:57

My DGC are still very young and chat endlessly about all sorts of things (the little one chats to herself all day as well grin)

However, I would just say chat to them without asking too many questions, listen to them and respond and tell them a little of what you are doing. It is lovely that they come to visit you.
I always liked talking to my nieces and nephews when they were teens and young adults - and even more so now they are older; they can be so interesting, without the angst and rebellion of your own children! grin

Greyduster Wed 21-Oct-15 22:19:14

I'm with lefthanded on this - I could have written her post myself. In addition to my one grandson (8) I have two step-grandsons in their late teens, and even though no one has ever put them under any obligation to do so, they visit and seem to be comfortable in our company. We let conversation find its own path and if they don't have a lot to say, that's okay. Go with the flow and enjoy their company.

rosequartz Wed 21-Oct-15 23:46:58

Greyduster I will whisper this very quietly - lefthanded is a man I think. There, I typed it very lightly so he doesn't overhear. wink
So it is good to see his answer, as the OP is a grandad, nice to get a male point of view.

Grandma2213 Thu 22-Oct-15 02:40:24

Welcome dice4. My grandchildren are all under 8 so I haven't had this experience. However if they were still willingly visiting me at 20 and 22 I would be delighted. You must be doing something right as Nonnie says.

Greyduster Thu 22-Oct-15 07:33:45

lefthanded please accept my apologies for misconstruing your gender!! I belong to another forum where I think I must be the only female and it is constantly happening to me - they don't expect "wimmin' " to be there and it brings them up short when they find out I am one! That's never the case on Gransnet. Grandads? Bring them on!

LuckyDucky Thu 22-Oct-15 17:14:05

Hi Dice4 yes it's good to have male input.

I haven't got pearls of wisdom. I can only reminisce on what I did when babysitting. He was washed, fed and almost ready for bed by the time I arrived. At a very early age, when putting him to bed in his cot, I'd brush his hair gently while singing softly to him. (He stopped asked me to sing for him at the ripe old age of 8).

As a toddler, I'd chase him noisily up the stairs or play 'he' on all fours
in their sitting rom. Within 20 minutes he'd flag, then I'd carry him upstairs to wash his hands, put him to bed, brush his hair and sing. When he as able to talk he'd ask for the same song repeatedly.

I was a tom-boy, so showing him I wasn't frightened to walk on a pole 2 feet above the ground was OK for me. then he trusted me to steady him, hold his hand in order to walk the three poles.

How about a game of pirates? An easy to climb tree is ideal. Ambushing
relatives and you, with loud "boo." is harmless and good fun and good exercise.

Just make good memories Dice4. grin

TendringGran Thu 22-Oct-15 17:18:07

Hi- My grandchildren are now mid teens- two boys and a girl. When they come to me, especially when it is without their parents, they just seem to want to hang out- watch TV, lie about,read, play cards etc. Baking is something they associate with me so one of them might set to and bake biscuits. I think they get so little down time they are glad of the excuse. They keep coming back, so far.

dice4 Mon 26-Oct-15 16:16:38

Thank you very much everybody!

I did not expect to get this many answers, I will look into each one.

Again, thank you very much.