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Teenage grandaughter is hard work!

(75 Posts)
Davida1968 Mon 10-Jul-23 10:20:57

Please can any grans out there reassure me about teeenage DGC? Our DGD is staying with us and frankly it's very hard work! DGD lives overseas (in an English speaking country) and we hadn't seen her in over a year. She arrived with a friend (we agreed to this) but having them stay is very hard work. Technically they are adults, but they behave at times like toddlers! (Other than rising early- irritatingly they stay in bed late, every morning). DH and I appear to be regarded as: cook, cleaner, chauffeur, housekeeper and general factotum. They show no interest in us or our lives: we try hard to show an interest in theirs. We are treating them as adults, and have taken them away on trips to stay at places/do things that they'd like, but it's stressful! (And as for them forever being on their bloomin' phones.......!) I'm simply seeking reassurance: in your experience, will this pass? Will we ever again see the lovely young person we used to know? I'd appreciate any constructive advice - thank you.

pascal30 Wed 12-Jul-23 11:01:10

I can remember staying as a teenager at my GM's with my cousin and trying to find something more interesting to do, obviously before the days of iphones. we were always trying to find ways to escape from the house. Why would you think they would want to spend time with you when they have each others company? They live in a different world but that needn't stop them from being helpful and polite.. we were certainly polite with our GM

Chocolatelovinggran Wed 12-Jul-23 11:11:03

I'm with SpringsEternal. Think of it as the pupae stage. A butterfly will emerge ( eventually) so you just have to grin and bear it for a while. Good luck

Cambsnan Thu 13-Jul-23 12:09:05

Set a few ground rules and then enjoy he fact that she feel comfortable in your company. Expecting her to be interested in you is perhaps a bit optimistic. Are you lonely? Were you expecting the shared times you had when she was growing up? Those days are gone but she will mature and appreciate you very soon.

Fflaurie Thu 13-Jul-23 12:59:17

Our DGG has come out of that now, she is 21. It was hard going for ages, we knew nothing, didn't understand, hadn't lived etc. Her behaviour could be made worse because she has a friend with her, so the dynamics are so different other than just having time with her grandparents herself. Keep your boundaries, keep your cool and when she returns home, BREATHE.

Debbi58 Thu 13-Jul-23 13:09:21

Typical of today's teenagers I'm afraid. Went through it with my twin daughters ( now 30 ) now my granddaughter's aged 11 and 13 , they don't really go back to those lovely girls until they are in their 20 s

jenpax Thu 13-Jul-23 13:43:29

Teenagers are neither fish nor fowl😁 not children but certainly not fully fledged adults. My 3 DDs turned into “normal” people in the early to mid 20’s; you have to ride with it, if they are with you only on a visit then more important is trying to give them great memories of their stay and hopes to return.
My eldest DGS is 13, he is polite if I talk about something that interests me but he isn’t really very interested and I do not really expect it. He will get enthusiastic if I talk about cooking as he loves food and cooking and we share time thinking up recipes and putting a meal together sometimes, but a lot of the time he is on his xbox or chatting to his friends on his phone. I am fine with that as its just a normal developmental stage.

Kamiso Thu 13-Jul-23 13:51:23


Yes, the teenage phase is a struggle. Add a friend along on the trip and you’ve almost lost her (temporarily). However, if she was sweet as a child I’m thinking she will re-emerge as a lovely young woman some day.

Could be that her friend is having some influence over her too? IDK. Don’t know how old these two are.

Teens and social media… 😩😉
Hang in there G’ma!
USA Gundy

We took friends as company for our children occasionally and, one in particular, was a mistake. DD2 and her friend didn’t turn up after an organised teen event and we ended up searching for them in the dark.

They were told they had to stay in the next two nights. DD1 overheard the friend telling DD2 to keep whining until we gave in! DD1 told her quite bluntly that if they kept whining they would most likely be grounded for the entire holiday.

The moaning stopped! Having a friend along will make a difference as peer pressure is a big deal. Are they places that they are keen to visit. One of my grandson’s is keen to visit historic houses for example. The other less keen but enjoys eating out - or eating of any kind! If we combine the two that seems to work.

HeavenLeigh Thu 13-Jul-23 13:53:52

Teenagers are always glued to their phones iPads and everything else these days, and so are millions of adults 🤣the fact there is two of them it’s going to be slightly different. Many teenagers don’t take interest in their grandparents lives, you will get a better response probably in a few years time.

NambyPamby Thu 13-Jul-23 14:11:05

Well done, all the respect in the world. I've had my granddaughter since 16months. She's 5 next week. It's a very hard and lonely world being a guardian xx

Davida1968 Thu 13-Jul-23 15:23:14

My sincere thanks to those GNs who have responded here to my quandry/query, and who have reassured me that after the teenage years (in your experience) it's likely my DGD will once again demonstrate the qualities of the lovely young person that we knew. (In fact we had something of a frank chat with DGD, and that improved things notably.) Truly I appreciate your thoughtful responses: thank you!

SophiaCharm1 Fri 14-Jul-23 02:25:07

I would welcome visits from my darling granddaughter and her friend(s) anytime and be grateful they want to visit. My granddaughter is 2 years old and lives in the UK, and I live in the U.S. We visit her 2x per year, but Face Time with her and her parents weekly. She will be our one and only grandchild. So, we will meet her where she is anytime and be grateful at every stage of her development.

Daisydaisydaisy Sat 15-Jul-23 12:57:20

Agree with Wild swan smile

SylviaPlathssister Sat 15-Jul-23 15:43:05

One of my son phoned me and said “ I have got good news and bad news Mother” . Good news “ I have escaped having to endure my F1 in a remote horrible Hospital, The good news is I have a placement in a hospital near you, so I shall be moving in shortly.
It wasn’t hell as he was older than 18, but it was annoying to get to the fridge to see he had eaten the lovely salad I had prepared for myself and my friend. And the mounds of washing generated every second.
Son number three came home from University not looking too good. I said “ would you like to go to bed, and shall Mummy bring you up something nice to eat. A forlorn look ensured and the tray of delicious food delivered in bed. Have an hour later, said son appears downstairs and nicely coiffed. Me “ what the F or equivalent” . Said son’s friend had text him “ want to come to a party…..
That will learn me . Eh

Witzend Sat 15-Jul-23 15:48:12

Sylviaplathssister, that reminded me of dd1 at that sort of age. However rough she felt, she simply couldn’t bear to miss anything - she had to go out.

TBH she’s not all that much different in her 40s! Always intensely sociable.

Callistemon21 Sat 15-Jul-23 16:21:10


My sincere thanks to those GNs who have responded here to my quandry/query, and who have reassured me that after the teenage years (in your experience) it's likely my DGD will once again demonstrate the qualities of the lovely young person that we knew. (In fact we had something of a frank chat with DGD, and that improved things notably.) Truly I appreciate your thoughtful responses: thank you!

I think if she'd come on her own it might have been different - possibly.
However, it is better that two of them are travelling together.

singhrishavbhai Tue 18-Jul-23 06:06:32

Message deleted by Gransnet for breaking our forum guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

downtoearth Tue 18-Jul-23 06:45:10

DGD has just turned up I am coming to stay for a few weeks nan while I start my new job,yes ok says I innocently,then the massive case of dirty washing was produced as she has just finished a week of live in care,oh and by the way am out early meeting my friend ( today) erm ok so who is doing your washing today,silly question really,I do love her reallygrin

NanaDana Tue 18-Jul-23 07:00:18

I could have written the script! Sounds perfectly normal to me. Remember the Harry Enfield sketch? At least they're not shouting : "I hate you!" Honestly, there's a lot worse out there, and personally, I'd hate to be a teenager these days. I think their lives are so much more stressful and challenging than ours ever were at the same age. Just go with the flow, but do establish your own boundaries, and look forward to getting your home back in due course. With any luck, in a few years they may even emerge from the ugly chrysalis as beautiful, caring adult butterflies. smile

NanKate Thu 15-Feb-24 16:30:14

I’m resurrecting this thread as my oldest DG phoned me from his bed at 3.15 for a chat. It’s half term. His younger brother has a friend round and they are playing something on the tv.

My lad is 13 tomorrow and I suspect he is practising for what he will be doing during the next few years 😏

We laughed and teased each other. At my prompting he put my evening meal pictures up on FaceTime.

When asked he said he had played some football today and been to the Co-Op, that’s it.

After a while he said ‘see you, love you’ and I said the same to him.

I wish I had seen him reading a book, or making something.

Times have changed.

GrandmaGrandmaGrandma Fri 16-Feb-24 17:12:27

Parents and grandparents of teenagers understand quite well why animals often eat their young........

NanKate Sun 18-Feb-24 07:57:31


Serendipity22 Sun 18-Feb-24 08:06:09

What you're describing is normal teenagers.
As my mum used to say you cant put old heads on young shoulders.

Sparklefizz Sun 18-Feb-24 08:41:51


Parents and grandparents of teenagers understand quite well why animals often eat their young........


Oldnproud Sun 18-Feb-24 13:22:02


I had a situation last year when a young (22-year-old) Australian relative travelling in Europe came to stay for 'a couple of days'. It soon became clear he was only using us to provide board and lodging until something better came up. We tried taking him out to places and he didn't bother to conceal his boredom. He just sat around or lay around on his phone or laptop for 11 days until I told him I'd had enough and bought him a bus ticket to London.

I think this is the way a lot of young people are these days. They are used to spending loads of time alone in a bedroom on their phone and they really can't be bothered with the real world. It feels terribly rude, doesn't it?

Funny you should say that - I have some elderly relatives who had exactly the same experience last time one of their Aussie-born dgc, also in his 20s, 'visited' them.
I seem to remember that they put an end to it in a similar way, too.