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Do you love your grandchildren the same as your children?

(100 Posts)
musicposy Fri 06-May-11 13:56:53

Hi there, I'm not a gran yet so hope you grans don't mind me posting - I have two teenage girls.

I always wanted 4 children, but at 45 this year, I'm having to accept it's not going to happen. I had a miscarriage last year which was devastating and the only thing I can think is at least one day I may have grandchildren.

But, and it's hard to envisage how it feels to have grandchildren. Do you love your grandchildren the same as your children? And if so, isn't it hard only seeing them sometimes and not being the one to parent them? If you wanted a large family but instead get lots of grandchildren, does that feel the same? Do you feel as close to them as you do to your children?

Sorry if these questions are hopelessly naive! Just that I think people are likely to be honest on here. wink

twinklepickers Fri 06-May-11 14:33:16

No, I don't think so. It's different. But it is love all the same.

I'm sorry you didn't get the family size you wanted. It is hard when you feel like you are getting past the age you can reasonably expect to have such a life change are more kids. But you'll probably be a great gran and because you won't have to divide your time up between four different children you'll be able to focus more closely on the grandkids you do get. smile

HildaW Fri 06-May-11 15:38:42

I wanted more than my two daughters but my husband had had a son from his first marriage and he was not keen on having more than he felt the finances could cope with ...sounds a bit cold blooded but I have long since learned that being very responsible and grown up about finances can be quite a good thing.........!! Any road up my elder daughter suddenly announced that she was pregnant and I was delighted. He is now two and there is another on the way.....! The love you feel is quite quite different, its very intense but there are other elements to consider. How often you see them makes a huge difference, also you tend to be a little more worried if you are left in charge. After all its not your have a son-in-law to answer to if anything goes wrong. I find I see my Grandson more as an individual, I can see his developing personality more clearly than my own children. Its a great joy and yet .....yes the old joke does sometimes apply....its great to give him back!!

wallers5 Fri 06-May-11 16:30:33

I do adore the latest grandchild because I see so much of her & did not of the others as one lot were abroad. Also I feel sorry for her as her mother is so busy with two jobs & no time or money.

As the grandchildren grow up & change, their need of you is different & so I enjoy the moments when they need me. I agree with the comment above that it is great to give them back!

Grannysmith Fri 06-May-11 17:27:09

I have not had a particularly close relationship with my daughter (I also have an unmarried son of 25) but she made me a GM 7 months ago. I am totally smitten with the little one & motherhood has also helped to mend our relationship. They live 200 miles from us, but are moving closer later this year as she has to return to work so I will see more of him. I adore my grandson & feel a love for him I didn't know existed! How soppy am I?

HildaW Fri 06-May-11 17:30:17 are not soppy......enjoy it...and am so glad you and your daughter are on better will have a wonderful time!

usualsuspect Fri 06-May-11 17:31:23

yes I do

lucid Fri 06-May-11 18:00:54

First go...
I also would have liked a big family but it didn't happen, and I have 2 children...I now have 4 gorgeous grandchildren from 15years old to 2months old. The older 3 live very close to me and we have a great do love them in a more intense way. I also find that as they get older I can be a 'go-between' to ease the usual teenage/parent angst. We all have great fun together but we also talk about things that they might find difficult to discuss with their Mum and Dad. They love to hear stories about their Mum when she was growing up. My newest grandchild lives a long way away and I'm hoping to be a modern Gran and keep in touch via the internet as she grows older. How do other Grandparents keep a good relationship going with their distant grandchildren? Is there anything I can do or are there things I shouldn't do?
Phew...I did it where did I put my wine

HildaW Fri 06-May-11 18:17:54

Lucid.....ruddy 'ell...........and you jolly well are........! smile and where's mine?

lucid Fri 06-May-11 20:13:33

Here you are HildaW...enjoy... wine...wink

musicposy Fri 06-May-11 23:32:09

Thanks for the really interesting responses. I find it hard to know how these things feel - just like I never really had any idea just how much people felt for their children until I had mine.

My mum says she loves them just the same as she did us and has really loved having grandchildren - but I'm not so sure it's the same really. I think she has to battle against favouritism more than you would with children. Maybe favouritism isn't quite the right word, but she obviously finds my girls much easier than my nephew who tires her out, and I think for a long time she was more closely bonded with my eldest than my youngest.

She likes not having to make the decisions and being able to send them home!

One thing I do think is that now I am so busy; trying to juggle work and home, hubby and I struggling to keep our heads above water financially, running the girls around all over the place etc. I hope that when I have grandchildren my pace of life will be a bit slower and I will be able to take the time for them, as others have said.

Loving all the responses. Don't want my 15 year old to have one just yet, though! wink

grannyactivist Sat 07-May-11 00:39:22

Hi there musicposy,
I think the truth is that the love you feel for your grandchildren may be very much dependent upon circumstances. I was present, along with my SiL, at the birth of my youngest (premature) grandson and spent a great deal of time with him and my daughter. Tragically my daughter was widowed when baby was less than 5 months old. They live only a 20/30 minute drive away and when my SiL died in very traumatic circumstances I moved in to my daughter's house for several weeks - I left my job and dropped everything else I was involved in - and I have remained pretty much on hand ever since. As you can imagine with so much involvement I feel very close to my baby GS and love him like my own. (But still love to hand him back!)

Contrast that with my other three grandchildren who live in a distant part of the country and whom I very rarely see; our contact is usually through cards, letters, photo's and gifts. I love them very much, but yes, it's different.

Grandmacool Sat 07-May-11 09:39:37

@Grannysmith, not soppy at all.

I have 2 grandchildren and I adore them both. When they look into my eyes and say ``Please Grandma, can I have an ice cream`` I just can`t refuse. I guess I am a real pushover, when it comes to them. LOL.

nannym Sat 07-May-11 11:00:05

I just have one grandchild, a little girl who I've looked after while her parents work since she was 8 months old. She has made my life so different that I would be lost without her. My husband is golf mad and plays at least four days a week so having a small child to look after has stopped me from turning into a bitter golf widow or (even worse in my opinion) learning to play golf myself!! She has filled my days with joy, laughter and delight. Of course I loved both my sons but the love you feel for a grandchild is so different and only rarely do I feel relief when her Mum comes to pick her up in the evening!

jangly Sat 07-May-11 12:33:10

I feel exactly the same about them as I did about my own children. Absolutely adore them. And Grandmacool I know exactly what you mean. smile

katied Sat 07-May-11 12:53:52

I adore my four Grandchildren. I enjoy having them to stay and love taking them out for 'adventures'. I have more time to spare than I had when my own children were young. We have an old motorhome that we take them off in (2 at a time) and its the only way we can afford to visit our younger two who live 350 miles away!
I think that being a Grandma is the best job in the world, the love I feel when they are with me is undescribeable. Especially when they say the magic words "I love you Grandma".
And I am so proud I dont care who thinks I am soppy, silly or whatever!

grannywendy Sat 07-May-11 15:50:08

Hi! I think the love you feel for your grandchildren is different because there is no pressure on making them do the right things. You just enjoy being with them and showing them how to make things, you are far more patient than when you were a Mum, also it isn't such a problem saying yes when they ask for something, you are allowed to spoil them....within reason of course. Enjoy being a Mum but don't be afraid when the time comes to be a grandma.

supernana Sat 07-May-11 17:25:21

How do I get to add the Smileys please?

jangly Sat 07-May-11 17:34:34

supernan, look by the side of the "Add your comment here box".

Grannysue Sat 07-May-11 17:46:40


Ha Ha! You sound like me, I can't resist them when they ask for lollies & sweets but I do try and steer them towards fruit if I can (boring?). Of course I always ask my daughter-in-law before I give them anything.

I think I love my grandchildren as much as my children, I didn't think I would but they are so beautiful. I also find I remember things about my children that I had forgotten.

One word of caution @Musicposy I think it would be very easy to get too involved if you weren't careful. A work colleague of mine had her daughter & granddaughter living with her and I think she got a bit too close. Her relationship with her daughter and husband was affected

GrannyTunnocks Sat 07-May-11 22:10:30

I love the fact that I can have lots of fun with my grandchildren but hand them back at the end of the day and have time to myself. I also enjoy telling them stories about when their Mum and Dad were children. I try not to become a granny bore as everyone else does not want to hear about all my trivialities.

Nannyliz Sun 08-May-11 00:48:56

I'm glad I'm not the only one who just can't say no to my grandchildren. just keep telling my daughter that's what Nanny's do! Thankfully she agrees with me!

PoppaRob Sun 08-May-11 10:53:23

I was very pleasantly surprised when I was first handed my grand-daughter and felt the same unconditional love that I'd felt when I helped deliver my daughter 26 years before. I'd forgotten how great it felt! Mind you I don't always like my daughter or my grand-daughter, but I'll always love them unconditionally.

Poppy Sun 08-May-11 12:14:22

The love I have for my grand children is different from the love that I had and still do have for my children.My children were entirely mine and my husbands responsibility.I loved them and cared for them but was also busy with their day to day needs.With my grand children I am able to give them more of my undivided attention. Also I can see things through their eyes and probably have more patience than I had when my children were small.We should remember that they are our future. They are the most precious gift that our children have given us.

Jangran Sun 08-May-11 12:17:26

I found loving my grandchildren rather easier. I was very young when I had my daughters, both by Caesarian section, and I found bonding with them very difficult. On the other hand, I fell in love with my first grandson as soon as I saw him. Not quite the same with the second, a girl, but with the last two, both boys, I felt the same as with the first. I don't know if gender had anything to do with it. Now they are older (2-8) I don't have favourites, though, I feel bonded with all of them and they seem to feel close to me too.

We spend a weekend with them most months, and I find that ideal because we spend enough time with them to keep the closeness, and we can leave at the end of the weekend and get back to our normal lives.

When I retire we are going to move closer to them, though.

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