Gransnet forums

Positive experiences of grandparenting

(23 Posts)
MEDIA: KayC Fri 26-Oct-18 17:24:10

I’m a new member as I’ve just become a grandmother! I’m also a writer and a psychologist and have decided to make my next project on grandparenting as I haven’t found much positive and practical material on the subject The academic work tends to be rather dry and has a somewhat negative bias and the rest is of an anecdotal nature, mainly by celebrities.

Can members of Gransnet write on this thread about their most positive grandparenting experiences so that I can clarify the most common themes and patterns

MacCavity2 Fri 26-Oct-18 18:01:19

What a lovely question. As an estranged gran it made me think of all the wonderful memories I have.

Her shouting “Nanny” and jumping into my arms. Cuddles when she was tired. Bath time followed by storytelling. I could go on and on.

Thank you for reminding me.

tanith Fri 26-Oct-18 19:09:30

Have my now mostly grown up Grandchildren recreating the seaside caravan holidays for their own children my Great Grandchildren and inviting me and their siblings to all come along so we all get to relive those wonderful holidays and make new memories.

Day6 Fri 26-Oct-18 19:20:33

For me, it's mothering all over again but this time without the stress and with the time to interact completely. Pure unadulterated pleasure with little innocents. They are fascinating.

When I was given the honour of bedtime duty with my first baby grandchild and I held her in my arms, giving her her bedtime milk in her bottle in a darkened nursery, my heart almost broke with love as she looked up at me with her big blue eyes as I sang to her. What a privilege to do it all over again with your child's child. I had no idea that such love and deep bonds existed.

Marydoll Fri 26-Oct-18 19:21:15

I was very ill, had to retire, felt very low and sorry for myself, when a much wanted, miracle granddaughter was born after thirteen years of trying and failed rounds of IVF.

I gave myself a shake, picked myself up and decided I was going to be well for her. Every time I see her, I feel such joy. She gave me hope for what had seemed a really bleak future. 😍

BBbevan Fri 26-Oct-18 20:00:57

Just knowing my two DGDs are happy to be in my house,with DH and me. Lovely company.

M0nica Fri 26-Oct-18 20:53:06

At the moment, I am almost dancing with excitement, because DS and family are well on their way south from their home 200 miles away to spend a week with us. I feel like that every time they are coming and equally so when we visit them.

Nothing beats it.

cornergran Fri 26-Oct-18 21:55:42

Hearing ‘do I have to go home’ and knowing every word is meant

Being able to offer the precious resource of time. Time to listen, to laugh, to make and do, to laugh, to cry, to praise and gently encourage a more appropriate path. All the things that are squashed into time available for busy parents.

PECS Fri 26-Oct-18 22:15:14

My favourite thing is walking along with grandchildren and suddenly having a small hand finding mine.

pensionpat Fri 26-Oct-18 22:19:02

Hearing from my grandson, then aged 4 “Oh I like you”

Grannyknot Fri 26-Oct-18 22:26:59

The "starfish hands" my grandson makes with both hands in delight at seeing me at the window of his nursery school and he let's the whole room know "There's Granny!" and drops what he's doing to come to me. We take 40 minutes to get to his home 10 minutes away because we play hide-and-seek in the park, make up "challenges" by walking sideways along a low wall, and stop for a treat on the way.

Grannyknot Fri 26-Oct-18 22:29:02

..."lets" not "let's". Darn auto correct.

Apricity Sat 27-Oct-18 04:22:39

For me, as a grandmother of 7, there is one word that says it all. Joy. Pure unadulterated joy. Joy watching them grow, seeing their individual personalities emerge like butterflies from a chrysalis and their smiles as they run into my arms when little and happily greet me with big hugs as they grow into gorgeous young teenagers already towering over me.

And yes I have done the hard stuff including lots of childcare and now do regular school holiday care as they are all at school.

For a number of complex reasons I had very limited contact and no real relationship with any of my own grandparents and my own children didn't have a lot of involvement with their grandparents so now I feel incredibly lucky to have my precious grandchildren and to be fit and well enough to enjoy and cherish them.

Leavingnormal Sat 27-Oct-18 05:56:45

Oh PECS, definitely. My young granddaughter did exactly that last weekend as we were walking along.

PamelaJ1 Sat 27-Oct-18 07:21:00

How long have you got? So many experiences.
I was fascinated just watching my GS learning how to live life. Working out how to reach objects, how to hold a pencil, throw a ball. I could almost see the cogs in his brain working. We didn’t have time for that when we were Mothers did we?
We did see and look after him a lot when he was very little but , as our eldest DD lives in Australia, we went away for quite a long time. During that time DD and he used to come and pick up post and water the plants. He’d obviously got used to us being absent.
When I opened the door after our return his face was such a picture of joy. I’ll never forget it. Wish I could bottle it to remind me of the moment when he’s 14 and just grunting at me.😜

Jobey68 Sat 27-Oct-18 07:52:00

We are completely enthralled by our little 1 year old granddaughter! Watching her lost in play and the cogs spinning behind her eyes trying to work things out, how quickly she picks things up and her obvious memory of what she did here the previous week- grandad picks her up and shows her all the pictures we have on our fridge - she goes to him arms up and tells him in her own little language that she wants to see them, she just melts us ❤️

Iam64 Sat 27-Oct-18 08:32:00

Taking our 2 1/2 year old grandson to nursery after a sleep over at our house. "bye gannie, I do wub you". - what a start to the day.

Greyduster Sat 27-Oct-18 08:37:39

I was looking at a picture of my grandson the other day; he was about ten months old, sitting on my lap, “playing” the piano with tiny pudgy hands. He is now an eleven year old, all round sporting, tries hard, knows everything 🙄, very loving young man. We have been involved in his care from day one and it has been a complete joy to help him grow and develop. Our hands-on role is drawing to a close now that he is older, but I hope we will be around for a good while to share his joys, his woes and his triumphs.

Flossieturner Sat 27-Oct-18 09:22:54

I think. a lot of negative experiences of grandparents stem from two sources. First, if there is a strained relationship between the grandparent and the adult child. The second comes when there is intolerance of the child’s partner or the partner has hostility for the In-laws.

I have 8 grandchildren aged from 3 to 24 and have only ever had positive experiences. My children and their partners have worked hard to include us in their family life. Having very bad experiences with our own parents, we have always shown our children and their partners, how grateful we are to them . We never intrude, we respect their need for privacy and we do not criticise. We help out whenever we can but if we can’t help, no offence is taken.

Our GCs come for sleep overs and we will stay at their houses when the parents work or when the children are sick. We are now at the age when we are starting to need the help ourselves . Like our children did with us, we do take advantage but help is always willingly given. As we move into the last stage of our life it is now the adult Grandchildren that are joining in with helping us.

One of the best things that happened to me was when my eldest grandchild brought his 3 year old step son to see me. He introduced me as Granny Pancake which was his name for me. Then told him about all the things he did on his sleep over. The little boy sat their in wide-eyed amazement, and then asked if he could come for a sleep-over too.

Granny23 Sat 27-Oct-18 10:09:29

We had 2 DDs who, having kept us waiting until after we had retired, suddenly, moved from the city to live nearby and within the space of 6 months, blessed us with a DGS and a DGD, with another DGD 2 years later. Our small family (of 4 for Christmas dinner) became, with the addition of 2 x SIL's' 9 of us, sometimes 11 if the lovely 'other' DGPs joined us. Leisured retirement was turned upside down, we were plunged into a round of childminding, sleepovers, taking to nursery and later school. Such joy, exhaustion, laughter and love.

I adore all 3 Grandbairns but want to say something about DGS in particular. from an early age he was his Grandpal's shadow. They had their own little rituals, high fiving, mock boxing, squeezed into one chair watching TV, in fits of giggles as Grandpal read bed time stories deliberately wrong. Sadly Granpal now has quite advanced dementia, but the pair remain 'best pals', with GS (now 11) sitting with him, escorting him to the Gents toilets, changing TV channels, making him cups of T to his special recipe. showing him Magic Tricks, telling GP all about his exploits in the Scouts (DH was A Queen's Scout). The bond is very strong.

Grandchildren? The gift that keeps on giving

Missfoodlove Sat 27-Oct-18 10:29:36

For me grandparenting has been like the last piece in the puzzle.
I had a dreadful upbringing but with the support of a wonderful husband we brought up 3 children who are all happy and successful adults, we all have a solid relationship.
Seeing our daughter with our beautiful granddaughter is heartwarming, we have broken a long cycle of destructive relationships on my side of the family and now have three happy generations.
Our daughter is a fabulous Mother
and our granddaughter is so loved by us and her uncles, she is happy, funny and loving.
She jumps with delight at seeing us and cries as we are leaving and tells us how much she loves us.
Her love has helped me recover from my abusive childhood.
History does not have to repeat itself.

KayC Sat 27-Oct-18 10:37:56

I am grateful for these posts - so moving and so helpful. I am inspired to start writing and hopefully sharing this wisdom as soon as I can. Thank you.

KayC Sun 28-Oct-18 12:19:59

The phrase ‘unconditional love’ comes to mind when I read these posts. It is wonderful to be reminded in these commercial times where organisations, government and commerce are all piling in and putting a price on relationships and feelings!