Role of grandparents in a child’s life: A human, formerly just a ball of cells, is born dependent on the beings around him. Believe it or not, every single expression of love, hatred, or change is perceived by this seemingly clueless infant as something extremely integral. So if you ask us whether or not grandparents affect a child’s life, we would nod in agreement without a second thought.
The parents of the parents, if alive, can prove to be an essential part of a child’s life, for they may be one of the primary sources from which the child receives love, care, and nurturing. Grandparents are where the child finds an abode, full of warmth, gentleness, and life lessons.
Let us dig deeper into the topic.
Table of Content
The child finds strength in the roots.
A lot of stability in a person’s personality comes from knowing where he belongs—despite the idea of us living in the global village, not learning about our family’s history is like not knowing one whole part of us.
The grandparents are the ones who help us reach the feeling of being a human being as a whole.
They are the mom and dad when mom and dad aren’t home.
Let us face it. We all are swamped with duty calls and long working hours, and most obviously, the children are not. Since the children don’t have much to do (except running around and getting themselves dirty), they need a constant source of love and monitoring. Well, the good news, there is someone else who isn’t as busy either—the grandparents.
Doesn’t it feel unsafe to let a stranger caretaker take care of your kids when grandparents could? Of course, what the grandparents can do for their grandchildren can’t be done by anyone else. Sometimes not even the parents themselves.
A broad horizon is easily achievable.
In today’s world, what we all want in our children is for them to perceive life in a more open, diverse manner. And you guessed it right, grandparents can easily pull this job off. During those walks to the park or back from the school, they enrich the children with stories of their time. Making them look at the past and the present together, allowing the child’s brain to grow in a more developed, more relishing way.
Better emotional intelligence.
Children who grow feeling a sense of attachment to the older people in the family are more in touch with their sentiments. Not only is it something scientifically proven, but it is also something that looks more like a statement of common sense. As they grow older, humans begin to see life from the ‘surface’ and, in turn, become calmer. Having someone with a calm approach to life than yourself can prove essential for your child’s ability to manage stress.
The parents often need guidance from the grandma and the grandpa.
New parents, especially after their first pregnancy, are pretty clueless about what to do. And this feeling of helplessness and disorder just amplifies through the roof when the child won’t stop bawling its eyes out at 3 in the morning, has a hard time on the first day of school, or develops anger issues as an adolescent. At every step, in a trance, the parents of these children look back to their parents to ask them, “What did you do?”
Grandparents know just exactly how much honey or garlic can cure a cold. Just some mint, and the cough gets going out of the system. While dealing with children, we are very protective and sometimes give the medication they don’t even need. Grandparents have their own nutritious, gentle ways of dealing with it all. So when you rush off to work, leaving behind a baby with a stuffy nose, you can work relaxed throughout the day because the problem will probably be solved by the time you get back home.
Kids get skillful.
Often, we cannot teach our kids about the family’s history and the simple skills that our parents passed on to us. The good news is, there isn’t much to worry about when we know that the kids are at their grandparents’ house. He/ she would probably be learning how to knit or the essentials of gardening or make some yummy chocolate chip cookies. These are some of the essential skills that significantly impact a child’s cognitive abilities. And while we may not be able to ingrain them into our children, we can take a sigh of relief because our parents have gotten the job covered.
The kids get closer to you.
Now, this one may sound illogical since the child doesn’t even spend a lot of time with you, but it is true. As the child grows with his grandparents and spends time with them, they learn about the various stories about your childhood. The things you were good at, as well as the things you were just not made for. This way, the child gets an opportunity to look at you as a human being rather than setting you on a distant, ‘respectful’ podium.
Spirituality and soul. (Your kids have them too)
Good use of ample time at hand is doing the ‘soul talk’ with your child, in the child’s way. The grandparents have brought their kids up and have seen, known, and observed closely what it is that appeals to the children the most. They know how to tell them stories and give them fruitful lessons at the end. This provides higher chances for your child to grow as a human and in-depth.
Grandparents can take care of the hard days between mom and dad.
One of the most frightful experiences a child has to go through in his childhood is to see his parents fight. Children detest discord. It makes them anxious and may even leave an imprint on their minds. Grandparents can save children from going through that. They can take children to their house while the parents need to sort some things out or even help the parents resolve conflict. This is why often grandparents are seen as heroic in a child’s eyes because they know that their granny helped their mum and dad get back together.
The children get to see life more closely.
As the children grow through different stages of life, being friends with an older man or woman can help them see what matters in our lives the most. They notice how big of a treasure their physical wellbeing is and develop a more grateful attitude towards life. They learn from their grandparents’ experiences and can carry this wisdom into their lives.
To the children with special needs.
Life isn’t fair sometimes. And it may leave some children entirely dependent on those around them for life! Children with special needs need exclusive love, care, and attention along with the expenses that come as part and parcel of this care. This might get taxing for some parents, but the grandparents come into the scene; they may help the kids and the parents alike.
They offer a more peaceful home.
Parents with all the stress going on in their lives can sometimes mess up through anger, nagging, and sometimes even abuse. Grandparents are the people who have an emotional authority, if not financial, over both the kids and the parents. This position helps them recognize whose fault leads to what, which is one of the most crucial jobs to do in conflict resolution.
Gifts and more.
Grandparents don’t have a lot to spend on by the time they start aging. One of the most favorite things they do with their money is getting their grandkids gifts of all sorts. We don’t remember a single time that we returned from our granny’s house without a present in hand. It could be some toys they bought or a new sweater they just knitted. They like doing little things for their grandkids, and guess what? Making things or buying things for their grandchildren helps to keep them occupied. They look forward to stuff, and all of this helps to fight their mental stress away.
We all can agree that bedtime memories are among the most vivid memories we have in our minds. Children who grow listening to more diverse and articulate stories have a better imagination and creativity. Thanks to the grandpa and grandma. Their minds are full of stories that they’d like to share, and in the way, they’d like to be heard by the children.
A child has a lot of things to say. Stories, anecdotes, broken sentences, and little rants. For all it is worth, they just want to feel heard. Many parents find it hard to constantly keep listening to the child’s ramblings because of how taxing it is to take care of them. Grandparents have the time and the patience to listen to tiny tales as many times as they come out of the little mouths.
Less time on screen.
One of the main reasons children stay on screen so much nowadays is that they have to spend too much time on their own. With the grandparents around and so much to learn and talk about, they get distracted from the screen. This is one of the significant benefits of having the grandparent around with multiple physical and mental advantages. Grandparents will engage your child in hearty conversations, get them busy helping in the kitchen, spend time with your child and their toys instead of turning the tv on or picking out a Youtube video to assist lunch.
Grandparents have seen it all.
These are the people who have brought their kids up. They have seen them go and grow through different life stages and remember very clearly how they handled it and what went wrong. With the events, their ways, and their mistakes in mind, they come up with better strategies to deal with the children sometimes.
Grandparents are humans, though.
While taking help from anyone, this is something we should be mindful of. At the end of the day, they are humans too! Let us explore that for a bit.
They have their boundaries.
Grandparents’ love is unconditional, but some of them prefer privacy over everything. Chances are they have lived a hard life, and now they just want to live in peace and do not want to be stuck with duties that need all-time attention. This is a pretty fair boundary to develop, and everyone around them should respect it.
Aging tires them.
In a survey conducted recently, half of the grandparents were reported to have found the duty of taking care of the kids extremely taxing and tiring.
It is a fact. Aging in itself is a tricky thing to deal with. And now that they have to take care of ‘more’ kids, they find themselves in a challenging position.
Depression could be a mood killer and debilitating for them.
People above the age of sixty are known to have the highest prevalence of mental health issues. There could be quite a possibility that the elderly at your house is going through extreme mood changes, which is why they cannot connect with your kids.
They have got more of the life to see
We often associate the advancing age with a sense of no purpose, but the exceptions are always there. Some people work all their lives so they can travel and truly experience life when they are old. If that is how they have always thought of life, everyone around them needs to understand and accept their choice.
They might differ on your ideas of bringing up the child
Humans have opinions. Even about something as simple as tea. The views and the strategies of bringing up a child encompass a very diverse topic. People of the same generation differ on this topic. You having similar ideas with someone from another era is a far-fetched idea. How do we make it work, then?
In cases like these, grandparents need to respect the choices and the boundaries of the parents. They can guide them, but they need to come to terms with the fact that their children are now adults who have their children. And now it is their right to make it work the way they want it to.
Many components of a child’s personality are dependent upon how much love they received from their parents while growing up. Now, if, along with the parents’ love, they have humans who love, nurture, respect, and educate them as their parents do in the shape of grandparents, their self-confidence and the sense of self-worth are positively reinforced. This is one of the most significant treasures a child can and should be able to collect and recognize while he/she grows to face the harsh world we live in today.
The relationship of the grandparents with the grandchildren has its pros and cons. But then, which relationship doesn’t?