Global Council for Tolerance and Peace

Grandparents… The good raisers

By: Dr. Antoine Chartouni

Dr. Antoine Chartouni

Despite our fast-paced lifestyle, grandma’s bosom and sitting with grandpa are still one of the most beautiful places a grandchild goes to, because of their ongoing parenthood instinct no matter how old they get, and their educational experience which is worthless.

Grandparents understand the requirements of grandchildren and seek to solve all their romantic, economic and family problems with love and affection… Therefore, they are the source of experience, sociability and tenderness.

Grandparents’ role in the family!

Grandparents role cannot be considered close to parents’ role due to the prominent role of the parents in educating and upraising their children, but this doesn’t mean that that grandparents are far from this field.

Family psychology considers that grandparents are relieved by the presence of their grandchildren, which increases their love for them away from the father’s rules and the mother’s strictness, although it should be remembered that the parents cannot be replaced with grandparents.

What are the pros and cons of having grandparents at home?

One of the most important advantages of the grandparents’ presence in the family is to create more psychological balance in children, especially those who suffer from psychological trauma or family problems, and that means, after the retribution of parents. For example, most children take refuge in their grandparents seeking compassion and affection because of the annoying feeling they have been through.

Speaking about disadvantages, the most important one is excessive pampering. Parents have to come up and explain to grandparents that excessive pampering will only teach the child how to dodge when dealing with others. Another negative point is the grandparents’ anxiety to parents punishing their children. Therefore, parents must explain to grandparents the importance of punishments in education.

One of the favorite things for grandparents, especially grandmothers, is to buy gifts and get sweets for their grandchildren. Of course, for this behavior many psychological explanations as well as health and educational implications. For that, parents should agree on the quantity and quality of gifts and sweets offered to grandchildren.

Finally, if the grandparents insist on intervening in raising the child, dialogue is the solution to clarify things and thank them for their love and compassion and explain to them that discipline, ethics and education are the basics of life, and it is very important that the mother and the father treat their parents well in front of their children because their method will be passed on to their children later on.

Strengthening the relationship with the grandparents 

Parents depend way too much on the grandparents, leading them to withdraw and feel disturbed.

Sometimes there are some problems between the two teams because of the means of raising the children or because of different point of views. We also notice some emotional coldness between grandchildren and grandparents in families that have psychological and social problems.

Therefore, it is necessary to help strengthening the relationship with the grandparents by paying attention to the following points:

First, explain very calmly to grandparents that education is the parents’ task.

Second, constantly consult the grandparents about health and education issues, as they usually like to be involved in the family life so that he won’t feel useless. This is why we see many grandparents interfering with all sort of things to feel that they are still “important” in society.

Thirdly, grandparents can be asked to share activities or hobbies like swimming or walking in nature with their grandchildren… This is a way to strengthen the relationship not only between grandparents and parents but also with grandchildren.

To strengthen the relationship between grandchildren and grandparents, the child must be taught to frequently contact the grandparents to check on them, write short messages or send pictures via telephone.

Also, grandparents can allocate some time to teach their grandchildren some of the skills they master such as drawing, artwork or garden care…

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