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Tags: grandmothers | mothers | grandchildren | expectations
OPINION

Are Grandmas Always a Blessing?

Are Grandmas Always a Blessing?

Dr. Laura By Monday, 17 June 2024 03:25 PM EDT Current | Bio | Archive

Sadly, I get way too many calls from grandmothers about hurt feelings.

Here is an example: A grandmother complains that in her opinion, she should have certain rights and expectations with respect to the grandkids.

What? There are no such automatic rights and privileges. This sense of entitlement has gotten her in lots of trouble with the mother of her grandchildren.

I tell this woman that her access to the grandkids is based on earning the mother's trust and confidence. That means that if a grandmother has been given rules or expectations, she should follow them!

Don't argue, complain, or ignore because you think you know better.

You may know better; however, you should never announce that as a way of getting to do things the way you have always done them. They are not your children.

So that means you don't buy things that momma said no to; you don't cut their hair or give them forbidden treats; you don't take them places without permission; and you don't expose them to media or people without momma's knowledge and approval.

The silly saying that apologizing is better than getting permission does not at all hold here.

You don't show up uninvited just because you had time to see the grandkids. You definitely don't complain to your son — the husband/dad — hoping he will nullify what his wife expects. That would be an assault on their marriage. You will not win that one!

Your job as a grandparent is to be supportive of the parents — and you best do that with patience, self-control, a willingness to accept direction, and an overall attitude of appreciation for the opportunities afforded you — or you will be drop-kicked.

New moms need help and support. However, first-time moms or those suffering postpartum depression deal with feeling overwhelmed and are, frankly, not very competent.

I remember when I brought my son home from the hospital; I was afraid to give him a bath. Silly me worried about his arms and legs falling off. I know that sounds crazy, but it is the truth. Postpartum is tough.

Grandmothers need to tread lightly to avoid adding to the new mom's sense of confusion and anxiety. If grandma behaves as though the mom is incompetent and she has to bark the orders, the already anxious mom will lash out, because she is made to feel that she is lacking.

Grandmothers often have a tough time shifting from being a mom to recognizing and appreciating a new position as not being the authority, but the helper and supporter. If you want to make sure you get to be in your grandkids' lives, you'd better heed these words.

On the flip side, postpartum issues often make a mom "sensitive" to seemingly helpful comments.

You new moms have to put ego aside and embrace the help that grandmothers can be. There is always something to learn, and knowing what to do all the time with a newborn is not built in.

Be willing to accept the fact that you do not know it all — that does not make you stupid or a bad mother. Not willing to be open to help and learning — well, that's pretty stupid.

All in all, moms and grandmothers teaming together to love and support children is a blessing. So don't blow it!

Dr. Laura (Laura Schlessinger) is a well-known radio personality and best-selling author. She appears regularly on many television shows and in many publications. Listen to Dr. Laura on SiriusXM Channel 111, Mon.–Sat. 2–6pm ET, Sun. 5–9pm ET.​ Read Dr. Laura's Reports — More Here.

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DrLaura
Sadly, I get way too many calls from grandmothers about hurt feelings.Here is an example: A grandmother complains that in her opinion, she should have certain rights and expectations with respect to the grandkids.What? There are no such automatic rights and privileges.
grandmothers, mothers, grandchildren, expectations
598
2024-25-17
Monday, 17 June 2024 03:25 PM
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