There are certain holidays like Valentine’s Day that put the word “love” under a magnifying glass. We use this word to embody so many emotions, ranging from trust and appreciation to passion and desire. The words we use to describe love say a lot about how we view the connections between people.
When parents are unable to raise their children, grandparents often step in. In the U.S., there are millions of grandparents raising grandchildren. These families are often called “grandfamilies.” Of course raising your own grandchildren is not without it’s challenges, but, it can also be rewarding.
The relationship between mother-in-laws and daughter-in-laws is complicated. At its best, it can be like finding a long-lost daughter. At worst, it can be a center of tension for the entire family.
When you think about it, having a daughter-in-law is a beautiful thing. After all, this is the person that your son has chosen from the billions of women in the world. She is also the mother of your precious grandchildren. And, while this may be hard for many mothers to accept, she is now the center of your son’s life.
So, with so much riding on the mother-in-law to daughter-in-law relationship, why is it so hard to get right? Why do so many of us feel a sense of tension, or even outright hostility, from the most important woman in our son’s life?
Grandkids are a treasure for many women over 60 – but just as is the case with so many other aspects of our world and our new stage of life, many things are much different than previous generations might have expected.
The knowledge that the child you brought into this world is not only all grown up, but a parent, and that you are now a new grandma, is a scary prospect. You are excited and elated, but nervous and fearful all at the same time.
Kids love crafts! One of the joys of being grandparents is getting to work on special little arts and crafts projects with our grandkids.
This is a great time of year to find some new winter craft ideas for kids, because it helps to keep kids entertained while they’re cooped up in the house on cold days, without having to resort to TV, video games or more screen time.
As grandparents, many women over 60 are embracing a new role in life. Seeing our children grow up to have children of their own is one of life’s great joys and privileges, and it reminds us of how life is a circle, with so many stages and cycles. The young become the old, and “The Child is father of the Man,” as William Wordsworth wrote.
One of the most fun and heartwarming ways to spend time with your grandchildren is to travel together. Whether it’s a weekend trip close to home, or a longer excursion to a faraway vacation destination or even another country, more women over 60 are discovering the joys of traveling with their grandchildren.
According to the 2010 U.S. Census, there are 4.9 million grandparents raising grandchildren. If this group includes you, congratulations for stepping up to the plate. You are doing something amazing.