May, 2014

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Raising Grandchildren: The Fine Line of being both Grandparent and Parent to Grandchildren

baby-35723_640Whether you are a grandparent raising grandchildren, a sister raising a brother, an aunt raising a niece, etc., you will undoubtedly on occasion experience the “fine line” as I call it.

What is the “fine line”?  Well, I am a Mario’s grandmother and I am also his parent at the same time.  If I had not been raising Mario I would have been experiencing being his grandparent.  So in that case I would be having him for sleep-overs, taking him on adventures, babysitting him sometimes, and of course SPOILING him!  And then he would go home to be with his mom.

On the flip side, as Mario’s parent I am providing (or at least attempting to provide!) stability, discipline, good values and morals, emotional support, fixing boo boo’s, guiding him through everyday life, helping with homework (ugghh! That can be a tough one!) and so on.  All of those “parenty” kinds of things.

Now for the “fine line” (In case you’re still wondering what that is!).  The “fine line” is….

When I find myself being a grandmom instead of a mom, or even worse a mixture of BOTH!

Thoughts will be running through my head such as “Well, he IS my grandson and other grandmoms would buy him this toy he wants so badly, or feed him tons of candy on a visit, or give in just to see his little smile!

Then the “other” thoughts come. NO, that’s not how things are!  I can’t do these things to these things in the same way as a regular grandmom can.  Besides, that would be terribly expensive since he’s with me every day!

It’s very important to find a balance when you are caring for your grandchild or another family member’s child.

You have to put your “parenting” hat on, and try your best to keep it on.  Sometimes though that hat will fall off, and that’s okay, as long as you put it back on quickly!  It will take some practice at being the parent figure, but it does get easier with time.

The most important thing to remember is that it’s okay to be in both roles, because quite simply, you ARE!  Just roll with it and you’ll eventually find a happy medium and lean more toward the parent role.

Mario Pre-K Graduation

 

I would love to hear of any difficulties  and how you are trying to overcome them or any funny stories you have with your “fine line”, so please share! 

Talk soon,

Lori

 

 

 

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