Subha Manoj

While I Was Away

Subha Manoj

The Grandeur of Grand-Parenting – Blogathon – Post 10

11th August 2013

I am
the product of multi parenting. Apart from my parents, my grandparents, especially
my grandmother has a big role in what I am and the way I think. I am indebted
to her for many lives to come, for the values and good thinking she gave me.
my mother also lives with me. And I am able to see changes in my children. Some
are great, some good, some ok, and some well…let’s just say, could have been
your child/children are being multi parented too, then here are some
perspectives which is worth going through.
keep the math very simple.

  • They
    are more experienced, so they definitely know a little better: I have seen some
    great moves being given by my mother when one or both my kids get in
    mother-of-all moods. Honestly, she can handle them better during those times.
  • They
    can tell a lot more stories in a much better way than you do: This holds true
    in my case. Let’s face it. I am a good mother, but I am a bad bed time story
    teller. I really wish I could catch up on some TV while they sleep on their
    own. (Sheepish grin!)
  • They
    definitely can pamper them better: Come on. Do admit, a little pampering has
    never done harm to any child. Even we had our share of pampering during our
    golden days. This was pointed to me by my mother, when on an un-cool day, I pointed
    out to her that she is spoiling the kids. Her response, “You know what? You
    were just like this as a child. Every child needs pampering. And no one pampers
    your children better than me.” Okies, point taken.
  • They
    can reinforce learning your mother tongue better: My parents definitely wanted
    me to learn to speak Malayalam very well, but my grandmother was the one who
    took it one notch higher. She made sure that I am able to write and read
    Malayalam. Being a Delhi-ite, I was a rare species of my age, who could read,
    write and speak Malayalam. Her point, “You should be able to write a letter to
    me in Malayalam, when you are away.”

(Yup, this is A with my mother. Its a candid shot and my fav pic recently clicked on a vacation. They were discussing his school, I guess.)

can truly provide the emotional cushioning which a parent cannot: There is
something about being a grandparent. They are so gooey and full of love…always.

  • No,
    they do not always know better than you: You are closer to your child’s age
    than them. And that helps you to keep track about the way your child operates. This
    one is for mothers: You will always know your child the best, no one else.
  • Sometimes,
    they need to be reminded too: It makes sense to keep expectations clear. It may
    sound harsh but it is better to do so, so that clashes on an everyday basis can
    be avoided. This holds true in cases where your parents or inlaws stay under
    the same roof as you and your family.
  • Sometimes,
    they might not be the best help for your child: It simply means that they are
    just not up for it. They might not really enjoy grand-parenting or they like
    privacy or they might not interested to do the tasks which you may feel is
    beneficial for your child.
  • So,
    how do you strike a balance?
  • Keep
    expectations clear: There are some things you can let go. There are some which
    can be compromised and some which is inexcusable. Let the children and your
    parents know that. Let your child know that you are a family and that families
    do not back bite. It is incorrect to complain and ask the grand-dad or
    grand-mom to change rules.
  • Set
    the hierarchy clear: Yeah, the H word appears here too. The child should know
    when the parent is the boss, and time when the grandparent is holding the baton.
  • No disciplining
    each other in front of kids: All background talks should happen when the kids
    are not around. This is important so that no one loses self respect in front of
    the children.

lastly, always remember that years down the line, even you will be a
grandparent. If you try putting yourself in their shoes, things need not look
as complicated as it does. 

3 Replies to “The Grandeur of Grand-Parenting – Blogathon – Post 10”

  • Well written Subha. My parents stay with me and I am indebted to the way they are imparting certain values to Meraaya. Being a working mother I dont get to spend as much time with her as as I would like to, however I am delighted to see when my father teaches her bengali, sings songs to her, reads her stories. Grandparents are truely a bliss:-)

    • Pallavi

      Ur daughter is very young Pallavi. I am sure ur parents are a huge support. It is when they start getting older that sometimes the thought processes do not match between our parents and us.

      But there is always a way out 🙂

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