Custom CSS of Section contains Conditional Preview for See Life Campaign Elements

Helping to Care for Grandkids?

Share:
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email
Grandparents read book with granddaughter

Participating in caring for grandkids is a gift and a privilege. With careful planning, it represents an unprecedented opportunity to make a lasting, positive impression in their lives.

After the birth of our first grandchild, my daughter and son-in-law asked us to consider caring for the baby one day a week. They thought their request would burden us, but we laughed at the thought. We were thrilled!

Five years and another grandchild later, we’re still at it.

If you’re given the opportunity to participate in your grandchildren’s lives in this way, planning ahead will make it a joyful and meaningful experience for all three generations.

Note: Some grandparents are raising their grandchildren because the parents are unable. God bless you for stepping in. Please note that the following tips are designed for occasional caregiving, not for grandparents who are primary caregivers.

This is your chance to create sweet memories

I can still smell the sweet buttery aroma that followed my grandmother when she arrived at Christmastime with a hat box of homemade cookies. I remember my excitement as I opened her handmade Barbie doll outfits.

I can feel my grandfather’s gentle hands guiding mine as we sanded smooth the homemade wooden blocks. And the sight of my grandmother’s fingers tickling the ivories along with her reminders to “practice, practice, practice!” until I could play a piece accurately and with emotion.

I recall my annoyance as my grandfather stopped to talk with yet another neighbor, and then the admiration I felt realizing he was so beloved by his friends.

When I was disobedient or rebellious, each grandparent, in their own way, responded with a message of grace followed by the truth that my attitude and behavior needed to change. Every meal with them began with prayer, every week started with Sunday school and every question was referred to Scripture.

Creativity. Patience. Discipline. Commitment. Care for others. Faith in God. These are the lessons I learned from my grandparents. And they’re the lessons I want to share with my own grandchildren.

Five things to consider when you’re caring for grandkids

  1. There’s a new sheriff in town. It’s easy to slip back into your previous parenting role and want to direct decisions for your adult children and their offspring. But your role is different now. You’ve raised your kids. Ideally, you’ve modeled good parenting skills. You’ve hopefully taught them to make good decisions. You’ve helped them leave your family and cleave to a spouse. Now it’s their turn.Think of it like this: Now dad and mom are the lead vocalists in the band, and grandpa and grandma are the back-up singers. As such, you’ll want to look to dad and mom for preferences when it comes to household rules and chores, daily routines, methods of discipline and so on.That’s not to say you can’t have healthy discussions or disagreements about child care. But ultimately, the decision belongs to the now-parent you’ve raised.
  2. Discuss the day-to-day. Talk beforehand about the nuts and bolts of child care so you learn dad and mom’s preferences. Some discussion points might include:
    • Daily routines
    • Reward systems for good behavior
    • Discipline for poor behavior
    • Preferred foods and drinks for meal and snack times
    • Acceptable toys and play activities
    • Acceptable boundaries for the house and yard or play area
    • Rules for driving and car safety
    • Emergency contact numbers and procedures
  3. Assign roles. What role are your adult kids asking you to fill? Do they want you to be surrogate parents in their absence and make decisions based on their stated desires? Or, do they want you to be adult friends to their kids and defer discipline until they return?
  4. Be clear with the children. In age-appropriate language, communicate the agreement with the kids. That way you could avoid a misfortunate experience I recall from my childhood when my brother took advantage of my grandparents’ supervision by violating every household rule.
  5. Expect the unexpected. You likely remember this mantra from raising your own kids. In fact, adaptability is one of the 7 Traits of Effective Parenting. Although it’s impossible to plan for every scenario, it’s important to anticipate challenges. I like to separate them into three categories:Mild challenges – small interruptions, such as:
    • Home-related mishaps (i.e., a water leak)
    • Unexpected changes in the school schedule
    • For a mild medical issue, such as a skinned knee provide general guidelines for managing bumps and bruises

    Ask parents how they’d like you to handle these types of challenges and request contact information for their service providers or trusted friends that may be able to help problem solve.

    Moderate challenges – situations that involve other kids and parents, such as:

    • Last-minute invitations to events
    • Arguments or fights that occur between a grandchild and his or her friends
    • Phone calls from other parents accusing a grandchild of something, or situations that might require a slight change to certain household rules but that are beneficial for the child in the long run

    Discuss possible scenarios and learn how the parents would handle them. Ask parents in which circumstances they would want to be notified.

    Significant challenges/crises – unexpected events likely to harm grandchildren, physically or emotionally, such as:

    • An accident/illness that involves a trip to the doctor
    • A tragedy at school
    • A major discipline issue
    • A health crisis suffered by the caregiving grandparent

    If at all possible, contact parents during crises. However, it’s also a good idea for parents to provide written consent for grandparents to make care decisions in their absence. In some states or countries, this is a document that can be written and notarized in order to be accepted at a medical facility. In other locations, a parent may need to obtain the document from an attorney.

Clearly, participating in caring for grandkids is a gift and a privilege. With careful planning, it represents an unprecedented opportunity to make a lasting, positive impression in their lives.

Dynamic CTA Template Below

Your Teen Needs You Most of All

No parent of teens is perfect and even the best can learn how to better connect with their son or daughter. Get practical action steps to better connect with your teenager in 8 Essential Tips for Parenting Your Teen in this FREE video series!

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.
Emerson-Eggerich4-840w

Understand How to Respect and Love your Son Well

Why doesn’t my son listen to me? Have you ever asked that question? The truth is, how you see your son and talk to him has a significant effect on how he thinks and acts. That’s why we want to help you. In fact, we’ve created a free five-part video series called “Recognizing Your Son’s Need for Respect” that will help you understand how showing respect, rather than shaming and badgering, will serve to motivate and guide your son.

Reconnected: The Digital Experience

Is the love there, but not the spark? Reawaken fun in your marriage and move from roommates to soulmates again with the help of this 7-part online video experience. Learn how to connect emotionally and spiritually as husband and wife using techniques such as dreaming together and establishing deep, heartfelt communication. The Digital Experience includes 7 teaching videos, an online study guide and access to additional tools and resources to help spouses reconnect.

Next Steps: Marriage Assessment

We want your marriage to be thriving and healthy. Take the free Marriage Assessment from Focus on the Family to learn how to strengthen your bond with your spouse and get the tools to help you need to grow closer together. 

Next Steps: Fruit of the Spirit Devotionals for Couples

The Fruit of the Spirit Devotional is a free series of nine short videos to get you into God’s Word and inspire you to seek the Holy Spirit’s help in loving your spouse.

Share:
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email

About the Author

Read More About:

You May Also Like

The Role of Grandparents: Leading Your Grandchildren to Jesus
Grandparenting

Leading Grandchildren to Jesus

As grandparents, we have the unique opportunity to lead our grandchildren towards Jesus through our actions, thoughts, and example.

The Role of Grandparents: Valuing Our Grandchilren's Thoughts
Grandparenting

Valuing Grandchildren’s Thoughts

As grandparents, we can learn to value our grandchildren’s thoughts. In doing so, we can guide their thoughts to lead to healthy lives.

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 5: It’s Going to be Amazing!

After a couple has chosen life, hear the heartwarming stories of children that culture would have cast aside, yet are making tremendous impacts in their communities. Whether the diagnosis was adverse or the circumstances were difficult, these stories will inspire you to come along side of families who have chosen life!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

see life episode 4 normal version

Please check back soon for an updated version of this episode!

Newest Release - Episode 4: Sometimes the Choice is Hard

Hear real life stories of parents who have made the decision to choose life even though the circumstances were overwhelming. You’ll see why “ALL” life is precious to God and why choosing life is always the right decision!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 6: Families Helping Families!

So, after all you’ve seen through the SeeLife ‘21 Episodic journey; what can you do now? We’ll share how you can partner with some amazing organizations that are making significant impacts in the pro-life movement! You want to Celebrate Life!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 3: The Power of a Picture

Have you ever wondered what a baby looked like in the womb? With today’s technology, Moms and Dads can see the baby’s heartbeat, facial expressions, and movements! You’ll find out why more women choose life once they hear their baby’s heartbeat and realize it’s a real living human!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 2: Heroes Providing Hope

Discover the amazing work our PRC’s Directors, Nurses, and Volunteers are making in their communities! You’ll see firsthand testimonies of a PRC in action, and that there are other options outside of abortions! You’ll also discover how your family can support your local PRC!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!

Play Video

Newest Release - Episode 1: The Truth About Life!

In this episode, we will tackle tough questions like, “When does life begin?” and “What does the Bible
say about Life?” You’ll discover and understand the stages of pre-born life and that babies are more than
just a clump of cells!

Yes, I Promise to Pray for the Pre-born and Their Moms!

Will you pray for the pre-born and moms that are facing unexpected pregnancies? We will send you a 7-day prayer guide that will help guide you along this journey with us!! You can even choose to receive this great resource by text!