Is That Your Mom?

Meet My Grandma!

Is she your Mother? How many times have you over heard that question from your grandchild’s playmate or classmate and held your breath, awaiting their reply? Seems grandparents are younger and younger these days so having to ask the question to clarify if you’re Mom or Grand Mom may be totally within the realm of possibilities. Besides, age is irrelevant to most kids and only as they get older do they see that you look, act or speak “older” than their own parents. I believe I don’t hold my breath quite as often as I first did in those early days. And I did so more in anticipation of the GP being uncomfortable answering or feeling the need to explain his living circumstances. Then I realized I was projecting my own feelings from “way back when”.
You see, I too was raised by my grandparents in a time when it was far less common. And I distinctly remember those classmates who seemed to take pleasure in reminding me that my grandparents were not my “real parents”.
The Grand Prince always seems to handle this question in stride, answering without hesitation “that’s my Nana”. He’s lucky in that he knows and sees his Mom on a regular basis so the lines are clearly defined. We’ve always been honest and upfront about the circumstances that brought him to live with us and though we’re not so naive as to think he’ll sail through adolescence without questions of identity, we strongly feel he’s got a good foundation. I think that’s the best gift we can give our grandchildren; honesty tempered with love and sincerity. If you struggle with the ‘hows, whys and whens” of sharing your grandchild’s life circumstance, please seek professional counseling. There are many many wonderful people available to help you work through the words and ways of imparting information to your grandkids. Remember, your grandchildren’s friends want to hang out with them because they’re simply great kids. Not because you’re 33 and can wear “skinny jeans”. Not to say you couldn’t wear them, but some things are better left to the young. πŸ™‚
Happy Sunday!

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7 comments

  1. Elaine Williams · November 11, 2011

    I so admire you for parenting again!

    I came across the growing community of parenting grandparents several years ago and became so interested that I started writing a book to help those in this situation.

    Then, my sister became a parenting grandparent, and I threw out my first draft so I could rewrite it based on not only the interviews I had already done, but also her experiences.

    I so look forward to reading more from you and would love your feedback on my website. Thanks!

    Elaine, LMSW, CHt

    • grandnana · January 24, 2012

      Thanks Elaine, will definitely check out your website. Come back again! πŸ™‚

  2. Lynne Gassel · January 24, 2012

    In the same boat! Please check out my blog about raising my child’s child. fifthchildblog.blogspot.com

    • grandnana · January 24, 2012

      thanks Lynne! just read some of your blog. Best of luck with the book πŸ™‚

  3. Jill Krentz · February 5, 2012

    Our social worker offered to come to the school during the adoption process, to talk with the teachers (and the class) about ways to include our g-kids in the conversation and help them feel not quite so “different.” Also to talk about adoption and forever families.

    Local child protection services should have a list of agencies — I encourage anyone struggling with this to check it out! We need all the help we can get!

  4. whereasi · October 8, 2012

    Loved this post. I’m a Grandmother raising mentally disabled Grandchildren in Canada. My blog is http://www.challengedhope.wordpress.com if you would like to check it out. So many Grandparents raising Grandchildren worldwide these days!

  5. Beth beckman · December 3, 2012

    I have just found you!!!! My husband and I just began this journey of raising our two granddaughters…9 and 10. It is a big challenge And a joy as well.
    Trying to do the best for them while coming to grips with the horror of watching our daughter slowly slip deeper into her alcoholism is the toughest time of our lives. I wonder all the time if we did something to set her on this path years ago, she is 43 now. Added to this is the fact that her younger rather is a recovering alcoholic! He has been a great source of information and support. I just don’t want to see these two precious girls who have also lost their own dad to cancer five years ago, fall into these traps or have the same disease….alcoholism. I helps to read how other Grand Nana’s do things. The hugs from the girls is wonderful. They talk to us and we try to keep this conversation going. I never miss a chance to encourage them and give lots of hugs back. They didn’t make this happen, and I always let them know this life change isn’t their fault. Everyday is a new thing, some positive and some upsetting and stressful. Grandpa is 69 and Nana is 67…. Just retired and now our lives are all upside down and trying to find a plan. This looks more long term as each day goes by. I look forward to hearing from other Grandnanas out there!!! any advise greatly received!

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