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What to Do When Baby has Grumpy Grannies.

Family is horribly important to me. As it is for most people. But I have this problem, maybe you have the same one, feel free to pipe up if you do…

I have really, really, grumpy grandparents.

Specifically my grandma. She is of the generation that children are to be seen and not heard. While visiting she has made my daughter cry on multiple occasions by scolding her for doing perfectly normal kid things. I can still remember times when I was a kid where I went hungry because I refused to ask my grandma for a snack out of fear.

Yet it is still very important to me that my kids see my grandma. My daughters are their only two great grandchildren and given that my grandpa is well into his 90’s and my grandma is right behind him…if there’s an opportunity for them to see my kids (they live in California, I live in Indiana.) I’m going to take it.

Most of the time.

The last time my mom, Addie and I pulled away from my grandparents house my mom commented on what a noble effort I have made to have my grandparents get to know Addie (she is named after my grandma by the way.) She also said “I’m not so sure they appreciate the effort you’ve put in, I think you’ve done your duty.” But now I have Vivi, a new great granddaughter for my grandparents to meet, even though I’m not entirely sure they want to.

I have a trip to San Diego coming up in less than a month with my mom and sister that Vivi will be joining me on, we’re all torn on making the trip up to see my grandparents (about two hours away.) Yes, we want to see them. They won’t be around forever. But at the same time our efforts and sacrifices to make it up there won’t be appreciated and in fact may very well end in tears. My mom says we could find better ways to spend our time. And Vivi certainly won’t remember it.

But I will.

I have pictures of myself with my great grandparents, and while I don’t remember anything about them, I wonder if they mean a lot to my parents. If that moment of their babies meeting their grandparents was a memorable one. Vivi has two other great grandmothers still living, and they simply adore her. Which is how it should be, shouldn’t it?

If your grandparents are still with you, what is the your relationship like between them and your kids? Do you find it harder to make the effort to visit them if they are of the especially grumpy variety?

A Grandmother’s Lament: I used to be in charge, then my son had a baby

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