ABC by Paley – Grandmother and Grandfather

Grandma and grandpa - these two words make the heart fill with pleasant warmth, and the memories return to images of holidays together, carefree play in the garden, or reading bedtime stories. Apart from parents, grandparents are often the most important people in children's lives. And, although it is worth showing care and love every day, it is in January that we celebrate Grandma's Day and Grandfather's Day, and thus we have the opportunity to celebrate in a special way that grandparents are or were present in our lives.

Today’s grandparents are far from stereotypical old ladies with a gray bun and distinguished gentlemen with a cane. More and more often they are still professionally active, developing their passions and interests outside the home. For these reasons alone, the role of grandparents today is somewhat different than in the past. Less and less often a grandmother or a grandfather take care of grandchildren while the parents are at work. The reasons may be different – distance, the fact that grandparents are still working, or that they do not want to give up their activities. And, although it is sometimes difficult to accept, they have the right to do so.

On the other hand, some grandmothers or grandparents want to be so intensely involved in the lives of their grandchildren and their children that over time it may contribute to conflicts between family members. Regardless of whether the grandparents and parents of the grandchildren are in agreement about their expectations, obligations, and approach to life, or on the contrary – it is worth talking to each other and explaining what is important to each of the parties. Because, ultimately, it may turn out that we have the same needs and have the same goal, but we want to achieve it  in a different way.

Dear grandparents,

it’s a real gift that you are here. Not everyone is lucky. You can become great guides in  life your grandchildren. Who, if not you, can talk about important matters in such a fantastic way and share their experiences.

You are often the first person to whom the parents of your grandchildren turn to in moments of joy or sadness. By sharing an important piece of their lives, they show you how important you are to them. They want you to be companions on this challenging parental journey. You know for yourself how difficult, winding, and at the same time beautiful it can be. Remember that sometimes a hug or a simple nod and  saying “I hear that you find it difficult” sometimes means more than a thousand golden pieces of advice.

Dear Grandparents, you also have the right to your own life, time for yourself, travel or work. Sometimes, reconciling all the roles with one  another is a real challenge, and as much as you want to, some things are simply not to be. When engaging in being a grandmother or a grandfather, also take care of your own health and well-being. Don’t give up on yourselves. Fulfilled and happy grandparents spend time with their grandchildren more willingly and actively – you probably experience it yourself.

Remember how important your presence is for your grandchildren. Thanks to you, children discover that people can differ beautifully from each other, and yet get along with each other, respect, and care for each other. After years of experience in life, you often know what is really important in life and what matters. Thus, you show children that sometimes it is worth letting go and other times focusing on something more. And, over time, as your grandchildren transform from sweet little babies into more and more independent teens, you can play a key role in easing the conflicts that arise between them and their parents.

Teenagers often don’t want to obey their parents, but they treat their grandmothers and grandparents quite differently. It is with them that they seek solace and advice on how to make a decision. Even researchers became interested in your role in family life and found that when you take an active part in the process of raising your grandchildren, you contribute to children’s well-being and less risky behavior. It’s good that you are here!


Dear Parents,

Certainly, while you were expecting your child, the image of not only you as parents, but also the grandparents of your mothers and fathers, was slowly forming in your heads. Perhaps you expected that they would be as committed and committed to being a parent when they stepped into their new role as grandmother or grandfather. Perhaps it was quite the opposite and you wanted more independence and you wanted grandparents to appear in your kids’ lives only on holidays.

Sometimes it is difficult to come to terms with the fact that the people closest to us have different ideas for life, including raising children. Perhaps you have been nervous many times when your parents treated your children differently than you would like. While this may seem harmful at first (and it certainly is irritating), it can benefit your children in the long run. The multitude of experiences and interactions with people and different points of view can contribute to the fact that in adulthood children will find it easier to find each other in new situations, and above all – that they will better understand other people and the relations between them.

Of course, there are situations from which it is absolutely necessary to protect children. In the event of violence, the sooner we act, the better for children. However, in other situations, such as those related to screen time or (un) healthy snacks, you may want to ask yourself ‘how important is this topic to me? By agreeing to this, do I act against myself and allow myself to exceed my limits? ”. Perhaps it will turn out that some things can be let go. Others will still be non-negotiable. Then it is worth talking honestly with your grandparents and calmly explain to them why the topic is so important to you. Also, be sure to ask the other party what is important to them about the issue. This will increase the chance for mutual understanding and dialogue.

If, on the other hand, your life has turned out so that your grandparents are absent, and you would like your children to have contact with the older generation, remember that the role of a doye can also be played by a beloved nanny or an older neighbor or neighbor, to whom you can come for an afternoon tea and chats about life. Such relationships will help your children develop empathy, openness and respect for others.

Regardless of whether you and your children have great or good enough contact with their grandparents, remember to let them know how important they are in your life. They will surely appreciate it. And Grandma’s and Grandfather’s Day will be a great opportunity to thank them for their presence, talk with them from the heart and even more floral your relationship.