Succumbing to the grandmother role

Filed under: Just For Moms, Relatives

Every weekend, I look forward to reading the Guardian's Family and Relationships section. Each time I visit, I find something timely and well-written to share with Blogging Baby readers. This week, Anne Bentley talks about the relationship between mothers and daughters, as they each get bumped up a role to grandmothers and mothers.

Bentley's mother, Mavis, was a mere 49 when she was to become a grandmother. Mavis had a hard time accepting the fact and refused to be called Gran or anything like it. Bentley talks about how this upset her, but through conversations with friends she realized that though being a mom is trendy these days, being a granny still brings forth images of knitting needles.

Another big difference in this relationship is how we no longer rely so heavily on our mothers for support for childbirth and rearing. Many of us live a great distance from our parents, and in modern relationships we rely on our partners to pull their share. Something that was unimaginable when our own parents were raising us.

My own mother was quite happy to transition to grandmotherhood. She falls into the Mrs. Doubtfire type grandmother role quite naturally. I was the one who refused her staying with us after the baby was born, much to her diasappointment. She stepped in regardless, washing my dishes and clothes, stocking my freezer with casseroles. I will never forget that. I can't imagine getting through those early days without her help.

My mother-in-law, who is considerably more hip and active, probably had a harder time when her fitst grandchild appeared on the scene while in her 50s. But much like Mavis, before you know it biology and love kick in and being called Grandma doesn't sound so bad after all.

What's your experience been? Did you, or your mother, go happily into the grandmother role? Or did you find resistance to the idea? (Can't wait to see what our resident Rebel Granny, Ann Adams, has to say!)

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.