The role of grandfathers and grandmothers in upbringing



Grandparents and grandmothers contribute to the upbringing of their grandchildren:

In many families, grandparents and grandmothers play an important role.
They provide emotional support, share their experiences, and give helpful advice.
In addition, they help solve practical aspects of baby care and household chores.
Most importantly, however, they give a special kind of love and affection to grandchildren.

The birth of a new baby often brings families together. It is an event that gives new parents and their parents the opportunity to renew their bonds.
But the change in roles may not always be as easy as might be expected.
Without knowing it, you and your parents may have different interpretations and expectations of the new roles.

Make an effort to talk to them about how you feel about becoming a parent and how they feel about becoming a grandparent.
Also make sure to listen to their feelings on the subject.
Additionally, in the case of babies with congenital heart disease, there are several issues and fears that can create additional stress. That is why direct, sincere and friendly dialogue is essential.

getting help:

Your parents and in-laws may want to provide help and support.
Sometimes, however, the support you receive is not what you need.
For example, excited new grandparents may want to stay for a few days after the baby is born.

While some new moms and dads may find this helpful, others may find the presence of relatives stressful.
Think about what might work best for you and your family , and discuss your needs with your parents and in-laws before the baby is born.

Would you and your partner like to spend a few days alone with your new baby before visiting relatives? Do you prefer that your relatives come to help from the beginning? Would you like your parents and in-laws to visit at different times so that each group of grandparents can spend time with the baby?

Tell your parents and in-laws what they can do to be more helpful, including chores around the house . This can help prevent misunderstandings and tensions, as well as make the most of your parents' and in-laws' desire to be there for you.

Explaining heart disease:

Also, it is important that grandparents and grandparents know the details of the baby's medical condition.
This can help understand why visits are restricted and the reasons for cleaning and protection protocols.

Remember that a traditional way of providing affection is kissing the hands and face.
When explaining to grandparents that this is not recommended in the case of your baby, it is necessary to clearly explain why.

conflicting ideas:

Your ideas about parenting may be different from those of your parents and in-laws.
For example, even though your parents might have fed you formula, you might plan to breastfeed.

One of your parents may have stayed home to care for you, while you and your partner plan to continue working. As the baby grows, conflicting opinions may appear.
This can be a tricky situation.

Realize that your parents and in-laws are trying to help and may be adjusting to being grandparents.
It is normal that, when caring for the baby, grandparents handle things differently than you would.
These little differences can even help your son or daughter learn to be flexible.

Also, just as you and your partner have your own thoughts about what kind of parents you would like to be. Similarly, your parents and in-laws may have thoughts about what kind of grandparents they would like to be.

Some grandparents are not comfortable taking care of children and prefer a formal relationship with their grandchildren.
Others are playful and enjoy involving their grandchildren in activities. And still others want to be a part of your everyday life.

Consider talking to your parents and in-laws about your daughter or son's life.
Do they want to babysit?
How available do they plan to be?
Are they willing to help in a crisis?
When requesting help to care for your child, be sure to take into account the ages, abilities, and any other limitations of your parents and in-laws.

To avoid unnecessary misunderstandings or resentments, ask them what they can handle and if you expect too much of them.

Contradictory ideas and heart disease:

In the case of children with congenital heart disease, conflicting ideas must be handled with special care.

This is not just a different way of doing things, but certain practices can endanger the baby's life . For this reason, grandparents should be informed of the particularities of raising a baby with heart disease.
Some activities that can help grandparents to acquire this knowledge are:
  • Go with them to some visits to the pediatrician.
  • Provide reading material on the subject.
  • Provide videos or other informative materials on complex congenital heart disease.
  • Answer the doubts they have in a clear, friendly and direct way.

Grandfathers and grandmothers as child care providers:

Some couples rely on grandparents to provide part-time or full-time care for their babies. Having someone you know and trust take care of your child can be comforting.
However, as we mentioned, some care training may be needed.

These kinds of arrangements can also cause tension , especially if you don't feel comfortable telling your parents or in-laws how you want your child to be cared for.
Think about the pros and cons before asking them to provide regular child care.
If you decide to do it, it is necessary that they receive the appropriate training. Make sure you discuss the details and reach agreements.

If it's been a while since your parents or in-laws cared for a baby, they may need a refresher on the basics.
Especially in areas where the rules have changed over the years, such as eating and sleeping positions.

Special preparations for care:

Likewise, grandmothers and grandfathers should recognize the warning signs related to the baby's heart disease.
They need to know what to do in case of a medical emergency.

It is recommended that before leaving the baby in your care, the courses of action for these cases are practiced.
Also, it is very important that grandparents and grandparents can communicate with you at any time. Make sure there is a fast and secure communication path .

In the handling of medications , it is necessary that the procedure and care aspects be explained. Remember that medication mismanagement can be deadly for your baby.
Safe strategies should be sought so that grandfathers and grandmothers know how to give medications correctly. Similarly, establish reminder strategies such as alarms or scheduled calls.

Lastly, make sure your parents are aware of all safety precautions . If the baby is going to be in your home, it must be accident-proof.
For example, it is important that medicines and other dangerous items are not left within the baby's reach. Likewise, safety against falls and burns should be reviewed.

Grandmothers and grandfathers from a distance:

If your parents or in-laws don't live nearby, they might miss your baby's first smile, giggle, or attempts to roll over.

Consider helping them stay in touch with your baby through regular phone calls and video calls. Another strategy is to send photos and videos of the baby while doing different activities.
While it may still be a while before your baby can talk, she probably enjoys listening to her grandparents' voices.

To help your baby get to know grandparents and other family members, you can make a photo album. Once you have it ready, you can show it to him during playtime or before bedtime. Be sure to tell the baby the names of the people in the photos .

These recommendations are very useful in the case of babies with heart disease , since, as we mentioned, visits may be restricted.
Also, in the conditions of social isolation due to the COVID 19 pandemic, it is necessary to carry out activities to maintain affective and social ties.

With these strategies you will be able to maintain the contact of the baby with the other members of the family.