ailatanie (ailatanie) wrote,

Child care, elder care

I have been lucky to get some help with my daughter from my grandmother and grandfather recently. I saw them enjoying their great granddaughter's company so much. For the first time my granny was not eager to see every new exhibition in the city and spend every weekend traveling. And I do not think that American grandparents are much different. Think of the "brag-books" they carry around or their excitement about the holidays when they get to see the little ones... So why do so very few of them help raising their grandchildren? Sometimes it is the distance or difficult relations with children-in-law. However, the main reason is that they have been convinced that this is not the right way to enjoy their retirement. They should be traveling, playing golf, and then spending the rest of their savings on services of assisted living facilities and then retirement homes. In the meantime their children are spending a good chunk of their income on childcare. What a fabulous way to put money into the economy and create jobs! Someone pretty smart must have thought of breaking away with the tradition of grandparents helping with grandchildren and children looking after their parents when they grow old. And then it was just a matter of a good campaign to promote the new arrangement in the popular culture. Hello American gray gold! When did you last see a commercial where a happy grandparent was taking an active part in their grandchildren's life? No, God forbid. What you might have seen is "Everybody loves Ray" or something of this sort where nosy grandparents interfere with their children's lives and give a random hug to their grandchildren. Everybody is much better on their own. How practical, how lovely! But I am afraid that we are losing something very precious at the same time.
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well, my mother-in-law doesn't seem to want to baby sit one day, few hours, her grandson. cause she will have vacation during this time and she needs VACATION, with him she can't rest.
no comments, ha? :(
well has she spent time with him yet? Trust me my granny is a modern woman too. She was not coming here to help me, she was going to have a vacation too. But she got sucked in. If your mother-in-law spends some time with the LO, she might like it more than her vacation. This is exactly what I am talking about actually. There is a preconceived notion "I have raised my children, now I am free as a bird". But it is not always what they really want. But people are different. Hope you are alright there ;)
after 6 weeks it DOES get easier
my mother-in-law is a very special, one of a kind, that i would not wish anyone to have...
some grandparents prefer to have a life of their own...
+1. My own grandmother, who had never set foot outside Russia, never watched after her grandchildren, let alone help raising them. She just didn't care as much and didn't want to bother. And I don't blame her: she's done her part in raising her countless siblings and children, who, in their turn, chose to have children of their own. If one was capable enough to bring them to the world, they should be capable enough to bear responsibility to rear them, too. It is grandparents' choice to partake in raising grandchildren, and their right to finally just enjoy the days - with or without the little ones. It does kinda suck having to raise generations after generations all your life, while those generations have it "easier than them" in that regard.
On that note, my American MIL doesn't really look forward to seeing her little grandchildren as much either. At the same time, she's not asking either of her children to look after her, nor does my grandmother, who won't even take money. And I'm beginning to observe the same trait in my own mother.
Although, at the same time, my MIL suggested she moves with us after I give birth and if our child has the same condition my husband had when he was born: to teach help me. Honestly, I rather handle it myself. And here I think lies another reason: perhaps many people's views on parenting their little children differ from how they were raised. I personally choose simply not to butt heads.
But... we'll see how it will turn out in practice.
I am not surprised that some people would not care after their grandchildren/great grandchildren when given a choice. I was even surpised that my uber-independednt grandma (who still works, is fully independent financially and was here on a genuine vacation) CHOSE to spend so much time with the little one. What bothers me is that old people's choices are so often influenced by this society's expectation that you have rely on yourself only when you have children and when you age, i.e. lose the ability to take care of yourself.

The only social influence my grandmother had was exactly that "grandparents should help with grandchildren". But she chose not to. I don't think only society is to blame.
I do not think that we even have to blame anyone in this case :) Some people are truly better of on their own. But the general trend here robs many families of an amazing cross generational bond that I saw develop during the last month.
But my grandmother has never been here, yet she's doing exactly the same. She doesn't know the trend. Same for my mother, who has been here, but hasn't been immersed in the trend/culture/society/w/e here. I think it's just because there are simply many people thinking alike and for themselves first and foremost. Being selfish is not a crime. You can't expect everyone to be that family guy. They had to be in the past because of then-current trend (yep) of being all into family for a number of reasons, but now things have relaxed and people can finally choose. Why do you think there are so many single parents nowadays than there were before when divorces were shunned. Same thing. People choose to be selfish (of course, in this case, I can't put it on the same plane as with grandparents. Here one has to be responsible for their child).
this is absolutely true
indeed, we're loosing a lot...
проблема в том что бабушки\дедушки и ЛЮБЫЕ люди к старости становятся ужасно желчные по характеру. Ну просто жутко! И родных своих поедом едят. Понятно что нехорошее самочувствие тому причиной, но их детям то от этого не легче - гадости сказанные есть гадости. А они ещё и все больные места знают. А чужому человеку по большому счёту плевать.
Плюс некоторые ещё и спец внимание надо (Альцгеймер) а кто же будет смотреть 24\7 чтобы они дом не спалили или из окна не выпрыгнули.