Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

'Parent Reserves' Best Role for Grandparents

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

'Parent Reserves' Best Role for Grandparents

Article excerpt

I THOUGHT it was timely to pay tribute to grandmothers.

One hundred years ago only 40 per cent of grandparents survived to the age of 65, now it's more like 63% for males and 77% for females.

In fact in Australia there are more grandparents than kids around.

You would think that would be a powerful force for families but it doesn't always work that way as well or as often as certainly the kids would like.

From their viewpoint grandma is super special. For some, it's the way grandmas walk or grunt, some like the cooking, the lolly jar, the spoiling, the presents but a lot of them just like the way grandparents talk and listen to them.

Just recently I asked a group of children what important things they learnt from their grandparents and they were quick to respond.

Jodie: "How to cross the road."

Heidi: "Grandma learnt me to do letters."

Kirstie: "Grandma taught me to ice cakes."

Mark: "They taught me how to get dressed."

Laura: "They taught me how to ride a scooter and my Grandpa pushed me a lot and then I learned how to swing myself."

Michael: "One day Grandpa did teach me how to pretend you're sick so you get to stay home on a school day."

Jacqueline: "They taught me that they love me."

Corie: "They teach you how to spell numbers when you are four or five."

Bettina: "They teach me how to play cards and do tricks."

Michael: "They teach you about the olden days."

Jacqueline: "They teach me how to pull out my tooth."

Alex: "They teach you with old pictures everything about your great, great aunty."

Kimberley: "They taught me how to go to the toilet."

Ellen: "They taught me how to brush my teeth properly."

Michael: "Grandma did show me how to get wrinkles."

Being a good grandparent is almost as easy as getting wrinkles. It's not what grandparents do but who they are and how they feel that matters. In fact one cynic described the role of grandparents as so simple that any child can operate them.

However there are some classic styles that make some grans great grans rather than good grans.

* SUPER GRANS: These grandparents make up for the mess they feel they made with their own kids with a super job on the grandkids . …

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