8 Ways That Grandparents Really Rock!

10 Reasons Grandparents Rock - National Grandparents Day

This Sunday is National Grandparents Day and to celebrate, I've compiled a list of the eight reasons I think grandparents are beyond fabulous:

    1. They're grand role models. This generation of grandparents rocks, but not in a chair on the front porch. Today's Grandma and Grandpa live more active, interesting lives than any generation before. They've been there, done that - and they've brought the grandkids T-shirts to prove it. Their values, skills and life experience make them people to look up to.
    2. They're happy to give. Studies show that grandparents are generous with financial support for grandchildren, despite a recession or a fixed income. Grandchildren's needs are very high on their list of priorities; millions pay for basic needs, such as housing, health care and education.
    3. They provide a buffer. An old joke says grandparents and grandchildren get along so well because they have a common enemy (parents!). While that may be going a bit far, there is something special about that skipped-generation relationship.
    4. They're willing to listen. Grandparents generally have more patience and time to focus on anything and everything their grandchildren say. They really get it - we have two ears and one mouth for a reason!  Kids feel valued when grandparents take time to listen.
    5. They're a link to our heritage. The family lore my grandparents passed on to me taught me that I come from strong, resilient people who survived hardships I can't even imagine. Knowing this makes me feel grounded and confident I can deal with almost anything.
    6. They lend a strong helping hand. Grandparents provide a great deal of child care for grandchildren, and many live with and/or raise grandchildren. They quit jobs, move across country and make sacrifices to be available - that's love in action.
    7. They're living history. I remember my grandfather telling me stories about his adventures homesteading, working on the railroad, CCC camps, WWI and WWII. He brought those times to life for me. Nothing beats firsthand experience.
    8. They adore - and indulge. Grandparents feel that "spoiling" a child is a hard-earned benefit of being a grandparent. Every kid deserves someone in their life who takes great pleasure in delighting them.


Contest: Post your memory of the birth of your grandchild

Whether you're a grandparent yourself, or are lucky enough to have grandparents in your life, I suspect you can add to this list. Why do you think grandparents rock?!

Photo: Sean Dreilinger

Amy Goyer is AARP's home and family expert; she splits her time between Washington  and Phoenix, where she lives with and cares for her parents. Her new book, AARP's Juggling Work and Caregiving, will be published this fall. Follow Amy on Twitter @amygoyer and on Facebook.


Also of Interest


See the  AARP home page for deals, savings tips, trivia and more


Search AARP Blogs

Related Posts
February 04, 2016 09:00 AM
When Dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, I knew he would need all of his senses to help interpret the world around him and balance his changing cognitive abilities. But he has hearing impairment and limited vision (glaucoma plus visual-processing problems associated with Alzheimer’s). Even though there is only so much I can do about the visual issues, I assumed  hearing aids would solve his auditory problems. I was wrong. The good news is that we eventually discovered a surprisingly simple solution.
February 01, 2016 10:00 AM
The phone rang one day when I was at work. It was my mom. “Come right away, Elaine, we need you,” she said. Mom had just driven Pop to the emergency room. I knew Pop must have been very sick, because Mom hadn’t driven a car in years.
January 21, 2016 01:00 PM
I have been both a live-in caregiver and a long-distance caregiver. In fact, currently, I’m really both. My dad lives with me (as do my sister and her two sons at the moment), and I also travel for work, about a week every month. I’ve learned to manage my loved ones’ care no matter where I am. Here are some of my tips for other long-distance caregivers.