Introduction and list of topics:
We begin with an acknowledgment. Congratulations! You did it. You raised a child and now you have a grandchild. You are deserving of a diploma, a medal, or at least a certificate of accomplishment. It could be said that you have mastered the parenting communication curriculum. Grandparenting—a primer is about the next curriculum. I say “primer” because it can’t possibly cover everything—it simply reminds one that there’s always more to learn. The primer is designed to stimulate new satisfying conversations. It’s about tapping into the rewards of service, of having served for 18+ years.
This exercise is also about mastering support at a new level; it’s about communicating supportively, as a leader, but from the position of coach.
One would think that after raising one or more children that they had pretty much mastered communication, however, many grandparents experience disappointment during their golden years. See if any of the following Gp (Grandparenting) Topics apply to you.
- Your child doesn’t verbally acknowledge your support.
- The words “I love you” don’t flow easily, if ever, from either of you.
- Your child verges on stingy when it comes to presents even though he/she has lots of gadgets and toys.
- You’ve hidden a few secrets from your child and wish you had the courage to tell the truth.
- You’re aware of secrets your child has hidden from you—revealing that you have not been a safe space for the truth to be told.
- You don’t get along well with the parents of your child’s partner.
- You wish you could be more comfortable communicating with your child.
- Your child prefers to not share holidays with you, it hurts.
- Your child has moved away and now you don’t get to see your grandchild(ren) as much as you’d like.
- You’re concerned about your will.
- Your child appears to be unaware of your aging concerns.
- You know your child loves you but he/she has never verbalized it.
- You don’t approve of your child’s lifestyle and don’t know how to stop trying to change him/her.
- You don’t like your child’s choice of a partner.
- Your leadership-communication skills have caused your child to want nothing to do with you.
- You suspect that part of your health problem has to do with what’s going on between you and your child.
- There are things you’ve done or not done for which you feel badly or even guilty; these incompletes get in the way of you feeling great about yourself.
Here’s some valuable Dear Gabby letters:
The way the primer works is you post a comment/concern/question and the coach/others will reply. I guarantee you the conversations will make a difference. How can I be so certain? It’s because problems persist when there’s an error in the way one is describing the problem. When the truth is told, when communication takes place, old problems disappear and one begins to create new more desirable ones.