Grandparents and grandchildren share a unique bond. Some grandparents act as caregivers to their children’s children, others share their affection from afar, and many grandparents enjoy spoiling their grandchildren with gifts, foods, experiences, and (most importantly) love. Wondering how to bond with grandchildren when you’re living in an assisted living community? If you would like to have a closer relationship with your grandchildren, use the tips below for inspiration.
How to Bond with Grandchildren
Connect with your children first.
If you want to spend more time with your grandchildren, you may need to build a stronger bond with your children first. Keep in regular contact with your children, and make note of their schedules so that you know when they are free to talk or visit. This is especially important if your grandchildren are very young, as they may not be able to visit you on their own. Share your assisted living community’s guidelines regarding visits as well, so that your children know the best times of day to visit you. Finally, remember that you aren’t the parent in this situation, and you need to respect your children’s parenting decisions. Discuss and respect the rules they have made for their children.
Explore your grandchildren’s interests.
As your grandchildren grow, they will develop unique personalities and interests. So if you aren’t sure how to spend your time together, ask them about their hobbies and passions. If your granddaughter loves baseball, consider taking her to a ball game. If your grandson adores nature, go outside with him on an “explorer’s expedition,” seeking out strange bugs and plants. Tailor your plans to their hobbies.
Share your interests.
Share your own interests with your grandchildren as well. For example, you could teach your grandchildren how to play your favorite card game or show them how to cook a family recipe. Invite your grandchildren to join you during activities at your assisted living community as well. They might enjoy participating in an arts and crafts class, for example, or playing bingo with you. Plus, you will be able to introduce them to your friends and favorite staff members at the retirement community.
Stay connected online.
Being a grandparent in the digital age offers unique advantages. Namely, keeping in touch is easier than ever due to the various technologies available these days. Skype, e-mailing, and text messaging can help you check in with your grandchildren and share life updates. However, they aren’t the only ways to communicate via the World Wide Web. You could also play games together using apps like Words with Friends (which is like Scrabble) and Monopoly. So even when you’re apart, you can enjoy a laugh and some friendly competition. Finally, if you don’t know how to use these technologies, simply ask your grandchildren for help!
Finally, although you don’t need to spoil your grandchildren with gifts and special activities every time you see them, consider surprising them occasionally. These experiences could come to define how they view you as a grandparent. A surprise might come in the form of a silly letter sent by “snail mail,” fresh baked cookies, a trip to the zoo, or a picnic.
Cherish the opportunity to spend time with your grandchildren and other family members. You likely already know how to bond with grandchildren, but with a little creativity and enthusiasm, you can make these family experiences even more memorable. Good luck!
Looking for an assisted living community in Tennessee? Check out Hearthside Senior Living of Collierville. You will love our spacious apartments and convenient services and amenities, such as exercise classes, a beautiful dining room, and group activities. If you’re interested in learning more about our community or scheduling a tour, please give us a call at 901-651-2503 or click here. We look forward to hearing from you!