GRAND Magazine - May/June 2013 - (Page 58-59)

grandparents raising grandchildren Overcompensation how not to deal with a troubled grandchild BY silVie de toledo H enrietta Casper’s 15-year-old grandson is defiant Grandparents who overcompensate do so materially and emotionally. Not go out at night, he just walks out the door. She only do they try to soothe their grand- promised her daughter on her deathbed that she would children with presents, but they also always care for Adam, and she can’t find it in herself overlook setting limits. They make al- even to withhold privileges from the boy. Henrietta is lowances they never would have made falling into a classic grandparenting trap: overcompen- Photo credit: ©sherYl Griffin and disrespectful. When she tells him he can’t with their own children. sation. She is trying to make up for the pain and loss No matter how much you do for your Real parenting doesn’t bring the immediate smiles her grandchild has suffered by attempting to make him grandchildren, you cannot remove the pain, repair the happy every moment. loss, or fill the void inside them. The world has taken away and laughter that presents do; sometimes, it brings more than you can put back. Nor do you them any favors sour looks and loud complaints. But you are doing more grandparent, you could dote, pamper, spoil, and com- by giving in. Children need limits to know they are loved than making your grandchildren happy in the moment. fort to your heart’s content. Now that you are a surro- and to develop a sense of who they are. Overcompensat- You are giving them the necessary tools to grow and gate parent, you must also discipline and educate your ing teaches them to expect permissiveness. It lets them build their futures. grandchildren. You can’t spoil and educate them at the feel that the world owes them things and that they don’t same time; that only sends mixed messages. have to behave or work to have them. This sense of en- It’s an easy trap to fall into. When you were only a titlement can cause all kinds of other problems later in life. sylvie de toledo, lcsw/Bcd, the founder and clinical director of Grandparents as Parents, Inc., is a child kinship-care expert and author. Your grandchildren need nurturing and discipline, and they need consistency in both. They need to know that you will do what you say you’ll do, even when they may Excerpted from Grandparents as Parents: A Survival Guide for Raising a Second Family, Second Edition, by Sylvie de Toledo with Deborah Edler Brown. not like the outcome. 58 GRAND MAY JUNE 2013 MAY JUNE 2013 GRAND 59

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRAND Magazine - May/June 2013

GRAND Magazine - May/June 2013
Slaying Dragons
You’ve Come a Long Way, Granny
Electrical Safety
Let’s Pretend
The Grandest Gift
Born Free’s Virginia McKenna
My Aging Brain
Judy Cockerton: Foster parent and innovator
10 Best Story Books for Babies & Toddlers
Grand Expectations
Fun Toys for Kids of All Ages
Annuities Simplified
News, Products, Tips, and Resources for Today’s Grandparents
Sure Cure for Senior-Time Blues
It’s a Wonderful Life
When a Child Is Removed from the Parents’ Home

GRAND Magazine - May/June 2013