When you’re a grandparent, it’s important to make the most of the precious family time. The bonds between grandparents and their grandchildren can be deep and enduring. Those caring for elderly parents are likely to notice the strength of the bond between their parents and their children too.
As your grandchildren age (and so do you), there’s always new ways to strengthen family ties and provide grandchildren with joyful memories and valuable life lessons.
Here are some ideas to have more meaningful conversations with grandchildren.
Skip boring questions:
Don’t waste your time asking, “how is school” – the only answer you’ll get is “good” and by the time you think of something else to say, your grandchild will be busy looking up something on their iPad. You’ll find a much more engaging conversation if you utilise questions that are open-ended, focused and sometimes a little bit silly.
Questions focused on superlatives — “What’s the best holiday you’ve ever had?” or “What is your favourite meal of all time?”, or “If you could win the lottery, what would you buy?” Questions like this can open up discussion, and it also helps to get to know each other.
Never have I ever…
Believe it or not you are probably one of the most interesting, inspiring and very special people in their lives. They want to know about you (yes, that means your secrets too). Inspire them, move them, encourage them – on the basis of your very own life stories.
Have a laugh
Don’t be afraid to try something new – even if you do feel self-conscious. Ask your grandchild to show you how to “dab”, or try and sing and dance to the newest hit song. They may call you daggy, but love you anyway – or perhaps you’ll be the coolest granny or grandpa in town.
Teaching them how to knit or showing your grandchildren how to fish is helping to make lasting memories. Sharing what you’ve learned in your life is a wonderful way to ensure your legacy and make strong bonds together.
The language of food
Food and conversation go together like a house on fire. Serve a batch of your favourite scones with a real story behind them – for instance, who handed down the recipe to you, what your grandparents used to make for you.
Dive in the deep end
Don’t be afraid to dive deep into conversation. Manifest the magic of having answers to all their fears, worries, hopes and dreams – even the meaning of life. Discuss serious things at all ages, ponder important questions while you gaze at the stars, tan at the beach or show them photographs from your childhood. Talk about your parents and grandparents and what it means to be involved in caring for elderly parents.
Did you find this blog informative?
To find out more about communicating with family members, especially those living with dementia, click here.
To discover more on why laugher is the best medicine for your mental health, click here.
About Oxley Home Care
Oxley Home Care provides Dementia Care, Private Care, Home Care, Nursing, Veterans Home Care and Allied Health to enable people to live a quality life independently in their own home and stay connected to their local community.
For further information, please feel free to call Oxley Home Care on 1300 993 591.