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Old 05-25-2018, 09:30 PM
 
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We retired a little over a year ago and moved 800 miles away from our previous home. We learned in December that our daughter back "home" is expecting twins so we are overjoyed. However, trying to decide what to do about visits since we are on a travel budget, ie two trips per year back home. Do we go when they are born or should we wait a few months? Personally, I would rather "meet" them when they are past the newborn stage but everyone keeps assuming I should be there for their birth. I have asked DD but she says it is up to me. Thoughts?
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Old 05-25-2018, 10:03 PM
 
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That’s difficult to answer because it all depends on what your daughter needs and what you are willing to do. My dil needed me for a month and I was happy to stay and cook the meals, tidy the house, hold the baby so she could nap.

On the other hand if you are just wanting to see your new grandchild and your daughter does not need your help, or you are not wanting to help then when the baby is older is better.
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Old 05-25-2018, 10:05 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
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IMHO, it depends on whether you are coming to "help" or coming to "visit".

When I had our first child my MIL came for the first three weeks, to help. And, she certainly helped. I recall that my husband could only take off a few days from work. Due to the C-section, I couldn't drive and needed to limit my stair climbing. My MIL was amazing. She took over the grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning, which gave me time to recover from the emergency C-section and allowed me to concentrate on caring for our new baby.

OTOH, I have heard about parents or in-laws who came right after the baby was born and expected to be waited on and entertained by the new parents or are very critical or impose their child rearing views on the new parents. Obviously that is not a good idea. Heck, it is not a good idea even if the baby is a few months old.

When you come may also depend on how long the father has for paternity leave. One new father that I know had the same paternity leave (six full weeks) on his job that females had for maternity leave. They did not need as much help as a couple as where the new mom is completely on her own when the new dad is off to work all day.

Also, keep in mind that with twins the likelihood of complications such as needed to be on bedrest or early delivery is higher than in a single birth so you may need to be more flexible with your schedule.

Good luck.

BTW, now that you are grandparents you may find that you need to, or want to, change the number of trips that you take back home. Whether that means getting a part time job or cutting back in other areas to save up the money, you may want to consider that.

Last edited by germaine2626; 05-25-2018 at 10:20 PM..
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Old 05-25-2018, 10:10 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
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Originally Posted by Spuggy View Post
Thatís difficult to answer because it all depends on what your daughter needs and what you are willing to do. My dil needed me for a month and I was happy to stay and cook the meals, tidy the house, hold the baby so she could nap.

On the other hand if you are just wanting to see your new grandchild and your daughter does not need your help, or you are not wanting to help then when the baby is older is better.
Agree completely with this. If you are prepared to roll up your sleeves and get to work helping out with cooking, cleaning, laundry, changing diapers, etc., then going right when they are born can be very helpful.

If you are just there to "meet" the babies but not really do all that much to help with them other than some cuddles and cooing, going when they are older and your DD has had a chance to recuperate a bit and find her rhythm is better.

Plus in terms of planning, twins usually come early but kind of unpredictably early, so it would be tough to buy tickets too far in advance without knowing if they will have been born yet, or maybe they would be here, but at 2 or 3 weeks old, having to entertain a guest who isn't prepared to pitch in (a LOT) is too much to ask of a new twin mom.
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Old 05-25-2018, 10:21 PM
 
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That's a problem...there is a scheduled C-section date but they might come earlier. I am definitely open to staying and helping but their house is tiny so I don't want to step on toes so to speak. Her husband has six weeks off and his parents live close by to help out. Just struggling with what is expected of my role as new grandma when I am so far away...
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Old 05-25-2018, 10:44 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
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Originally Posted by orngkat View Post
That's a problem...there is a scheduled C-section date but they might come earlier. I am definitely open to staying and helping but their house is tiny so I don't want to step on toes so to speak. Her husband has six weeks off and his parents live close by to help out. Just struggling with what is expected of my role as new grandma when I am so far away...
Your "role" is whatever is agreed upon by you and the new parents. I'm a grandparent and I know many grandparents. One couple that I know both are working full time and their children all live in distance states, they were never able to be with their children and new grandchildren except for brief visits during their scheduled vacations. OTOH, another friend of mine has left her husband behind and moved in with each of her daughters for several months after they had a new baby. Most people are somewhere in between.

My grandchildren live 2,000 miles away. When the first was born my son & DIL wanted Hubby and me to wait until the new baby was a month old, and they had adjusted to parenthood before we visited. We agreed. When our second grandchild was born, they wanted me to be there for the birth. Unfortunately, by that time my husband was disabled, could not travel and could not be left alone so I/we had to wait to meet our granddaughter until she was six months old and they could travel to visit us.

Every family is different.

BTW, I am sure that even if the house is tiny you can work it out. My son & DIL's first apartment was so tiny that they slept in the one small bedroom, the baby slept in a closet and when I visited I slept on an air mattress on the floor in the combo living room/dining room, partially under the table and it worked out fine (I was too tall to sleep on their love seat).

Or, you could stay at a nearby Airbnb or hotel or a relative's house if that would work out better.
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Old 05-25-2018, 10:48 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orngkat View Post
That's a problem...there is a scheduled C-section date but they might come earlier. I am definitely open to staying and helping but their house is tiny so I don't want to step on toes so to speak. Her husband has six weeks off and his parents live close by to help out. Just struggling with what is expected of my role as new grandma when I am so far away...
I think you should talk to your daughter some more. Explain that you want to give her help *if she needs it* but you also respect that her husband will be home with her and you don't want to crowd them as they get used to being a family of 4. (at least I think they are going from 2 to 4, and don't already have any other kids?)

Tell her that it won't hurt your feelings if she prefers that you wait a little while, like maybe when her husband goes back to work, so that you are there for her when she really needs the help rather than bringing coals to Newcastle and being an extra person in a small house when she's already got enough help to start with. Hopefully she'll give you an honest answer of what really works best for her.

And esp. if these are your first grandchildren, you may want to start tweaking the budget in order to squeeze in another trip or two each year!
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Old 05-26-2018, 08:45 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
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Moderator cut: orphaned quote

Every family is different. No one, other than my husband, was present for the birth of our children. No one was invited to the hospital for the first 48 hours (I had C-sections).

When my first grandchild was born my son and DIL requested that Hubby and I wait until their baby was a month old and they adjusted to being parents before we flew out to see them. They requested that my DIL's parents, who lived only 15 minutes away, come to see the new baby after they left the hospital and, I believe, once a week for the first month.

So, every family is different. I know plenty of grandparents who were not present for the birth of their grandchildren. It is up to the Mom and Dad of the new baby to decide the rules.

Last edited by Miss Blue; 05-30-2018 at 01:10 PM..
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Old 05-27-2018, 02:40 AM
 
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I didn't particularly want any visitors right after my son was born- I just wanted to hole up in the house and enjoy our first few weeks as a family of three. My parents visited from 5000 miles away when the baby was two months old, and it was perfect; he was old enough to smile but still young enough that he mostly slept while we did touristy things (which we had to do as it was their first trip to Alaska!)

It really is up to what your daughter is most comfortable with, but there's nothing wrong with waiting a few months.
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Old 05-27-2018, 10:56 AM
 
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I talked to DD and she seems to be fine with us waiting a few months for a first visit. I confessed to her that would be best scenario for all concerned (babies may be in NICU for a while anyway if born early) but there is pretty strong cultural meme for mom of mom to be there right away. She didn't seem to mind if we waited. Apparently, grandparents have to get shots anyway before they can even be with newborns so will need to get that done too I guess.
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