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Old 08-07-2012, 11:22 AM
 
Location: WA
605 posts, read 556,256 times
Reputation: 2050

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Poll?

My late husband and I thought we were more unusual than most parents, as we gave our sons roots and---wings! They currently have their own lives, families, live in another state---of their choosing.

Now, as much as we loved them, their families, we did not need to be in constant contact with them,
we were not joined at the hip. Husband and I were enjoying exploring, having fun with just the two of us. Are we, were we or I am unusual ? Our sons were most helpful when my husband became ill and
after his transition to Heaven. They have not hovered over me since his passing.

? When your children's children have babies, they near retirement age, are they going to be willing to
sit home and babysit, be upset you want to enjoy your golden years, you have a life other than them ?

Not to stir up the pot or cause upset, just curious. Note, must take the computer in the shop, no sound; daughter-in-law could not diagnose the problem..
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Old 08-07-2012, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Whereever we have our RV parked
8,766 posts, read 7,695,901 times
Reputation: 14995
We're also not moving closer to kids when we retire. We have our own life, interests etc, and we don't like Iowa. We don't like the idea of full time or part time child care. Babysitting is not part of our retirement plans. Once in a while, OK, but full time? forget it. Well move closer, but we'd move where we're going to move anyway. Can't count on kids not moving again themselves.
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Old 08-07-2012, 12:50 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 83,901,398 times
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I think that depends greatly on the persons and varies.It really depdns on the family goup itself and their relationship .Mnay grand aprents are raisng or aprtially raisng their grqand children i larger numbers. just the two worker family means its increased as grand parnets want to raise the children within the family rather than say put in day care. It alos can be a regional thing. Where I live such fmaily extension of care runs to cousins and often a parent moves out of state to live with children when they can no longer live alone. But even within family here the partial support to allow older family mebers to live alone or as a couple is common both fiancially and things as tranpost ;shopping help;paying bills they apy. Bascailly there is no doubt that this allows more indepdnece to older age and often means when moving to assited circumxctances its is shorter enbd of life or better faciltiy. But how thew memberws view it is very family realtionship depependent. My mother ilaw lived with us the last thre eyars of her life.We wouldn't have missed thsoe years for anyhthing;so it just depends on now you view family:IMO.My sister is 82;healthy for her age but we still do things for her since my brotherin law died. That is just the way we see family ;I guess.
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Old 08-07-2012, 03:43 PM
 
Location: MN
20 posts, read 34,519 times
Reputation: 98
I always enjoy the retirement forums, but seldom post. This topic really interests me because my husband and I will be retiring in two years at 62 to a home which we purchased 18 months ago. I have fretted a lot over the fact that I will be an 18 hour drive away from my two boys. (ages: 28, 31) I have no grand kids and frankly don't know if they will have children or not. I will only see my boys in person probably 3x a year, but have convinced myself that these visits along with the weekly phone calls, and Skype will allow us to stay connected. Presently, they work for their Dad out of our home, which means I have the privilege of seeing my boys Mon. - Fri. which certainly puts us in a close relationship. They both live in apartments with their SO, (married soon I think) and we all do our own thing every weekend. I have friends who absolutely live for interaction with their grand kids. I think it's odd; I feel it is time for them to enjoy their own lives, and pursue their interests. We certainly would be caring grandparents, and we both think it would be great having grand kids visit for a couple weeks every year in the lovely area we are retiring to; the "Land of Enchantment" which offers tons of outdoor adventures. (Funny, I sound like a tourism ad!) We want to enjoy our retirement which we have carefully and purposely planned for. We will not be more than occasional sitters and I have no desire to run around to all the baseball, soccer, track and band events as a cheerleader. Spent years doing that for my own kids. We will enjoy what we want in the last season of our life. My only fear is "keeping the close connections". The boys say no problem, so we will move and make every effort to stay connected. We can't imagine living in our present mid west state in our older years; the summers are hot, humid, and populated with mosquitoes, and the long, cold winters are for hibernating. I look forward to reading other comments.
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Old 08-07-2012, 04:01 PM
 
Location: California
4,552 posts, read 5,467,791 times
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One thing that drives me nuts is people who think I am interested in their kids/grandkids. I am not and have other things to spend my time on. I did the best I could as a parent but now it is my time to finally have a life and it doesn't include being a babysitter as we really do prefer adult companionship. My husband and I enjoy our peace and quiet and couldn't imagin having our retirement centered around going backward.

I have a neighbor who has adult children and her children living off him even after his heart surgery. Yikes, enough is enough already - the poor guy doesn't make enough to support all the freeloaders so he can't retire.
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Old 08-07-2012, 06:06 PM
 
4,343 posts, read 6,054,558 times
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We moved away from our only child, who was very responsible, once he graduated from college. We moved for my husband's career. In the last 15 years we lived in 3 different states. During this time there was a marriage and grandchildren were born and we had a good connection with them. We visited about 3 times a year and they visited us about twice a year. In the meantime we must've mailed a package to the kids about every other week. We skyped, we did whatever we had to do, and we think it worked. Just recently we decided to move back home but we were considerate of the fact that our son has been independent of us for the last decade and a half so we moved about 2 hours away which is perfect. We didn't feel we had any business moving in his back yard. We respect each other's schedule. We set up visits in advance, we've been fortunate to be included in their holiday plans, and all-in-all, I'm glad we're back. I think you can make anything work. Miles don't make any difference.
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:41 PM
 
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,471,910 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sera View Post
Poll?

My late husband and I thought we were more unusual than most parents, as we gave our sons roots and---wings! They currently have their own lives, families, live in another state---of their choosing.

Now, as much as we loved them, their families, we did not need to be in constant contact with them,
we were not joined at the hip. Husband and I were enjoying exploring, having fun with just the two of us. Are we, were we or I am unusual ?
I don't find it unusual. We have seven children betwween us, 10 grandchildren and are expecting our first great-grandchild this month. They live in three other states. We like it that way.
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Old 08-07-2012, 11:03 PM
 
Location: Maryland
1,534 posts, read 3,780,673 times
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The majority our collective children (6) live within a 45 minute drive, the one on the west coast we visit at least once per year. Doing grandparent babysitting is generally a pleasure. Its fun to spoil the little buggers and then send them home.

Its also really nice to have young muscles and backs available if we need to do something outside our capabilities around the house. A phone call and casual mention of a "muscle needed" chore usually elicits a very welcome visit of sons or SILs.

Its been a new and enjoyable life experience to be the "grey hairs" some of the teenagers/early 20s grandkids come to for advice and arbitration on issues with their parents/boyfriends/whatever. Both mine and my DW's GP's died early so we never had that experience.

Its an opportunity to teach values, responsibility and conduct that I and my wife thoroughly enjoy. IMO, kids need a sounding board, an impartial advisor and a serious, mature friend who has no axe to grind.

Being a grandfather is one of the best and most enjoyable aspects of my life to date. The kids have advised me that my standard comment to daters of our granddaughters that they select the tree on my back acre where I will bury them if they ever drive under the influence of anything while my GDs are in their company is a bit over the top - but I'm a grandfather --- and thats my rule.
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Old 01-24-2013, 06:20 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,969,510 times
Reputation: 15649
I remembered this thread created last summer. It unfortunately did not go very far, as I find the subject most interesting (about to become a grandparent for the first time).

I think a lot about the last generation of grandparents (our grandparents). My two grandmothers were quite different from each other. My loving Italian nana lived with us, and thank goodness she did, she brought the only real joy and levity to the household. She was giving and caring in every sense of the word. Needless to say we loved her. My other "grandma" was total opposite, into herself, her image, her Poker and gin and weekly card games. She never babysat us and our visits with her were formal. I don't remember her cooking or serving anything. And yet, though she was emotionally removed, she was kind and we loved her in a different kind of way, fascinated by her selfish lifestyle and stories from the Great Depression when she was a dance hall girl with many suitors.

So I was exposed to different kinds of grandparenting, including my friends' exceptionally doting grandparents showering them with attention and gifts.

Of course it's a shock to realize I'm old enough to be a grandma and am going to be one. How did all the years pass so fast?? I'm excited by this new development, and wondering what kind of grandma I will be, esp since it's not my daughter but my DIL having the kids. A mother can be automatically close to her daughter having the kids, but there's more distance it seems with a DIL. We get along fine, but the axis of closeness is much stronger with her own side of the family.

I'm wondering what others' experiences have been with "being in their grandchildren's lives—how much, how often...what kind of grandparent, more distant, more close, what kind of access you have, what kind of things do you do when you're with them.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:19 AM
 
Location: Lexington, SC
4,281 posts, read 10,732,445 times
Reputation: 3716
My son (not married, no children) was pleased we were retiring to where we wanted to, 1000 miles away. My daughter on the other hand has been cool since in that she does not see how people can "giveup" their children, grand children. She thinks we were selfish.
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