How to Help Your Aging Parents Connect to Your Kids

These days, people are waiting longer to have children. And while there are many benefits to this, such as being more financially stable by the time kids come along, it also means that extended family members, like grandparents, are older. In fact, your young childrens’ grandparents may already be looking into LTC options such as residential facilities or retirement complexes. If this is the case for you, it is still possible for your kids to connect with their grandparents. Read on for a few ideas to help make that happen.

Grandparent Field Trip

If your parents are mobile, meaning they are able to drive or be picked up, but not exactly able to babysit, especially younger children, one thing you can do to increase their interaction is to have them just spend time in your home when you and the kids are present. Instead of just a couple of hours to share a meal, pick up your mom or dad (or both) in the morning and plan a whole day of just kicking back in your home and enjoying the regular routine. Enjoy coffee on the porch or lunch on the patio, spend a few hours letting them rest in the afternoon (perhaps with the kids are napping and you are getting a few things done around the house!) and then regroup for an evening meal. After dinner and a board game or TV program, pile the kids into the car for a family drive to take the grandparents’ home. This full day “field trip” gives everyone time to relax and enjoy the natural rhythms of the day.

Easy Outings: Sports and More

If your child has soccer or swim or some other sports team practice that requires you to be present, why not pick up a grandparent on the way? Give grandma or grandpa the chance to watch their grandchild’s athletic experiences and connect in a totally different way. On game day, do the same thing. Having a grandparent watching could bring an entirely new type of motivation to do well! It also allows another side of kids to surface that grandparents might not often get to see.

Why not bring a grandparent along to back-to-school night? At any age, kids love to see grandparents who are proud of their achievements. Whether your child is in a single elementary school classroom or has six or seven high school classrooms, giving grandparents a chance to see where their grandchildren spend most of their days is a special treat, but also a great conversation starter when grandpa starts describing what it was like back in his day…

Do you have an official family portrait of your parents with your children? It may be less common now that cell phones do most of the photography heavy lifting for people on a daily basis, but portrait studios do still exist, and grandparents love things that connect them to the norms of their younger years. As it gets near the time for a special family occasion, like a birthday or holiday, plan an excursion to a photographer’s studio for a session that will then become a perfect gift.  

Don’t forget a good, old-fashioned movie! Going to the movies may require everyone to be quiet, but a movie and then lunch on a weekend afternoon gives grandparents and grandchildren something to talk about later. Movies are like automatic conversation starters, and watching a movie together is a great prompt that can get the stories going and allow grandchildren to see a whole new side of their grandparents.

If you have questions about long-term care coverage or how NPFBA can help serve you, feel free to reach out to us via our website, phone, email or schedule a zoom meeting and let’s grab some face time!

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If you have questions about long-term care coverage or how NPFBA can help serve you, feel free to reach out to us via our website, phone, email or schedule a zoom meeting and let’s grab some face time!

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