Contact Me

Any time - drop me an email
miriamhendeles@gmail.com
1-323-243-7116

Contact Me

Any time - drop me an email
miriamhendeles@gmail.com
1-323-243-7116

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Helicopter Grandparents

We’ve all heard about helicopter mothers, the moms you see in the soccer field cheering their kids on from the stands, and if said kids do not happen to be on the winning team, these moms get very upset.

Hovering Grandparents Swooping Down...Be Careful....

Hovering Grandparents Swooping Down…Be Careful….

Helicopter Moms  —  coined by Jim Fay and Foster Cline, have  received a bad rap – and for good reason. These parents hover just above their kids’ heads (and hearts), watching their kids’ every move, and basically living their own life  through that of  their suffocating and frustrated children.

But what about Helicopter Grandparents? How do they fit into the picture? Do Helicopter Moms (and Dads) who are unchecked (and haven’t worked on themselves to undo their annoying helicopter behaviors) grow up to become Helicopter Grandparents?

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Future Bath Tubs and Playgrounds

A 6-YEAR-OLD WAS ASKED WHERE HIS GRANDMA LIVED. ”OH,” HE SAID, ”SHE LIVES AT THE AIRPORT, AND WHEN WE WANT HER, WE JUST GO GET HER. THEN WHEN WE’RE DONE HAVING HER VISIT, WE TAKE HER BACK TO THE AIRPORT” Author unknown

Yes – Grandma is always available whenever we want.  Hmmm.

I was thinking along those lines the other day and I suddenly had a fantasy. Right now, we grandmothers are able thank G-d to care for our grandchildren when they need us. We are there for them, as long as we want to (and have the strength)  and then we go home (or send them home, if they are at our house).  Unlike the kids’ perception in which they – the children – are done having us so we leave…we know the truth. Right?

But never mind all that. What if it came a time when G-d forbid, we couldn’t care for our kids? We couldn’t care for them – not because we didn’t have the energy – but simply because the stuff they had around their house, and the technology that they used, were way too advanced for our Baby Boomer Generation minds.

So here goes my fantasy. Imagine in the year 2020, I want to give my little grandson – (or grand-daughter!) born in the year 2018 a bath. So I go take the kid to the bathroom, get him or her undressed, and lo and behold I look at the bathtub and it does not resemble the one I have at home – in my circa 1990-2000 remodeled home. Instead the bathtub is suspended up high, and there is a staircase to get there. The knobs are not the usual – left for hot, and right for cold – but they are buttons on the wall which I have no clue how to use.

Another fantasy: Imagine in the year 2025, I want to take my grandkids to the park. I walk with them to the park, and we find the playground equipment, but somehow nothing looks the same as how I remembered swings back in the olden days of the 1980’s or even in the times of my older grandsons – born in the 2010’s.

What is a grandmother to do? Is she to ask a kid nearby to help her? (in the case of the park?)

Is she supposed to risk G-d forbid burning the 2-year old, by using the wrong temperature of water, and/or not being able to climb the steps to the raised tub?

I really don’t know what I’m going to do. I tell you – I’m pretty grateful that right now I’m kind of savvy and know how to use a computer, how to do things that are similar to the skill set of my grandkids.

But when I think of the future, I tell you – I’m pretty scared.

I guess this is where faith and trust really kick in. Because when it comes down to it, if we can’t give our grandchildren baths and take them to the park, what is left to the grandmother-grandchild relationship?

Trust in G-d, and all my scary science fiction fantasies will either not materialize in a negative way, or my grandchildren will patiently teach me the ins and the outs of the skills.  I will march along to the tunes of the new inventions.

Otherwise, I will be sent home by the kids on the first plane (rocket ship by then?) out of their hometown.  What use will the kids have for us if we can’t even keep up with their technology?


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