Fran Fisher made a choice to take early retirement so she could have fun, while at the same time giving the best care possible to her grandchildren as a Grandma Nanny! She didn’t have to do this, but she wanted to!
In my interview with Fran, she detailed for me how the rewards have outweighed the hardships of caring for babies all over again at her age.
In Fran’s case, it’s a win-win-win for all 3 generations!
Fran now has a special warmth and closeness with her grandchildren that others might wish for! Her daughter and son-in-law are extremely appreciative, the grandchildren go home to eat dinner with their parents in their own house nightly, and they sleep soundly in their own beds every evening.
BUT, over 2.5 million grandparents are not just providing babysitting or daycare, but actually raising their grandchildren, and the number is growing, due to poverty, the opioid epidemic, the death of a grandchild’s parent, or extended military deployment. Large numbers of grandparents feel they have no option but to offer live-in care for their “grandfamilies.”
Those grandparents may feel forced to dip into their retirement, and delay or forgo their own visions of the future so they can prioritize the care of their grandchildren instead.
Hopefully, there will be help soon.
Were you aware that the President signed into law The Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act in July 2018? This Act is receiving support from both adult and child advocacy groups across the nation!
The new law mandates a Federal Advisory Council to support grandparents and other relatives raising children. The lead agency will be the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and they are tasked to identify, promote, coordinate and disseminate details about resources and best practices to help grandparents, and other relative caregivers, meet the health, educational, nutritional and other needs of the children they care for. It also will create vitally-needed support for the caregivers’ own physical and mental health, and emotional well-being.
In my interview with Fran, she mentioned that 1/4 to 1/3 of the grandparents picking up children from the local nursery school were other grandparents, as well.
Grandparents always deserve respect, but parenting again in older years MUST be a huge challenge!
Questions for YOU to consider, as we are on the eve of Grandparents Day…
Do you know someone raising their grandfamily?
If yes, do these grandparents get enough “Recovery Time,” like Fran mentions as a necessity?
How well do you think you would fare if you had to act as a parent again at this stage of life?
You can enjoy Fran’s full interview below: