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Why Grandparents Are Essential to Young Children


Why Grandparents Are Essential to Young Children

There have been many studies done on the impact grandparents make in the lives of grandchildren starting with the fabulous work from Dr. Arthur Kornhaber. Another such study by the University of Oxford completed a study that shows some key links to the role that grandparents play in the lives of young children. This large-scale study looked at how grandparents are involved in the upbringing of the child, as well as the role a grandparent plays in a child’s overall well-being.

“When grandparents are present, children have fewer emotional problems, and they are less likely to be involved in negative behavioral situations.”

We know from science, personal experience, and from common sense that grandparents can be invaluable assets to the upbringing of younger children. Grandparents today tend to work longer and live longer. Many are family-focused people, dedicated to values and principles refined through a lifetime of learning. With the rising number of single-parent families and those where both parents hold down full-time jobs, grandparents’ roles can be of immeasurable importance in the day-to-day life of a child.

The Oxford study found that grandparents play a high-level role in the emotional and behavioral development of children. When grandparents are present, children have fewer emotional problems, and they are less likely to be involved in negative behavioral situations.

Grandparents’ involvement helps children in several ways. For example, they often help in the development of children’s problem-solving skills. When family disruption occurs, grandparents can become a stabilizing force for young people. In times of turmoil, including after the loss of a parent, a grandparent can provide material and emotional support, reducing the complications a child might encounter.

In short, we know that emotionally healthy grandparents contribute positively to the well-being and overall development of their grandchildren. The Oxford study shows just how important their role can be.

Unfortunately, some parent’s families refuse to let grandparents to establish or maintain meaningful relationships with grandchildren, especially in times of turmoil. Parents even limit access to grandparents out of spite or perhaps simply due to a lack of effective communication.  Read more here

“If you want happy children who are better able to process emotions, invite Grandpa over for a snack.”

According to the website Love to Know, grandparents increase children’s emotional intelligence. Raising emotionally, well-adjusted children is the goal of all parents, and it can be argued that to do this, you need Grandma and Grandpa by your side. Researchers in the United Kingdom found that children who spent more time with their grandparents were at a decreased risk for having emotional and behavioral issues, and were far better off in terms of their emotional intelligence, compared to children who did not have grandparents involved in their lives. The study highlighted that this is particularly true for adolescents from divorced or separated families. If you want happy children who are better able to process emotions, invite Grandpa over for a snack.  Read more here

Read more about the impact that grandparents have on grandkids here

Christine Crosby

About the author

Christine is the co-founder and editorial director for GRAND Magazine. She is the grandmother of five and great-grandmom (aka Grandmere) to one. She makes her home in St. Petersburg, Florida.

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