The unique role of grandparents In times of crisis

The Unique Role of Grandparents in Times of Crisis

At its core, a crisis is a sudden, negative change in medical, physical, financial, spiritual, emotional, or relationship circumstances. Some crises are a result of human error and others come by way of nature, freak occurrences, or local, national, and global influences. However they appear, crises impact hard and our emotional response may be wild and difficult to manage for a time. Grandparents’ have a unique role in times of crisis. Grandparents are uniquely equipped to be leaders in our families when crisis strikes.

How so? One of the great blessings of age is decades’ worth of life experiences. Those experiences become the lens through which we view and respond to each new experience, particularly the challenging ones. As grandparents, we can take stock of family history, consider the difficulties faced by ourselves or predecessors, and glean wisdom to share with future generations.

Grandparents Role in Times of Crisis

When crisis strikes grandparents can step in to uniquely support their children with wisdom from their lived experiences. They can offer temporary financial support. Grandparents might even consider taking on tasks that are otherwise overwhelming for parents of young children when crisis strikes. This could include making meals, providing transport to and from school or related activities, or some other practical help. Communication is key here! In a time of a family crisis, the only way you may be able to help is through prayer. The most important thing is that your family knows you’re there with them through the crisis.

Every family experiences crises over the course of generations. It’s just a matter of when, to whom, and what type of crisis occurs. The question and determinant of recovery and long-term success become how we handle the fallout. When we have spent time examining our own and predecessors’ experiences as suggested above, we realize that life always moves forward. Crises never last forever. We adapt, we grieve losses, we adjust course–whatever is required–and we keep going. We persevere.

This month at Grandparenting A to Z, we’ll be talking about crisis and unexpected turns in family life. In addition to the blog, we’ll come at this issue from a variety of angles in our weekly emails, videos, and social media content. Join the GPAZ community to be encouraged and inspired to overcome life’s challenges!

2 thoughts on “The Unique Role of Grandparents in Times of Crisis”

  1. Avatar for Mari Carini

    My family crisis is that my daughter (32) is going through serious identity issues for the past tear since BLM began last year. We adopted our daughter from Korea. She never in her life identified herself as ‘ a yellow’, nor did we, her parents until a year ago. The politics and economics around adoption in Korea is quite disturbing and is really painful for the adoptees who have been the victims of this process ( which, back in the 80’s we didn’t realize what a ‘Profitable business it was, As a result of her emotional process, she has cur off all communication. The worst of it is, she is not allowing my grandson visit or even talk to ne. Its been 11 months since he & I gave talked or hugged. (in contrast to his spending 24 hrs per week with me from age 2 through age 5. We missed spending any time together during he 6th year. He just turned 7 in nay, and I turned 70 innApril. No acknowledgement. The kicker is that they live right next door to me. Ive been in weekly therapy since this began. I miss him so much. Is anyone else out there experiencing something like this? Daughter offers no explanation, There is no viable reason for this re: my love and care for him.

    1. Avatar for Donna K. Rice

      Mari, we are saddened to hear the story of the turn in your relationship with your daughter. We are glad you are seeking professional counseling as you struggle with the pain of this separation. Many grandparents face separation difficulties in our day. Changing times and confusing messages coming at folks from all directions are taking a toll on families. We will pray with you for reconciliation. If you aren’t already, you might begin to journal through this process. Focus on the hopes for reconciliation and your love for your daughter and grandson. One day, your journal may be a place to begin the healing process in your family.

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