For many grandparents, relating to their younger grandchildren and family members can be challenging. It may take some time, and a bit of both observation and investigation to determine what your grandkids are interested in, but after a bit of time, grandparents can definitely relate to their grandchildren. If you have grandchildren that you are struggling to connect with, then follow some of the tips below in order to break the ice with your adolescent and teenage grandkids and show them how much you love them.
Play Video Games
Video games are a favorite pastime of many teenagers and adolescents, especially boys. If your grandson or daughter is into video games, then ask them to teach you how to play their favorite game. By learning how to play their video games you can show an interest in their hobby and spend quality time with your grandchild. Plus, video games are great for hand-eye coordination and can help you improve yours.
Teach Your Grandchildren Something New
It is likely that you have a whole different set of hobbies and interests than your grandchildren. If this is true, then why not pass one of your hobbies onto them? By teaching your grandchildren about some of your favorite pastimes you can spend quality time with them and build a bond with them that they will always remember. Plus, if you choose correctly, then they may fall in love with your hobby and want to learn more whenever they see you.
Become Interested in Your Grandchildren’s Activities and Hobbies
If your grandchildren play sports or do any other fun activities such as Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts or academic extracurricular activities, then get involved. Sporting events are often very easy to attend, and if you attend a few of them each season, then you can show your grandkids that you are super interested in what they are doing. If they have other extracurricular activities, then ask them about any important events that family members can attend and try to make it to these events. You will learn more about your grandchildren’s lives this way and will be able to bond with them easier.
Put Together a Family Album
Get creative and put together a family album with your grandchildren. This activity can help you and your grandkids learn more about each other and can give your grandchildren a family memento that they can keep for the rest of their lives.
Learn About Social Media
Virtually every adolescent and teenager is on some sort of social media website. If your grandchildren spend their life online, then learn about social media websites that they are using on a daily basis. Some of the most popular social media platforms include Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Vine. Knowing a bit about each of these social networking websites can help you talk to your grandchildren and understand a bit more about how they communicate with their friends. Plus, you may even enjoy one or two of the websites and wish to create your own profile.
Be Open to Your Grandchildren’s Ideas about the Future
Often, young teenagers tend to have very ostentatious ideas about their future. While their plans may change before they hit college, its vital that you are supportive for all of their career choices. Sit back and listen to the new ideas your grandchildren share with you about how they see their future, and be supportive. It can be enlightening for you to listen to their views on the future, and to see how their views evolve as they grow older.
Create New Beginnings Together
Another great way to bond with your grandchildren is to create new memories together. Do something together that you, nor your grandchildren, have done before. Doing so will help you bond with your grandchildren and will give both of you new memories to cherish.
Get to Know Your Grandchildren’s Friends and What they Like To Do Together
If you live close to your grandchildren, then get to know their friends. You can always be the cool grandparent and take them and their friends out for dinner, a movie or to the mall. Or, you can let your grandkids and their friends hang out at your house. If you do not live close to your grandkids, then ask about their friends and any boyfriends or girlfriends they may have. Talk with them about who they enjoy spending time with and how they spend their time.
Enter Their World
To really bond with your grandchildren, understand everything about their world. Learn about their hobbies, likes and dislikes so that you always have something to talk about with them. If you find that they have similar likes or dislikes that you do, then you can talk with them about your mutual interests. This will help your grandkids bond with you and will give you new topics to discuss.
Watch the Movies and Television Shows They Watch
Ask your grandchildren about their favorite television shows and movies then sit back and try to watch a few of them. You may find that you actually love a few of their shows and movies, and suddenly have a new favorite TV show or movie. Then you can ask your grandkids why they love the show or movie and maybe even watch a few episodes of a TV show together. When you are together you can compare thoughts on the shows or movies and have a wonderful conversation.
With these great tips, you can easily connect with your grandchildren. The best advice to connect with your grandkids is to always keep trying. Sometimes, adolescents and teenagers are hard to crack, but, if you become a constant presence in their life, then they will always love you and know that you support them and love them. Overtime, your grandkids will seek you out for advice, love and support and will begin to connect with you during visits and over the phone. With a little bit of time and a lot of love, you can easily connect with your grandkids.
Here are some more articles in our home care blog about connecting with the Grandchildren: