How Often Should Grandparents See Their Grandchildren?

Grandparents are an important part of a child's life. They often provide love, support, and guidance that can make a significant impact on a child's development

Published On:
October 1, 2023

How Often Should Grandparents See Their Grandchildren?

Grandparents are an important part of a child's life. They often provide love, support, and guidance that can make a significant impact on a child's development. But how often should grandparents see their grandchildren? Is there a right or wrong answer to this question? Let's explore this topic further.

The Importance of Grandparents in a Child's Life

Grandparents play a vital role in a child's life. They offer a unique perspective, often providing a sense of wisdom and experience that parents may not have. They can also provide a sense of stability and security, especially during difficult times. In fact, studies have shown that children who have close relationships with their grandparents have lower levels of depression, anxiety, and behavioral problems.

Factors to Consider

When it comes to how often grandparents should see their grandchildren, there are several factors to consider. These include:

  • Proximity: How close do the grandparents live to their grandchildren? If they live nearby, they may be able to see them more frequently than if they live far away.
  • Availability: Are the grandparents retired or still working? If they are working, they may not have as much time to see their grandchildren as they would like.
  • Family dynamics: Are there any conflicts or issues within the family that may affect how often grandparents see their grandchildren?
  • Children's schedules: Do the grandchildren have busy schedules with school, extracurricular activities, and other commitments?

Frequency of Visits

Determining how often grandparents should see their grandchildren is a highly individualized matter that depends on each family's unique circumstances. Some families may be able to see each other frequently, while others may only be able to get together occasionally due to distance or other factors.

According to a study conducted by AARP, grandparents who live within 50 miles of their grandchildren see them approximately once a week on average. However, those who live further away may only be able to visit a few times a year.

Ultimately, the frequency of visits should be determined by what works best for the family as a whole. Open and honest communication about expectations and availability can help ensure that everyone's needs are taken into account. It's important to find a balance that allows grandparents and grandchildren to maintain a close and meaningful relationship while also respecting each other's schedules and limitations.

The Benefits of Intergenerational Relationships

The relationship between grandparents and grandchildren can have numerous benefits beyond providing love and support. Research has shown that intergenerational relationships can be mutually beneficial, with both parties gaining valuable experiences and insights.

For grandchildren, spending time with their grandparents can provide exposure to different perspectives and ways of thinking. Grandparents often have a wealth of knowledge and experience that they can share with their grandchildren, providing unique learning opportunities. Additionally, spending time with older adults can help children develop empathy and respect for people from different generations.

On the other hand, grandparents also benefit from spending time with their grandchildren. It gives them a sense of purpose and fulfillment, as well as an opportunity to pass on their values and traditions to the next generation. Furthermore, research has shown that seniors who spend time with younger generations may experience better physical health, mental health, and cognitive functioning.

Overall, intergenerational relationships between grandparents and grandchildren offer numerous benefits that extend beyond emotional support. They provide unique learning opportunities for both parties involved while also promoting mutual understanding and respect across generations.

How to Foster a Strong Relationship between Grandparents and Grandchildren

While the frequency of visits is important, it's not the only factor that determines the strength of the relationship between grandparents and grandchildren. Here are some additional tips on how to foster a strong bond:

1. Make time for one-on-one activities

Spending quality one-on-one time with each grandchild can help strengthen their individual relationships. This could be anything from going out for ice cream or taking a walk in the park to playing board games or doing crafts together.

2. Share stories and family history

Grandparents have a wealth of knowledge and experiences that they can share with their grandchildren. By telling stories about their own childhoods, sharing family history, and passing down traditions, grandparents can help their grandchildren develop a sense of identity and belonging.

3. Use technology to stay connected

Even if grandparents live far away from their grandchildren, there are many ways to stay connected through technology. Video chats, texting, and social media can all be used to keep in touch regularly.

4. Attend special events

Whether it's a school play, sports game, or birthday party, attending special events in your grandchild's life shows them that you care about what's important to them.

5. Be present and attentive

When spending time with your grandchild, make sure you're fully present and engaged in the moment. Put away distractions like phones or tablets and focus on enjoying each other's company.

By following these tips and making an effort to build a strong relationship with their grandchildren, grandparents can provide love, support, and guidance that will last a lifetime.

Activities to Strengthen the Bond between Grandparents and Grandchildren

Spending quality time with grandparents can be a fun and rewarding experience for grandchildren. Here are some activities that grandparents can do with their grandchildren to strengthen their bond:

1. Baking or Cooking Together

Baking or cooking together is a great way for grandparents to share their love of food and pass down family recipes and traditions. Whether it's making cookies, pies, or a special dish from their culture, grandparents can teach their grandchildren valuable skills while also creating memories that will last a lifetime.

2. Outdoor Adventures

Exploring nature together through hiking, fishing, camping, or taking walks in the park is an excellent way for grandparents and grandchildren to connect with each other while getting exercise and fresh air.

3. Crafts and Art Projects

Crafting together can be a fun way to nurture creativity and imagination while spending quality time together. From painting to knitting to building models, there are endless possibilities for crafting projects that both generations can enjoy.

4. Reading Together

Reading books aloud is a great way for grandparents to share their love of literature with their grandchildren while encouraging literacy skills.

5. Playing Games

Playing games like board games, card games, or video games can be a fun way for grandparents and grandchildren to bond over friendly competition.

By participating in these activities regularly, grandparents can create lasting memories with their grandchildren while strengthening their relationship at the same time.

What Grandparents Should Not Do?

Maintaining positive relationships between grandparents and their grandchildren requires a delicate balance between involvement and respect for boundaries.

Respect the parents' wishes and rules

  • Grandparents should avoid interfering with parenting decisions or undermining the parents' authority, as this can cause unnecessary tension and conflict.
  • Treating all grandchildren equally is also important to prevent favoritism and maintain healthy relationships within the family.

By striking a balance between involvement and respect for boundaries, grandparents can help create a loving and supportive environment that benefits everyone in the family.

Open communication and mutual understanding can go a long way in fostering positive relationships between grandparents, parents, and grandchildren.

How to handle conflicts or disagreements between grandparents and parents

While the relationship between grandparents and their grandchildren can be positive, it's not uncommon for conflicts or disagreements to arise between grandparents and parents. Here are some tips on how to handle these situations:

1. Communicate openly and respectfully

When a conflict arises, it's important to communicate openly and honestly with each other. Each party should have an opportunity to express their thoughts and feelings without interruption. It's important to maintain a respectful tone, even when discussing sensitive topics.

2. Listen actively

Active listening is essential in resolving conflicts. Each party should listen carefully to what the other person is saying, trying to understand their perspective. This can often help uncover underlying issues that need to be addressed.

3. Find common ground

Once both parties have had an opportunity to express themselves, look for areas of agreement or compromise. Finding common ground can help move the conversation forward in a positive direction.

4. Respect boundaries

It's important for both grandparents and parents to respect each other's boundaries. If a parent has made a decision about their child's upbringing, it should be respected by everyone involved.

5. Seek outside help if necessary

If conflicts cannot be resolved through open communication and compromise, seeking outside help may be necessary. A mediator or family therapist can often provide valuable insight into the situation and offer solutions that work for everyone involved.

By following these tips, conflicts between grandparents and parents can often be resolved in a way that promotes healthy relationships within the family.

How to Deal with Difficult Topics or Situations with Grandchildren

As grandparents age, it's inevitable that difficult topics or situations will arise that may be challenging to discuss with their grandchildren. Illness and death, for example, can be sensitive topics that require careful consideration and sensitivity.

1. Be Honest

When discussing difficult topics with grandchildren, it's important to be honest about what is happening. Use clear language that they can understand, being careful not to overcomplicate things or hide the truth.

2. Address Concerns and Emotions

Children may have a lot of questions and emotions surrounding difficult topics like illness or death. Encourage them to ask questions and express their feelings in a safe and supportive environment.

3. Provide Reassurance

Assure your grandchildren that they are loved and supported no matter what happens. Let them know you will always be there for them and that they can come to you with any questions or concerns.

4. Keep Things Age-Appropriate

It's important to tailor discussions around difficult topics to the child's age level. Younger children may need more concrete explanations, while older children may benefit from deeper conversations about complex emotions.

5. Seek Additional Support if Needed

Discussing difficult topics can be emotionally taxing for both grandparents and grandchildren alike. If additional support is needed, consider seeking help from a professional counselor or therapist who specializes in working with families dealing with loss or grief.

By approaching these sensitive subjects with honesty, empathy, and compassion, grandparents can provide valuable support and guidance for their grandchildren during difficult times.

Other Ways to Stay Connected

In addition to in-person visits, there are other ways for grandparents to stay connected with their grandchildren. These include:

  • Phone calls: Regular phone calls can be a great way to stay in touch and catch up on each other's lives.
  • Video chats: Platforms like Zoom and FaceTime make it easy to have face-to-face conversations, even if you can't be together in person.
  • Letters and cards: Sending letters or cards through the mail is a fun and personal way to stay connected.
  • Social media: Many grandparents are now on social media, which can be a great way to share updates and photos with each other.


In conclusion, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to how often grandparents should see their grandchildren. The frequency of visits will depend on a variety of factors, including proximity, availability, family dynamics, and children's schedules. Ultimately, what's most important is that grandparents and grandchildren have a strong and loving relationship, no matter how often they see each other.


Continue Reading