Bright Side

Why Being Close to a Great-Grandparent Means a Lot for a Child

It’s been estimated that by the year 2030, more than 70% of 8-year-olds will likely have a living great-grandparent. This is very exciting news since great-grandparents play a very special role in our lives. They can provide us with some unique and priceless things that we can’t get from anywhere else.

We at Bright Side tried to reveal what benefits a child can have while spending more time with great-grandparents.

A great-grandparent can be a source of knowledge and advice for younger generations.

The first thing that comes to mind when we think about great-grandparents is the huge amount of unique experience and knowledge that they are able to provide us with. Even though it may seem outdated, they’ve been through so many life situations and have met so many people, that it’s really worth listening to what they have to say.

They provide a link to the past, making history real.

Great-grandparents are a generation that witnessed many historic events, about which we have learned from history books and movies. For many of them, world wars, colonization, the great depression, and more are not just significant events, but rather, parts of their direct life. And unlike a textbook, they can provide us with a real connection with the past, to make us more aware. Any kid would only benefit from such information. Plus, it’s really exciting to hear these kinds of stories firsthand!

It gives the child a sense of belonging.

“Great-grandparents can act as a confidante,” said Peter Harris of the Grandparents’ Association. “And they can connect a child with the wider family — they have a long memory and are the repository of information.” This will give a child a certain sense of identity and an idea of where they come from, making them feel more included in our very big world.

They teach children to respect older people.

Great-grandparents always express much love and care for children but in addition to that, children show this kind of emotion right back. Since for little ones, great-grandparents may seem very old, they’ll want to provide them with some help and care in return, demonstrating an unchildlike level of respect. This will definitely help them grow up to have a more positive attitude toward older people.

Kids will feel more connected to their families.

“If great-grandchildren are in regular contact with their great-grandparents, it will give them a greater sense of connectedness to their families,” said Dr. Carr, who has studied the sociology of aging. During some research, kids were asked if there was anything they had learned from their great-grandparents and some of them replied that “family was really important.”

It makes children more aware of their cultural traditions.

You can only imagine how many traditional cookie recipes your great-grandmother could have provided you with if she was still around today. This is definitely not the same as reading them from cookbooks. And think about how many stories she could tell you while looking at family photo albums together. Great-grandparents will always be those good old tradition-keepers, and every kid can inherit them.

Have you been lucky enough to have met your great-grandparents? Share your stories with us in the comment section!

Preview photo credit Thermochopps / Reddit