Are they spoiling them?
Grandparents could be strict as parents. But when it comes to their grandchildren they always do favors without saying “no” to them, especially when it comes to summer vacation. And this is not necessarily bad, as the role of grandparents isn’t to replace that of parents. On the one side it’s important for the parents to set some basic rules and on the other side the grandparents have a right to “spoil” their grandchildren, in simple everyday trivial requests like for example eating one more ice cream, buying another toy, spending more time at the beach. What you can do is to direct the weakness and flexibility of the grandparents towards your own benefit and the children’s. For example if you know that grandparents are going to buy your children toys or snacks tell them what to choose and what to avoid.
Set limits with flexibility
To achieve a harmonious coexistence you should set clear boundaries, rules and schedule while allowing some exceptions on both sides. For example you can allow them to watch TV until late provided that they go to sleep when their grandparentsl tell them. In general the children must understand that spending time with their grandparents during their holidays doesn’t mean that can violate basic rules. In this way children will not be able to exploit the kindness of their grandparents.
Do not forget safety
On issues of safety there should be no flexibility at all. Grandparents bear a huge responsibility and in no way should they violate any rule jeopardizing the safety of children. Certainly they should be nor overprotective or oppressive because the children may overreact wanting to go back to their home.
Enjoyment for everyone
When children are away from home and spend time with their grandparents then their autonomy and independence is boosted. At the same time, grandparents and grandchildren have the opportunity to come closer developing a special bond with each other. Except that grandparents feel useful and creative because they help their children they also feel refreshed because they . Sometimes it may seem difficult for the parents to be away from their children but it is a good opportunity for them to rest, relax and come closer as a couple.
It is essential for the children to keep a regular telephone contact with their parents so that all feel calm and safe.