While grandparents often mean well, they can come off as pushy or rude. They may love to give advice, and expect you to take it. But, when you don’t see things their way, they may create tension that can cause stress in your life. Dealing with rude grandparents doesn’t mean you have to remove them from you or your family’s life. Try these steps to help resolve conflicts between you and your child’s grandparents.
Steps to Take
Sit down and have a heart-to-heart talk with the grandparents in question. If they are doing something that is bothering you, kindly let them know. Don’t speak with an accusing tone and speak calmly and openly. Tell them how you feel about the way they are acting.
Set boundaries when your child's grandparents are around your children. If the child's grandparents are being rude in front of the children, remove your children from the situation and let the grandparents know the reasoning behind your actions.
Be confident in your actions and words. When you are speaking to your child's grandparents about their behavior, don’t waver in your words. Be kind but authoritative when you speak about what you don’t want them doing around your child.
Be aware of the shortcomings of your child's grandparents. Know what physical limitations they may have when watching your children. For example, if you do not want your grandmother to smoke around your child and she has issues climbing stairs, think of places she can smoke away from your child, where she can easily get to without climbing up and down stairs.
Write a letter to your child's grandparents letting them know how you feel. Let them know how their actions affect your child’s life as well as your own. Offer some alternative actions they may take instead of negative ones when they are around you and your family.
Tell your child's grandparents that you respect them for making the behavioral changes you have requested when they are around your child. It will make them feel better knowing you feel better when they are visiting.
Always have and open heart and mind when speaking to your child’s grandparents about their actions around your child. Remember that they were raised in a different time period and how they act may be a direct result of just that.
Unless it is absolutely necessary, never cut off the relationship between your child and his grandparents. Grandparents play an important role in your child’s life, and can teach your child many things that come with age and experience.