Ways Seniors Can Build Stronger Relationships with Grandkids, Even When Leaning on Elder Care Support

Before the pandemic, relationships were different in many aspects, especially between seniors and their grandchildren or even great grandchildren. It’s nothing new, but as toddlers become young children who then become teenagers, their interest in spending quality time with grandma or grandpa begins to decline. They are more focused on spending time with friends, hanging out with the coolest crowd, or maybe even thinking about their future in college or a fledgling career. 

Once the pandemic hit, spending quality time one-on-one became much more complicated, especially at elder care facilities, like assisted living. Many seniors were not allowed to have in-person visitation and were instead directed to video teleconferencing using a variety of apps, including Zoom, Skype, and Facetime.

Today, while the pandemic continues on, many people are learning to live with this new reality. However, too many younger adults and teenagers may forget that quality time spent with grandma or grandpa is still vital, not just for them to understand their heritage (history), but also to help those aging seniors feel connected.

There are several ways that somebody who relies on elder care can stay more connected and build stronger relationships with their grandchildren.


Set this as a priority.

Assisted Living Spanish Fort, AL: Building Relationships

Assisted Living Spanish Fort, AL: Building Relationships

Many teenagers, college aged students and young adults might simply argue, “I don’t have time” as a reason not to spend some moments with an aging grandparent or other loved one, but if they only change that statement to, “It’s not a priority,” perhaps they would see the reality in that belief system.

If both grandparents and grandchildren set this as a priority, they will make it happen. If they don’t, there’s plenty of room for excuses.


Ask grandchildren to help teach seniors new technologies.

Kids who grow up with technology understand it like a second language. Even children as young as six and seven can tell their parents or grandparents how to best use a tablet, smartphone, or even how to connect to the Internet.

This could be a wonderful way for an aging grandparent who depends on elder care to connect with their grandchildren. They can ask questions, connect with them on social media, and send messages inquiring about how to set certain things up and do various tasks using the latest technology.

If they’re clever enough, they can focus on technological aspects that require in-person instruction. That can get those grandchildren there to spend at least a few moments with them, one-on-one.


Respect boundaries.

If grandma and grandpa are connected to their grandchildren on Facebook, for example, they need to respect boundaries. Even though they may not like the comments some of the grandchildren’s friends say or the posts they notice, they should keep some of those comments to themselves.

As with gaining independence from parents, teenagers and young adults are looking for independence from the grandparents, too. So long as the grandparents respect those boundaries, even if they may not fully understand how they work with regard to social media, it lays a foundation for stronger relationships.

If you or an aging loved one are considering a move to an Assisted Living in Spanish Fort, AL, contact Ashbury Manor Specialty Care and Assisted Living at 251-317-3017.

About Cindy Johnson

Ashbury Manor’s Administrator since 2008, Cindy Johnson is a long-time expert in the assisted living field. Prior to her arrival at Ashbury Manor, Cindy managed acquisitions and crisis management for existing and new larger senior care project developments for eleven years. As regional manager for an Oregon-based assisted living management company, Cindy was directly responsible for operations for five 50-65 bed assisted living facilities. As manager during the transition to new ownership, Cindy reorganized internal operations and conducted leadership training for Executive Directors. As a result of her management and expertise, one of the company’s facilities (in Ocala, Florida) received a deficiency-free survey, resulting in the lifting of a moratorium on operation.

A nurse for 36 years, senior care has always been Cindy’s passion. Desiring to work more closely with residents, Cindy became a Category II Administrator in 2005. As Ashbury Manor’s Administrator, Cindy understands the complexities associated with dementia and cognitive impairment and she has fallen in love with seniors with dementia or cognitive impairment and their families.

Cindy is Treasurer of the local “Senior Coalition” chapter. She enjoys mentoring new candidates who want to become administrators.

As a 16-bed facility, with Cindy's training and experience, our residents and their families can be sure Ashbury Manor’s carefully selected staff provides the expertise of a larger facility while maintaining the individualized personal care of a small special needs home.
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