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© 1986, The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska on behalf of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension. All rights reserved.


This guide explores grandparenting, including the benefits derived from being a grandparent, suggestions on how to be a good grandparent, precautions to take when grandchildren come for a visit, and ways to have fun with grandchildren.

Grandparents Today

Approximately 75 percent of Americans over 65 have living grandchildren, according to a 1975 Harris poll. Most grandparents begin their role during middle age. The average age for becoming a grandmother is 46 and may be as early as 32. This means we need to set aside many outdated ideas about grandparent. They are active people. They do not necessarily get around slowly or hold old-fashioned ideas. Nor are they people with a lot of time on their hands, just waiting around to help with the babysitting. In fact, at least half the grandmothers and almost all the grandfathers of young children are employed and may well be at the peak of their careers.