Do we take grandparents looking after grandchildren for granted?
Grandparents and the role they play in your childrens early lives are to an extent priceless. Has anyone stopped and thought what would happen if for some unknown reason all grandparents were unavailable for the next month.
Schools are getting ready for the summer break, but for parents the working life goes on. Who is going to look after the children while you are at work, or at weekends when you have your shopping excursions. Who will make sure your children are safe on an evening when you have a night out. These are the questions that hundreds and thousands of parents face every school holidays.
In an ideal world the questions would never need to be asked. Unfortunately we don’t live in such a place, it doesn’t exist anymore. So how would we cope. Obviously we can make use of professional child care, but that can be very expensive. Although you can claim some of your expenses back from the government, you cannot claim them all so you may finish up out of pocket at the end of the week.
How about sending your children to stay at friends, cheaper option but can the other parents cope when they have effectively a house full of someone else’s kids for up to 10 hours each day. And they will still expect some money to pay for food and any entertainment.
Grandparents on the other hand usually take on this task out of love and will cherish the extra time they have with the younger ones. They normally will look after the children at no cost, but is this the right way. Sure, we can offer some money for their time and devotion but do we really value them enough.
The children will no doubt enjoy their time, they usually do. As they will be free of the constraints of the childcare and all its rules. What would be a sensible price per hour for the transfer of experiences by both grandparents. It would definitely be more than the national minimum wage set by the government at present.
What are your views on this grandparents looking after grandchildren?
Do you believe that the time and commitment by all grandparents should be free of charge?