Almost every Dear Family Whisperer question I answer hits close to home, because I live and deal with many of the same issues. However, this week’s, “Overcoming Four Difficult Truths About Your Grandchild’s Parents,” was one of my most challenging to answer. In varying degrees–many less blatant–I’ve heard similar stories from other grandparents. More importantly, I’ve experienced the generational divide myself. I have and continue to inhabit many family roles: daughter, sister, niece, wife, mother, aunt, partner–and, most recently, grandmother, which might be the most challenging of all! Continue reading article
This week, the Family Whisperer responded to a question from a mother who revisits her childhood summer home (“You Can’t Go Home but You Can Grow Up. Here’s How!”)
I never had that challenge–at least not with my parents. On my wedding night, my father told me he’d sold our summer house. I was disappointed, but part of me was also relieved.. I remembered what happened when my much-older siblings came for the summer with their families. Continue reading article →
Will both generations, parents and grandparents, become involved in the weekly discussions of family?
This question occurred to me as I was enjoying yesterday’s debut of Dear Family Whisperer, now a weekly column on the Huffington Post. The first three installments were “published” on this site. I had asked Tracy’s fans (members of the online forum she launched a decade ago) if they would help me launch a Dear-Abby-type column about family issues, and they came up with great questions. Mothers in the thick of hands-on parenting–in their 30s, 40s, and 50s–they want answers about sibling rivalry, what to do when a parent is physically or mentally ill, how to resolve couple differences about parenting practices, how to tame a mother-in-law.
Now that Dear Family Whisperer is visible to a larger audience, I wonder who will metaphorically raise their hands and what will they ask about? Continue reading article →