10 FOFs will win a copy of Eye of My Heart, FOF Barbara Graham’s bestselling essay collection about the pleasures and perils of being a grandmother. To enter, answer in the comments below: What did you call your grandparents?
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What did you write before Eye of My Heart?
I’ve written for many magazines, including Self, Vogue, O Magazine, and Glamour. I’ve written a lot about psychology and personal growth, as well as personal essays. After taking one self-help workshop too many in the 90s, I authored a humorous take on the subject. That book is called Women Who Run With The Poodles: Myths and Tips for Honoring Your Mood Swings.
What’s the biggest difference between how our generation relates to our kids, compared to the way our parents’ generation related to us?
We’re the therapy generation. We talk to our kids. We share an intimacy that I certainly never had with my own parents. Our shared vocabulary includes the honest expression of feelings. But that can complicate matters when you become a grandparent, because the expectation is that the intimacy will continue. It does and it doesn’t. Clear boundaries are essential.
What are some of your personal observations about boomer grandparents?
Boomer women are redefining grandmotherhood, as we did with motherthood. The book gets the conversation going. Our grandmothers’ and mothers’ identities were mostly tied to being wives, mothers and homemakers, not to career. That’s a huge difference. My grandmother was always available to take care of me. Today, many grandparents live at great distances from their grandchildren, which presents another big challenge. And, with so much divorce and remarriage in recent decades, many families today have a bigger stable of grandparents than ever before. This also can make things a bit complicated. You think you’ve dealt with all your stuff in therapy, and that you’re all grown up. Then you become a grandparent, which can trigger all sorts of old feelings. If you haven’t matured and mastered the art of letting go, grandparenthood can be challenging since you don’t really have a say in what happens with your grandchildren. This can be especially challenging for women who are used to speaking up in their professional lives. Becoming a grandparent is like going from being a member of the starting lineup on a baseball team to a player on the bench. It’s wondrous, but a little shock to the ego sometimes.
Enter to win a copy of Eye of My Heart, FOF Barbara Graham’s bestselling essay collection about the pleasures and perils of being a grandmother. 10 FOFs will win. To enter, answer in the comments below: What did you call your grandparents?