Welcome back to “That Very Special Relationship,” my series of blog posts exploring the relationship between a grandmother and her grandchild. One of my readers recently wrote in:
Here's my question: We hear all the time about the First Lady and her children. Has there ever been a First Grandma?
Hi, George! Thanks for your question. The answer is yes! There is a long history of grandparents living in the White House. Ulysses S. Grant's father-in-law lived in the White House, as did Woodrow Wilson's mother-in-law and Harry S. Truman's mother-in-law.
According to the U.S. Census, at least 5.7 million American grandparents live in the same home with their grandchildren. We should all be so lucky!
am not the First Lady and none of my children are the President of the United States, I would love to live with my kids and grandkids one day. Of course, my daughter Jane still lives in a so-so one-bedroom apartment by herself, but I think she's finally coming around
to the idea of settling down. There are several young men in her life who would make wonderful fathers. If only she would choose one already! ( … And trust me. I know a thing or two about what makes a good husband. Maybe if my ex hadn't been a two-timing louse, I wouldn't be spending my golden years breaking my back as a waitress.)
Anyhow. There are a number of reasons why I believe it makes sense to have different generations living under the same roof. Nowadays, lots of women work outside of the home, and instead of paying a stranger to take care of your children, why not have family do it? Who's better equipped to raise my grandchildren than me?! Also, I can do chores around the house like light cleaning and cooking. All I really need is a small bedroom. I could even live in the children's room until they are a little older! And if a dinner invitation comes up unexpectedly? You've always got a babysitter on hand if Grandma is at home. You may not live in the White House, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't be treated like First Grandma!