“I have a problem with parents who think it’s perfectly normal for grandparents to only babysit.”

I am a part-time working mother, as are my sisters and almost all of my girlfriends, nieces, colleagues and acquaintances. I know very few women who work full time or not at all.

I have no opinion on it at all, I personally think that everything is fine. You must do what is best for you and your family. Saying that someone isn’t a good mom (or shouldn’t have started having kids) when you work full time is pretty short-sighted. For example, there are a lot of women who have to pay for everything on their own after a divorce and therefore have to work full time, just to provide a roof over their children. Mother of mothers who have tried for years to conceive and finally have a child, will we judge her for preferring to stay home to take care of her child? These are of course only examples, but if you have an opinion about working or non-working moms, you’re immediately over a glass of ice. You don’t know someone’s position and you can’t look at someone’s wallet. So I don’t have an opinion on how other mothers organize their lives in terms of work and family, it’s up to them. What I think is important is that your child is in a nice place while you work. I wouldn’t be able to fully focus on my work if I knew my child was sad in nursery school, or anywhere else he was feeling uncomfortable.

My sisters and I are fortunate to have parents who truly send them to heaven. As parents they were already great, but as grandparents they were already above themselves. They now have six grandchildren – with a seventh on the way – and nothing is too much for them. On Tuesdays, all the kids stay with them after school and there’s always a party. They go to the cinema, make jam, cake, fun crafts together, the children are terribly spoiled, and then mainly with real interest. With their unyielding love, energy, and fun ideas, my parents make it something special every time, and my sisters and I really realized how special it was. It goes without saying that grandparents want to take care of children, but when they do so with such passion and dedication, you can’t help but feel very lucky to do so. Not everyone is fortunate enough to be able to take his or her child into the family during working hours, I really know that, but I wish every single one of them a grandfather like my dad.

Fortunately, we live close to my parents, so my kids love to puff every now and then. How different it was when we lived ten thousand kilometers away… I will never forget how sadly my parents waved goodbye to us at Dusseldorf airport when we emigrated. Louis was one year old at the time and their only grandson at the time. I thought it was terrible. In our case, everyone feels more comfortable now that we live near each other again and we see each other a lot. Unfortunately, my ex-mother passed away and his father still lives in Curaçao. My children rarely see their grandfather, which they sincerely regret. It’s a big loss.

Grandchildren sometimes don’t realize what grandparents are doing to them, and how much they are willing to pay for it. Sometimes kids don’t. I have a problem with stories about parents who think it’s perfectly normal for grandparents to babysit, and who assume it’s going to happen for a while. Parents who are demanding or standing on their hind legs when things don’t go their way. Then do it yourself, quit your job and take care of your baby. Grandparents and grandmothers have really had their day, they have raised their children and when they take care of the grandchildren it is out of love. At least, I see it as a great show of love when you sacrifice your spare time to take care of two little ones again.

Quite frankly, I enjoy going to work when the kids are with my parents. I know they are fine and healthy and that I bring them back at the end of the day and they are completely happy. Then they did fun things, ate healthy snacks and got lots of love and attention. I can be a good working mom part time because I have my parents, as well as my two sisters. My kids also got a great bonus for their grandmother with Nils’ mother. It’s curious how quickly that changed and they embraced each other, and how naturally that happened. I like so much for kids that they have a kind of new grandma who will always be there for them. What a blessing.

Please let’s appreciate grandparents (bonus) and say that, because they are important to us and our children and they deserve gold.

She is a special secondary education consultant, author at De Fontein Publishing, mother of two sons, ages 10 and 8, who recently divorced and is expecting a daughter with her new boyfriend. So nothing boring about it. That’s why we’d like to introduce you to our new columnist: Elaine Rink.

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