The career as a grandmother begins even before her grandchild is born. From the moment when she gets the good news from her children, her actions and reactions matter. Grandmothers can offer advice regarding minor ailments of the mother and the baby, food habits of the new born, identifying reactions to allergies etc. She also plays an important role in being the constant emotional support for the parents.
Appreciate the good news - When the expectant parents share the good news with the granny-to-be, she should act pleased, even before she expresses her concern about issues such as finances. She should inquire before telling anyone else about the good news, and let the parents be the ones to tell close friends and relatives. If the couple would like to wait a bit before announcing the news to others, she should respect their wishes and not let their secret out.
Children never grow out of their grandmother's arms. - Anonymous
Let the expectant parents do it their way - The expectant parents may choose a boutique maternity centre when the granny-to-be would have opted for a hospital, or may decide not to have visitors in the hospital. No matter how she feels about their choices, she should refrain from questioning them. The future relationship with the child and the grandchild may depend upon the support that the granny-to-be has given to her child.
Emphasize the positive stories - The granny-to-be should tell funny and sweet stories about the experiences with her own children. Stories about his or her own babyhood will probably especially interest the expectant parent. It is better to avoid telling them about the birthing experiences.
Be understanding of the mother-to-be - Expectant mothers are often very centered on what is happening with her body and her life. If the daughter or daughter-in-law seems uninterested in the granny-to-be's activities and thoughts, she should accept that this is a natural stage. She will regain her interest in the wider world some time after she gives birth.
Hold off on major decisions - The granny-to-be should not make dramatic changes in her own life in anticipation of being a grandparent. She should not quit her job or plan to move until she knows how much she would be needed and wanted in her grandchild’s life. She should considering the decision carefully before she decides to provide full-time child care.
Recognize Postpartum Depression - If you're a new grandparent, you are concerned with the health of the new mother as well as that of the baby. After the birth, the granny-to-be should be alert for signs of post-partum depression or any persistent sadness in the newly delivered mother.