Grandparents who take care of their grandchildren might live longer and happier lives, certain studies suggest
August 25, 2018
That grandparents are a precious help for parents is universally recognized! In fact, the possibility for a stressed mom or dad to rely on a "babysitter" of proven experience and who is emotionally involved, in a positive way, is of immeasurable value.
Nevertheless, science wanted to observe the same situation from different points of view, namely from those of the grandchildren and grandparents themselves; and consequently, discovered the enormous benefits that both derive from their positive interactions.
1. Happier people. Research shows that children raised with grandparents, as adults, suffer less from depression. A study conducted on 374 grandparents and 356 adult grandchildren during the years 1985 and 2004 found that both were less prone to the symptoms of depression.
2. Superior emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is more important than IQ in determining an individual's success and career. It is something that children learn through contact with others and the example they observe from other people; therefore growing up together with their grandparents would help to increase the capacity for emotional understanding in children.
3. Getting older one gets better. Research has shown that relationships between grandfathers, grandmothers, and grandchildren improve with age, especially for grandfathers. In fact, even if grandmothers appear more loving and affectionate than their spouses, after the age of 60-70, it is the grandfathers who play a greater role in the lives of their grandchildren, becoming excellent friends.
4. Grandparents live longer. Recent studies have shown that grandparents who regularly babysit their grandchildren live much longer than adults of the same age without any responsibility for educating their grandchildren; in particular, a mortality risk of 37% was shown compared to other elderly peers who do not take care of their grandchildren.
In short, cross-generational interaction is good for everyone!