Family Relationships

Join our community of grandparents, family members and professionals by reading these stories and essays and submitting your own posts to: info@jewishgrandparentsnetwork.org

Click HERE for guidelines for posts on the Jewish Grandparents Network website.

  • All
  • Family Relationships
  • Featured
  • Jewish Life
  • My Legacy
  • Time Together

Staying Connected in this Time of Social Distance

The COVID-19 virus and the social restrictions in place to mitigate its spread have impacted us all.  A friend, who is fortunate to have all of her grandchildren living nearby pines to see them – knowing she can’t. Grandparents living in New York while their…

Grandma, Grandpa, Tell Me a Story: The Special Role of Grandparents as Storytellers in Family Life

In October 2018, David Raphael, CEO of the Jewish Grandparents Network, facilitated a conversation between Marshall Duke, Charles Howard Candler Professor of Psychology at Emory University, and Ron Wolfson, Fingerhut Professor of Education at American Jewish University. These two master educators explored the role of…

Staying Connected – Letter by Letter

Fifteen years ago, our first granddaughter was born in San Francisco. Living in Baltimore, Maryland, my husband and I wondered how we would ever establish a warm and caring relationship from so far away. Like many of today’s grandparents, our family experiences were often different. …

Making Room For Each Other In Interfaith Families

“Grandpa, will you get your ice cream in a dish or in a cone?” my then-seven-year-old granddaughter, Amina, asked.  We were walking to the ice cream parlor in the little town in Connecticut where her mother was the rabbi of the local temple. I was…

The Torah of Bubbiehood

We all know that bubbies are brilliant, but this bubbie has universal wisdom that could change your approach to everyday life.  Whether or not you are a bubbie, have a bubbie, met a bubbie or adopted a bubbie, Jane’s reflections will impact your perspective –…

Facing Infertility as a Grandparent

“Who among us does not have a story of a friend, daughter, daughter-in-law, son, son-in-law, or relative, who has found themselves trapped inside the world of infertility?  They blame themselves and become subsumed in the worlds of miscarriage, IVF, hormones, frozen embryos, injections, and endless…

Becoming Jew-ish Grandparents

My wife, Jacquie, and I are not Jewish. We are Christians. In fact, I was a Christian pastor for forty-five years and Jacquie and I continue to be active church members. But, like you, we have Jewish grandchildren. Jacquie and I can identify with Lee…

Grandparenting in the Age of Chrismukkah: 2019

For an increasing number of Jewish grandparents, the traditional Chanukah they celebrated with their children won’t be the Chanukah their grandchildren celebrate next week.  Instead, many grandchildren will be celebrating Chrismukkah, a pop-culture term for holiday celebrations that include traditions from both Chanukah and Christmas….

Blessings of Grandparenting

When I was ten years old, our family saw Fiddler on the Roof on Broadway.  This was a big deal.  My grandparents, who NEVER went to the theater, came.  As immigrants from Eastern Europe, Fiddler felt like their story. The first act climaxes with a…

Grandparenting Today: Talkin’ About Our Generation

As a bonafide Baby Boomer, I like to think of myself as someone who, along with my contemporaries, is reinventing the art of grandparenting. Oh sure, my cohorts and I will bake the Cookie Monster Oreos, read Dr. Seuss and celebrate the birthdays with trips…

A Hike Between the Seams

In the seam of time at the end of the summer,  I set off on a hike with my grandson Simon. At nine years, he is a sturdy and interesting child. These days that we spend without his parents are precious to us both, time…

These Are Not the Families We Imagined, But…  

When I married in 1974 and started to have our children (1,2,3,4) we went down a pretty conventional and predictable  Jewish path … one pidyon ha-ben (the ceremony welcoming a first-born son) was followed by four bar and bat mitzvahs later. And then in birth order, our children began…

How Do We Keep Our Families Together?

Despite its tremendous joys, being a Jewish grandparent isn’t easy. Our kids are too religious or not religious enough. In other words, they don’t do it our way. This also applies to their thoughts about Israel: they may love it more than we do or…

Musings from a Museum Savta

“All I really need to know I learned in Kindergarten,” continues to be a book that guides me as a grandparent. Its lessons are enduring. Don’t take things that aren’t yours. … Don’t hit people. … Hold hands, stick together. … Share. … Live a…