Ask Dr. Gramma Karen: My Step-Grandchildren Lack Discipline

I am a step-grandma. My concern is about my twin 5-year-old grandsons, who are at times delightful, at other times holy terrors (times two!). I’ve had a conversation with their mother, who tells me she and her husband use time-outs and then taking away toys for punishment. However, these children hit, do reckless things (like […]

Grandparents Worry about Depression and Anxiety in College Students

Dear Dr. Gramma Karen, My husband and I are grandparents with grandchildren in college. Although they appear to be handling their experiences fine, we are becoming alarmed by the many articles in the media about the increase in anxiety, depression, and suicides among college students. One of our friends who has similar concerns about this […]

Ask Dr. Gramma Karen: Grandparents’ Favoritism Is Upsetting Young Parents

My husband and I have two sons, a four-year old, and a two-and-a-half-year old. We are dealing with some grandparent favoritism issues. My husband’s parents will drop everything for their daughter’s family (who has two kids, three and six), but my family and kids always seem to come second. For example, after my husband and […]

How to Tell my Children Their Grandmother has Cancer

My mother-in-law, with whom my seven-year-old daughter and eight-year-old son are close, has just been diagnosed with lymphoma cancer. What advice do you have for what we tell them about their grandmother’s health situation? I want you to know how very sorry I am about your mother-in-law’s diagnosis. As a young parent, statistics indicate that […]