Struggling to Balance Roles as a Single Parent and Grandparent: A Grandmother’s Story

Being a single parent is tough, and having support can make a world of difference. Recently, a 56-year-old grandmother shared her story on the “AITA” subreddit about struggling to balance her role as a mother and grandmother.

The Challenge of Being a Single Parent and Grandparent

Despite her best efforts to be there for her daughter and grandson, she faced a difficult decision when asked to babysit instead of going on a long-awaited vacation. Her daughter became a single mother when her child’s father abandoned them. The grandmother stepped in to support her daughter and grandchild, even while juggling work and personal commitments.

A Selfless Act of Support

To manage finances, the grandmother covered household expenses while her daughter took care of essentials like diapers and daycare. This arrangement allowed the grandmother to save for her own future. However, her daughter disagreed with this arrangement and believed that her mother should babysit more often.

The Struggle for Balance

The situation escalated when the grandmother decided to take a month off from work to rest. But instead of enjoying her time off, her daughter saw it as an opportunity for her mother to take on babysitting duties. The grandmother declined, stating that she needed this vacation to rest and taking care of a child for long hours was not part of her plans.

Even though the grandmother proposed a compromise of helping with morning babysitting, her daughter insisted on extending the babysitting period. The grandmother understood her daughter’s struggles as a single parent but stood firm in prioritizing her own well-being during her vacation.

Supporting a Grandparent’s Autonomy

People in the online community supported the grandmother’s decision, noting that she had the right to say no. They believed that grandparents should be able to enjoy their grandchildren without being responsible for raising them. Being a single parent is challenging, but the grandmother’s decision to take a break should be respected.

A Desire for Personal Freedom

Commenters shared their own experiences, with one person mentioning their son who wanted them to care for their grandchild every day. They expressed their desire to enjoy their lives without the burden of childcare, having already raised their own children and other grandchildren.

Balancing Support and Self-Care

In the end, it’s important for everyone involved to find a balance between supporting and caring for each other while also taking care of their own needs. Grandparents should be able to enjoy their role without feeling overwhelmed, and parents should have access to reliable childcare options when needed.


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