1/23/2023 | By Amy Dickinson

While these parents want grandkids, they have never discussed the topic with their grown children. Now, they wonder how to discuss it without seeming to pressure them. See what Amy Dickinson advises in this edition of “Ask Amy.”

Dear Amy:

My wife and I, married for more than 48 years, have raised two wonderful children. Our son, 39 and unmarried, is unlikely to ever have children. Our married daughter is 34. Her and her husband’s intentions are unknown to us.

We struggled to get pregnant in the 1980s, and one thing we both regret is not sharing that struggle with our parents.

They did not press us about when they might become grandparents, but as we enter our early 70s, we better understand how it might have been kinder to inform them that we very much wanted to have children and were, shall we say, definitely working on it.

We have not asked our children their plans, and we don’t intend to.

I’m not really asking what to do here. This is more for those young people who might know what their intentions are but haven’t told their parents. Either way, I imagine most parents would be like us, loving their kids no matter what the decision.

It would just be nice to know.

-Been There

Dear Been There: 

Thank you for sharing your perspective about this.

Your family maintains strict and discrete boundaries around this deeply personal issue.

I respect your choice, but wonder if you have shared any details about your own experience with infertility – at least with your daughter.

You might be able to do so without it seeming like a, “So, when are we going to get some grandchildren” prompt. Letting her know about your experience might make a difference regarding her own health care.

Parents Want Grandkids But Not to Pressure Their Kids

Try: “We struggled with fertility issues before you and your brother were born. We never discussed it with our folks, but we wish we had. We’re not bugging you for grandkids – but if you want to discuss anything with us, we hope you’ll feel comfortable enough to bring it up.”

In the tradition of the great personal advice columnists, Chicago Tribune’s Amy Dickinson is a plainspoken straight shooter who relates to readers of all ages. She answers personal questions by addressing issues from both her head and her heart. A solid reporter, Dickinson researches her topics to provide readers with informed opinions and answers – ranging from when parents want grandkids to scams on the elderly to grandparenting to giving rides. Ask Amy, P.O. Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068.

© 2022 by Amy Dickinson

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