Becoming a Grandmother: A Life Transition

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Simon and Schuster, Dec 5, 1997 - Family & Relationships - 256 pages
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Previous books on grandmothering have been either scholarly studies or jokey books intended to humor grannies along. Now comes a book that offers grandmothers what they really want - an accessible guide through a major life passage, based on extensive research among grandmothers in the United States, Britain, Australia, and many other countries. In twelve accessible but intelligent chapters we learn about: Images of the Grandmother, Our Own Grandmothers, Grandmothers in Traditional Cultures and in Myths, The Eager-to-Be Grandmother, The Reluctant Grandmother, Birth, Granny Trouble, Feeling Close - Mothers, Daughters and Daughters-in-Law, A Learning Experience, and Grandmother Skills. For many women, becoming a grandmother is a bigger milestone than reaching menopause, and often, these two events occur at the same time, bringing with them many changes. Sheila Kitzinger addresses her subject with great sensitivity and honesty, recognizing that accompanying the intense pleasure of becoming a grandmother are deep anxieties as well. Becoming a Grandmother explores the ways in which grandmothers can find satisfaction in their new roles, achieve a better understanding of family tensions, communicate more effectively with their daughters and daughters-in-law, provide emotional support, and, most importantly, enjoy their grandchildren.
 

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What is it like to become a grandmother? In every culture, a woman's self-identity changes when her daughter or daughter-in-law births a child. In Becoming a Grandmother, Sheila Kitzinger, well-known ... Read full review

Contents

Ourselves as Grandmothers
7
Turning Into a Grandmother
15
Images off the Grandmother
24
How Grandmothers Really Are
36
Grandmothers with Zest SeeingYourselfwith Fresh Eyes
60
Other Grandmothers
74
in Myth and the Grandmother Goddess
85
The Reluctant Grandmother
104
Birth
120
Granny Trouble
144
Feeling CloseMothers Daughters
161
KinKeeping Positive Relationships Happy Families
174
Notes
237
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About the author (1997)

Sheila Kitzinger was born Sheila Helena Elizabeth Webster in Taunton, Somerset, England on March 29, 1929. She studied social anthropology at Ruskin and St Hugh's Colleges at Oxford. As an anthropologist, she encouraged women around the world to reclaim from doctors their natural prerogative over pregnancy and childbirth. Her first book, The Experience of Childbirth, was published in 1962. Her other works included Birth over Thirty, Woman's Experience of Sex, Breastfeeding Your Baby, Ourselves as Mothers, Becoming a Grandmother, Birth Crisis, Birth and Sex: The Power and the Passion, and A Passion for Birth. She created a Birth Crisis Network in Britain, which offers reflective listening for women traumatized after delivery. She died after a short illness on April 11, 2015 at the age of 86.

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