Questions to ask yourself

Behavior

• Is my grandchild's behavior due to the family situation or is it similar to that of most children this age? Could my reaction to the behavior be making the problem worse?

• Do I know my grandchild well enough to know how she usually responds? How does my grandchild respond to stress? How does he respond to something new? How does he respond to something fun?

• Do I take time to understand why my grandchild is acting the way she is? Is she tired? Sad? Hungry? Frustrated? Do I help her name and understand her feelings?

Stability and routines

• What is my schedule on a typical day? Is it pretty much the same from day to day or does it vary considerably? Does my grandchild know what to expect each day?

• How does my grandchild respond to changes in routine? Is my grandchild flexible or does he need a routine for comfort?

• Is this a temporary or permanent change for the child? If temporary, how long will it last?

Communication

• Throughout the day, do I take time to listen to what my grandchild is saying (and not saying)? What do his behaviors tell me?

• Do I encourage my grandchild to talk about her feelings? Does she need help learning how to put her feelings into words?

• Do I need help sorting out my own feelings and expressing them appropriately?

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