Holding my tongue just long enough
A difficult situation with my granddaughter
My granddaughter’s iPod was an ongoing issue. Since she uses it all day and evening, it has affected her schoolwork greatly. Lately, since I am her guardian and she lives with me, I received a phone call from her English teacher who informed me that she had an assignment past due from the week before. The teacher also informed me that she gave her an extension, and my granddaughter still hadn’t done it.
When she got home from school that day I asked her to put her iPod on the kitchen table and go do her assignment. She refused to give up her iPod, and I asked her several more times to put it on the table until her assignment was complete.
She still refused, and since I didn’t want to get upset, I asked her if she would prefer to go and do her assignment at the library. She agreed to go to the library and she left, with her iPod of course.
I felt the only thing that I could do at this point was to change the Wi-Fi password in the house. When she had finished her assignment, she asked me for the password so that she could use her iPod. I informed her that since she didn’t put her iPod on the table when I asked her to, I would not give her the password for a week.
She decided to write me a letter and run away. My husband found the note on the table and brought it to my attention.
The letter basically said that since I used her iPod to blackmail her into doing things, she did not want to live with me anymore. She also said that she would not come back until things changed.
I felt my first answer had to be to embrace the situation, saying my “Yes” to Jesus in a very deep way. I had changed my life around completely to look after my granddaughter, and she just doesn’t see that.
I never thought that she would feel so angry that she would run away. I felt alone and lost at this point, because I wasn’t sure how to handle the situation.
Then I phoned her friends to let them know what happened and asked them to let me know if they heard from her.
I finally received word that she was staying with a friend.
Two days later, I received a text from the friend’s mother, informing me that she could not stay there anymore because her daughter was sick. So that night my granddaughter came home.
I really tried to listen to the Holy Spirit to understand how to react. I informed her calmly that since she left for two days, she would be grounded for two weeks. She went to her room and basically stayed there all weekend. I felt she needed space, so I left her alone.
On Monday when I arrived home, my granddaughter started talking to me, and she apologized for running away. She explained why she ran away and I explained to her how that made me feel. She was okay with the punishment that she received, and she realized that she could have handled her emotions in a different way.
I am so happy that God gave me the grace to hold my tongue until she was ready to talk to me.
D. B., Canada
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