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Category: Aging, General / Topics: COVID-19 Demographics Family Parenting, Parents Relationships Statistics

Grandparenting by the Numbers

by Barbara Greenleaf

Posted: August 21, 2020

A picture of grandparenting in America today…

  • There are a record 70 million grandparents in the US today, 24% more than in 2001.
     
  • Of all adults over 30, more than 1 in 3 are grandparents.
     
  • Most grandparents have, on ;average, four to five grandchildren.
     
  • The average age of becoming a grandparent is 50 years for women and a few years older for men.
     
  • Grandparents spend an average of $2,562 annually on their grandchildren, which amounts to about $179 billion each year. They spend it on toys, clothing, and, later on, on school supplies and tuition. Before the pandemic many grandparents also took their grandchildren on vacation.
     
  • A third of grandparents say they spoil their grandchildren by buying them too much.
     
  • Grandparents want to give now. MetLife found that only 21% of grandparents specify gifts to grandchildren in their wills.
     
  • People are living longer, which means 90% of adolescents today will have two or more living grandparents. In 1900 less than 50% did. It is projected that a considerable number of grandparents will live long enough to become great-grandparents—and some will even become great-great-grandparents.
     
  • Only one-third of grandparents live within 25 miles of their grandchildren, and an overwhelming percentage of grandparents surveyed wished they could see the children more often.
     
  • Nine out of ten adult grandchildren feel their grandparents influenced their values and behaviors.


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Barbara is the author of eight books, including two of particular interest to seniors. She has given us permission to use material from her newsletter, "From the Desk of Barbara Greenleaf," to which you can subscribe on her website.

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Posted: August 21, 2020

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