Grandparents who fight for visitation rights may end up as losers even if they win in the court of law. Parents who try to punish or coerce grandparents by withholding visitation defeat their own child. Whenever there is a conflict between parents and grandparents, the child in middle is likely to lose.
Some parents and grandparents get it wrong. It is not the parents’ or grandparents’ right over a child, it is a child’s right (and a need) to have the love and access to both sets of grandparents without fear, guilt or conflict of loyalty.
A child must not be put in the position of taking sides. A major conflict between parents and grandparents teaches a child wrong lessons about parent-child relationship of grownups. Such a situation might have future repercussions for the quality of relationships the child might have with his parents or his or her own children in future.
In this article, we won’t discuss such ominous issues as neglect, abuse, abandonment or the parents’ absence or inability to care for their children. Let’s also set aside such cases as both parents being incarcerated or so severely addicted that they can’t care of their own needs, let alone those of their children. In such cases, grandparents have no choice but to go to the court. They need to get legal custody over such matters as financial assistance, housing, daycare assistance or a child’s medical care.