We can fool ourselves into thinking that we have our lives well planned out. It was that way for me, being a product of the 1950/60’s: I’d go to college, meet my prince, get married, have children and live happily ever after. As much as I thought I knew what to expect, my life was riddled with surprises. But the last was the most unexpected, compelling me to write Fifth Child, a non-fiction book about the anguish and consequences of a drug-addicted child, which resulted in parenting her child almost since birth.

My husband and I are cast into a shockingly large demographic. Grandparents raising grandchildren is a growing phenomenon in our country because of our shifting economy, unmarried teen mothers, alcohol abuse and illegal drug use. Close to 10 million grandparents comprise the club. We had already raised four children. Jaime was our third child, and Brady is her son, who began calling us Mommy and Daddy when he was three. Readers may be amazed to find calamity overcoming a so seemingly traditional family. But as events and family history unfold, disturbing pitfalls and unfortunate genetic vulnerability reveal fault lines that can sabotage people from any walk of life.

"The Addict's Mom Sharing Without Shame" Video is so important whether addiction has touched your life or not. It's powerful. Please click on the link below to watch the video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHNZbbePiKg

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Friday, January 20, 2012

EXCERPT- "We Project Great Things For Our Children"

            Neither Stu nor I could believe that we were even in this position; we didn’t smoke, drink or use drugs. This was far from our comfort zone. We spent countless hours re-hashing her life, what we should have done better, what we did wrong and what we should have done differently, all the while blaming each other. This was our child, so it had to be our fault!  
            What happened to our baby? We named her after my beloved grandmother so that unconditional love would be part of her being. She was swaddled in a pink blanket made by Stu’s mother, to add sweetness and gentility to her life and my mother gave her a huge Raggedy Ann doll for protection. Jaime was the sweetest and most Bohemian of our children. She strived for originality even in elementary school. Her fashion whims would have even impressed her idol, Cindy Lauper, as would her musical talent. We had such hope for our child. At age thirteen, at her Bat Mitzvah, Stu and I offered her advice: “Consider all that life offers and choose wisely so that you can strengthen the values which define you as an individual. We offer all our love, support and guidance to help you complete the precious collection of ideas and feelings which make you the unique and wonderful person you are.” I missed those days of innocence and hoped she would choose wisely.

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