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, October 25, 2013

Unusual Places Make Me feel Grateful

There is nothing more gratifying then retuning to my former co-dependent group to share my experience, strength and hope. But even better were the former co-dependent friends who showed up for the meeting -a mini reunion of sorts. The last time we were together was about five years ago. Those Friday night meetings were/are so important for family recovery and helped us immeasurably when our kids were in the throws of addiction. Now, because of my book, this world has opened up again and I get to connect with new people who need to know they're not alone in their battle with their own kids', spouses or significant others' addiction. I am blessed to be in their company.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


5.0 out of 5 stars
A poignant story of parental love surmounting the devastation wrought by drugs ., October 20, 2013

A riveting read, Fifth Child takes you through the indescribable tragedy of a family held captive by the heart wrenching manipulations of a drug addicted daughter and the resulting need to protect and raise her baby boy. Anyone who knows the insidious decay caused by drug addiction will be moved and strengthened by this blatantly honest and unvarnished true story. Told in a conversational style, as if being shared over a cup of coffee, Lynne Gassel bares her soul, so that others in a similar situation will most certainly be guided to recognize signs and to face realities that Lynne and her husband Stu, in their initial naivety were unable to see. You will laugh and you will cry; you will be educated; ultimately you will learn once again, that love, especially the love of warrior parents, does indeed conquer ALL.

Monday, October 21, 2013

!!! Calling All Grandparents Raising Grandchildren !!!

If you're also raising your child's child; I have a website just for us! It's private so only we see what we write. It's an off-shoot of "The Addict's Mom-Sharing Without Shame" called G2G. Every day, it seems there are new members and the numbers are quickly increasing. We all seem to share the same story. Like The Addict's Mom, this new site is just as supportive and welcoming AND it is geared specifically for us grandmother mothers (and grandfather fathers)!