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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Monday, April 7, 2014

Yes, 10 Million!

            There is an estimated 10 million grandparents having custodial responsibility for their grandchildren, according to the Foundation for Grandparenting, established by Dr. Arthur Kornhaber. The majority of grandparents is under 65 years of age and employed, with half the grandchildren under 6 years of age. This outrageously high number could actually be higher. Casual unreported custody and fear of losing senior housing and other benefits prevent many grandparents from exposing their circumstances.
            According to Pew Research Center, households composed of multiple generations are higher than they have been in half a century. Pew also found that 1 in 10 children is parented by his grandparent(s).
            The Brookdale Grandparent Caregiver Information Project at UC Berkeley Center on Aging said in the last 10 years, the number of children living with their grandparents has increased 50%.

            In 2000, the U.S. census reported that 4.5 million children were being raised by their grandparents. In 2005, the number rose to 6 million and jumped to 8 million in 2008.

For those 10 million, here is a a list of resources. I hope you get the support you so deserve. 

GAP (Grandparents as Parents)Group (www.grandparentsasparents.org/): a support group for grandparents  raising grandchildren.
National Kinship Alliance for Children (www.KinshipAllience.org): a nationwide network of grandparents, community members, and professionals working together to provide education and support, advocacy and thought leadership for children, grandparents, and kinship families.
Raising Your Grandchildren (RaisingYourGrandchildren.com) by Karen Best Wright: a website with ongoing information for grandparents and kinship families.
Grandparenting Blog (www.GrandparentingBlog.com) by Karen Best Wright: an interactive online support site.
The Addict's Mom G2G (grandparent to grandparent) Sharing Without Shame (https://www.facebook.com/groups/154033158118579/): a closed secure forum for grandparents raising grandchildren due to their child’s addiction.
AARP (American Association of Retired Persons) (www.AARP.com. Then type grandparents raising grandchildren): provides information and forum for grandparents.                                            

GRAND (www.grandmagazine.com) is an online magazine with information and articles for grandparents or relatives raising children.