Raising Grandkids: Inside Skipped-Generation Families
Author: Gary Garrison
Reviewer: Jeanette Perkins aka Beeba
The number of grandparents raising grandkids is growing as drugs, alcohol or other factors prevent the parents from taking care of their children. Raising Grandkids focuses on “skipped generation” families or grandparent-headed households in Canada.
Collecting together stories from grandparents and reflecting on his own experience as an older caregiver to his stepchildren, Gary Garrison paints a compassionate yet compelling picture of the joys, fears, and passions that drive some grandparents to put their later lives on hold to raise their children’s children. One of the chapters focuses on Betty Cornelius, founder of the support and advocacy group Cangrands. “I call it the club that none of us wanted to join. Our ‘freedom 55’ plan is now the ‘work until we die’ plan,” says Cornelius.
Grandparents raising grandkids have unique challenges.
They often have to battle their own children for custody, deal with pressures from caseworkers, and negotiate their own health and financial issues. Some must address the guilt and resentment they may feel towards the missing son or daughter who conceived the children in their care. Many grandparents, as well, find themselves overlooked or under resourced by social services, and others may struggle with additional factors such as racism. No matter their background, grandparents looking for comfort, guidance, and wisdom will find meaning in this book.
About the author:
Gary Garrison has three children and six grandchildren, earned a Ph.D. in English from the University of Alberta, was Editor of Alberta Hansard, coordinated a prison visitation program at Edmonton Institution (The Max), and is an active member of Edmonton’s literary community as a poet and nonfiction writer. His previous nonfiction book, Human on the Inside: Unlocking the Truth about Canadian Prisons, was published in 2015.
About the reviewer:
Jeanette Perkins is the grandmother of two adorable grandsons. She lives in beautiful St Pete Beach, FL. Jeanette is a product reviewer for GRAND and is looking forward to reviewing lots of new and useful products for all us grandparents.
If you have a product for boomer grandparents and or their grandkids, tell us all about it in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.