Thinking about Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

Although it is never really the ideal situation, many grandparents find the need to raise their grandchildren. Twenty-eight percent of the kids who are being raised by their grandparents were victims of abuse, abandonment, or neglect from their parents. Whatever the case may be, more grandparents than ever before are raising their grandchildren.

Across the United States, almost 15 million children live in homes with their grandparents. For every child that is in the foster system right now, there are about 25 kids being raised by their grandparents and/or an extended family support system.  Fewer than half of the kids living in our country today are in a “traditional” family.  Today 21% of grandparents who are taking care of their grandkids are living below the poverty line.  The one advantage they may have is that most grandparents own their home, which means there is a stable environment for children to be raised.

Unfortunately, the number of children being raised by their grandparents is steadily rising.  And we all know that such a living relationship can be stressful at the very least. Grandparents often have to handle the false promises that parents make to their children as they attempt to stay within the child’s life, leading to future behavioral difficulties.  Fortunately, this situation is more preferable, in many instances, than living with their birth parents or putting the children into foster care.

Why am I thinking and writing about this?  Perhaps because I know grandparents in this situation and care about them, but I would also like to raise awareness of these type situations.  Thank God for grandparents who are more than willing to take their grandbabies into their home and give them the love and guidance they need.

What does all this make me think about?  How about the need for parents to dedicate themselves to raising their children together in the Lord?  How about not letting the world tell us how to raise children or what a family should look like?  How about parents taking a lesson from these grandparents and doing whatever it takes to keep their families together and healthy?  How about us Northsiders rallying around our parents and grandparents with love, encouragement and wisdom to help keep them strong?  Whatever it takes … let’s do it with all our might!