By Karen Best Wright, B.S., M.A., CHES
Holistic Health & Wellness Educator
According to my grandparents survey linked from my main grandparents website about 1/2 of grandparents raising grandchildren are in the 50's, about 1/4 in their 40's, and about 1/4 are in their 60's, and 2.1% are 70+.
A few years ago I met a grandmother from Arizona, 81 years old, raising a great-grandson who was just graduating from high school. She was so positive about her chance to raise this terrific kid. I was amazed. Recently I met a couple in Florida celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary raising an elementary age child. That's right, they weren't 60 years old. They had been married for 60 years and had a little girl to raise. Isn't that impressive? The devotion and dedication of these grandparents touches me emotionally.
Grandparents 60 and over sometimes can receive assistance through their Area Agency on Aging. It is definitely a good phone call to make to see if there are helpful services in your area if you are 60+. However, with so many grandparents raising grandchildren who are in their 40's and 50's there are still many needs far from being met. One benefit younger grandparents might have is they are likely to be healthier, but that is not always the case either.
My hat is off to all grandparents raising grandchildren but especially to grandparents raising great-grandchildren. I am impressed.
A grandmother in love with her grandchildren