Grandparents as Parents: Fifth Child



Fifth Child: grandparents as parents

Fifth Child: grandparents as parents

Grandparents as Parents:
Fifth Child:
The Turbulent Path That Led to Parenting Our Child’s Child

~By Lynne R. Gassel

“God made a good decision.” The true story of a mother’s love for her family, her sacrifice and selfless journey into parenting—again.

~Review by Judy Herzanek, Changing Lives Foundation

 Parents don’t plan on their children becoming meth addicts. They don’t plan on burying their children and parents don’t plan on raising their children’s children. Lynne and her husband Stu have experienced the intense heartache and ultimately, the satisfaction of such life experiences.

Lynne sets the stage for telling her personal journey as she recounts her all-American childhood experiences, whirlwind romance and her anticipation of a traditional Baby-Boomer family life.

She then, draws the reader into the midst of her ever-darkening world as addiction insidiously creeps into her family and seizes control.

“It’s not what you do, it’s what you try to do.”

For those who may be experiencing similar circumstances, this book helps to assure the reader that they are not alone. It also provides some very important truths and helpful resources regarding co-dependency, dealing with an addicted child and the ever-increasing situation of grandparents raising grandkids.

Throughout the book Lynne intersperses short and wise snippets from her grandson Brady, who proves to be wise beyond his years. One “gem” happens after Lynne attempts to join other parents in a martial arts class to complete a strenuous workout. Brady hugs Lynne and cupps his hands around her beet-red face and states, “It’s not what you do, it’s what you try to do.”

Lynne sums up her arduous but fulfilling journey at the end of the book by leaving us with one last heartfelt statement from her grandson Brady (as he questions Lynne as to her role in his life).

 “So,” he said with his hands on his hips, “what are you, my stepmother or what?”

Obviously, his friends must have been throwing terms out at him trying to figure out who I was.

Now it’s time for some straight shooting. Maybe he’ll get it this time around.

“No, Brady, stepmothers aren’t related to their children; and you have my blood running through your veins.”

He looked confused.

“Brady, I’m your grandmother; and because I take care of you, I’m also your mom—you have two in one!”

He got a very serious look on his face.

“So, let me get this straight,” he self-assuredly re-capped. “In real life, if Jaime were still my mom, you’d be my grandmother. But because she took drugs and couldn’t do it, you’re my mom?”

“Yes,” I replied.

Brady stood there, very pensive. Then a smile of recognition came on his face.

“God made a good decision . . . He thought you’d be good parents for me. Jaime couldn’t be good at it because she used drugs, so he gave me to you.”

I enthusiastically recommend reading this book for anyone touched by addiction.
It is full of redemptive hope and encouragement.


Lynne Gassel

Lynne Gassel


Lynne R. Gassel, a first-time author, is also an artist and singer/performer. She lives in Irvine, California with her husband and fifth child, Brady.

Lynne is the Administrator for the closed Facebook group: The Addict’s Mom g2g” (Grandparent to Grandparent). This group is specifically for Grandparents raising Grandchildren—to provide its members with confidential support and resources.



-Overcoming difficulties living with an addict
-Expectations for our loved one’s recovery vs. reality

Get the help you need today.

Why Don't They Just Quit? What families and friends need to know about addiction and recovery.
“Why Don’t They Just Quit? What families and friends need to know about addiction and recovery”

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