There are many reasons why grandparents may become responsible for raising their grandchildren. Most commonly, this happens when the parents of the grandchildren are unable to provide for them due to various challenges. These challenges may include parents’ addiction to drugs or alcohol, neglect, unemployment, physical or mental illness, incarceration, death or abandonment. As a result, grandparents step in to care for their grandkids.
More grandparents than ever before are raising their grandchildren in America. Over 6.1 million children under the age of 18 were reported as living with at least one grandparent in 2020. This count is up from the 5.8 million that the US Census Bureau reported in 2010. Moreover, approximately 37% of these children receive the majority of their care from their grandparents.
Practical challenges that custodial grandparents often face
Many grandparents who raise their grandchildren often experience high levels of stress. This is because they find themselves in a situation that they never expected—that of being parents once again. What’s more, they tend to distance themselves from their friends due to their newfound responsibility as caretakers.
Raising children can be very difficult, especially when the custodial grandparents are elderly. Some grandparents may find themselves facing financial issues due to the responsibility of caring for their grandchildren. Additionally, they may feel responsible for their adult children’s inability to be good parents and may face social isolation as a result of their caregiving duties.
The laws in Texas regarding grandparents’ rights can be complex, and there is no single solution that applies to every case. Each family situation is unique. Obtaining custody may prove to be difficult, therefore, it’s important to seek legal guidance if grandparents who want custody of their children’s children have questions about how to get started and how to make their situation workable.