Saturday, April 19, 2008

Grandparents Raising Grandkids

From the Muncie Star Press comes a sobering reminder of the problems of grandparent's having custody of their grandchildren: Raising grandchildren can be challenging.

Nearly 50,000 grandparents in Indiana, like Debra L. Tuttle, are raising their grandchildren and many need the support of others, according to Sharon Pierce, president and CEO of The Villages.

'There's always a challenge relating to children that could be two generations away,' said Pierce, whose organization oversees Prevent Child Abuse Indiana"

Tuttle, 54, was preliminarily charged this week with child neglect for not seeking medical treatment for her grandson, Devon Grow, 2, after he fell into a bath tub of scalding water and disinfectant. On Tuesday, the toddler remained in serious condition at Riley Hospital, Indianapolis, being treated for infected burns covering his legs, feet and hands. Tuttle was jailed Monday and awaits arraignment on formal charges.

Tuttle had regular visitation with Devon, and also had legal custody of two other grandchildren after the death of her son, Robert, in July of 2007, according to court records.

Indiana allows for third party custody when the parents cannot adequately care for their children. Usually that third party custody translates to grandparent custody. Grandparents need to be aware of the difficulties of raising their grandchildren and most have this awareness. They also need to be ready to ask for assistance from others.

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