Hi everyone and welcome to Bristol Grandparents Support Group blog. Although we are Bristol based we have grandparents from all over the UK and beyond as members.

It is estimated that over one million children in the UK are denied contact with their grandparents due to family breakdown which may have been caused by divorce/separation, alcohol/drug dependency,domestic violence,bereavement or family feud.
Every child has the right to have contact with their grandparents
if they wish and unless proven unsafe for them to do so. To deny contact from a parent or grandparent has to become as socially unacceptable as drink driving.
I hope to keep you up to date with what is going on in BGSG and I shall continue to campaign for the rights of children to have a loving and meaningful relationship with both parents and their extended family. So please join in as good to hear your views, not just mine!
I also will support via Skype.
There is no membership fee to be part of Bristol Grandparents Support Group.
Esther Rantzen says, " To every grandparent, links of love can never be broken in our hearts."

Please contact during office hours.

Saturday 29 December 2012

UK scandal on family breakdown



24,000 visitors to the blog.

Just want to thank everyone who has visited Bristol Grandparents Support Group Blog as we have now had just over 24,000 hits!
I hope that the blog is giving the support it was intended to do and it  keeps people up to date with what we are all up to.
Many thanks again and I wish you all a very Happy and Hopeful New Year.

Thursday 27 December 2012

The hardest decision a parent can make, but its for the children.

We will probably never know the true figure of how many children are apart from one of their parents, as thousands of parents make the hardest decision in their lives to back off. Therefore these are hidden statistics because these families do not get recorded through court etc.
That is not because a father or mum doesn't love their children or that they don't care about them anymore, quite the reverse, but for them and their own unique circumstances, they are acting in their 'children's best interest.' It is the hardest decision any parent can make, there are no words to explain the utter grief this causes the parents.
They are not feckless, as the media will sometimes report, but parents who know that their children need to be able to get on with their life, they need to grow and develop as young people, they do not want them to be involved in continuing conflict between mum and dad, to be involved in court proceedings etc.
The same applies to grandparents, a member of the judiciary said to me recently, that this was a small problem as not many grandparents apply for contact orders. It does not mean that it is a small issue, it means that the majority of grandparents make the decision not to go to court, for the same reasons as parents not going to court.
As a society, what on earth are we doing, parents having to go to court to see our own children?

Tuesday 25 December 2012

Never, never give up.

A very Happy Christmas to everyone parted from a loved one again this year, you are in my thoughts.
If you have just a few moments and as yet not looked at this please do, a message of hope for us all.
As Aimee says in her message never give up, alienated children are aware and they will find you.

Saturday 22 December 2012

Message from Canadian Grandparents Rights Association.

I received this prayer this morning from Canadian Grandparents Rights Association, for our Tree of Hope:
Tree of Hope for all grandparents everywhere who are unable to see or be with their grandchildren, and continue to WAIT.
GOD of PEACE, Relax the tensions of my body...Still the anxieties of my mind... Calm the storms of my heart... Give me the courage to wait...Let peace flow in me, through me, from me... The deep deep peace of God. Amen.    Merry Christmas,  Warmest wishes,  Daphne Jennings  CGRA Canada


Thursday 20 December 2012

Grandparent Reunited, Never give up.

We all know that christmas is a particularly difficult time for grandparents and grandchildren denied contact.
I wanted to share with you a positive story.

"For years I had such a terrible time not being able to see them but thankfully the love and care we gave the Grandchildren in their early years sustained them. My oldest Grandchild will be ...  on boxing day and has regular contact with me ,he also assists  me with seeing the youngest one. Unfortunately contact with the middle child is still difficult, but two out of three is not bad.
Please put on your  tree of hope never give up because the Grandchildren miss you as much as you miss them and one day they will come back to you."


Tuesday 18 December 2012

Beautiful One I Adore........

I am a member of Gospel Generation Community Choir and we have just finished our Christmas concerts. One of the songs we sang is so appropriate for parents and grandparents unable to see their children and grandchildren, so this is for them all

Wednesday 12 December 2012

Tuesday 11 December 2012

Why Grandparents Need Support.

Thank you so much for the kind words you have been sending us. If I ever doubt whether we are giving the correct support, I will read these. 

“A very big "Thank you" to Jane Jackson and her husband for all that they do for Bristol Grandparents Support Group, not only for their kindness and hospitality but also for the part they are playing in changing attitudes to parenting and grand parenting - remarkable progress during last five years, thanks a million ! “

“Thank you so much for the support you give. Without your group, I think that many grandparents would go under.”

“Until yesterday I had never spoken to anyone who had suffered similar agonizing grief. Friends can be very kind but there is a limit to how much they can take of your grief before their eyes glaze over and the jolly invites begin to dwindle.
           Yesterday I met and heard people talk about their experiences and I was stunned by the fact that we all have the same feelings and the same grief no matter what event actually triggered off the alienation. I am not the only person who lives in a state of total bafflement, grief and feeling of helplessness.
            I am so glad that I was able to make contact with you after your appearance on 'Inside Out West' and that I came to the meeting yesterday. The support group allowed me to feel that I am not alone and that there are people who are working hard to increase public awareness of the damage such emotional cruelty does to so many people, not least the very grandchildren for whom we all grieve.
           Thank you for your devotion to this group. I will see you at the next meeting.”

“I had been left with a huge hole in my heart not being able to see my grandchildren, as I love them so much. Before I met Bristol Grandparents Support Group , on the surface I was functioning but inside, my emotions were raw. I felt ripped apart it didn’t leave me, I woke weeping everyday.
Meeting Jane, prevented my feelings getting any darker, listening to others in the same  situation. What was important was that the environment created by Jane as Marc, felt safe as the womb. Warm, friendly, knowing exactly what it feels like at every stage, caring, sensitive and managed in a professional way without formality. The group gives me a feeling of acceptance, because all the grandparents in this situation suffer the feeling of shame and failure as well as the pain, longing and regret. Everyone there knows all these feelings. Listening to others stories in a completely open, safe environment means that you learn to cope. I have heard some situations that are worse than mine which gives a sense of balance and hearing positive news when some grandparents are reunited gives me real hope, which in itself is healing.
After a meeting, I feel I can cope a bit better until the next meeting. When the next meeting is due, I really feel I am beginning to wear thin and feel more desperation and hopelessness and am screaming inside for help. I can’t see any service in the NHS that can compare with the well-being that is created by the group. Jane and Marc offer their own home, to anyone, and it costs nothing.”
Although the group consists of people from all walks of life, the atmosphere is always the same all through the seasons. Relaxed, calm, warm, healing, uplifting,lts ike coming home really. The feeling of support is really strong and powerful. It is empowering. Thank you.”


Saturday 8 December 2012

Messages are growing!

2012 Tree of Hope.

If you want me to post your message to your grandchildren and add it to the tree, email me.

Thanks Again.

Many thanks to everyone who attended the meeting yesterday, it was good to be able to welcome so many new people.
The Tree of Hope was well received and more messages were added. There was a small temporary technical hitch when the lights didn't work, but thanks to Marc all was well.
I have said this before but the support that you give to others ,in particular to new people is wonderful and without it the group would not work.
So a huge thank you to you all.
If any of you are local you might like to know that Gospel Generation Community Choir, of which I am a member, will be singing at St. Edyths Church in Sea Mills on Wednesday 12th at 7:30pm and you would be very welcome.
Thank you all again.

Monday 3 December 2012

Friday Meeting.

A reminder that we have the last meeting of 2012 this Friday, our Tree of Hope will be up for you to write/send your messages to be added.
Look forward to seeing you.