• “I highly recommend this book for pediatricians, child psychiatrists, psychologists and other therapists who do this work and see these families. I also recommend this book for the child welfare professionals who are legally responsible for the safety and structure these children require. And I especially recommend it for other grandparents who are also on this remarkable journey, for they are the true champions of these remarkable children.”

    Andrew Bremness, Clinical Professor,

    Department of Psychiatry,

    Faculty of Medicine,

    University of Alberta

  • “This book shares heartfelt stories of grandparent caregivers providing care despite seemingly insurmountable odds. Grandparent caregivers will find the comfort of a support group in these pages.”

    Esme Fuller-Thomson, Ph.D., Sandra Rotman Chair in Social Work, Factor-Iwentash

    Faculty of Social Work,

    University of Toronto

  • “Stories of love battered and bruised across a generation gap . . . Searingly honest.”

    Myrna Kostash,

    author of 'All of Baba’s Children',

    'Long Way from Home',

    and many others.

Prairie Books Now

Edmonton author Gary Garrison identifies with his new book because it echoes his own life circumstance. From an inside vantage point, Garrison studies the “skipped-generation” family phenomenon, which is grandparents raising their children’s children because the parents are unable to due to addiction, mental or physical illness, poverty, death, or imprisonment. With two active grandkids […]

The Globe and Mail- Op Ed

The challenge for all skipped-generation grandparents CONTRIBUTED TO THE GLOBE AND MAIL PUBLISHED SEPTEMBER 28, 2018 UPDATED SEPTEMBER 28, 2018 Gary Garrison is the author of Raising Grandkids: Inside Skipped-Generation Families, which was recently published by University of Regina Press. When dealing with animals, wild or otherwise, the first rule is never to get between […]

Article in The Walrus

A fair-haired girl in a pink sundress asks seven-year-old Jack, “Where do you go to school?” Jack and I are waiting in the checkout line at a Safeway in central Edmonton; the girl, accompanied by a woman about my age—in her sixties I’d say—is behind us. Jack blushes through his olive-brown cheeks and turns toward […]

About the Author

Gary Garrison has three children and six grandchildren, earned a Ph.D. in English from the University of Alberta, was Editor of Alberta Hansard, coordinated a prison visitation program at Edmonton Institution (The Max), and is an active member of Edmonton’s literary community as a poet and nonfiction writer.
His previous nonfiction book, Human on the Inside: Unlocking the Truth about Canadian Prisons, was published in 2015.

Do The Math

You’re too old. Do the math, they said.

Don’t raise those grandkids. Travel. See the world.

Live your one life to the full before you’re dead.

Numbers are more than abstractions in your head.

This boy is 5. Three years old this girl.

You’re too old. Do the math, they said.

Her parents left her scared and underfed.

They left the boy without a toy to twirl.

Live your one life to the full before you’re dead.

You’re 62. Get to know each other in bed.

Wear each other around your necks like pearls.

You’re too old. Do the math, they said.

You’ve raised your own children, your hearts bled

for them. These two aren’t yours. Go dance full swirl.

Live your one life to the full before you’re dead.

Their shining eyes, their rosy cheeks. That’s our bread.

Each day an effervescent playground whirl.

“You’re too old. Do the math.” We did.

Two plus two is the opposite of dead.