Governor Henry McMaster has issued a proclamation designating this Friday, June 14, as Grandparent Alienation Awareness Day in South Carolina. GRAND USA SC, an advocacy group committed to children, their alienated grandparents and the survival of extended families, sponsored the proclamation.
Fletcher Spigner III, a Columbia native and alienated grandfather now living in Lexington who represents GRAND USA, says “the proclamation’s name speaks for itself.” He is also the SC Strategic Alliance Coordinator for Alienated Grandparents Anonymous Inc., an international organization that raises awareness of the growing problem of alienation of grandparents.
“In today’s world, it’s a sinister epidemic and therefore not talked about very much,” Mr. Spigner states. “Many alienated grandparents quietly live in pain, essentially by themselves, while so many around us remain uninvolved. It is more painful than you can imagine.”
“There are tens of thousands of alienated grandparents in Columbia and throughout South Carolina”, Mr. Spigner states. “Most of them have been cut off from their grandchildren because of relatively minor grievances, but too many have been suddenly cut off for completely unknown reasons, sometimes for long periods of time.”
“Whatever the reasons are, they are seldom sufficient to warrant disturbing the developing bond between grandchildren and their grandparents,” said Spigner. “That bond begins at a grandchild’s birth for grandparents and grows stronger for both as time passes.”
The Governor’s proclamation states “strong family relationships constitute the foundation of our communities’ and “mental health professionals agree that the negative effects of alienation can follow a child into adulthood with tragic circumstances.”
“Grandparent alienation is grandchild alienation,” Spigner said.
The first support group for grandparents is being planned this summer in Columbia, Northeast Columbia or Irmo with others to follow. Widespread advocacy efforts by AGA and GRAND USA are being planned. Spigner’s book Alienated will be available to alienated grandparents, clergy, physicians, mental health professionals, and public schools in the near future.
For more information, contact Mr. Spigner at [email protected]