Could this be the UK's youngest grandparents?
4th October 2021

UK’s ‘youngest grandparents’ who welcomed their first grandchild aged 33 and 35 say strangers ‘get the shock of their life’ when they learn she’s not their baby

  • Jenni Medlam, now 34, from Hull, and Richard, 35, have became grandparents
  • Daughter Charmaine, aged 16, gave birth to her baby Isla-May in June 
  • Couple love being young grandparents and said strangers think Isla’s their baby

Could this be the UK’s youngest grandparents? This couple welcomed their first grandchild when they were 33 and 35 years old.

Jenni Medlam, now 34, from Hull, and her husband Richard, 35, became grandparents for the first time in their early thirties after the arrival of baby Isla-May in June.

After giving birth to her first daughter at the age of 17, Jenni says that she was able to navigate and support her daughter, Charmaine, 16 when she told her that she was pregnant.

Jenni and Richard are loving being young grandparents and say that strangers often think that Isla is their baby.

Jenni Medlam, now 34, from Hull, and her husband Richard, 35, became grandparents for the first time in their early thirties after the arrival of baby Isla-May in June. Pictured: L-R Richard Medlam and wife Jenni Medlam

After giving birth to her first daughter at the age of 17, Jenni says that she was able to navigate and support her daughter, Charmaine, 16 (pictured, with daughter Isla-May) when she told her that she was pregnant

Jenni (pictured, with Isla-May), who runs her own cleaning business, thinks that teenage mums are stereotyped but having a baby doesn’t mean your life is over

Jenni added: ‘When we are out with Isla everyone just assumed that she is mine and Richard’s daughter.

‘When we explain to them that we are actually grandparents they get the absolute shock of their life.

‘Most people don’t believe us when we tell them.

‘But I can obviously understand why people would think we are her parents as we are still in our early thirties.

After becoming a teenage mum herself, Jenni (pictured right, with Richard, left), who also has two other daughters, didn’t have a support network to help her through it and she was very isolated

Jenni (pictured, holding granddaughter Isla-May) didn’t want her daughter to have the same experience as she did and vowed to support her

The  couple understand why people would think they are Isla-May’s parents because they are still in their early thirties. Pictured, Richard Medlam holding granddaughter Isla-May

‘When Charmaine first told us that she was pregnant and that we were going to become grandparents we were really shocked.

‘It has been a whirlwind but we love our new roles. I’m Nanna and Richard is G’pa.

‘Being young grandparents just means you have more time to love your grandchild and longer to cherish them. And we might even get great-grandchildren.’

After becoming a teenage mum herself, Jenni, who also has two other daughters, Chelsey, 13, and Scarlett, 10, didn’t have a support network to help her through it and she was very isolated.

Jenni didn’t want her daughter to have the same experience as she did and vowed to support her.

Jenni said that since falling pregnant, it has really made Charmaine (pictured, with baby bump) grow up – adding that Isla has been the making of her

Jenni and Richard’s daughter Charmaine with baby Isla-May. Charmaine fell pregnant aged 16

Jenni said that Charmaine is an incredible mum to her daughter, Isla-May (pictured) – adding that she thinks it has made the bond between Charmaine and her even stronger

She said: ‘I knew exactly how Charmaine would be feeling having to tell her mum she was pregnant.

‘But I told her it’s her body and her decision and I would support her either way.

‘And since falling pregnant it has really made Charmaine grow up, Isla has been the making of her.

‘She is an incredible mum and I think it has made the bond between Charmaine and me even stronger.

‘I think she has even more respect for me now as her mum. We all live together under one roof too which is lovely.

‘She’s still with the baby’s dad and they’ve been together almost two years, so Isla also has all of his lovely family. We look after Isla quite often to give Charmaine a break.

The couple said that they look after Isla quite often to give Charmaine a break. Pictured, Isla May with her granddad Richard

Jenni and Richard’s youngest daughter Scarlett (pictured) feeding her niece, Isla-May

Jenni and Richard are loving being young grandparents and say that strangers often think that Isla (pictured) is their baby

The couple said that when they explain to people they are actually grandparents they get the absolute ‘shock of their life.’ Pictured, Isla-May

‘I think it’s brought us all even closer. My other girls absolutely love having a baby in the house, they love having a niece.’

Jenni, who runs her own cleaning business, thinks that teenage mums are stereotyped but having a baby doesn’t mean your life is over.

She says that although she was a teen mum she was still able to work and bring up her daughter, and even start her own business.

Jenni added: ‘Charmaine has watched me go to work and do well for myself while bringing her up, so she knows it’s possible.

‘She wants to go to college and do beauty. There is a stereotype about young mums which I don’t think is fair.

‘You can still enjoy your life and achieve whatever you want even if you have a baby when you’re younger.

‘I am glad that I am able to show my daughter that everything can still work out for you.’ 

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