More and more children are being taken from their parents in the commonwealth. According to new research from youth advocates in Kentucky, the number of children living with a relative has doubled in recent years. From 2013 to 2015 there were more than 50,000 children being raised by a relative in Kentucky, according to U.S Census Bureau. That number nearly doubled from 2016 to 2018, ultimately reaching 96,000 children. That’s nine percent of all children in the commonwealth. Kentucky’s statistics are close to two times the national average. Some officials are attributing Kentucky’s overwhelming numbers to the state’s opioid epidemic. They say these situations often force elderly or distant loved ones to pick up the pieces, and open their homes to children caught in the middle of addiction. Advocates for Kentucky youth say they expect this trend to continue upward, but while they’d rather see a decline in parent-child separation, family care is the next best thing.