Co-Parenting: How to be Great Parents Without Being Together

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When you say ‘happy family,’ most people will likely picture a complete family in their mind. But this is not necessarily true. Even though the mom and dad are no longer together, they can still be good parents to their children through the art of co-parenting.

Every year, millions of couples all around the world get divorced or separated. Divorce is a long and expensive process, but it nullifies the marriage responsibilities of both parties.

This process can permanently change the parents’ personal relationship with one another, but how can it affect their kids? How can they make co-parenting work?

Photo: Pexels/Vera Arsic

Is Divorce or Separation Bad for Your Kids?

Most people think that the children will be facing the heavier burden of the divorce’s aftermath.

However, this is proven to be false as experts claimed that a toxic relationship will more likely damage the children than the divorce itself.

Most of the time, parents try to stay together despite having a toxic relationship for the sake of their kids, but what they don’t know is they’re just subjecting their own children to a stressful environment. Expert Susan Pease says:

“Divorce does not harm kids, per se. There’s ample research out there that divorce isn’t the worst thing that parents can do to kids: Fighting terribly and subjecting them to your vitriolic hatred toward each other is the worst; staying married in such a state is actually worse for kids than if you actually got divorced.”

Staying together under one roof is not always the best option because most couples can’t hold back the urge to fight in front of their children. It can be really stressful for the children to be exposed to a violent environment, that’s why divorce can be seen as a better option.

However, it’s undeniable that a two-parent household has some significant advantages over the two separate parents. So the question is, how can you take care of your kids without being together as a couple?

Photo: Pexels/Agung Wiguna

How to Make Co-Parenting Work

Experts recommend a completely viable but little-less known alternative for divorce which could not only benefit both the couples but their children as well.

This method is called ‘parenting marriage‘ and many couples are turning to this option because it is an efficient way to stay together for the kids without getting stuck with their previous toxic relationship.

This process involves a change in a person’s “job description” or as Susan Gadoua puts it, “as spouses, you basically change your job description from a lover, best friend, and co-parent to co-parent first and foremost, friends maybe, and lovers no longer.”

Parenting marriage seems like a good option only if both parents can keep a civilized relationship with one another. After all, the aim of this purpose-driven method is to focus on raising happy and healthy children.

Parents who would choose parenting marriage or co-parenting can be free to have intimate relationships with other people, so long as it does not affect their set up.

The only challenge would be to adjust well between your responsibility as a parent and autonomy as an independent individual, but even those can be resolved as times passes by.

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