What is Parallel Parenting?

Parallel parenting is often the preferred method of parenting for those who have endured an especially tumultuous and high-conflict divorce. It allows parents to disengage from one another and have limited contact while raising their children, unlike traditional co-parenting. If you and your former spouse ended your marriage on such a difficult and sour note that it would turn co-parenting into an impossible challenge, parallel parenting may be right for you.

About Parallel Parenting

If you choose parallel parenting, you and your former spouse may decide to be responsible for different domains in your children’s lives. For example, one of you may take the reigns on medical decisions while the other may wish to focus on educational decisions. Additionally, while you may be raising your children separately, you will have some minimal interaction wherein you are able to coordinate major decisions about their upbringing.

Moreover, it is not uncommon for those engaging in parallel parenting to ultimately achieve a more cooperative parenting style once the dust begins to settle and trust is repaired. Therefore, another benefit of parallel parenting is its ability to provide a solid foundation for parents transitioning into cooperative parenting.

Here are some additional benefits of parallel parenting:

  • You can minimize interaction with your former spouse.
  • You will largely communicate via email or text to avoid situations in which you engage in a heated argument.
  • You will not experience any interference.
  • It resembles more of a business arrangement.
  • The minimal interactions with your former spouse may also reduce stress.

Parenting with a former spouse can be incredibly challenging, so if you are trying to reduce fights and tension in your family, you should consider opting for parallel parenting.

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