Thousands of couples in Colorado are either contemplating divorce, in the process of divorce or dealing with the aftermath of a divorce. And in many cases, the aftermath between former partners is bitter and difficult to navigate.
The situation gets more complicated when children are involved. Child custody is frequently a tricky subject, and often times parents will have to navigate a shared custody arrangement. And when the scars from the divorce are especially traumatic, parallel parenting may be the best option for raising children.
What is parallel parenting?
In many divorces, it’s no longer healthy or viable for former partners to have much interaction. This poses a dilemma if they need to figure out a joint parenting setup for raising children from the marriage.
With more amicable divorces, parents can collaborate on a weekly or even daily basis to share custody of their children. But in many situations, that kind of collaboration isn’t possible. And if it’s not advisable for co-parents to interact frequently, parallel parenting can be the best path forward.
In a parallel parenting setup, a parenting agreement describes up each parent’s obligation. Each parent then adheres to their responsibilities with minimum contact with the other parent.
Both parents maintain the terms of the agreement in raising the children, oftentimes delegating certain specific responsibilities to one parent or the other. Neither parent needs to communicate much or at all with the other, minimizing the risk of conflict when the relationship between ex-spouses is no longer healthy or productive.
Benefits of parallel parenting
Parallel parenting can create a healthy environment for children even when the parents can’t interact in a productive way.
Instead of parental interactions fraught with tension and conflict, a parallel parenting arrangement lets each parent attend to their duties without interacting with their former spouse. Each party handles their share of the parenting duties within the confines of a mutually agreed-upon plan. Still, neither parent needs to risk the conflicts likely to happen due to frequent contact with the other parent.
Parallel parenting is a proven strategy by which adversarial divorcees can parent their children with a minimum of conflict. By creating a plan but minimizing contact between parties, parallel parenting helps parents raise children even when their own relationship has broken down irretrievably.