Last week, we briefly touched on parallel parenting during our discussion on alternative forms of co-parenting. However, this method deserves more in-depth coverage, as it can be helpful for divorcees who are unable to co-parent successfully.
What is Parallel Parenting?
Parallel Parenting allows for divorced couples to co-parent while keeping their interaction with each other to a minimum. This method was developed for couples involved in high-conflict divorces. It is also useful for parents who can not interact without fighting.
During parallel parenting, parents are able to make decisions regarding their children without having to consult with their ex. For this to work, parents much agree on which aspects of their children’s upbringing they want to have control over. For instance, one parent will make all medical decisions, and the other will handle schooling and extracurricular activities.
Changing Communication Strategies
The main goal of parallel parenting is for children to be raised in a conflict free environment. In order to do this, parents must change the way they communicate with each other. To accomplish this, parents can:
- Only communicate via email, text message, or on co-parenting apps
- Keep conversations factual, and do not let emotion take control
- Never attend the same school or extra-curricular functions
- Do not spend time alone with the other parent
- Arrange a neutral location for custody exchanges
- Use a third-party to help with custody exchanges
These changes will not happen overnight. They take work. Parallel parenting is not easy, and there will be some trial and error. But, remember: this co-parenting method is good for children.
Pros and Cons to Parallel Parenting
The pros to parallel parenting far outweigh the cons. Since communication between parents is limited, there is less stress. Parallel parenting may even result in lower legal fees, as parents won’t get stuck in a loop of conflict and litigation. This method also helps to foster a stronger relationship between the child and each parent.
In some cases, parallel parenting can have a negative impact on children. Some kids can have difficulties moving between households, and may develop a sense of loyalty to one parent. Children can also feel hurt when they can’t have both parents at graduations, sporting events, and birthday parties.
Get the Help Need
In order for parallel parenting to work, both parents need be on the same page. They must realize that they cannot co-parent without a great deal of strife. Developing an effective co-parenting method is a marathon, and not a sprint. It requires the help of an experienced family law attorney.
Trust the team at Brian D. Perskin & Associates P.C. to customize a hand crafted divorce and co-parenting strategy for you. For more information, or to schedule a free consultation, contact us at 718-875-7584 today!