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Signs of Healthy Co-Parenting

Published: Nov. 18, 2021 at 11:44 AM CST
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - Dads’ Resource Center’s executive director, Jeff Steiner explains that there are 6 signs of healthy co-parenting. With roughly 23% of children in the country living in a home with just one of their parents, this percentage continues to increase over the years. While some parents feel they can’t stay together, it is imperative that they make healthy coparenting a priority, to help minimize the stress and negative outcomes when parents fall short on healthy coparenting.

Here are 6 signs of healthy coparenting:

  • Kids come first. The most important part of coparenting is that both parents agree that the child comes first. The relationship that the parents have is to ensure that they do their best for their child. A healthy sign of coparenting is seeing both parents attend an event for the child, where they are there near each other, being kind, and the child doesn’t feel stress as a result.
  • Parents agree. While parents may not agree on everything, coparents need to agree on the major issues. These include that healthy coparenting is a must, but also on issues such as discipline and health. If both parents are on the same page about major issues it will go a long way toward avoiding controversy, and will help the child know their boundaries.
  • Flexibility is allowed. Having set schedules is nice and can help with predictability, but there needs to be room for things that weren’t planned. Whether it’s a party or extended family visit from out of town, having some flexibility is healthy for the children. It shows that people compromise and will work together.
  • Respect is shown. Healthy coparenting means being nice to one another in front of the child. They hear and see what is going on and they learn how to treat others by what their parents do. If parents treat each other with respect, that will teach the child to treat others with respect as well.
  • Kids get time. Both parents need to have time with the child. Far too often, one parent will try to get the majority of the time, leaving the other parent with very little. While this may feel like success, because it’s punishing the other parent, it’s really not. It’s the child that is being punished and will suffer.
  • Communication is key. Healthy coparenting requires there to be an open line of communication. Parents need to communicate about things that are going on, and kids need to have constant access both parents, just as they would if everyone lived under the same roof.

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