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I have been co-parenting  my twins boys for 6 plus years now and in all that time I have never liked to be labelled as a single parent. The term seems inappropriate to describe my parenting status. After all, I was raised by a single parent and trust me my mother’s post-marriage experience was very different than mine.

A single parent, in my esteem, is a parent raising kids alone or virtually alone. I am definitely not doing that. And thankfully so. I am co-parenting, which means that I raise children in conjunction with dad, but separate from dad. Separate in time, and in many respects separate in style as well.

Co-parenting can produce healthy well adjusted children as much as any other parenting relationship because parenting like life isn’t one size fits all.

If you are single parenting, then my hat is off to you as that is an awesome responsibility.  I really hope that you have a network of friends and family that are helping you to shape the tiny life or lives in your hands. But if your child has an actively involved parent even if the custodial time share isn’t equal, I challenge and encourage you to stop calling yourself a single parent and start calling yourself a co-parent. Words matter. Titles shape the way we look at a situation and the way we approach it. Remembering that you share your child or children with another person can remind you to slow down and listen instead of speak sometimes. After all, your child is really our child and not my child or his or her child.

Co-parent for your kids and for yourself. When you let go of being in control and start sharing the responsibilities of parenting, you may be amazed at how well the other parent steps up to the plate, how much more rewarding your parental responsibilities become, and how much better off your children are for your efforts.

If you need help getting there, there are counselors, classes, and mediators (like me) who can work with you and your co-parent to help you build a co-parenting relationship that works. Not sure where to begin? Schedule a free 15 minute consult with me, and I will help you figure it out.

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