Most articles that I read on Co-Parenting refer to co-parents as 2 parents who have gone through a divorce/separation. They refer to co-parents as exes; ex husband/wife; ex lover; ex partner. Either way, the reference is focused on 2 people who are now apart after having been together and have had children together.
The focus is then on the many challenges these 2 people encounter when it comes to being separated/divorced parents. Some articles make mention of the ones who have natural friendships which continued after the divorce/separation, others mention the moments which got them to realise how much they were hurting the children and made a choice to change for the good of the kids, but most articles refer to co-parents as people who are now living apart, some easily, others less easily and subsequently the breakdown of the children’s home and family.
When one talks about broken families and broken children, it is important to understand that a divorce/separation does not break children. Parents who lose the notion of their role and responsibilities toward their family break their children’s family and home. Parents who separate make a personal decision and then, as co-parents, ought to now figure out living apart with the same roles and responsibilities towards their family – Their family being their children. To your children you will always be “their family”. You will always be mom and dad. It’s only fair to refer to it both ways.
A life changing decision was made at one point which was to have children. Whether the parents decide sooner or later that they do not wish to stay, or can remain together, they can never go back to how they were before they met, because now they are parents. Co-parents. They have become a person with roles and responsibilities to another person. A separation/divorce will not change that. A divorce/separation does not change that. There should be no law to state it!
Divorces/separations have become a norm. It is time to understand that when, as part of that union, we have become parents, the 2 individuals who are now separating cannot separate from being parents and the norm ought to become primarily that the co-parents value the Role and Relevance of the other parent in their children’s life.
We do not need better laws, we need better emotional support. We need better emotional preparation in schools and we need a legal system which understands that a divorce/separation is emotional in essence and cannot find lasting resolution in litigation.
When some people go on to talk about a broken legal system, a system which does not do justice to families who are in distress or correct the ill doings of a parent over the other parent, surely it is easy enough to understand that it is illegal to not provide for your children and to not interfere with contact agreements, and that, ultimately, the Law doesn’t raise children. Parents do!
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