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'Conscious co-parenting' after divorce may not be for everyone

It seems like just about everyone has an opinion on the Gwyneth Paltrow/Chris Martin breakup and their decision to "consciously uncouple." When the couple noted in their announcement that they would engage in "consciously co-parenting" of their two children, many people began to wonder what it all meant and if others should adopt a similar perspective on breaking up. Conscious uncoupling seems to refer to an amicable or even friendly parting, but what about conscious co-parenting?

A licensed marriage and family therapist posits that conscious co-parenting isn't for every couple, especially when one or both of the parents has a "high conflict" personality. She suggests that this approach to parenting after divorce might be difficult for some people with high-conflict personalities who may have a hard time focusing on what is best for their children.

When a high-conflict person is involved, the conscious c-parenting approach could turn one parent into a doormat of sorts due to his or her continued attempts to keep the peace. With one parent brewing discontent and the other constantly making allowances, it could make for an especially unhealthy environment for children of divorce.

What's the solution for Illinois couples when conscious co-parenting is off the table? Creating an amicable plan for parenting after divorce is always ideal, but some people are simply not wired to follow a predesigned plan.

The best course of action may be to consult with professionals like family law attorneys and even family therapists in order to try to create a parenting model that accounts for diverse personalities and still takes into consideration the needs of the children.

Source: Huffington Post, "Not Everyone Should Try to Consciously Co-Parent. Here's Why." Virginia Gilbert, Apr. 08, 2014

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