Coparenting-Parallel Parenting

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In A High Conflict Custody Case, at least one of the parents has difficulty following court orders. Here are some tips to create more detailed court order to eliminate some of the conflict. Dr. Deena Stacer is a parent educator offering online and live coparenting courses to stop conflict between parents over custody issues, www.parentsinconflict.com

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Coparenting-Parallel Parenting

  1. 1. High Conflict Intervention and Coparenting Program Hi, I’m Dr. Deena Stacer. I teach the High Conflict Intervention and Coparenting Program in San Diego. I’ve been teaching this as a live program in San Diego since 1997. And now, I have translated this class online for you to participate without leaving your home. I was in a high conflict breakup myself (for seven years) and have three grown children who were part of my custody fight. ©Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009
  2. 2. Credentials I have teaching credentials ranging from Kindergarten through College. I have a Bachelors of Science in Child Development, a Masters in Counseling and Leadership and a Ph.D. in Psychology. I have worked with over 5000 high conflict parents and many of their children. I have mediated over 850 divorces. I mostly mediate highly conflictual cases now. ©Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009
  3. 3. Online Courses for Coparents In Conflict Over Their Children Because of my experiences, I’ve learned a lot of great strategies to help parents get out of conflict. I teach parents how to navigate through the court system, how to disengage from the fight with the other parent and how to protect the children from permanent emotional damage that often occurs from chronic conflict. Co-Parents can take courses at www.ParentsInConflict.com ©Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009
  4. 4. Conflictual Coparenting Alternative The “Parallel Parenting” or Dual Parenting Approach If you have tried everything you can think of to get the other parent to coparent with you, and you still can’t work together, then you need to begin parallel parenting immediately. Parallel parenting is a style of coparenting which allows parents to reduce their communication with each other regarding the children. It gives each parent control over their own parenting time. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  5. 5. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” The parents do not consult each other about their daily routines, rules, or decisions regarding the children. Minor decisions about the children are made alone, without interacting with the other parent. All major decisions however, do require communication and agreement between both parents. You may need professional intervention for these issues for example, managing medication or major schooling issues. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  6. 6. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” Did you know that you can end the conflict yourself? You do not have to wait for the other parent to work with you. It only takes one parent to end the conflict. Why not do it now. It only takes one parent to save your child. Make sure that it is you. News Flash!! © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  7. 7. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” Parallel parenting works for parents who have a history of, or potential for conflict over their children’s issues. This style of parenting reduces communication between parents so they have a chance to develop their own rules in their own world. Each parent creates their own regular and stable routines for their children when they are in their home. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  8. 8. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” The children benefit because parents can quit trying to reach agreements with the other parent. Parents in conflict generally waste their emotional energy trying to get the other parent to agree with them regarding issues. In “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” each parent decides their own rules for school work, bedtime, homework and chores. Both parent’s rules may be different. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  9. 9. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” The children adjust to these changes, just like they adjust to having several teachers in school who have different rules for academics and for conduct. Think of Parallel Parenting as if both parents are driving to the child’s school from their individual homes. They will both get to the school, but they will each drive their own way, from their own driveway to get there. They don’t ask each other how to get to the school. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  10. 10. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” For example: A mother tells their child to brush their teeth. The child says, “Daddy doesn’t make me brush my teeth before bedtime. Mom replies, “That’s in Daddy’s World. When you are in my world, we brush our teeth before bedtime. The child may be manipulating Mom by trying to get her to not enforce her rule. Or Mom lets go of the child not brushing their teeth at Dad’s. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  11. 11. Rules for “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” A father tells their child to get their homework done before dinner. The child says, “Mommy doesn’t make me do my homework before dinner.” Dad replies, “That’s Mommy’s World. While you are in my home, we do your homework before dinner. When you are with me, you can do homework according to my rules.” Dad learns to let go of the child not doing their homework at Mom’s. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  12. 12. Rules for “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” The father checks with the school to see if the child is really missing homework, then he handles any concerns with the teacher, not the other parent. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  13. 13. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” Each parent’s world includes rules for home, school and the world in general. It includes the parent’s choice of friends, their beliefs, religion, culture and their family history. Mom’s World/Dad’s World includes your family traditions and family dynamics. It includes all the people in each parent’s life, even if the other parent doesn’t like them or approve of your choices. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  14. 14. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” You may not like the other parent’s choice of rules or people, but your child doesn’t deserve to hear about your displeasure. They love that parent and want to be a part of the other parent’s traditions, rules and family activities. What goes on in Mom’s world stays in Mom’s World. What goes on in Dad’s World stays in Dad’s World. Tell your children you do not need to know what goes on in the other parent’s world. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  15. 15. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” Separate worlds mean both parents individually contact coaches, teachers & extracurricular leaders.  Parents attend extracurricular events on their time to eliminate conflict.  Communication about academic performance takes place at separate school conferences.  Parents learn to let go of things they can’t change about the other parent. They let them parent their own way.  © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  16. 16. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” You put your children in the middle when you: •Ask your child what they did with the other parent. •Ask them to relay messages through to the other parent. •Plan activities with the children that fall on the other parent’s time and you insist that the children get the other parent’s permission © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  17. 17. “Mom’s World-Dad’s World” You put your children in the middle when you: • Punish your child to prove a point to the other parent. • When your child is missing homework and you don’t resolve the issue and help them win. • When you let them fail to prove that the other parent isn’t involved, doesn’t care, or can’t manage school or homework. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  18. 18. Mom’s World Dad’s World Cooperative and Conflictual Coparenting Cooperative Coparenting requires that you talk to each other about child issues. When you hear the other parent’s voice or see their face, you will “spin” for 3 days afterwards. “Its lights on, no one’s home” for the children. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009. Parallel Parenting reduces or eliminates the amount of contact and communication between you and the other parent. Exchanges are done from school to school or curbside to curbside to eliminate contact and conflict.
  19. 19. Mom’s World Dad’s World Cooperative and Conflictual Coparenting Coparenting requires you to agree with the other parent on the “proper” parenting approach. This requires that you talk to the other parent (a lot) to reach agreements. If you couldn’t agree on parenting during the marriage/relationship, how will you agree now? Parallel Parenting encourages parents to develop their own rules and standards for discipline, school behavior, homework, bedtime. . . If you do not have to reach an agreement with the other parent, you will calm down and reduce your conflict. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009.
  20. 20. Mom’s World Dad’s World Cooperative and Conflictual Coparenting Coparenting means the entire family remains upset because of the constant efforts to communicate even though the success rate is low. Parallel Parenting allows parents to calm down. Parents are unable to become “single” parents due to conflict, when they keep trying to get along with each other. Parents develop new rules that support the family unit, because they can think more clearly now that they are not upset all of the time. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009. Parents create a new family unit that supports the children.
  21. 21. Mom’s World Dad’s World Cooperative and Conflictual Coparenting Coparenting continues the marital relationship. The interaction with the other parent creates anxiety. It may even become addictive. Parents continue to have contact which means parents are always feeling anxious and disrupted around the children. © Deena Stacer, Ph.D. All rights reserved. May 2009. Parallel Parenting allows parents to get closer to their children by redirecting their “fighting energy” toward “bonding” with their children. Parents feel better and more positive. The children feel better and loved.

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