It is highly likely that if you have any children with your ex-spouse that you will be parenting together with him or her after the divorce. In an ideal world, you and your ex-spouse would be able to work together in the best interest of the children despite your differences.
However, this is not always reality. In extremely acrimonious divorces, coming together for a co-parenting plan may be impracticable. According to Healthline, parallel parenting is an option for parents who are not reliably able to work together in order to raise their children.
How is this different from co-parenting?
The major difference between parallel parenting and co-parenting is that co-parenting involves more time spent together with the ex-spouse. For example, a healthy co-parenting relationship may involve both parents attending a child’s soccer game even though they are no longer together and may even be seeing other people at this point.
With a parallel parenting situation, the parents are never actually together in the same place at the same time. Again, this may be the only workable situation in some family dynamics.
What are the benefits?
The biggest benefit is that parallel parenting removes the child from the conflict. With parallel parenting, both parents can be actively involved in the lives of their children without needing to come in contact with each other. It can also provide a less-stressful environment for the feuding parents, as well.
Additionally, with some time spent successfully parallel parenting, the situation between the parents may settle down enough and allow a more traditional co-parenting dynamic to emerge.