6 million views later, I realized co-parenting was clearly still worth discussing. My Ex-Husband Michael agreed to my request that we should do a short video on our life as Co-Parents, but we didn’t plan it out. It was very off the cuff, with bad lighting, and a weird angle. 45 seconds later, good enough. I decided to test it on My TikTok account, which had a very small following, so I had little investment in the end result. Perhaps it was the very candid nature or the fact that we were two divorced parents coming together, maybe it was the combination of both but + 10,000 had opinions in the form of comments on that single video. In my life, on this blog platform, and on my social media I have been open about my life as a Co-Parent. When Michael and I work the school fair PLINKO booth together for our kids, no one is losing their mind. But the rest of the world, those on TikTok at least, were losing their collective minds.
So many assumptions and opinions surfaced in the comments, sparking the need for subsequent videos with answers, explanations, and clarifications. I feel compelled to speak the truth about the concept that Co-Parenting Builds Community. A few of the common questions/assumptions asked hundreds of times include:
“If you can get along so well as co-parents, why did you get a divorce?”
For us, it is simple. Co-Parenting is about parenting and loving our children, it is not about our former marital relationship. We can get along so well, because we are not married. We are no longer in a dynamic that is not a right fit.
”He’s wearing scrubs, he must be a wealthy doctor and pay for all of your living expenses”
This statement is about the actual thousands of sweeping antagonistic misogynistic statements made negatively to me, which is representative of the generalized assumptions about “men versus women” in our country. Attached to this comment was often, “I know now why he left you” and “he is comfortable around you because he paid for that house and all your bills”.
”No man would want an ex around so much.”
My Co-Parent is not a random man, he is the children’s Father. He is just like any other family member. We practice respectful boundaries and our interactions and engagement are always centered around the children and their families. In the case of this question, my long-term Boyfriend took center stage answering a lot of these types of statements. He explained to the women viewers, that the right man will not have a problem with this healthy arrangement. And to the men, this is an ideal situation for everyone involved when possible.
“You are glamorizing divorce”
No, we are giving tools to parents who are not in a relationship together. We are being the voice that “family is family” and that romantic status does not need to dictate how you raise your family. We show how it is possible.
“Such a selfish person, inflicting all this trauma on your kids. You should have worked it out for the sake of your kids.”
We are working it out for our kids, we have in fact. We are a committed team, lock step raising our kids. They experience healthy, balanced, consistent love and support from their parents together.
This last one is a much-needed reminder to others: Just because two parents are married, does not guarantee that those children are living in the ideal home environment. One roof does not equal emotionally healthy children. It is just an assumption we can do without. The focus should be on supporting parents so they can raise their children to be emotionally healthy people.