To think that LP parenting is naturally different to co-parenting.(16 Posts)
Coming off the back of another thread I started thinking about this.
I was a LP for essentially the majority of my kids childhood. Looking back I know they were involved in decisions a lot more than the kids in 2 parent families. Ok, so for example, when we were going to move they were involved in that decision, yes I had the final say but we all discussed it, pros and cons etc. When in most of the 2 parent families I know, the decision would be made by the 2 parents and presented as a more or less “done deal” to the kids. I mean that’s just an example and of course there will be exceptions but hopefully you get the idea.
I’m not saying either approach is wrong or right but I do think there is a natural difference in how you parent when you don’t have a partner. The one thing I do think is there is more of a need to be a “team” when the LP doesn’t have the support of a partner and the DCs only have the one parent. Not only when they’re kids but as adults too.
I certainly haven’t been a perfect parent and have made my share of mistakes, but me and my DCs are a tight unit and we have a great relationship. But I do think there are some differences in how you parent, depending on if your an LP or not.
Of course there is. The hardest thing I found about being an LP was not treating my daughter like my friend too much. When you only have one person to talk to, it's easy to get over reliant on them.
I think that's too sweeping a generalization, tbh. More that you either have a team mentality or you don't. We (me, DH and DD) have a team mentality and so did me and my mum (who was a lp for a while). I don't think the number of parents affects that.
My DH comes from a family where the children had less say in things, he has more siblings though - don't know if that's a factor, the more people you have to take into account the less you consider their views!
I'm very much like this with DS. We're a team and have been since he was 3 (11 now). He's always chosen his schools, had a say in where we've moved to (well, the last 2 places), where we go on holiday, what car we get etc. I also give him a lot more say in day to day stuff - as he comes food shopping with me we plan meals together for example.
Many of his friends in 2 parent families differ and just tell their kids they'll go to the closest school, or what's for dinner etc. I'm known as "a bit of a boho parent" (actual quote said to me this week!) amongst my circle of Mums.
HOWEVER, I base my parenting on how I was raised, and I was raised in a 2 parent family. Many of my parents friends were quite shocked my parents gave my Dsister and I so much choice in the 80s and 90s. We got to pick schools, my Dsis was told she didn't have to go to the same school as me, but chose to anyway. We had a lot of say in family decisions compared to other family members of similar ages.
Interesting points, but then LMBL, do you think you maybe learned that team mentality from your mum?
My upbringing was different as in it was crap and chaotic! But, I made a lot of decisions for myself as a kid as a result of that and maybe that has influenced me in letting my own kids have a say in things.
I agree op. In the widows group that I belong to we say the same thing. Children have a march larger input into the big decisions than when we were a two parent family.
Of course it's going to be different as the whole dynamics are different. I'm not a LP (and I have utmost respect for those of you who are) but I realise that I'm different with the children when DH isn't around. I have friends who are LPs and they seem much tighter knit with their children than I am with mine, which is something I'm missing in life I think.
My dd now 20 thinks I co paented with her rather than my ex waste of space. Her teen years 13 onwards saw her picking her younger brothers from school and making dinner most nights. Shes done parents evenings and homework for as long as i can remember. This has caused one or two flash arguments between us but no bitterness. She knows what her farther was and is and is maternal and protective of her younger brothers who are both now teenagers and much bigger than her!
I agree and I think it has a positive impact on the relationship and the child it's self. They seem to be really stable well rounded kids that are in this situation.
This is really thought-provoking for me as I was brought up by a LP and no, we children were never involved in decisions. Everything was a done deal and you had to be grateful too (as in, show gratitude even if you didn't like it). I left home quite early.
It's made me realise that dh and I parent in quite a similar way: we make the decisions, even if it only involves one of us doing something with ds. He doesn't really get a say very often. We don't make him perform gratitude though.
Will definitely work on this and am quite ashamed I hadn't noticed!
Did I get the team mentality from my mum - maybe, I hope so.
Sometimes it's the illusion of choice as well though - DD got to pick the order of her secondary schools on the preference form although I picked the schools that we toured so she was choosing from my choices really (which didn't include our nearest Crapville Academy, for instance).
I suspect DH would say that she is slightly over-involved in our decisions sometimes It's not his default the way it is mine. Having said that, I am
quite strict no pushover and don't hesitate to say no when it's appropriate. Adults are clearly in charge, it's not a child's job to be bothered with stressful stuff in life family-wise
I'm a LP to my 7yo DS and yes he definitely has a lot more say in things than friend's DC from what I've noticed for example the house we chose, what to have for tea and I wouldn't move away without him being on board with it.
It means we have a real team mentality and he never moans when he has to help out and we have a super close relationship. However as a PP said I have to keep in mind that I'm the adult and he's the child and not lean on him too much. Plus although acting more of a friend than a parent works for us now I'm aware that may have to change in the teenage years when it's beneficial to have clearer boundaries but for now I'm just playing it by ear like we all are I suppose
I'm not an lone parent but have been. Am now co- parenting. I would say i have given all kids equal say on everything. I.e. it hasn't made a difference
@Storm4star I'm going down this path soon, and I agree with you. I will be closer with my children than I am now and it will feel like we're a little unit, a team. Just us four
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