What is equally shared parenting

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What is equally shared parenting

Equally shared parenting is a model that no one really achieves. It's a lifestyle based on purposeful decisions based around two foundations of equality and balance. Equality is looking at the pursuit of four different domains and sharing equally in each of the; namely, the sharing of careers, sharing of the raising of the children, sharing of the taking care of the home, sharing of the pursuit of your interests. Balance is the belief that each parent deserves a decent amount of all that's important to them. However it can be challenging trying to identify what an equally shared parenting couple looks like. There are no equally shared parenting t-shirts. There are no checklists to qualify someone as an equally shared parent. It's more of an internal decision as opposed to a calculation of who does what. For instance, let's take a look at the example of a man who is perfectly involved at home, who the mom might work a little bit part time outside the home. This is not necessarily an equally shared parenting family. The presumption in that scenario is that mom still owns the home. She makes all the rules for the kids. She has the junior career, which is nice to have, but not all that important to the overall family mode. And then dad in this scenario is presumed to need time off to recreate. He's been so busy working all day. Comes home, is involved with the family. And it's presumed he needs the time to refresh. This isn't equally shared parenting any more than an apple is an orange. Like I said, it's a model. And if they're not pursuing the dream of trying to share equally in all of the domains, then that's not equally shared parenting. Equally shared parenting is not based on a specific point in time. It's not based on the circumstances that come into your life. For instance, if dad gets laid off from his job, he may take on a lion's share of the work at home, which is not what he was originally doing. And mom may ramp up at work to buoy the family finances in the short term. But ultimately if they're maintaining the dream of wanting to share equally in all the domains of how they're living their lives, that's an equally shared parenting family.

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Marc Vachon


Marc and Amy Vachon are the authors of Equally Shared Parenting: Rewriting the Rules for a New Generation of Parents, and founders of www.equallysharedparenting.com. They are dedicated to helping parents achieve their dream of an equal partnership, and to providing both mothers and fathers with a roadmap to a balanced life of parenting, breadwinning, homemaking and time for self. Their work has been covered by the New York TimesBoston GlobeGuardian (UK), Fitness MagazineThe Today ShowParenting, and other media. They have written their own personal story of equally shared parenting in One Big Happy Family, an anthology by Rebecca Walker. Amy is a clinical pharmacy director, and Marc is an information technology manager. They live in Watertown, Massachusetts with their two children, ages 11 and 8.

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