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Traditional parenting vs. new-age parenting

One of the biggest issues that parents run into after divorce — and, to be fair, while they’re still married — is when they disagree on how to parent their children. When they have vastly different views, they may both feel that the other person is damaging the children in some way or hindering their development. These issues can be very hard to sort out because both parents love their children, and both also think they’re doing the right thing.

For instance, “traditional” parenting tends to be more authoritative. It’s focused on the idea that the parents are fully in charge of the children. They are encouraged to command the child to do something, for instance, rather than asking them to do it. The parent is the king (or queen), and the child is the subject.

However, some experts suggest that this older approach is no longer effective and doesn’t work. Modern parents who take a more “new-age” approach may instead ask their children to do something or negotiate with them. They are more like friends or equals — or, at least, like the relationship a friendly boss may have with an employee. They’re not as strict, they do not practice physical punishments and they give the children more of a voice in how they are raised.

The goal here is not to pick a side or say which tactic works. Instead, it’s important to think about how these two fundamentally different approaches can put divorced parents at odds. They really need to make sure they know what legal rights they have as they create a parenting plan and a child custody arrangement.

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