How to Stop Being the Default Parent

Jul 05, 2023

"I am so tired of being the default parent" is something we have BOTH felt at times in our parenting journey.  We have talked to thousands of moms who have struggled with falling into the role as the default parent.  Here are some of our top tips and strategies to have parenting feel more equitable! 

  1. Openly Communicate and Set Expectations:

    • Have open and honest conversations with your partner about what equitable parenting looks like.  Some people take their experiences and their own childhoods and reflect on this. Discuss what you want to continue and what you want to leave behind.
    • Clearly define and discuss your expectations regarding child care tasks, household chores, and other parenting responsibilities.
    • Agree on a shared parenting plan that outlines each person's roles and responsibilities, this may be especially useful when going on trips or other areas that requires a clearer cut plan
  2. Delegate and Divide Tasks:

    • Divide parenting tasks and household chores fairly between you and your partner. Consider each person's strengths, interests, and availability when assigning responsibilities (for example I HATE cooking but I am ok with cleaning, this makes this easier when dividing up responsibilities.  
    • Delegate tasks based on a shared understanding of what needs to be done 
    • Be open to adjusting and renegotiating tasks as kids get older and responsibilities change
  3. Foster Independence and Problem-Solving:

    • Avoid intervening or taking over when your partner is handling a parenting task differently than you would. Trust in their ability to care for and make decisions for your child.  Easier said than done we know. However we want to point out the positives and have a discussion with our partner if something did not feel OK
    • Support your partner's efforts and refrain from micromanaging or criticizing their parenting methods.
  4. Share Parenting Responsibilities in Public:

    • Actively share parenting responsibilities in public settings to challenge traditional gender roles and expectations.
    • Be equally involved in activities such as school meetings, doctor's appointments, extracurricular activities, and social gatherings. Ex: both parents be an emergency contact, etc
    • Engage with other parents and professionals as an equal partner in parenting discussions and decision-making processes.

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