Single adults are now raising children as ‘platonic’ parents. How does that work?https://indianexpress.com/article/parenting/family/single-adults-platonic-parenting-child-5706605/

Single adults are now raising children as ‘platonic’ parents. How does that work?

Platonic parenting, a form of co-parenting, is becoming popular in certain parts of the world. Co-parenting is usually adopted by estranged couples who agree to raise their child together. But that's not what this parenting approach is all about for some single men and women who are looking out for co-parents.

platonic parenting
Representative image (Source: Getty Images)

Even as more and more single adults across the world are opting to become parents, they are aware of the challenges of raising a child all alone. And so, some of them have started looking out for ways to co-parent their child.

The co-parenting method is usually adopted by estranged couples who agree to raise their child together. But that’s not what this parenting approach is all about for some single men and women in the US, who are deliberately looking for co-parents for the purpose of parenting only, with no romantic inclinations.

Called Platonic Parenting, the parenting style involves a partnership between two or more people who come together for the sole reason of raising a child or even having a child.

How does platonic parenting work?

Platonic parenting is gaining momentum among the millennial in America. As per the Pew Research poll, single adults aged 25-34 in the US are not willing to be married till they find the right partner, even as they are willing to have a baby with the biological clock ticking. This includes people from the LGBT community, who wish to raise a child, and have begun relying on platonic parenting, thereby marking a conscious departure from the traditional construct of a family. The child, in this case, is not the result of two people’s relationship but the primary reason for the individuals to come together in the first place. This form of a family that centres around the child, therefore, does not bear the weight of the parents’ personal relationship, thereafter protecting the child from possible disruptions in it. At the same time, the single parent is able to get the desired support from the co-parent, helping him or her cope with the challenges of child-rearing.

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How can one find a platonic parent?

Now, how does one find a co-parent? Some arrive at a settlement with friends, colleagues or acquaintances. For others, there are popular websites like Modamily, Coparents, Family By Design, Pollen Tree and Pride Angel, among others, which help them choose from potential parenting partners. These sites offer a huge database of like-minded potential moms and dads one can collaborate with for raising a child, besides providing other relevant information and guidance on parenting partnerships.

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It is important to note that platonic parenting is not just restricted to having a single co-parent. As Pollen Tree mentions on its website, it “is typically where two single people agree to have a child and parent together. However, it can also be two couples who agree to do the same, or even a couple and a single person.”

As effective as this parenting style seems to be, one of the major challenges entail commuting between the parents’ house if they live apart, which can be stressful for children. And that’s why parents should ideally stay in close proximity for the sake of their child. As for the legal issues, the law in US and elsewhere, as per BBC, is gradually evolving to allow unrelated people (two or more) to be legally recognised as parents.