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Coparenting refers to the extent to which parents work as a team with respect to raising a child. According to family systems theorists such as Salvador Minuchin, families consist of interdependent parts, or subsystems, with the family “whole” being greater than the sum of its parts. For a family of three, family members participate in a number of dyadic (two-person) relationships (e.g., parent1–child relationship, parent2–child relationship, parent1–parent2 relationship). The triadic (three-person) coparenting relationship between both parents and the child represents how both parents and the child function together. As such, coparenting represents the “executive subsystem” of parenting—meaning that it guides the whole family.

Just as coparenting impacts the entire family system, external forces can affect the coparenting relationship, as well. As described by Mark Feinberg ...

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