The highs and lows of co-parenting

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amber-editedAmber, from Teen Mom UK, spoke to us about the highs and lows of co-parenting with her ex-partner, Ste and how they work together to be the best parents they can be to their son, Brooklyn.

The highs of co-parenting would be obviously, it’s so much better when you are getting on with your ex or your partner or anything like that because you can see a nice change in your child.

Whereas, with me and Ste, we always go from arguing to being nice to each other and because last season we were arguing a lot, we could see a dramatic change in Brooklyn’s behaviour because he was picking up on it.

And now his behaviour, he likes to shout and stuff like this. I kind of blame myself and Ste for that.

And it’s not good to see, it’s not even good to argue in front of your child but sometimes you can’t actually help it.

It’s like one of the hardest things ever being a single parent. People don’t class it as a job or anything like that but in a way, it partly is because you’re bringing up your child.

You know I haven’t got the help of the other mums, I can’t just turn to the side and put Brooklyn – you know I can’t even go have a bath, I have to have like a 5-minute shower.

But now me and Ste are actually getting on, I can ring Ste up and he can come around and keep me company and I can make some tea and it’s just like company for me.

So, it’s actually nice to see that we can actually call each other like, we’re classed as a family now whereas we wasn’t like last year.

And now that me and Ste are getting on, I can see this other change in Brooklyn’s behaviour like he’s so much calmer, he’s so much happier when he’s around us both. We’re not ex partners, we‘re actually mummy and daddy to a little boy.

And it’s just so nice to actually watch him grow up now and nothing feel awkward between me and his dad. We can do things together now, we can go on a day out and see Brooklyn play at the park together and nothing feels awkward.

It’s hard, like Ste’s got a girlfriend now so he’s introducing Brooklyn to his girlfriend. I’m gonna have my partner one day and part of me always used to think like, ‘am I allowed a boyfriend?’ all this but you know, we just need to grow up, we just need to bang our heads together and grow up, put our differences beside and just concentrate on Brooklyn because that’s the main thing.

He’s in the middle of all of this. We just need to both concentrate on that little boy and just do our best.

Obviously, you’ve got to go through the lows to actually get to the highs in a way and it’s took time, loads of time to actually get to where I am now with Ste, but it’s worth it. He’s got loads of stress on his head, I’m a single mum I’ve got loads of stress on my head, like to do with other things apart from Brooklyn.

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How me and Ste have got to where we are now, it’s took a lot of time and effort to be honest. We’ve been to parenting classes just to help us communicate with each other.

You know ‘cause we never knew actually how to be parents together. We knew how to be parents singularly, but not together. So, that’s why we attended these parent classes to actually help us work together now to help our son grow up you know.

It’s like really hard, ‘cause he’s got so many things he wants to say and I’ve got so many things I want to say and he’s got his own ways of wanting Brooklyn to grow up and I’ve got my ways to watch Brooklyn and how he wants to grow up. But we’ve just got to put those ideas together and like work together.

You can’t click your fingers and expect everything to change in one day. You know all I’d say really is try your best. 

Read more from other young parents like Amber:

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