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Friend Parenting

I recently launched a new non-profit organisation called The Porn Conversation with my husband Pablo! Our mission is to offer tools for parents to use to instigate the talk about online porn with their kids at home. We want to give adults the opportunity to help kids and teens make smart and informed decisions regarding pornography and about healthy, consensual relationships!

erikalust-pablodobner

Helping kids to understand healthy relationships and sexuality from a young age has lasting effects. Not only do they need the right kind of education, they also need a safe, secure environment to learn and grow in. A lot of children who come from broken families or parents with damaged marriages can  struggle to form healthy relationships in adult life. They may face trust issues, resentment and even warped ideas about consent and relationships based on equality, after having to grasp the concept of parents splitting, dividing and taking respective ownership of parts of their lives together. With same sex marriage and paternal rights gaining equal footing, are “nuclear families” beginning to feel a little outdated?

Studies over the past few years have shown that children with same sex, gay, lesbian or trans parents can often be healthier and happier than those with “normal” parents i.e. a straight, married couple. Children with same-sex parents actually outscored others with regards to general health and family cohesion, according to this study I read about in Australia! It seems that parents who have had to struggle against social norms, might have a little more valuable experience to share with their children and understand the importance of communication and understanding! Sounds like the perfect recipe for parenting to me!

But what about going a step further and taking romantic relationships out of parenting completely? Like these two “co-mammas” from Canada did? I found this article on The Pool about the idea of friend parenting. Just like it says on the tin, two best friends decided to legally raise one of their children together! They are the first two women in history to do this, and bravo to them! They found that they both loved the child and had a vested interest in his care and future, so why not legally split the responsibilities and costs of raising him and make sure he has two lawful mothers instead of one? Without the romantic complications of a normal parental relationship, this is a strong and solid family foundation. Unions like this could also mean that single mothers specifically have more support, more opportunity to work and help with finances. All without reinstating the idea that when you grow up you should be monogamous, straight and married.

And just like with same-sex couples, would two women or two men who feel comfortable with each other as friends, be more likely to have the porn conversation with their kids? Perhaps it would take some of the pressure off both the parents and the child! I think all parents are capable of helping their kids on their way to understanding sexuality and consent, but I’ll be interested to see how family structures progress and become more diverse over time, and the positive effects this has on younger generations!

If you’re looking for some advice on how to talk to your kids about porn, check out The Porn Conversation now! It’s full of useful articles and guides about how to talk to kids of all ages! 

 

 

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