Because studies of the determinants and consequences of coparenting coordination are a relatively recent phenomenon, efforts to alter or forestall the development of coparental difficulties are rare. However, one exemplary program of research has been concerned with strengthening coparental partnerships in two-parent families with young children. Philip and Carolyn Cowan, whose creative interventions with couples during the transition to parenthood had shown some salutary effects on early coparenting mutuality (including enhancement of fathers' psychological involvement with babies and mothers' satisfaction with division of family labor), described an innovative couples group intervention specifically concerned with coparenting dilemmas of families with preschool-aged children.
Preliminary results from this intervention study indicated that participation in a sixteen-week couples group dealing with how family strains affect coparenting had far-reaching effects for both parents and children. Among the benefits of this intervention were greater marital satisfaction, more effective father-child interaction, and significant improvements for children on a number of academic and social adjustment indicators (Cowan and Cowan 1997).
See also: CONFLICT: COUPLE RELATIONSHIPS; DISCIPLINE; FAMILY LIFE EDUCATION; FATHERHOOD; INTERPARENTAL CONFLICT—EFFECTS ON CHILDREN; MARITAL QUALITY; MOTHERHOOD; PARENTING EDUCATION; PARENTING STYLES; SPANKING; SUBSTITUTE CAREGIVERS; THERAPY: COUPLE RELATIONSHIPS; TRANSITION TO PARENTHOOD; TRIANGULATION
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