What is Double Parenthood?

proudAlmost anyone, if asked, could give a fairly accurate definition of the words ‘double’ and ‘parenthood’.

Parenthood is a noun whose definition means: the state of being a parent. More specifically, it means the position, function, or standing of a parent. In the concept of double parenthood, I take the definition one step further, and include the notion that parenthood is more than simply the state of being a parent. Parenthood, in this case, is taken to specifically mean the full amount of parenting required to successfully raise one’s child(ren) – and not simply the state of being a parent. Parenthood, simply put, is the whole entity, and in most families, the task of parenting (parenthood) is shared by two individuals.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines ‘double’ as an adjective which means twice as much or many, or consisting of two usually equal parts or things.

Taking these dictionary definitions into account, I define ‘Double Parenthood’ as follows:


1. Double parenthood is when one parent fulfils all the responsibilities of parenthood due to the absence of a committed parenting partner with which to share parental responsibilities and duties; resulting in one parent having twice the amount of parental responsibility in comparison to parents who parent as part of a couple. One parent who does the work of two parents is a double parent.


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8 thoughts on “What is Double Parenthood?

  1. sfnowak says:

    Been there, done that. However, for my “second litter” I was blessed with a wife and mother for the kids.
    For double parents, don’t forget you get both Mothers’ Day & Fathers” Day!


  2. Thanks for stopping my page, sfnowak. I am so glad to hear that you were blessed. And yes, you are correct – we do get Mother’s Day AND Father’s Day!!! (and every other day in between) and we are all the more blessed for it.


  3. bronxboy55 says:

    This is brilliant. I was a double-parent, too, for eight years. I don’t know how this idea never came to me, but I guess I was too tired.


  4. Thanks for your comment, bronxyboy555. You might be surprised to hear that some single-parents are resistant to the concept of double parenthood. I say we embrace it, we ARE doing double the parenting work, after all. No wonder you were tired!!


  5. I like it. Double strikes me as both more positive and more accurate a description.


  6. Thank you! That was my hope when I came up with the name. I really wanted to accurately describe what we do and reframe it in a positive, empowering way.


  7. You have all my respect. All my double-parent friends do. Olympians, all of you. And thank you for dropping in at my blog. I’m grateful for your input any time.–M.


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