Supporting families through transition
Over the past few decades, there have been fundamental changes to the family. Societal changes, such as the role of women, acceptance of difference in sexual orientation, and policy changes, such as to divorce and employment, mean that families are probably more heterogeneous than ever before.
This makes it difficult to design policies responsive to families which are increasingly different, disjointed and yet intimately and complexly connected to other families.
In this section, contributors cover the changing shape of the family (for example, lone parents and adoptive parents) and consider what happens when families separate.
The traditional single male breadwinner family is declining and the growth of single-parent families and other new kinds of family present many new challenges for government.
Ipsos MORI, 2009
Going it alone
In November 2011, the EU highlighted the increased risk of poverty and social exclusion faced by single mothers, and called for action by member states. Satwat Rehman examines the issues facing lone parents and their families in Scotland.
Not just surviving - thriving
When parents live apart following divorce or separation, children are often caught in the middle. Rosanne Cubitt considers how to support effective co-parenting so that everyone can thrive.
Parenting after separation: the case for sharing
Ian Maxwell describes the importance of shared parenting and suggests that the parenting strategy should emphasise this as the norm rather than the exception.
Consistent parenting: supporting parents
Marion Laird discusses the findings from a recent youth consultation and their implications for working with parents to reduce conflict.
Parenting through adoption
An adoptive parent describes the process of adopting a child and charts both the anxieties and the joys of different stages. The child's new grandparent also comments.