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date: 23 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

With the 2016 release of Zero to Three’s Diagnostic Classification of Mental Health and Developmental Disorders of Infancy and Early Childhood, the eyes of the field are newly trained on assessment of the full family caregiving contexts in which children are raised. This chapter presents a conceptual model for assessing coparenting alliances in families of infants and toddlers intended to provide information to both researchers and practitioners. The chapter defines coparenting in a manner that is relevant for various family systems, identifies important elements of effective coparenting alliances, and presents a schematic for assessing quality of coparenting in the young child’s family. Guidance based on lessons learned from extensive field experience with coparenting in diverse families is provided, and both reported and observed coparenting assessment methods are discussed. Growing points for this relatively new field of infant–family mental health assessment are enumerated.

Keywords: coparenting, family systems, family assessment, triangular relationships, diverse families, infant–family mental health

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