When Mom and Dad both know and understand their Type, it can be a great benefit to the co-parenting team. When parents have different preferences, children get the opportunity to experience a balance and variety of styles from Mom and Dad. This can help the child feel freer to explore and express their own type preferences when they can connect with one parent or the other in different areas of their Type.
When parents’ have many preferences in common with each other, it’s easier to establish a home environment that well-defined and consistent. If the children also share those preferences, they will feel in sync with Mom and Dad, but children with opposite preferences may feel disconnected from the family and a bit like an outsider.
Parents with similar Types can be great at creating a unified front with the kids, but it can also leave them a bit short-handed and perhaps resentful when they need a rescue from their own blind spots and their partner is struggling in the same area.
When parents have mostly different Type preferences, they have a great advantage in being able to call on their partner’s differences when they aren’t syncing with a particular child in an area. If a child of opposite preferences are exhausting one parent, the other parent can provide relief for their partner who might be energized by that same behavior.
Parents with different Types can complement each other’s weaknesses nicely but those same differences can also be a source of conflict and they should be cautious of letting children sense that conflict and misinterpret a preference they share with one parent or the other as bad.
For more information on the MBTI, visit the Myers-Briggs (MBTI) Resource Central.