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'It's cruel and unusual.' Zoe Hendrix on co-parenting with her ex, Alex Garner.

Married At First Sight‘s Zoe Hendrix and Alex Garner have spent six months navigating the awkwardness that can be co-parenting.

The exes met on Australia’s first season in 2015 and their daughter Harper Rose was born in November 2016. They separated in April this year after four years together.

Hendrix, 29, spoke candidly on Monday’s episode of the Single Mother’s Survival Guide podcast about becoming a single mum, the grief of a breakup and of course, co-parenting challenges.

She said she was embarrassed and overwhelmed when announcing the breakup.

“I felt a massive amount of shame and failure,” she told host Julia Hasche.

“I was thinking I had let people down. I had failed in the fairy tale that a lot of people were invested in.”

 

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I opened my heart and chatted to Julia on her Podcast @singlemothersurvivalguide about the first few months following our separation and how life was flipped upside down. We covered everything from the shame that I felt following the separation, understanding heartbreak and grief, strategies to rise up again, the resilience of children, co-parenting challenge, the unexpected joys of parenting alone!! Also I shared what my goals and dreams are now, and so much more! Julia has created a fantastic platform to inspire and empower single mums and dad to take control of their lives and strive (not just survive) their best life. It was great to join her in her mission. ???????????? Link in bio to listen to our chat ❤️⭐️ #singlemothersurvivalguide #podcast

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Hendrix said she had “90 percent” care of Harper Rose. Garner has her for one night a week and a couple of hours another afternoon.

She said co-parenting was a “cruel and unusual punishment” for recently broken up parents.

“This is not healthy. This system, when you break up with someone, you’re meant to go your separate ways. You’re meant to be out of each other’s lives. It’s really a cruel system to have to see that person so regularly. It’s not right, but it has to happen.”

Despite still learning to navigate their new roles, Hendrix said said she and Garner had one co-parenting rule that they could not break:

“No changes can be made to the parenting plan without at least two weeks notice,” she explained. “So you can’t just be like ‘Oh, I can’t have her on this day [without notice]’.”

Hendrix said she has struggled throughout the last six months since Garner left, but she has now “set free” the plan she had of how thought her life should be.

She said she found her feet again and is enjoying her new role as a single mum.

“I’m learning. I have really good days… I’m doing my [law] studies and I’m really determined to build a really good life.”

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