• Eye Opening
  • Insider's Take
  • Inspiring


When Shaka Senghor and Ebony Roberts ended their romantic relationship after nearly nine years, they immediately forged a new one as co-parents. United by the intention to put their son first and by a parenting philosophy that affirms and empowers him, Roberts and Senghor became strong allies. As Senghor explains in this personal, moving TED Talk, “for us, [co-parenting] is about helping each other carry the weight [and] unpack the load.” Their approach to co-parenting can serve as a possible model for separated parents who’re struggling.


Prioritizing their child’s needs and growth can turn an estranged couple into powerful allies.

When researcher and poet Ebony Roberts was 12 years old, she witnessed her father firing a pistol at her mother. The bullet missed and her mother survived, but the episode of extreme domestic violence shaped Roberts’s determination to forge a different path through adulthood and parenthood. Similarly, her longtime partner and eventual co-parent Shaka Senghor remembers, at age 11, watching his own father tearfully preparing to leave the family home after separating from Senghor’s mom.

Thus, when Roberts and Senghor ended their nearly nine-year relationship,

About the Speakers

Ebony Roberts is a researcher, author, poet and mother. Shaka Senghor, author, father and cultural leader, was honored by the Oprah Winfrey Network as a Soul Igniter. His best-selling book, Writing My Wrongs, explains how literature and writing helped him transcend a life of drugs and violence.

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