June 24, 2010 04:00 PM

Mark Sullivan/WireImage

Co-parenting is a priority for former couple Virginia Madsen and Antonio Sabàto Jr., and never moreso than now.

With a new sitcom to film — Scoundrels, airing Sundays at 9 p.m. on ABC — Madsen tells the Vancouver Sun that her ex-flame is stepping up to the plate big time with son Jack Antonio, 15.

“He’s been a great help to me being away for so long, because I’ve never had to be away for this long,” the actress confides. Sabàto Jr. has “taken parenthood on,” she raves, continuing,

“He’s done full-on high school parenting while I’ve been away having a great time. So I’m very grateful to him.”

From the sound of things, Sabàto’s involvement is nothing new. Madsen, 48, says she doesn’t consider herself a single parent because the former soap star “has always been in the picture, and we live around the corner from each other and we parent together.”

With that said, you won’t find Madsen lamenting the effort to balance her newfound acting responsibilities with her job as a mom.

“This life is not hard,” she insists. “It’s joyful and an adventure. If you live an adventurous life there’s going to be a climb, but at the end of each climb is a beautiful vista.”

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