Getting a divorce is only the first step in building your new life, particularly if you have children and joint custody. Often, figuring out the new family normal is one of the most difficult parts of divorce.
Traditionally, after divorce the parents set up separate households and the children move between them as per the custody agreement. However, some families have found that this arrangement is not suitable. In response, some families are opting for a “nesting” situation. Nesting involves the kids living full-time in a family home that the parents rotate in and out of.
What are the advantages?
Nesting can save a lot of angst on the part of children, particularly older ones. Many older children resist shuttling back and forth between parental households. Allowing them to stay in the same house can stave off a lot of fights.
Additionally, if you live in a high cost of living area, you and your ex-spouse may not be able to maintain households as single entities. Nesting will allow you to continue to maintain the family home and keep your children in the same school district.
What are the challenges?
Nesting requires a lot of communication between the parents. If you and your ex-spouse are not on good terms, it is unlikely that you will be able to maintain a nesting situation. Nesting requires a commitment to jointly maintain the family home, which means paying bills and negotiating repairs.
The living situation for the parents can also be challenging. It is common for nesting situations to be semi-permanent because it is likely that the parents will want to set up independent households at some point.