Does nesting really work as a long-term solution?
Divorce can be hard to navigate. When you have children, it can become even harder. In a perfect world, children’s lives would not be impacted by divorce. Unfortunately, the reality of the situation is that with divorce comes change. The biggest change that occurs for children is when their parents live in separate houses, and they have to go back and forth depending on which parent has custody at the time. Because this can be stressful for their kids, some divorced parents opt for a living arrangement called “nesting.”
What Is Nesting?
Nesting is when the marital home remains intact, but the divorced parents switch off depending on the custody schedule they have agreed on. The children live in the home full-time and parents have a separate living space (sometimes sharing a rented apartment) that they go to when it is not their time to be in the home.
Because this allows children to maintain a sense of normalcy due to the fact that they are living in a familiar and comfortable environment, some divorced couples find that this kind of arrangement is best in order to disrupt their children’s lives as little as possible.
Does Nesting Work?
Experts agree that nesting does have some benefits. Divorce can have a big impact on children, so keeping children in the marital home and not forcing them to uproot their lives can provide them with some stability in the midst of an otherwise painful situation. However, long-term nesting is not recommended.
While short-term nesting can provide a sense of stability for the children, experts state that a long-term nesting agreement can also create feelings of confusion and anxiety due to the uncertain nature of the situation and the hope that their divorced parents will inevitably recommit to one another. Children aside, experts are also wary of long-term nesting because of the divorced couple’s inability to fully move on with their personal lives. When one parent inevitably begins dating, the situation becomes even more stressful and confusing for all parties involved.
A Happy Medium
If you like the idea of short-term nesting, therapists recommend that you only opt for this particular living situation for a time period of three to six months. This time frame allows children to adjust to the idea of divorce and of their parents living separately. Further, it can help the parents adjust to a new living arrangement as well. With that being said, every family is different and how long you plan on nesting (if you plan on nesting at all) will ultimately depend on your individual situation and needs.
For those interested in nesting or the legalities associated with post-divorce living arrangements, it is best to speak with an attorney to go over what your options are. The family law attorneys at The Gucciardo Law Firm are well-versed in post-divorce living arrangements and can help you come to a decision that works best for your family’s needs. Call The Gucciardo Law Firm today at (248) 723-5190 to schedule a consultation.
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