Going through a divorce without little ones can already be a balancing act. But if you’re reading this, chances are you are working on plans for an ideal post-divorce living situation for you and your children. You and your ex-spouse are planning to part ways, but is immediately getting a new home necessary? The simple answer is no, and the longer answer is complex. Nesting could be an ideal middle ground for parents looking to ease into post-divorce living and co-parenting.
WHAT IS NESTING?
A nesting arrangement involves keeping the residence you shared through marriage as a home base for your children. Rather than dropping off your children at their other parent’s home or setting up custody exchanges at school or another neutral location, the children stay put. Instead, parents will alternate at the family home during their parenting time and stay at an offsite location when it’s time to swap.
Depending on how long you’d like to extend this arrangement, the second home could be a temporary or more permanent dwelling. If you’d like to try nesting for a brief period, you might consider simply staying with supportive family members. If that’s not an option, then you could rent a modest apartment that you could share with your ex to reduce costs.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
While every family is different, here are a few plus sides that may convince you to give nesting a go:
- Saving money: There are a lot of costs to a divorce, like legal fees and running an independent household after the split. With these financial changes, you might not be able to afford to buy your post-divorce home or might want to take your time navigating the current real estate market.
- Children’s emotions: Divorce can be a highly emotional experience for little ones. Staying in the home they are familiar with can provide indescribable comfort when they process all the changes they can’t control.
- Accepting change: Adults may need time to cope too. Transitioning your lifestyle at a slower pace can do wonders for your mental health.
Whatever your main inspirations are for opting to nest, accounting for cons as well as pros is crucial.
WHO SHOULD AVOID NESTING?
Even with the benefits of nesting, it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution. If you and your spouse end your marriage on bad terms, chances are you don’t want to share spaces with them in any capacity. Before trying nesting, it’s vital to decide if you can truly put aside your differences for the sake of your children.
It’s possible you still have questions about nesting logistics or the parenting plan. In that case, reach out to a legal professional to get a full scope of your family’s options.