Nesting refers to a transitional arrangement where divorcing or separating parents continue to share the family home and take turns living in the home with their children. This arrangement is uniquely child-centered. The goal of nesting is usually to provide a stable home for the children while the marital status is in flux. This attempts to ensure that the children’s lives are minimally disrupted, while the adults, bear the brunt of the changes. Both parents establish their own separate residences to be used during the other parties’ parenting time while also maintaining the family home for the children who stay in the home full time. This arrangement gives the children more time to adapt to other changes occurring within the family without also adapting to a new home.
How and When Can Nesting Work?
Nesting works best when parents separate their co-parenting responsibilities from their marital conflicts and remain amicable and cooperative as they confer about continuing household arrangements and the children’s needs. Nesting can be successful when the parents effectively communicate with one another, and respectfully manage to leave the family home in a reasonable condition when turning over the duties to the other parent.
Nesting arrangements require an immense amount of trust and respect between the parties. There are issues of privacy, such as keeping one’s personal property separate. There are issues of respect such as cleaning up the house after their parenting time and replacing groceries and toilet paper. The issues that can arise are endless in number and need to be considered prior to determine whether nesting is right for you. If nesting increases conflict, it is not best for the children. This is not to say that nesting is never a good idea, but it is one that needs to be thoroughly considered before it is executed.
If you are currently involved in a divorce it is important to focus on what would be best for your children, and whether a nesting arrangement is in their best interests. Our experienced and passionate family law attorneys are familiar with local and state laws regarding divorce and the complex and stressful issues surrounding children in divorce. Our assistance and guidance can help you through the process. If you are contemplating divorce or are already in the midst and need assistance, please contact our office.