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What is nesting and can it help our family?

Rebuilding your life after divorce is challenging, and doing so with children involved is even more difficult. In fact, if you are in a joint custody situation with your ex-spouse, figuring out how to parent effectively may be even more challenging than the divorce process.

This is why many families are coming up with new and innovative living solutions. One of these solutions is “nesting.” With a nesting situation, the children stay in the same living environment and it is the parents who do the moving according to the custody schedule.

How does nesting work?

In a traditional joint custody situation, the children are the ones who do the moving between the parents’ households. In some family situations, this can cause a lot of hardship or not be possible in the first place. For instance, families who have a special needs child may find that it is hazardous to move the child more than is necessary due to required medical equipment or medications.

In other situations, nesting can save a lot of family strife. For example, many older children resent having to move between households frequently. In this situation, some families decide to maintain the family home until the children graduate high school and leave the “nest.”

Will this work for us?

Nesting requires a great deal of communication between the ex-spouses. This is because you will continue to maintain the family home even though you are no longer married or co-habitating. If you have a very contentious relationship with your ex-spouse, it is unlikely that you will be able to effectively maintain a nesting situation.

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