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Does Bird Nesting Really Work?


Is bird nesting just an Internet trend, or do people actually do it in real life?  If you watch enough videos on social media, you will probably find some people who say that bird nesting after divorce was the best thing that ever happened to their family, and they seem convinced of it.  Bird nesting is when neither spouse resides permanently in the marital home, but the children do.  From an optimist’s perspective, bird nesting means putting aside your differences with your ex and providing a stable environment for your children.  From a pessimist’s perspective, though, it means that you spend half of the time house sitting for your ex-spouse and the other half of the time living out of a suitcase.  Bird nesting is not for everyone, to say the least.  To achieve a successful bird nesting arrangement is several orders of magnitude more difficult than finalizing a successful parenting plan where the children travel back and forth between the parents’ residences.  A Boca Raton child custody lawyer can help you explore co-parenting options, including but not limited to unconventional options such as co-parenting.

Who Wants to Be Shadow Roommates With Their Ex-Spouse?

Bird nesting can only work if the parents set clear boundaries and respect them.  It helps if each parent has his or her own room in the house, and no one enters that room when the parent who possesses the room is not present.  Despite this, it is easy for parents to drive each other crazy in a bird nesting arrangement, such as by leaving messes in the house or undermining each other’s rules for the children.  It also works only if both parents have another residence nearby that is not prohibitively expensive.  For example, bird nesting is better if you spend your non-parenting time in your parents’ house than in a rented apartment that sits empty every other week.

If You Think the Co-Parenting Aspects of Bird Nesting Are Challenging, You Should See the Financial Aspects

Perhaps the most complicated thing about bird nesting is managing the finances of a house that belongs to both parents and to neither of them.  On paper, one parent legally owns the house and is responsible for paying its mortgage.  In other words, the laws about parenting plans and child support simply were not written with bird nesting in mind.  Therefore, you and your spouse, with the help of your lawyers, will need to set out rules in writing about how to handle your finances when the former couple is responsible for paying for three houses instead of two.  You may decide by the time your divorce is final that co-parenting your children in two separate houses is simpler.

Contact Schwartz | White About the Financial and Non-Financial Aspects of Co-Parenting

A South Florida family law attorney can help you think outside the box about co-parenting your children with your former spouse, in one house, two, or three.  Contact Schwartz | White in Boca Raton, Florida about your case.




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