Parenting Arrangements Today After Divorce
The days when divorced dads would pick up their kids every other Friday night and drive them home to mom on Sunday nights may not be completely over yet, but they’re on the wane. Today’s divorced parents are changing the child custody landscape with ongoing cohabitation, nesting, and other creative and non-traditional co-parenting arrangements.
Divorce can be difficult for children, no matter how old they are. While dealing with separation from your parents is by far the hardest thing to handle, moving from one home to another is almost equally upsetting. To combat this, some parents are giving their children custody of the family home in an arrangement called nesting.
Rather than moving the children in and out of the home, each parent takes turns living in the family home with the children. This allows children to remain in a familiar environment, continue to attend the same schools, remain involved in their established extracurricular activities, and be in close contact with their friends. Mom and Dad maintain separate residences where they live temporarily while the other stays with the children, raising them in the “nest” for set periods of time.
Maintaining two or three residences is prohibitively expensive for many divorced couples. Some divorced parents choose to continue sharing their former “marital home” with their children after the divorce. They can live together as roommates while simultaneously sharing parenting, or they can set a schedule that allows them to take turns. If the house is big enough, they may each have their own smaller secluded “space” in which they take turns living while the “on-call” parent lives in the main part of the residence, raising the children.
The nesting arrangement requires adequate finances to accommodate multiple residences and the configuration of the shared space requires the ability to continue living together in harmony. Somewhere between these two concessions is the neighboring option.
For these former spouses, living apart from each other, but in close proximity, allows them to continue raising their children on a daily basis with little interruption for the children. They can have houses on the same street or apartments in the same complex. Children can move freely between their parents’ residences, giving both mom and dad open access and eliminating many of the problems present when divorced parents live more distant from each other.
Putting children first
Obviously, these types of parental arrangements require an extremely friendly relationship between the former spouses. They are clearly not for everyone. Regardless of whether parents are in a position to choose one of these recently popular modernized co-parenting setups or develop their own creative custody arrangement, the important thing is that they serve the best interests of the children.
At Mejias Milgrim Alvarado, we are committed to helping our clients achieve that goal by exploring their unique situations and negotiating the child custody arrangements that work best for everyone. Come talk to us about your family law requirements.