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Is Birdnesting a Good Option for My Family?

 Posted on May 16, 2024 in Family Law

WI family lawyerWe have all heard horror stories about parents who turn into each other’s sworn enemies during a divorce. They go to court hoping to make the other person suffer, and their marriage ends with a lot of anger. Luckily, that is not always the case. There are countless examples of divorced couples who still manage to respect each other. This becomes even more beneficial if there are children involved. If parents can work together to find a child custody arrangement that benefits everyone, it can help them offer their child stability. If you fall under this second category, birdnesting might be a good option for your family to consider. Speak with a knowledgeable Waukesha County, WI child custody lawyer to find out more.

Why Choose Birdnesting?

When parents go through a divorce, they need to figure out child custody arrangements. They need to answer questions including:

  • Which parent will get the child on which days?
  • Where will the child spend annual holidays and school vacations?
  • What responsibilities will each parent have regarding the child’s schoolwork, including making sure they do their homework and get tutoring if needed?

Once those larger issues are resolved, there are other details that the family members need to remember. If the child is with each parent on alternating days or weeks, how will they make sure they have everything they need on days they have after-school activities? If they have a pet hamster, will that need to move back and forth with them, or will the parent whose house the pet lives in need to take care of it on days the child is with the other parent? It is no wonder that parents with split custody and their children often feel stressed and overwhelmed by trying to stay on top of everything.

How Does Birdnesting Work?

Divorced parents with split custody generally live in their own respective homes and their child moves back and forth between their homes according to their parenting schedule. Birdnesting is the opposite. The child permanently lives in the family home, and the parents alternate what nights they sleep there based on the parenting schedule. Often, the parents each have their own second home where they sleep on nights they are not with the child, but in some rare cases, the parents even share the secondary home to keep costs down.

One of the main reasons why parents consider birdnesting is because it is associated with more stability for the children. However, if you and your ex do not get along, sharing a home - even though it is not on the same days - can be a source of stress for you. Exposing your child to the added tension that can result from sharing a living space with your ex might counter all the positive effects that the stability of living in one place can offer. You and your ex need to think long and hard about whether this is a reasonable and doable option for you. If it is, you might find that raising your child after divorce can go much smoother than you ever imagined.

Contact a Waukesha County, WI Divorce Lawyer

If you and your future ex are considering birdnesting, speak with a Pewaukee, WI child custody attorney to learn more. Call Bucher, Wolff & Sonderhouse, LLP at 262-232-6699 so we can offer you advice tailored to your family and your needs.

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