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Divorce nesting? Your child may experience less emotional trauma

As more parents see the emotional toll divorce takes on children, they naturally might seek a creative way to alleviate the stress of an impending separation. Nesting is a secure way for children to maintain balance and normalcy during the upheaval of a divorce.

In a nesting agreement, the family keeps the marital home and both parents own it. Instead of a traditional custody agreement in which parents bring children back and forth between their individual homes, parents move in and out of the shared home. Nesting may provide the consistency many children need when experiencing a parental divorce.

If your divorce proves amicable, and you are in a financial place to continue house payments on your marital home, nesting may allow for a smooth transition for your children.

Nesting may help your child

Studies show that the emotional effects divorce has on a child's mental development is striking. When divorce occurs between parents - which it does for approximately 55 percent of children younger than 17 - relationships with various family members may be strained.

If children experience the parents' animosity during divorce, their own emotional needs might be neglected or affect parents themselves. Often, children feel like they have to choose spending time with one parent over the other.

If parents continue to have contact through the family home, however, they may not take notice of a breaking relationship and avoid choosing the more entertaining home.

Same schools, same home

Traditional custody arrangements usually involve routine pick-ups and drop-offs of children at individual parents' homes. With nesting, parents both have individual apartments or houses. During their custody time, they live with their children at home.

Staying at the same school and in the same activities may prove essential to decreasing the emotional trauma of divorce for a child. Aside from either parent leaving the home for a period of time, their life follows the same routine.

Financial commitment and cooperation

For nesting to be feasible, your family must be in a financial state to keep up the family home and purchase individual space for each parent.

Just as essential as the means to pay, parents should cooperate with one another. Should you choose to nest during divorce proceedings and beyond, a relationship in which collaboration is at the forefront provides not only a smooth transition from marriage to nesting, but it also creates a positive environment for you, your ex-spouse and your children.

Done right, nesting may prove to be a seamless choice for helping your children through divorce.

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