Birdnesting” — Where the House Gets Custody of the ChildrenWhatever happened to the simple days of Kramer vs. Kramer? The 1979 movie reflected a social transformation which happened in the 70s. Views about parenthood were changing, and couples were going through a “new method of divorce”.
Say hello to the modern divorce where the exes are just as likely to talk to each other over the table as through their attorneys. The most severe model is “birdnesting.”
“Mad Men” star Anne Dudek recently proclaimed her plans to birdnest with her ex, Matthew Heller. Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin came to up with a similar setup where Paltrow sleeps at their previous home.
Manhattan attorneys say that numerous pairs are asking about the idea.
Wendy Paris, 40, lately left Hoboken for Santa Monica. Before the transcontinental move, she remained in the Brownstone, formerly known as ‘home,’ while her ex found a small place closeby. The two pledged to meals under around the same table and their 8-year old spends nighttime in the apartment. “I don’t want to make him feel displaced,” explains Paris, writer of “Splitopia.”
Kevin, a 38-year old instructor on the Upper West Side, birdnested with his ex for almost a year. They wanted to avoid rushing the disposal of the two-bedroom flat they divided with their 4-year old.
To trim costs on their evenings “off,” the pair gets creative and couch-surfs using a cobbled-together network of friends. “I t was a tough year,” John says. “But in looking back, I think it helps us transition into being fully divorced.”
Birdnesting is a new idea. The idea is used by some divorcing parents as they hope to create as small an uproar as possible, for their kids, after a divorce.
Think of it as a situation where the parents rotate in and out of the house, and the house gets custody of the kid.
Each parent gets a new resident for themselves and shares visitation which permits the kids to skip the divorce stage of having to adjust to unfamiliar homes.
Birdnesting Will Work If:
1. You can afford the costs of maintaining both a family home and a separate place to live.
2. You both want to avoid disruption to your kid’s lives.
3. A civil-co-parenting agreement exists between you and your ex.
4. Household rules and household expenses have been discussed, and both of you know how they will be handled.
Birdnesting Won’t Work If:
1. Either of you are strapped for cash. Nesting is expensive. It won’t be easy if you are continually stressed about the money.
2. You maintain an adversarial relationship with your ex. If you can’t endure the sight of them, don’t even consider nesting.
Questions For Both of You to Explore
1. Who will hold the title to the house during the nesting period?
2. Who will be responsible for the mortgage payments?
3. What results if one of the individuals can’t bear their portion of the mortgage?
4. When will nesting end and the house be sold?
5. Who — and how — will repairs to the house be handled?
6. Who is going to clean what?
7. Who is going to skip work if a kid is sick?
8. Can you co-parent and still own a home together?
Co-parenting is tough. Add birdnesting to the mixing bowl and co-parenting becomes even harder. Birdnesting takes parents whose chief goal is to keep the kid’s best interests in mind.