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Birdnesting Is a New Divorce Trend Among Families with Children

An unusual new trend has emerged among divorcing parents in New York and across the country. Instead of transferring the kids back and forth between the parents’ homes, parents are letting the kids stay put and instead shuffling themselves around.

This trend is known as birdnesting or bird’s nest custody. The way it usually works is that parents either agree to keep the marital home or establish a new home for the children who remain in this home full time, regardless of which parent has custody or visitation with them at any given time. Instead of moving the children every few days, the parents are the ones who do the moving.

When the parents aren’t in the home, they may rotate to a second, shared apartment. Other couples choose to maintain separate living spaces apart from the family home. In some cases, they stay with friends or family when they aren’t sleeping in the children’s home.

There are many advantages to bird’s nest custody. The children only need one set of clothes, one set of toys, and one bed each. They don’t need to pack up all their schoolwork, medications or chargers for their portable electronic devices every few days. Instead, everything stays right where kids are used to it being, offering them stability during what is often a difficult time. Some parents take the concept of stability even further, choosing to eat meals together as a family when possible.

These arrangements aren’t always permanent, however. Some families choose to do this for a year or two as children get used to the idea of a divorce, instead of forcing them to adjust to major changes all at once. For others, it may work as a long-term solution.

This type of arrangement works best when the parents are able to maintain a cordial relationship in spite of their marriage ending. To learn more about your custody options, speak with the compassionate and dedicated child custody attorneys at Jakubowski, Robertson, Maffei, Goldsmith & Tartaglia. We serve clients throughout New York City’s five boroughs.

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