How A Family Law Attorney Can Help

Unconventional Ways To Co-Parent After A Divorce

Divorce is difficult for everyone, but it can be especially difficult for couples with children. There are many different custody arrangements divorced parents can make, but there are some you may not have heard about. Here are a few unconventional custody arrangements for divorced parents.

1. Co-Parenting

In most traditional custody arrangements, one parent will receive primary custody (often this is the mother) and the other will have partial custody or visitation rights. While this arrangement may work for some—if one parent lives far away, for example—it is not ideal for all. Co-parenting is a pleasant alternative where the parents choose 50/50 custody.

As women have begun to join the workforce in higher numbers, co-parenting is becoming a great alternative for households with 2 working parents. There are, however, a few things parents must take into consideration before committing to this arrangement.

  • Proximity – where you live will be essential in determining if this if right for you. Because children need to be near their schools, traveling long distances multiple times per week is not an option. Co-parenting families should ideally live within the same neighborhood.
  • Costs – how much each parent makes should be a big factor in your deliberation process. Because a large economic disparity creates stress on divorced parent households, earning somewhat similar wages is desirable. Co-parenting is also much more expensive than other arrangements because you need 2 primary residences.
  • Scheduling – determining what feels like a fair division of time is very difficult. Each parent wants to have the most time possible with their children, but it is also important to limit the children's travel time between houses so they're not forced to live out of a suitcase.
  • Parenting Style – different parents may have different ways of parenting, but it is important for co-parents to work together, even when the child is not at their house. Because this parenting arrangement takes a lot of teamwork, parents should be on amicable terms.

2. Bird Nesting

"Bird nesting" is a unique new child care arrangement that more and more divorced parents are looking into. This is when the children stay put in a primary house, and the parents rotate who stays with them. Parents who choose bird nesting are putting the needs and stability of their children before their own personal comfort because, as this bird nesting mother puts it, the parents can easily begin to feel like they're living out of a suitcase.

Bird nesting parents can decide whether or not to have separate outside dwellings, or have a joint apartment where they each go while the other is in the primary home. The difficulty with bird nesting is the added tension of shared chores and bills that the divorced parents will have to deal with together. But if you are up to the challenge, bird nesting may be a great way to keep your family in a beloved, comfortable, and familiar home.

Though these unconventional custody agreements will most likely be settled out of court, if is still necessary to have a family or divorce lawyer present at the official negotiations. Consult your divorce attorney about these custody arrangements if they seem like they might be right for your family. To find out more about the divorce, speak with someone like Law office of Kristine A. Michael, P.C.