It is not always easy to untangle a family situation when it looks like your marriage is ending, which is why more couples contemplating divorce are looking for alternatives as either short term or long term solutions. One example of such an alternative is known as a “bird’s nest” or “nesting” approach.

In this situation, the children stay in the home and the parents rotate in and out of either two different residences or within one shared home. There are some advantages to this if both spouses agree to work together. Household costs can be kept down, and toys and clothes do not have to be duplicated in separate homes. For children, the biggest benefit is in being able to maintain stability in their normal routine with regard to friends, the housing, and school.

In order for this solution to work during and after a divorce, both parents must be invested in putting aside conflicts in order to stay disciplined in bearing the brunt of change. Staying calm around the children is a must-do. For some couples, this cooperative approach works well because it minimizes disagreement between divorcing spouses, but it is not always so easy to separate what is best for the children from your own emotions. If you and your spouse are not in the right position to manage such a change, then the outcome could be worse than if you had moved into two houses from the outset.

It can also be confusing for children to understand the new relationship between their parents, so it might take some time to adjust and explain how this new arrangement is different. Children might have false hope that their parents will get back together again, so this issue should be approached with care and understanding. Jayson Lutzky is a divorce and family law attorney handling family child custody cases. He has over 32 years of experience as a lawyer and offers free in-person consultations to prospective clients. Visit to learn more about Mr. Lutzky and call 718-514-6619 to set up an appointment.