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This parenting plan puts adaptation duty on mom and dad

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The end of a marriage can be difficult. In some cases, the dissolution may rip whole families apart. As we noted in one recent post, Michigan couples going through the process of divorce don't do so with the intention of breaking up the family. However, maintaining some semblance of normalcy requires adaptation.

What many might consider the common form of child custody plans involves each parent creating a separate home base and then having the children move from site to site on a set shared schedule. Many experts agree this model presents some challenges. The need to transition from place to place can put an emotional strain on all the parties. Everyone, including the children, are put under a lot of stress.

Some parents and experts feel that turmoil can be so detrimental to the children that it motivates finding new ways of approaching the issue. What might surprise some readers is one model that could literally be called, for the birds.

It goes by the label, bird's nest parenting. As the name implies, it is inspired by how many bird species care for their broods. The key feature of the plan is that it puts the greatest burden of adaptation on the parents. The original family home is kept. The parents find separate housing and return to the home nest on a set schedule.

As with nearly any new endeavor, there are pros and cons to consider. Experts agree that on the pro side, children suffer less disruption of their routines, creating an environment that is more conducive to normal development.

On the con side, it's likely that three homes, rather than two, will be needed to support the comings and goings. That can be costly. The time demands on the parents could also stifle their desires to get on with their own lives.

This leads some experts to conclude that bird's nesting may be viable for some couples on a short-term basis. But to win sign-off from the state, the court will have to be convinced it's in the best interest of the children. That is something an experienced attorney can help with.

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