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A Child-Centered Solution to Co-Parenting During Separation and Divorce

by Ann Gold Buscho

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-50-721409-1
Publisher: Adams Media

A practical introduction to nesting, aimed at parents on the verge of living apart.

For couples considering separation or divorce, it can be difficult to calmly discuss future co-parenting plans. As licensed clinical psychologist Buscho explains in this well-structured debut, nesting is a way for such couples to reduce conflict while providing a consistent home for their children. The author defines it as “an arrangement where the children stay in the family home, and the parents rotate in and out for their scheduled parenting time.” When not on duty, the other parent lives either in a shared off-site residence, a different home, or in a separate area of the family residence. Buscho recognizes that only parents with considerable financial means can engage in nesting and that the arrangement is inappropriate for families suffering from problems involving substance abuse or domestic violence. But for certain families, she notes, the benefits of temporarily nesting during a turbulent time can be substantial. For example, it can allow the parent who has traditionally had less parenting time during the marriage to “develop closer ties with the children while ‘coming up to speed’ as a solo parent.” Buscho convincingly describes the potential benefits and shortcomings of this parenting method and addresses questions regarding budgeting, communication, and parents’ future romantic relationships. She also gives detailed instructions for creating a successful, personalized nesting agreement as well as valuable templates and worksheets that couples may use as they evolve into co-parents. Buscho also provides suggestions for self-care, which occasionally feel a bit simplistic. However, the author’s compassion and wisdom are evident throughout—in part because the author went through the nesting process herself when she and her husband divorced. “Case in Point” vignettes throughout feature specific families’ stories, allowing Buscho to include perspectives from different cultures and family structures.

A perceptive and essential guide to an uncommon family arrangement.