According to TMZ, actress Anne Dudek has filed for divorce from her husband, Matthew Heller. The couple has been married nearly eight years. They have two children, Akiva, 7, and Saskia, 4.
Dudek has starred in several popular television shows including Mad Men, Big Love, House and Covert Affairs. Heller is an artist.
The divorce paperwork filed by Dudek indicates that the couple wants to share legal and physical custody of the children. The interesting element, however, is the physical custody will involve the children living in one house and Dudek and Heller rotating in and out every few days.
The Cooperative Parenting Institute refers to this type of custody arrangement as “nesting.” It allows the children to remain in the marital home while the parents rotate and live with them during their parenting time. The idea is that nesting reduces the amount of change the children must deal with and thereby lowering the stress they feel from the divorce. It places the disruption and inconvenience of shuffling around on the parents instead of the children.
The Cooperative Parenting Institute website states that “[b]esides the advantage of creating continuity, the children do not need to carry items back and forth between households and, there is no need to purchase duplicate items or worry about leaving hockey equipment or math books behind. The children keep their friendships, their neighbors and the majority of their life remains as familiar as possible.”
Of course, nesting is not for everyone. There are numerous disadvantages to this type of custody arrangement such as neither parent has real privacy with their children. Additionally, the parents must be mature, child-focused, and able to communicate on a wide variety of issues. Neither parent can make unilateral decisions regarding their children nor about the marital home, so effective communication is necessary to avoid a complete breakdown of the arrangement.
If you are interested in learning more about nesting or other unique child custody arrangements, we can help.
If you need assistance with your divorce, contact the Men’s Divorce Law Firm today. Our approach to family law is quite simple: we listen to you; we return your calls promptly; we keep you prepared and informed; we respect your time; we understand your concerns; and, most importantly, we care.