Divorce Inside Out: Kathleen Brigham’s Unique Bird-Nesting Life

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Episode Description

When Kathleen Brigham and her husband divorced, they did something most parents never do – they “bird nested.”  What’s more, not only did they bird nest during their divorce, but they continued to rotate in and out of their family home for years after their divorce, all while their children stayed put.

In this podcast episode, Kathleen Brigham walks us through her personal bird nesting journey, providing a profound insight into the practicalities and nuances of this co-parenting strategy. We talk about where parents stay when they're not with their kids, how to structure bird nesting for success, and how this arrangement can bring stability for kids during a challenging transition.

If you’ve ever wondered whether bird nesting was a viable co-parenting option in your divorce, this podcast episode is for you. It dives deeply into what bird nesting is, what you need to do to make it work, and how to decide whether it’s truly for you … or not.

Show Notes

About Kathleen

Kathleen Brigham graduated from Middlebury College and has a Master's from Columbia Teacher's College. She completed her divorce mediation certification from The Center for Mediation and Training. Kathleen created Brigham Advising after going through her own divorce and finding it difficult to map a productive path between tough talking lawyers, well-meaning therapists and supportive but uneasy friends and family. Kathleen’s advising is designed to be a catalyst to creating a personal divorce plan, with or without nesting, and to accelerate the path to resolution and peace.

Connect with Kathleen

You can learn more about Kathleen and her work on her website Brigham Learning.  You can connect with Kathleen on LinkedIn at Kathleen Brigham, on Facebook at Brigham Learning and on Instagram at Brigham Learning.  Kathleen’s book, co-written with her current husband, Chris Dugan, “The Nesting Experiment” is available on Amazon.

Key Takeaways From This Episode with Kathleen

  • Bird nesting or nesting refers to an arrangement where the children of divorcing parents stay in the family home full-time, while the parents rotate in and out to parent.
  • The children have stability and consistency while the parents move between the family home and alternate living arrangements.
  • Kathleen and her ex-husband nested with their young children ages 4-13. Her ex-husband stayed in a small apartment when not at the family home. Kathleen stayed with friends/family or in another apartment when not home. 
  • Kathleen found nesting allowed her younger kids to maintain normalcy and not be uprooted. She also got more time with them than if they were going back and forth. The children had consistency in schedules, activities, homework, etc. 
  • Nesting requires a lot of coordination, communication, and some level of trust between the parents. Kathleen and her ex worked out detailed guidelines for their arrangement. Clear ground rules need to be set.
  • Potential downsides are that nesting can delay kids from fully grasping the reality of the divorce situation. And introducing new partners can be challenging.
  • Kathleen and her current husband Chris had both nested so they understood the complex coordination required with their combined 7 kids. 
  • They recommend nesting as an option but don't advise forcing an unwilling parent into it. Starting small and re-evaluating along the way is wise.
  • Overall, Kathleen felt nesting provided stability for her kids during a turbulent time, despite the challenges.  Her book "The Nesting Experiment" details her experience.
  • Do you like what you've heard? 

    Share the love so more people can benefit from this episode too!


    Divorce Inside Out: Kathleen Brigham's Unique Bird-Nesting Life


    nesting, stability, coordination, trust


    Karen Covy, Kathleen Brigham

    Karen Covy Host00:1

    Hello and welcome to Off the Fence, a podcast where we deconstruct difficult decision making so we can discover what keeps us stuck and, more importantly, how we can get unstuck and start making even tough decisions with confidence. I'm your host, Karen Covey, a former divorce lawyer, mediator and arbitrator, turned coach, author and entrepreneur. And now, without further ado, let's get on with the show. With me today is my guest, Kathleen Brigham. Kathleen graduated from Middlebury College and has a master's from Columbia Teachers College. She completed her divorce mediation certification from the Center for Mediation and Training. Kathleen created Brigham Advising after going through her own divorce and finding it difficult to map a productive path between tough talking lawyers, well-meaning therapists and supportive but uneasy friends and family. Her advising is designed to be a catalyst to creating a personal divorce plan and to accelerate the path to resolution and peace. Kathleen, welcome to the show.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest01:22

    Thank you, Karen, so happy to be here.

    Karen Covy Host01:24

    I am excited to have you because you and your husband, when you went through your divorce, did something a little bit no, a lot of bit unusual right, and this is something that the divorce professionals we talk about in our world but most people don't do it and that's something called bird nesting. So if you could just to start explain to the listeners what is nesting or bird nesting, what does it mean and why did you do it.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest01:53

    Okay. So yes, a lot of people refer to it as bird nesting now the term, sort of dropping the bird and going over to nesting but essentially what it means is that the children of the couple that is going through the separation or divorce stay in one place. They stay in one home and the X's or soon to be X's come and go, and that can look very different. It can be a house that's owned by one and the other comes and goes. It might be a joint home, but the basic premise behind it is that the children are not moving from home to home, right from their dads to their moms and back and forth, but that they have this solid, stable home and the X's are figuring out what that's all about and how they're going to share that space.

    Karen Covy Host02:42

    Okay, so this immediately brings up a host of questions for me. So, if I'm understanding this right, let's say that we're talking about a couple that's just starting a divorce process, right? So they've all lived in one home together, and so the idea is that home becomes the children's home and the husband and wife go in and out on a set schedule. Is that right?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest03:06

    That is right that is right, and you're right that usually they have a home right. You have a family unit mother, father, children usually and so when they're going through that separation, you figure out who's going to keep that home and that's a whole nother conversation. But that is the place where the children are going to stay.

    Karen Covy Host03:29

    So when the spouses are going in and out of this home the children's home when they're not in the children's home, where are they? Do they each have their own apartments? Do you have one apartment and share that so you're always in shared space? How does that work?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest03:47

    Really good question. What I would say is there's a whole spectrum here of how sort of many people's view how crazy this can get right. So I'm just going to give you my example and then we can I'll throw in some others examples of people that I've worked with. So my example is that I had the home and my soon to be ex found his own small apartment. Now at the time we were in New York City pretty pricey real estate, so this can often be a financial decision. There's no way that we're both going to have three, four bedroom apartments or something like that. So he got a smaller apartment and that was his.


    When I left on my not children nights, I did not go to his apartment and we can talk about where I went and it was sometimes difficult, or with a friend or different things but I was not going to go live in his apartment. I will tell you there are situations where the soon to be exes decide on a sort of a shared apartment and they do that. That was extreme for me. I did not want to do that. I was willing to leave the home and let my ex husband come in and be with the children, but when I left. I decided where I wanted to go.

    Karen Covy Host05:03

    So it sounds like what you did was you would stay with friends or family or like, so you never really had your own space.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest05:12

    Yeah, so it was tricky in the beginning because you do it's like can you carry your suitcase to your friends or your sisters? I was really fortunate to have access to a New York City apartment through some very nice people that they were not using so I could go there. So I kind of did have that place, but it took all different and I moved around quite a bit. We didn't stay in the city the whole time and I eventually moved to the suburbs. But the point is it can be tricky. I think the whole premise of this bird nesting is it is uncomfortable, it is going to be uncomfortable.

    Karen Covy Host05:50

    And why is it that you made that decision? Because you could have, also if your husband had his own little apartment. I mean, you could have also made the more traditional, typical choice of you stay on the home with the kids and then, when he's got them on his parenting time, either they go somewhere else or they all camp in the living room or they, you know, like whatever that looks like, that they're with him when they're with him and they're with you and they're with you. Why make the choice that you made?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest06:21

    So when I was going through this, my children were quite young. Okay, the youngest was four and I have three children altogether, so they were between the sort of the ages of four and 12 and 13. And what I was seeing is that this was chaos. I mean, just having a family at this time, right, how many different activities do you have? Where's the homework, where's the soccer uniform, all this kind of thing. And, to be perfectly honest, it was a way of me keeping some control. I knew that if they were in this home everything was there. They weren't gonna forget their homework when they went to their dads. Their dad wasn't gonna know, you know, not know where the soccer uniform was, things like that.


    So initially I sort of had this gut feeling that I wanna keep these kids in a very comfortable and safe and stable environment. So that's where it stemmed it really did stem from. I had had friends that had gone through a divorce. I had seen sort of the sad little suitcases being packed and going down the street and I just really didn't want that. And, I'll be honest, it was a way of protecting, and we can talk about whether or not that's always a good thing or not, but it was a way of protecting my children from really kind of always understanding exactly what was going on. Oh, mom's here, dad's here, but I'm still here. I still have my toys and my stuffed animal. My friend can come over and I know that schedule it's not like. Are you your dad's tonight? Are you your mom's? Like we could have play dates, we could organize all of this and it was all in one place.

    Karen Covy Host08:00

    But that still takes organization right. So you must have had, like, some sort of a family calendar because, like, for example, if you're organizing that play date for tomorrow but you're not the parent that's going to be there tomorrow, you've got to make sure that your spouse knows that he's okay with it, that he knows what his responsibilities are, what he's walking into when he's walking in the door and what you're walking out at. Like there's still a lot of coordination.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest08:28

    I would think an enormous amount of coordination. But if you think about it, there's even more coordination. If I'm the one saying, hey, tomorrow night is dad's night, get your bag packed, where's your uniform, where your ballet shoes, things like that, that also takes an enormous amount of coordination and I think a lot of this. People would say, wow, you're really a pushover. Are you really doing a lot for your ex-husband? I don't really understand it and I kept saying I'm not. I'm actually just doing a lot for my kids. I really am just keeping them focused.


    I have a share Google calendar. I would literally leave a very long text for my ex saying, hey, this is what the homework, this kind of thing. Here's the night unfolding. I'm out. I wouldn't always have conversations. I don't think you need to get on the phone and do that. It could be a shared Google calendar. It could be just a whiteboard with. Here are the things, the highlights of the night, whatever it is. But the truth of the matter is, in a divorce normally it's not equal right. There's usually one who is doing the caretaking more than the other, and no matter if you're living together or living apart or moving the kids back and forth from two homes. There's someone who has to be the coordinator, and that was me.

    Karen Covy Host09:46

    Yeah, so tell me about, if you don't mind sharing, what was your schedule Like. How many nights a week were you in the house? How many nights a week was he in the house?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest09:54

    Yeah, good question. So in a traditional divorce you often get the Wednesday night and then the every other weekend sort of situation. Our kids were really really young, as I had mentioned, so I suggested to our mediator that we have the Wednesday night but that in the very beginning we split the. We even split the weekends. So Friday night with dad, Saturday night with mom, the next weekend, Friday night with mom, Saturday night with dad.


    It gets tricky and I'm not sure that that was really necessary maybe, but I thought at the time they were so young that a weekend was a really long time away from a parent. So that's just what we did for a while and then it morphed into the every other weekend. But if you can just imagine a Wednesday and I had a much more flexible work schedule at the time so I was the one sort of doing the school pickup and things like that so I would get them in place on a Wednesday, get them started on their homework. For a while we had to share babysitter and I think this was a real saving moment for me. I would have that babysitter stick around for that transition time, that 15, 20 minutes, and I'd head out and say goodbye to the kids, they're all set.


    I'd give our sitter sort of the plans and then I would leave because I, you know look, I'm not a robot I didn't need to have that interaction every time he, you know, was coming into my house. So there are things that I set up to make it a little easier on myself. And I would do the same for the times where he came in on the weekends. And let's just be clear, because people always say this like, where is this person sleeping? This sounds crazy, you know. No, he's not. I'm not coming in my bedroom, he's not sleeping in my bed, he's downstairs with the kids, honestly camping out with them most of the time. My husband, my current husband, did the same with his family, which is when we met with such an interesting point of connection for us, and they had, like a guest, you know, sort of room down in the basement, so he would go into his ex-wife's home and be in the basement.

    Karen Covy Host12:08

    So they're all sort of different versions, okay this is wild that you were bird nesting and you met another guy who was bird nesting and the two of you. So how in the name of heaven did you coordinate two families schedules like this?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest12:25

    yeah, insane. And this is where the book came from, because the two of us sat down finally and said we have to write about this experience of what we did because, you know, my husband, Chris, is coordinating with his four children and his ex-wife, I'm coordinating with my ex-husband and my three kids and it just, I mean, it takes a lot of organization. It's such a funny mix. It takes kind of organization with flexibility. You can't get too rigid, you know. You can't sit here and just say it. The plan has to be the plan right. And again, I think the most important thing for me was to always just keep saying what's gonna be better for these three. You know, let's just take him out of the picture, cause there are times where, like this, I don't wanna do this anymore. I just can't do this.

    Karen Covy Host13:17

    You know Well, you and your ex-husband must get along to some. I mean, you don't have. You might not be besties, but you've gotta have some level of cooperation. To pull this off, I would think you do, you do.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest13:33

    And what I explain to people is the story is not important. You know we're not gonna sit here and judge for rate, from one to 10, how difficult someone's divorce was compared to someone else's, which I got a lot of those questions literally. You know, oh, it must have not been so bad for you in order for you to do this, and I'm just saying that's not what we're discussing. You know that's not the point, but you're right, you have to decide whether or not you want to stay angry and maybe make someone pay for it, make it not easy for them. Or again, and I'm not some martyr here, I just really I literally put things on my mirror to remind me. This is about the kids. I would just keep focusing on that, but we did work out a pretty respectful relationship. I mean, even today, you know, we'll see each other at the sidelines of sports games and things like that. Our kids are much older, but we did really manage to work out a respectful relationship.

    Karen Covy Host14:37

    Well, how did you do that? I mean all right, so you had one time picturing from what you said, you had your own bedroom. Did you have a lock on it?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest14:45

    So in the book actually, we have a quiz that you can take about the different levels. Basically it's are you a candidate for nesting? And one of the questions is there has to be a certain level of trust. If I thought my husband, my ex, was going to come in and rummage through my personal things, no, it would not work. Now, on the flip side, did I do a clean sweep before he came? Yes, I would go down, ok, my bills and my place I put it upstairs, I would shut the door. So I wasn't just all let's just see how this go and all trusting, but I did think if I can't trust him enough to come in the home, then this isn't going to work.

    Karen Covy Host15:33

    This isn't going to work 100%. So that brings up the next question of besides. It sounds like if a couple is considering doing this, there obviously has to be that base level of trust that neither one of you is going to rifle through the other one's things. But beyond that, what else qualifies somebody to, or would make somebody a good candidate for, doing this kind of thing, and what qualities or characteristics would make somebody a really bad candidate to do this? Good, question.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest16:09

    So, off the bat, anything that you feel in danger, threatened, physical harm, emotional none of that. That's off the table. When I work with families, even when they come to me and they're sort of in the early stages of figuring out separation and divorce, many of them will come and say we only want to do mediation, we only want to do mediation, which I think is a great starting point. But if I know and I can see quickly that somebody is drawing a line in the sand and they're not going to move, there's no mediation. It's all about compromise. So I think the same sort of litmus test can be applied to nesting. If you don't feel that sort of ability to trust somebody, then we're done.


    The other sort of smaller things that I often put into a kind of a parenting plan or parenting agreement you have to have some sort of set of rules around this. You can't come in and polish off the ice cream and not finish it. You can't make a mess. You can't leave dishes. You can't say and this could happen anywhere, don't worry about your homework. I mean, you have to really have.


    I think and I'm sure you found this in your work the clearer and more detailed you are in all of this, the smoother it goes. So don't leave it all open-ended Like, yeah, come on over See how it goes, open my fridge, take what you want. We had conversations. You bring food into the home. You do not. You don't use my home. So if you're making dinner for the kids, you bring over the stuff for the tacos or you bring in the takeout. You don't just open up. Those are really important conversations to have beforehand, and if you're finding, if couples are finding, that they're just arguing through all of that minutia, it's just not going to work. So I just want to also say sorry to interrupt, but there's a big range of nesting here. Not everybody has to do this crazy sort of dance that I did. They're different versions. I mean, one of the versions could be just allow the ex to come in and maybe make dinner for his kids and you go out. Yeah.

    Karen Covy Host18:30

    So it sounds like, though, you have these conversations, but how far did you go? Did you go so far as to say, OK, we're going to write all the rules down? Or were they just conversations?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest18:44

    No, no, no. We had conversations that then became a parenting agreement, a parenting plan, and it put in all kinds of things. I mean, I felt very strongly that no other come into my home. You've got other nights for that, that's fine. We don't introduce a new person. This is parent child time. This isn't time to meet the girlfriend. So I'm happy to share it with you and you completely even put it in the show notes. But I was very and I'm saying I because I did write it I was very detailed with it and then my ex was very good about agreeing to it and saying this makes sense. I agree, a few things that we bump up against, but yeah, I get it.

    Karen Covy Host19:32

    So what would you do or say Because I know now you coach other people going through a divorce. You're also a mediator, right, and you help people create plans. What would you say to the circumstance where one person really truly believes in their heart this will be best for the children, but the other parent either doesn't want to do it or they're bullying or they're whatever. Can you coerce somebody to do it? Should you coerce someone into doing this kind of arrangement?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest20:06

    Excuse me, you're asking such perfect questions. No, you can't, you can't, and that is really one of the more heartbreaking situations for me. So what I do is I really meet and advise one of a couple who are going through divorce and I will explain different situations and then I will you know if they need more. I will then refer them to someone like yourself, right? So those early conversations, we have a lot and they come in with such high hopes and you know, even I've read about.


    You know Gwyneth and you know her. You know she talks a lot about this. You know uncoupling and things like that, and I want to do it. And that is the most heartbreaking thing to see. One parent really, really want to do it and the other parent usually because they just can't get over that person entering their physical space, you know. So I think that's a hard one, but you can't, can't coerce, because again, then, what are you starting to work? What are you starting to work from?


    I often explain to parents look, let's not put a timeline on this, you know, and you can't say I want to nest for the next five years, or I mean, I did nest for a long time, but start small. Don't make any promises to your kids hey, mom and dad are going to do this forever. Or mom and dad are even going to do this until you really have these clear conversations and maybe you start really small, which is let's try this for a couple of weeks, you know, let's see how it goes, and then it, and then it changes. But to your point, that is a hard conversation to have with some of my clients where this isn't, this isn't going to work.

    Karen Covy Host21:43

    Yeah, and you know. What else is unique about your situation is that you did this for a very long time, as you mentioned right. So most people. As a divorce professional, this has been an option that I've known about for years and years and years and years, but it's usually something that I would want to or recommend that a client do for a very short period of time, like in that you're just getting divorced or you're going through the divorce process time, so maybe three months, six months and then after that, it's just it gives the kids chance to adjust and then it gives the parents a chance to figure out their next steps and blah, blah, blah. And you did this for years, years. A how did you manage that? Because you moved, like you said a couple of times.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest22:30

    I did do it for a very long time. Again, that age group of the kids really was an influence on me. They weren't independent. Honestly, selfishly, I got a lot more time with the kids. Okay, let's just talk about a scenario that might have happened which is separate no nesting with dad.


    Well, if dad's job is pretty intense and he's not going to be getting home until later, then it's really the babysitter. So I knew with my job situation that was more flexible that if I sort of agreed to have that time and I'll be here through the transition, I got that time. It was me instead of a in a sitter, and actually we put that in our agreement that anytime you couldn't meet your obligation, first refusal went to the parent and then a babysitter would be brought in. We got into a pretty decent routine. I was in the area where the schools were, so a lot of this was scheduling and just made sense. But I look back on it now and I think you know some days I think I'm not quite sure how we did it.


    I'm very fortunate, sort of halfway through my nesting work, actually even earlier, to meet my husband Chris.


    So there was this other life that I had and I just really I was very clean and separate about like this is my time with my kids.


    Now this is very separate and I think for my ex-husband his work schedule and things like that it honestly it suited him, not that he didn't want more time with the kids, but he didn't have a flexible job, so for him he also was sort of like I like that my kids are with their mom instead of, you know, a sitter or something like that. But to answer your question more specifically, like why keep allowing him into the home, was the comfort I saw with my children. You know, there is something quite wonderful about having them either in the middle of an activity or in the middle of a play date or whatever it might be, or having that spontaneity of like I'm going to run down the street oh no, no, you got to be back by this time because it's you know and then this beautiful blending would happen. I would sort of disappear and dad would show up and they just kept carrying on with their day, you know, and that was really wonderful to see happen for them.

    Karen Covy Host25:11

    So I have to ask you the next question, because now you're on the other side of this. Now your nesting is over, your kids are older. Your current husband's kids, I would assume they're older too. Right, looking backwards, what effect did the nesting have on your kids, positive and negative?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest25:32

    So I think the positive is sort of what I mentioned, that they were able to carry on in their lives. You know, sometimes we would laugh because, like one time, for instance, the a friend knocked on the door and my ex-husband answered the door and he's, the kid is like wait, I'm so confused, like what are you doing here? And my son was like what's my dad? He's here, whatever, come on in. You know, it was so sort of normal for them that I think it allowed them to do what they should do at those ages was to just worry about themselves. That's what it's all about, right.


    But I think some of the negatives and my husband has brought this up in his situation especially is that it kind of allowed this normalcy that maybe the kids didn't quite get. Wait, they're not. Not that they knew, they knew we were divorced, they knew we weren't together, but in a way it doesn't have the kids deal with reality right away. So I think for some of the older students who might older children, who need to kind of grasp that they got to live in sort of a pretend land for a while and I think that can be a little tricky. So if you're going to do it, I think you have to bring in more conversation around mom and dad or not together, not to give them reasons why. How are you doing checking in? Because it does feel a little. It feels a little fake sometimes, like, oh, this is my house, these are my parents, and sometimes that idea of like oh no, they're really divorced doesn't quite hit them as hard.

    Karen Covy Host27:01

    Well, I would think that when it would hit them hard would be as you were finding the new person to be with Do you think you experienced I know it's hard to say how many bumps in the road you would have experienced if you had lived differently. But given where you were and how you were bird nesting and he was bird nesting, did you find from either set of children more resistance to your new relationship because of what you just said?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest27:32

    Yeah, good point. Yes, yes, Because you know you're sort of like on the outskirts, right, you're not involved in their day to day life and you sort of show up on a weekend and you know who's this person. So it's hard to judge from my vantage point, because that's just what happened if we had been, you know, not nesting, or if, say, we started living together earlier or anything like that. So, yeah, I think there's definitely some. I mean, I joke with my stepkids now because, you know, in the first couple of years, you know, they just did not want to talk to me, you know, and now we have wonderful relationships, but I was like, oh, that was, that was rough in the beginning, you know, and that could be from this, even not nesting, we just we didn't live together. So that just being  separate, so it's a good point, I think that. I think you're  accurate about that.

    Karen Covy Host28:20

    How did you manage the schedules, like, did you and he try to find you try to coordinate the schedules so that you always had somebody's kids, or that there were times you didn't have anybody's kids, or how did you do that?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest28:35

    More often that we had. No, we had none. We tried to get that weekend just for ourselves. We tried to get our X's with their kids, with, you know, with our kids at the same time, so that we can then have that weekend together. That's pretty much what we did. And then, you know, I mean there's seven of these children, so blending them was, you know, a big, a big challenge, and we did it very, very slowly.

    Karen Covy Host29:01

    Yeah, and now, from where you sit? Now everything's are smooth blended, no more nesting, and are you happy with your decisions?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest29:11

    I'm really happy with my decisions. I think when I read in the book like three out of the seven participated in the book and when you read their reflections afterwards and how grateful they are, and you know, for instance, my stepdaughter, when she went to college and then met some people there of her good friends who were divorced, she didn't realize. She was like, oh wow, I really had it pretty good, you know. So I think, looking at that now, I mean I'm not saying it's all you know, sit around and skip and sing, but it is a pretty nice group of people and I think because our kids weren't forced under the same roof at these very difficult ages, which would have been like from four to 17, they've developed their own independent relationships with each other which are really authentic and really nice. It's not just like, oh, we're a Christmas again. You know, with them it's been, it's been slow, but it's been really, really like sort of good and real connections.

    Karen Covy Host30:11

    That's beautiful and you mentioned your book. Can you tell me a little bit more about your book? And, by the way, I just have to let's I have to read the title. I love it. The nesting experiment. Two divorces, seven kids and six years of uncomfortable cohabitation. That is the best title ever.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest30:30

    Yeah, it was pretty funny. You know, we got a lot of questions when we were doing this. So we would, you know wherever Chris and I were and people would ask and then they'd say, wait, you both do this, we, you know. It would just eyes would be bulging out of heads and things like that. So we sort of started journaling and then we thought, you know, this could be really useful for people. So we did a mixture of our stories.


    Do you kind of get to know where our crazy story came from? But then sort of what are some practical and real life applications that could be useful for you? So are you a good candidate for nesting? What are the pitfalls you have to think about when you should maybe unravel and not nest anymore? And it's in both our voices and if anyone cares to read it, you will find out that we are very, two, very different people and have very different takes on it. But it was really helpful because, for instance, hearing Chris's story about going into see, going into his ex-wife's home and seeing his kids really gave me sort of an insight and a little bit of empathy for my own ex-husband. Oh, that's not always easy to go in and see the pictures have been removed or you know, someone else's shoes are there, whatever it might be. So it really both of us were kind of like barometers for what the other side was feeling.

    Karen Covy Host31:53

    Yeah, that is beautiful. Well, I would highly recommend that people get your book. I mean, it's just if they're even just a teeny bit considering doing this, because I would expect that there were a lot of things when you started you just didn't think about. You know, you kind of had to feel your way through it.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest32:13

    Mm, hmm. And so in writing the book we're like, oh, we really we really wish we had made that rule about, you know, putting away the peanut butter or whatever it might be. Back then Like, oh well, we can put that in the book, even if we didn't quite think of it back then.

    Karen Covy Host32:28

    Yeah, that makes so much sense. This has been such an enlightening and unusual conversation. I have really enjoyed it. So if you know for people out there who are listening, if they want to connect with you or if they want to get a copy of your book, where can they do that? Where's the best place to find you?

    Kathleen Brigham Guest32:45

    Well, you can find the book on Amazon The Nesting Experiments. You can just Google Brigham Advising and you'll find me, and you can find me on Instagram. But really looking for the website is the easiest place because you can sign up for a free consultation there if you just want to hear more or discuss or anything like that. That's a good starting point and that's. You know, as I said, I just I really like to work with people as they're going through the process and then, when it sort of gets really difficult or more complex, I pass them off to people like you  know well.

    Karen Covy Host33:20

    Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom here and enlightening people that you know life isn't always black and white. There's not always just one choice, the typical traditional choice that you and your you know, your ex-husband and your current husband and his ex-husband, like everybody, made different decisions and they led to an outcome that seems to have worked out really well and that it's a choice for people to make. So thank you so much for sharing your experience, your wisdom and, for those of you out there who are watching or listening, if you like this, if you enjoyed the podcast, if you want to see and hear more of this, give this a thumbs up. Please like, subscribe, share and I look forward to talking to you again next time.

    Kathleen Brigham Guest34:05

    Thanks so much, Karen. Thanks for having me.

    Karen Covy Host34:09

    You're welcome, Kathleen. It's been my pleasure.

    Head shot of Karen Covy in an Orange jacket smiling at the camera with her hand on her chin.

    Karen Covy is a Divorce Coach, Lawyer, Mediator, Author, and Speaker. She coaches high net worth professionals and successful business owners to make hard decisions about their marriage with confidence, and to navigate divorce with dignity.  She speaks and writes about decision-making, divorce, and living life on your terms. To connect with Karen and discover how she can help you, CLICK HERE.


    children and divorce, dealing with divorce, divorce advice, divorce tips, effect of divorce on children

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