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“Divorce is the psychological equivalent of a triple coronary by-pass. After such a monumental assault on the heart, it takes years to amend all the habits and attitudes that led up to it.”

-- Mary Kay Blakely

 

“Even though you may want to move forward in your life, you may have one foot on the brakes. In order to be free, we must learn how to let go. Release the hurt. Release the fear. Refuse to entertain your old pain. The energy it takes to hang onto the past is holding you back from a new life. What is it you would let go of today?"

-- Mary Manin Morrissey

 

“If we don’t stand up for children, then we don’t stand up for much.”

-- Marian Wright Edelman 


 

Welcome to KIDS STAY, a child-centered site for parents who are ending their marriage. The concept is simple. When parents divorce, their kids continue to reside in the family home while parents alternately move back and forth to parent their children in the home. Kids maintain their own room, their neighborhood, their pets, their friends and, to a degree, their sense of place and security. Parents, presumably adults, have greater ability to cope with changing residence and the inconvenience it imposes.

This strategy isn’t new, but it is infrequently used. We would like to share our long term experience and gather information and personal stories from others who have done something similar. This collaboration may become a book, a blog or simply a reference and a collection of stories. In any case we offer it to you as a place to learn from the experiences of parents, kids, lawyers, counselors, judges, doctors and others who regularly deal with the thorny issues that surround divorce and child custody.

Our own experience, that of Rob and Sandy, began fifteen years ago as our marriage was ending. Our daughter, Whitney, was eight years old at the time. We talked about this alternate-parenting-in the-home concept but could not find other parents who had ever accomplished this or anyone who had ever supported the idea legally. Despite our own unhappiness and unease with each other, we managed to work out a co-equal parenting plan that allowed each of us to be with and parent our daughter virtually every day. We continued that arrangement up until our daughter left for college. Our experience is detailed by Rob in the section, “Our Story/Chapter Narrative” with added commentary by Sandy and Whitney. We have also included the legal document we used and the schedule we maintained. In addition there is a video clip about our experience from the TV show, Extra. We’ve also included remarks from our lawyers and our judge.

Most importantly we hope you will share your experiences either with us personally or with our web audience in general. It doesn’t matter whether you are just thinking about the issue, are already divorced, are a child of divorcing parents or have another professional or personal interest. We want to hear from you, and if you like, post your comments. Divorce is tough, but our kids must come first. Please help.

 

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