Single Parent Downsizing Home Life
Right after my divorce separation, I moved into an apartment several miles from my ex-wife. She kept the marital house, and with it the close proximity to great schools, good neighbors, and close friends. My apartment was fine for everyday living, but it was so far from our old stomping grounds, I might as well have been in Siberia. Where children and divorce were concerned, my kids were decidedly not near anything else near and dear to their hearts.
And so a year after my divorce, I did all I could to buy back into the old neighborhood. I ended up three blocks from my ex – i.e. a short bike ride for my kids between the two homes. For the next nine years, my kids were close to school and their friends, no matter if they were in mom’s house or dad’s house.
Sadly, it wreaked havoc on my social life. You try being a middle-aged single man in the heart of suburbia. The neighborhood wasn’t exactly crawling with singles. (For some reason, I thought owning a home would have attracted women to me, the stable provider. Ha! Even calling all matchmakers didn’t help.)
With my daughter heading to college this fall, I am suddenly looking at a home where I will live full time, and my son will live half time. That’s a big space for 1 ½ men. And so I’m entertaining the notion of moving out of the neighborhood again, downsizing in the process.
Who would have guessed – my teen son is thrilled.
I’m not talking about moving hundreds of miles away. I had already considered the pros and cons of a divorced parent moving away. (The pros of living someplace outside of Silicon Valley with a lower cost of living and a slower paced life pale in comparison to forcing the kids to live solely with one parent.)
Instead, I’m looking at moving a few miles and changing my lifestyle. If it’s just me and a teen boy in the house, do I really need a yard to mow? He won’t be running around the lawn like a five-year-old. All he and his friends need are a TV with cable or dish, and a full fridge.Continued on the next page