Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner might have decided to continue living together post-divorce, but they’re not doing so just yet. The couple announced last month that they had decided to end their 10-year marriage, but they assured fans they would “move forward with love and friendship.” It was later revealed that they planned to continue sharing a property in an effort to make the divorce easier on their three young children.
Although they will eventually be living on the same grounds, E! News reports that Affleck will temporarily rent Brooke Shields’ former Los Angeles mansion. He is believed to be moving into the home after Garner and their three children, Violet, Seraphina and Samuel, return home from Georgia, where Garner is filming “Miracles From Heaven.” Affleck will be living in the home temporarily while he and Garner’s 8,800-square-foot home is being renovated. The home is said to be a backup for the couple.
“It’s for convenience sake,” a source told E!. “They wanted another option.”
Shields’ home was purchased for $3.3 million in 1997. She and then-husband Andre Agassi bought the property together. They first put it on the market for rent in June, asking a whopping $30,000 per month. The massive mansion is said to be just a few doors down from Affleck and Garner’s marital home.
As we previously reported, Affleck and Garner have said their main focus following their split is their children. They hope to continue to co-parent to the best of their ability and are said to have been very honest with their kids about their separation. Sources told People Garner was “not sugarcoating” the details about their divorce one bit. Despite making the kids aware of the divorce, the couple believes living together on the same property is the best way to make the transition.
Although their decision is commendable, divorce attorneys Barry Slotnick and John Shea were not convinced it was the best option. Both told International Business Times exclusively that, in their experience, couples who choose to continue living together after divorce tend to run into problems when other relationships begin to form. Shea, a Massachusetts-based lawyer, said he fears the lack of physical separation will likely prove problematic as time passes.
"To me that's fraught with peril, because, while it may be commendable now, they've got young children and I understand that, but at some point I suspect both of them will have other relationships and it's kind of hard to have those additional relationships and have your former spouse living on the same grounds," he says. “You don’t have that separation physically that most people have and I think that, again, is fraught with peril.”
It is not yet clear when Garner and her children will return to California. Affleck was said to be staying on the grounds of the rental property his soon-to-be-ex-wife procured for herself and the children after their family trip to the Bahamas July 3.