how do prepare my daughter for over night stays at her daddies?

Erica - posted on 06/11/2009 ( 12 moms have responded )

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shes never been away from me for more then a few hours. except when i had my son. and that was a nightmare. She screamed and cryed half the night. now my SOB of a husband wants her everyother weekend. if the judge approves. then she starts staying the night.. not sure what to do. please help

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User - posted on 06/17/2009

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Looks like really good advice from moms above, My little one is 3 and we have her own suitcase which always contains a photo album of me and her, a bible(even though he won't read it to her), a voice recording of me singing you are my sunshine, her favorite blanket, and her choice of stuffed animals. I call every day at 4:00 until I pick her up on Sunday evening. This has been the same routine since she was one yr old. I also wrote down a complete routine that she was used to when he received the court ordered visitations. Her usual time to eat, snack, nap, sleep, and usual sleep routine, like we always read our Bible and say our prayers before sleep. So He will hopefully keep it as similar to her normal routine as possible.

Amy - posted on 06/17/2009

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I have been in your situation. My daughter has been going to her dad's for two weekends a month for 5 1/2 years, she was 1 years old when it started. He is JUST NOW starting to get better. In the beginning I packed all the diapers, food, meds, clothes, snacks, as if we were going on a vacation. When she was 5 we met at McDonald's, I would get her a happy meal and let her play until her dad showed up because he can't tell time and is always late. Now at 7 we get a pedicure until he graces us with his presence. You must distract them and make the switch as fast and easy as possible, had over the bad, hug and kiss, and get out of there. One day he arrived and asked me for money to feed her for the weekend and to gas up his car. I was a mess the entire time she was gone. All you can do is pray that God watches over them and keeps them safe. I made them call me at bedtime to check in.
It does get better. Now I take her to him on Friday after school and pick her up no later than 1 pm Sunday afternoon. She has a special daddy's house backpack with EVERYTHING she could possible need. Most Sundays when I pick her up she is a monster because the little princess has been in complete control and ruled the ruste for 48 hours. "Disneyland Daddy" refers to weekend parents that have no rules, boundaries, routines and think pizza and french fries are healthy meals. I use to worry that she was so different, but now after all a few years, she craves coming home to me. I am her rock. I meet her needs. She loves her daddy, but needs me! I pick her up and let her ramble about her weekend with a fake smile and play the part. We have a healthy dinner, bath and go to bed early. I give her lots of hugs and tell her that I missed her, BUT that I was very busy myself. You MUST fake that you are ok with this. She NEEDS you to be ok with this, so she can love her daddy and her mommy at the same time and not feel guilty.
My little Hannah would be so nervous about seeing her daddy she would throw up in the car on the way there or have the runs when I'd pick her up. When you are a little kid TIME=LOVE. Remember that no matter how hard it is for your baby to be away from you. They need to know that their daddy loves them. Her dad didn't love me, but he loves his kid!
I used to send a note in the bag with detailed instructions as well as an inventory list of the things in the backpack that need to come back home with her.
Now I don't have to do that at all. She hardly ever calls me and I love my kid free weekends.
No matter how big of an idiot he is at being a parent, he will ALWAYS be her daddy. Don't EVER say a single negative word about him in front of her, because she must make up her own mind about him. If he is selfish, he will eventually let her down. If he is absent, he will eventually not show up. If he is late, he will eventually miss her game, concert, etc. If he can't manage money, he will promise her things and never buy them.
But you can are the one that will always be there...send him a video tape of the game/concert. You can teacher her how to tell time. You can go to www.orangekids.com and teach her how to save money and you can help her buy the things she wants without the help of her dad. Teach her that strong, smart woman can do things all by themselves.
let him have his little weekends and one day a week. You will be OK!

Tracey - posted on 06/15/2009

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I am not sure where you are but in Queensland Australia we can request that he does a parenting class before the sleep over stage. I agree with the mum above that said to set it up during the week as a special time and something to look forward to for her sake. The more you can show it is possitive the better she will see the event. It si a shame that he will most likely play the good time dad and set you up to be the mean one who makes her eat her vegies. It is also no fair that mean get to treat thier kids like toys to be taken of the shelf and played with when they are in the mood and our children are th ones who have to pay the price. I will keep my fingers crossed that he has grown up and at last realizes that he is missing out on a wonderful thing and is read to step up. good luck with that lol

Erica - posted on 06/14/2009

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my husband was never home for more the 20 mins at a time and never came home till after the kids were in bed it been like this for 2 1/2yrs. my daughter is three so is used to not having him around. hr never hod any time for our kids and know he want to play daddy. she saw he dad for 3 hours tues and he took the from10am-8pm. no more then that cause he never asked for them more. he took me to court for yhey everyother weekend and one day a week. right after i filed for support.. this was the first weekend i had them all weekend and she was my normal little girl again. when shes with him her personility doae COMEPLEY 360. AND THAT WORRIES ME.

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Is it a problem because she doesn't spend all that much away from you, or doesn't spend much time with Daddy? If its the latter and especially if she's only young,I'd try to suggest to your ex to spend only days with her first, to get her used to being with him and the time away from you.A court should take this into consideration

Kimberly - posted on 06/13/2009

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I have a 7 yr. old who has to go through this... Yes, the priority is the child as mother's we know this and protecting them is what we do best... Pack her over-night bag with everything she would need if she were at home. Don't expect that those things will be waiting for her or that the father will even comprehend that she will need or want them!!! Label her things and write a list of her routines her likes and dislikes. I also send food for her and try and talk to the father and ask him to let her come home or ask him to please allow the child to call you... It sucks you will worry and you will have to learn how to get through it for the children.... Peace between the both of you is the best way no matter how much hate there is put the face on for the children.... Also talk nicely about her dad and pump her up to how much fun it will be!!! Good luck

Kendra - posted on 06/13/2009

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i made a share box with my daughter ,use old shoe box ,decorate it together ,then she can put in special things from home to share with both you and dad.

Syteria - posted on 06/13/2009

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You can always pretend to sleep over at Daddy's before it actually happens. That way it will has a name. This would seem like a big event to her. When she actually does it you can celebrate. This usually makes a transition like this easier.

Rhonda - posted on 06/13/2009

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don't force her to go. let her make the decision send her stuff but let him know if she wants to come home let her or she will feel that much worse when she has to see him thinking he will force her to stay the idea is for her to feel safe and secure enough to stay with him he needs to work her up to it. Tell him to pick her up in the am and keep for the day and if she wants to come bring her then next time try to keep her a bit longer so she can get used to the idea of being away from you and know that she will be able to come home eventually she will ask to stay. been through this already myself. He also needs to give her her own space at his place with some toys clothes and maybe a blanket and pillow from your house so she feels it is an extention of your home and not a place she is forced to be her comfort is the most important not his. if that doesnt work tell him to get over it he's not the important one she is and she comes first. hope it works out

Erica - posted on 06/12/2009

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the prob is he doin this to make himself look good he cares nothing for them or whats best. he just want to see me hurt.

Steph - posted on 06/12/2009

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i have no experience of this but if my ex ever wanted her to stay over, i guess i would tell her that i will ring to say good night and i'll ring u at bed time and pray that he has a terrible night that he'll suggest waiting till she's older. or start at the beginning of the week saying how fun it'll b to b staying over at daddies. and make it seem like a good thing

Kegan - posted on 06/12/2009

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make sure she has something familiar like a doll also will help if she has her own bag to carry. Speak to her about what a big girl thing it is. and tell her that she can phone you when she needs to. And tell your SOB that he must to what is best for her. if she wants to come back let her ,ask him to try her on one night first build up to a weekend. Ask him to do something exciting with her like take her to MCdonalds.

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