Custody Battle of a Newborn- please share your thoughts...

Danielle - posted on 12/17/2009 ( 238 moms have responded )

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My cousin had her baby this week and the father wants 50/50 (her one week, him one week) custody of the baby. He is her ex-boyfriend. This ding dong doesn't understand that a NEWBORN can't be away from his mother for a whole week at a time. THEN...to top it off because she said no, she wont do that, he threatens to take the baby away completely!!! What an idiot...the state of Texas wont even take a baby from a drug user/addict alot of the time much less a regular person. He thinks he's better suited since he owns a home/makes $100,000+ a year and she makes less than half of that and has an apartment. He's already hired a lawyer and about to file a suit, she can't afford a lawyer and Is scared to death that he'll win. It's hard enough to raise a baby on your own, then to have someone putting all of this stress on you and trying to take him away. Share your thoughts please, be brutally honest.

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Jodi - posted on 12/17/2009

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Quoting Nancy:

In Canada the courts start at 50/50 because it has been shown time and time again to be in the best interest of the child. Breast milk can be pumped, and formula can be used. I'm not sure what the laws are where you live, but custody is a very emotional thing, and it is always difficult to separate what we, as parents, want vs what is best for the baby. If this man wants 50/50 custody, good for him!



Actually, if I were a breastfeeding mother, I would totally argue against you on this one.  Yes, breast milk can be pumped, but (1) pumping is not nearly as efficient as actually breastfeeding and often results in having to supplement, (2) not being around the crying baby for extended periods can decrease the production of breast milk, our hormones are trained to respond to our baby's cries, and (3) feeding from a bottle on a regular basis can make a baby lazy and can cause it to reject the breast altogether.  None of this is in the best interests of the child. 

Karen - posted on 12/26/2009

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Why are we all assuming that the Dad is (pick any one of a number of insults that have been posted) just because he wants to have 50/50 custody. A ton of assumptions are being made due to people's biases, stereotypes, bad experiences, etc. And "he sounds like the type?" and this is a "custody battle". This doesn't need to be a battle if pre-conceived notions related to gender, etc. are checked at the door. I think the assumptions might be feeding into the Dad's reaction because a lot of the posters (and a lot of Moms I have run into over the year) assume that Men either can't or won't do what needs to be done. The medical argument that Breast Milk is best is valid, but that does not mean that it can't be pumped. The fact that Dad has a certain income does not mean that he will automatically have someone else care for the child during the day. And, it seems to be a double standard since it's OK for Moms to go BTW after Maternity leave and put the baby in day care, but it's not OK for Dad to do the same thing? Nowhere in the post does it say that the Mom would be home full-time, so why is it OK for her to do what seems to be horrible for Dad to do? Could it be that Dad has the type of job that is more flexible? Could it be that he is willing to work only when the baby is sleeping like many WAHMs do? Again, people are assuming that Dad won't or can't do it. There is a huge double standard being followed here. I know many men who are better with the children and do provide the majority of care. I think that both parents need to be open-minded here, quit thinking of it as a battle, and do what is best for the child. It could be 50/50, it could be unlimited visitation, it could be exclusively BF, it could be pumping, it could be formula, it could be a combination of everything. What needs to happen is that biases and preconceptions related to gender or past experiences need to be checked at the door and work it out as civilized adults. Women have yet to corner the market on parenting or knowing completely what is best for kids, but that attitude will drive the man away and then we'll be complaining that he isn't stepping up. How is that best for the child???

Kate CP - posted on 12/18/2009

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Quoting Nancy:

In Canada, it has been shown and researched and yes, 50/50 custody is where the courts START with Canadian family law.
Yes, having a newborn is very stressful, but if the parents are not together, when can the father bond with his child unless he is given just as much access as the mother. Having a good strong bond with both parents is what is best for the child.
Sometimes mothers die in childbirth and the fathers take care of a newborn all by themselves, so it is possible.
This would hurt me too if I was the mother, but I see custody battles all the time in the work I do, it almost always gets ugly, and the kids end up hurting. T
he best thing for the CHILD is to have equal access to her parents. Every child has the right to know and bond with both her parents. Period.


Right now this baby can't even see across the room. She's too young to understand what is going on. Developmentally she needs the warmth and comfort and nutrition of her mother MORE than a snuggle from Daddy. When the child is older and not quite so dependent on Mom then I can see sharing custody. But if Daddy wants to see the baby right now he needs to be nice to Mom and ask if he can visit during the day when baby is awake.

Vicky - posted on 12/19/2009

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I live in Texas (Houston area) and am going through a divorce. My marriage was rocky before we became pregnant, but the pregnancy happened after divorce papers were filed. My lawyer bailed on me (long story that's irrelevant) and most other lawyers wanted $3000 for a retainer, which, after my son was born, I had NO money for even gas sometimes. Have her contact the Attorney General. They will represent the CHILD and help to ensure that the custody arrangements are addressed and fairly done. I did not take this route though, I was able to receive financial assistance so that allowed me to hire an attorney.

In this difficult period, this is what I learned - there are lawyers in Texas that work pro-bono, but you have to search for them. There are also people willing to help a person out financially, which she could talk with her employer's HR department, her church, or any organization with whom she's involved. Document everything and do as much research as she can. Get books and become an informed and involved client - the less work the lawyer has to do, the cheaper it is. The way to achieve that is if your cousin does her homework.

Regarding Child Support/Custody - it depends on the county where they will be filing, but the courts will encourage both parties to work it out as much as possible. If it becomes evident that this won't happen, I believe the state has a pretty standard custody arrangement. Alternating weekend visitations with one night during the week. If I understand correctly, I don't think the state will grant what the father is looking for - weekly custody - until the child is over 3 years of age. After that, alternating holidays and a few weeks out of the summer. All of this is dependent of course on the distance between the mother and the father.

As far as the father moving on the custody, he's in full rights to do this. The State of Texas does not proceed with divorces during pregnancy, so I would assume this includes custody/child support cases as well. I would hope that, while she was enjoying her pregnancy, she was also preparing for this. Whatever the situation, please plan on helping her out quite a bit with the emotions and adjustments of welcoming her bundle of joy. This will be an extremely difficult time for her to cope with legal issues on top of adjusting to the baby. I highly advocate that she seeks psychological counseling. She'll need to separate her emotions as much as she can during the proceedings. Of all things, she needs to keep her child's best interests in her heart and in her mind. The difficulties she goes through now will make her stronger and more capable of raising her child, especially if the focus she has is the baby. I was able to find this link to the State Bar. It has some references that should be able to guide her to the help she may be seeking:



http://www.texasbar.com/Template.cfm?Sec...



I wish you, her, and the baby all the best of luck. I hope this helps and I hope that you keep us informed with how things work out for her.

Tracey - posted on 12/26/2009

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i had similar problems with my ex wanting to take my 8 month old who was brest fed on weekends for the whole weekend, i said it wasnt going to happen and it didnt.

Im in australia so im not sure how it would work in the states but the courts are very unlikely to take a baby from its mother no matter, the ex would have to prove your cousin an un fit mother and that the baby is in imediate danger for them to take the baby away. Aslong as she can prove that she can provide a safe home and provide for the childs needs she shouldnt have any problems. She should also try looking for legal aid, we have a service that provides free legal advice and representation for people who cant afford it, ask comunity groups and the government welfare dept and church grooups if they can help. it is probably the worst thing to happen to a mum and is majorly stressfull the suport of friends and family helps alot and what your doing for her is a great thing good luck to you both

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Jodi - posted on 12/26/2009

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Ladies, I would like to thank you for your input. The OP hasn't been back for seceral days (and several pages of this discussion), so the thread will be locked. I'm sure she appreciates the input from all of you.

Jodi Adams
CoM Moderator

Marva - posted on 12/26/2009

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I cannot see any separation of mother and baby happening here, except he has some concrete evidence to present against her to the court to show that she would or is an unfit mother.

Carrol - posted on 12/26/2009

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for once we need to stop thinking about the mother and the father.they are consenting adults who get themselves in this mess.the matter at this moment is what is in the best interest of the child.how can both parent come together to be good parents to ensure that this child gets the best,.put aside your selfish desire.costody is just a matter of trying to be in control.put aside anger and control. mother and father and make a decision as what is best for the child.breast feeding is important in the first 3 months of life.seperation would be unfair for the child from the mother.no child sholud be denied that because of parental differences.mother was given this ability to breast feed by the creator.no law should change that.the child being with its mother does not stop the father from being a good supportive father.i must say i admire the father for wanting to be involve in the child's life.you can.please dont use costody as a means of control and intimidation on the mom.if you are so rich.use the legal feed to give the mother a good life so your child can be comfortable.good luck.

Elaine - posted on 12/26/2009

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First I'm sorry you are going through this. 2nd, I would not let that baby go with him until its in writing that you are the custodial parent or he could not return the baby and make you file to get her back and that could take months. If you dont have the means to do that, then it could take longer. Without the papers, trust me that could happen. 3rd, you have to find a lawyer and you could put it in there that he must pay the costs because you are willing to accomidate a schedule for visitation. Its good he wants to be in her life, even 50/50 but when the baby is well adjusted and old enough. I have read that age is about 3 years old before long stays. Good luck with that situation and dont let that baby go till its in writing!

[deleted account]

omg some guys can't be that stupid surelly, the baby needs to be with the mother 24hrs a day to breastfeed in order to have a good start in life. It is in the best interest of the child to stay with its mother and the father should be able to visit maybe a couple of hours a week NOT by himself the mother and some support person should be present. The courts in Australia would never support taking the baby from its mother so early in life.

Greta - posted on 12/26/2009

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She should call Lawyers office request free services and contact legal aid for services.

Laurel - posted on 12/26/2009

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Tell that guy to jump off of a bridge because there is no way that a newborn is going to be seperated from the mother from that long. He's stupid because the court is going to order him to pay a large amount in child support to help her out. He's going to be allowed visitation, but whatever. She does not have to worry because the medical argument is that breast milk is always best for the child, which means mommmy has to have baby if possible. She should call the court system and ask what paperwork she needs to file for a custody and child support hearing. She also should not let him take the child anywhere until the courts decide. Have them play in another room or something. If he gets the baby, he doesn't have to give it back, and he sounds like the type. Also document her attempts to be reasonable (emails and notes instead of calling) because it will be good for court. His lawyer is probably not telling him that he's going to win, but that he will push for whatever because he's willing to pay. Good luck

Laura - posted on 12/26/2009

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In CA he would end up with a huge child support payment and she could move up! BUT, unless she is nursing the baby, she will have a battle on her hands as dads do get 50/50 often times if they are capable. If she has nothing to hide, the court typically talks to both persons and theoretically tries to decide what is best for the child...it is considered that infants need their moms and older kids need both parents. He is likely to get some sort of custody though. It would be in her best interest to support the father knowing and bonding with the child while defending the infants need for maternal bonding. Do they live in close proximity? Either person could hire an outside mediator who does extensive research into both persons (not superficial things like degrees of education, but thin gs that will harm or benefit the child(ren) and makes recommendations to the court that are almost always accepted as the rule. My opinions are based on CALIF, not TX though...so not sure. I would be betting that as a consevative, traditionalist state, mothers have general respect unless evidence supports the mother's inadequate abilities to parent safely and in the child's best, long term interest.

Gene & Erin - posted on 12/26/2009

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Okay, I haven't read every post on here but I'll tell you what I know from experience.

1. Document - if he/she talk and what was discusses. If Dad does come visit the baby and how it went. If he (or his parents/girlfriend) visit &/or give something to the baby.

It really doesn't have to be in great detail but she needs records.

2. Get that free consultation with a lawyer - most lawyers do this. If she can't afford them they may know one more affordable or willing to work out a payment plan.

And don't be afraid to ask family for help on this one! You need a lawyer - they know stuff!

3. Write down what she does want the dad to have. When can he visit now. At what age can he get visits alone/overnight. How would she like the visitation set up? Then have a back-up plan. That way you have something to offer the judge so that the court sees that your not trying to keep the kid away from this parent but do what you feel is best - the back-up plan is so you have something else in case they do want to "fight". the judge will see you've "tried"

4. Pray! I know that my children are God's. He has intrusted them to me - BUT sometimes there are things beyond my control. I have to remind myself (LOTS!) that God shelters them and trust HIM to watch them when they HAVE to be with people I'd rather they not spend 24 hours with. So far, so good.



Examples: In my divorce I had full custody and gave him (we didn't go to court thankfully, but a judge still had to sign off) visitation with our oldest 2 once a month (he doesn't live close by) and with the younger two in my home until they were 18 months old.

My friend's baby-daddy got Saturday afternoons until the baby was 6 month old (and she didn't breastfeed) then he got a little more - working up to overnight at 12 months then entire weekends later.

Another mom had been out of her kids lives for 2 years (had to clean up) she now has supervised visitation only and has stepped up over a period of months from an afternoon, to whole days, to overnight - the plan is that by next year, if she "acts right" she will have UNsupervised regular weekend visitation - or something. And these are grade school kids - not babies. But the dad made an offer to her in court instead of just hoping the judge would side with him and do what he wanted.



Be prepared to share all with your lawyer! You never know what may help.

Renee - posted on 12/26/2009

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As my attorney always told me.......You picked him. If she is breast feeding then no the baby needs to be with her. If not. There is no reason that Dad cannot provide half the care in a 50/50 situation. She needs to find an attorney. Most states have some law that protects newborns from parents that are unfit. It will involve custody investigators ect. But in the long run.....She picked him.

Mary - posted on 12/26/2009

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I would think if she's breastfeeding then he wouldn't stand a chance. What a jackass, he obviously has NO idea what it takes to take care of a newborn. How is he going to work if he has to feed the baby EVERY THREE HOURS???? Maybe she can open his eyes a little bit by reminding him that you can't even put a baby in daycare until they're six weeks therefore he would have to take every other week off of work. It makes me so sad for that baby...someone would have to pry him from my cold dead hands before they could take my baby away!

Michelle - posted on 12/26/2009

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unless he can prove her unable to care for the child he has very little chance of getting the baby. A judge may order visitation and also order he pay child support though.

Renee - posted on 12/26/2009

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Your cousin needs to start documenting everything,from his visit's to his threats. Sorry to say this,she is gonna have a battle. She needs to allow him to visit in her presence,or another responsible adults presence,& she is gonna have to be on her p's & q's all the time.

Anne - posted on 12/26/2009

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We were ordered to do this with our children after a divorce and it doe not work. It still causes arguments which are bad for the children, although ours were a little older. Besides when they become school age there is a lot of confusion over the homework and the child learns to manipulate the patents.

Nicole - posted on 12/26/2009

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That's hideous. Since she can't afford a lawyer, it would be smart to make an appeal to the judge based on a developmental level, and say that she's certainly be willing to revisit the issue at a later time. That way, she's coming across a reasonable in an unreasonable situation. If she's breast feeding, that could be helpful. It's a bit of a gamble, because a judge could say that fathers who have to raise babies alone without a mom around still do ok. True...but studies show that newborns need consistency in schedule and care, and a back and forth arrangement at such a young age isn't reasonable. It will be VERY unlikely that the Dad will win full custody-taking away maternal parental rights is a big deal. And, she should remember to ask for child support. She'll get it.

Kristen - posted on 12/25/2009

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I went through a similar situation. Except my ex didn't even want our child, he just wanted to fight just to say he did. And let me tell you it was a huge long fight. I had little money, but i got a good lawyer. We fought for nearly 2 years and now he doesn't even come around. It was horrible but it was definetly worth it and eventually things turned out ok. Just tell her to fight her hardest for what she believes is best for that child. And it'll be ok. Oh, and trust me the court will not see it as a good way for that child to grow up being with one parent one week and another parent the next. They are too young and get way too confused.

Mary - posted on 12/25/2009

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There is a Christian organization called Peacemakers that seeks to mediate between people before it becomes a legal issue. I don't know alot about them, to be honest. But assuming that your cousin and her baby's father want the best for the child, he might be willing to take that route rather than get the courts involved (or continue with the courts). Also, even if he didn't want to mediate, it would at the least show good faith on her part to try to meet him the the middle (50/50, if you will). My brutally honest opinion: there might be a different schedule that would work for both of them that might be close to a 50/50 arrangement. Dad's are important in kids' lives, and I wouldn't want to discourage involvement in any way.

http://www.peacemaker.net/site/c.aqKFLTO...

Deanise - posted on 12/25/2009

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They both need to understand it should be about whats best for the baby. This is a critical time for bonding, it doesnt matter to which parent it is, but to at least one of them. What does matter is that the baby not be jostled around at this young age until he is bonded to someone. I am not saying there should be no visitation because the child needs to know both parents, but he needs to form attachments now and through his first year so he does not have attachment disorders when he is older.

[deleted account]

I'm sorry but he deserves to be in the baby's life as much as she does. Is she breast feeding? Maybe they can come to a better solution. That he can visit the baby often until he/she gets a little older. if she tries to fight him he could make it worse. If she shows respect to him as the father perhaps he will come to understand how hard it really is to raise a child. The most important thing if they are both level headed people, is that this child knows that it is loved so very much by both parents. I am a mother of 2 now 26 and 22, divorced when they were 5 and 9. Their father has always been a part of their lives. I would never have taken that away from him. My kids love both of us equally as they should. If I would have kept them from him they would have grown to hate me for it not him.

Nina - posted on 12/25/2009

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The Real Question is how much Real time is mom going to with Baby and How much Real time is Dad going to be with baby when they are together ? At this precious time in a newborns life. If he has money to pay lawyers and the courts DO NOT UNDER ESTIMATE the system. Whats fair is fair as 50% whether he is a $$$ 100,000 dollar drug user. She got involved with him, so now she gets to be courageous By being Positive and asking God for protection over her self and her Baby and working with the Father. Being in Good heart is the hardest thing to do when you have child with someone who also needs God and guidance in his life. She and you get to be educated. Parentalrights.com Familyrightsradio.net Seek close mentoring. And by the way if you have a strong head and heart it is your RIGHT TO REPRESENT yourself along with all your family, friends Testifying and Standing behind Her in the courts. Remember that the universe is a very powerful being, if you want it bad enough you will get it. Be Humble and pure in Heart.

Lise - posted on 12/25/2009

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I think that sort of an arrangement is detrimental for a 10 year old. I can't imagine it with a newborn! How heartbreaking for her and the child.

Tonya - posted on 12/25/2009

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Keep a journal far and for most. A judge likes to know exactly what goes on when someone appears in court. This way if you have dates and documents as well as witnesses the judge will know you are not lying. If you have to tape a conversation per say face to face no telephone that is considered phone tapping and can get you into big trouble then do so incase your states allows that. If he is threating and harrassing or stalking get an ex parte on him. Do not leave the baby with anyone that is associated with him so he does not know the baby's where abouts. If she is stressed it could cause low milk supply I know my husband wants me to stop breast feeding so he is stressing me causing my milk to be low so I do not have a choice but to quit. Watch all surroundings when out if he is acting stupid chances are he will attempt something. Call all attorney's ask for anyone who does pro bono - for free chances are there will be someone who will want to listen to the case and help. As for the pumping of milk yeah she can but chances are there will be times when all the baby wants to do is suck from mommy not take a bottle how will this be resolved if this happens say at bedtime. My son does this from time to time and the only way to satisfy him is let him nurse from me if not he cries like he is in pain for hours. I wish her the best of luck.

Regina - posted on 12/25/2009

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She might be able to get some help for the College Grads looking to do cases that are just coming out of law school. They will usually do free or a very low cost to get a first hand look at the different cases that they will be going to do. She might look at the phone books to look at local law schools in her area. Or even some lawyers will direct her into the right area most will do free session if she goes in and talks to them and tell them everything that is going on.

Jamie - posted on 12/25/2009

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First of all he has to prove her unfit and then prove that he would be a better parent to the child. Having money and owning a home doesnt say he knows what he is doing. So juss tell her to stay strong and that the judge will appoint her an attourney.

[deleted account]

fathers that want to be part of the babies live is good......if the father wanted nothing to do with the baby the mother would be whinging......i am a mother of three boys ,my oldest son had a daughter when he and his ex were 16 and it has been a fight since day 1 for him to see his daughter,but she is happy to put their daughter in child care with strangers or now even the newest ex boyfriend gets to spend more time with my sons daughter that what he does .......

Rebecca - posted on 12/25/2009

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i hope all goes well but if she is going to breast feed then she should pump and send it with him even if they have to meet to get it everyday or every other day

Kristi - posted on 12/25/2009

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I know it's hard to think about the money for.an attorney, but she can be appointed one. Do not let him have 50/50. If I have learned anything from my divorce.... It's not to let him have 50/50. Especially with a newborn. She could do 50/ and still be the custodial parent with him having visitation. My situation is ... 4yr old stays with me all day, visits dad on Mon, thurs, nights from 5-9 comes home. Spends every other weekend with him. It is still very difficult. She needs to try for full custody, then she makes all decisions for the child.

Barbara - posted on 12/25/2009

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Even new born babies need stability. it is not a good idea to keep trading the baby like it is a new toy. The better parent shoule have custody, and the non custodial parent should have visiting rights until the child is at leasr4-5. Babies can suffer from separartion anxiety. They need a stable enviroment in order to thrive.

Katherine - posted on 12/25/2009

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PLEASE DO NOT FLAG BECAUSE YOU DISAGREE WITH SOMEONE!!!!!!! REFER TO OPINION VS PERSONAL ATTACK IF YOU ARE CONFUSED ON WHAT CONSTITUTES PERSONAL ATTACK. THERE WERE TWO FLAGGED POSTS IN THIS THREAD AND BOTH WERE OPINIONS.

Jenni - posted on 12/25/2009

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If he sues her for custody she can request a lawyer and that he has to pay the court and lawyer fees. I think 50 -50 is only fair but after she is breast feeds for a bit. He will be able to get overnights she will have to pump this day and age we have many kinds of breast pumps that work very well. I was a BFing mom of 4 kids and the hospitals even have ones you can rent or if your low income I believe they will loan them for free. Once school starts then the one week on one week off will not work unless they live in the same school district or can provide transportation back and forth. But she will need to pick one or the other to have the primary residency this is just so there is a legal address to apply for insurances and so the schools will have an address to make sure your going to the appropriate school for your area. So if she wants him to go to school where she lives she needs to ask that she gets primary residency yes someone has to have it even when its 50-50 custody.

Jennifer - posted on 12/25/2009

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Quoting Melanie:

I think most of you need to get your information from some where other then Opera and Dr. Phil. What mommy and Daddy need to do is get a 3rd pprson, someone that can keep then both cool, I do not recomend family. They need to meet in a public plce like Starbucks, and talk this trough. Chances are daddy did fill the paper work. They need to come to an agreement. Now this is very hard to do, mommy and daay need to let go of what ever happened to them, its done, its over, move on. Until they both move on they will not be able to make decisions for the best interest for the child. It can be done, but you have to think of what is BEST for the child and what you WANT!
Mommy needs to explain to daddy she is breastfeeding, but moomy needs to figure ut how daddy can see baby. Now someone sugested 4 hour visits a day with dady. Think about that, are you going to go over to his place for 4 hours, or have him over at yours? Do you even want to be around daddy for that long? Also mommy can't expect daddy to not be involved in his childs life fo 4 years while she breastfeeds. These are things
you have to ask.
You guys have a child together, you will always have to deal with each other, deal with it. Both Mommy and Daddy need to comunicate with each other. Comunication, thats the secert key to everything.



it was me who suggested 4 hourly visits as an example. yes i had thought about it and was hoping that the parents would be adult and civil enough to put their differences aside to be able to come to some sort of agreement. it was just an example of course when the baby is so young four hours is long so maybe start off as 1 or 2 hours until you ALL get use to it then extend as baby gets older.



 



"Mommy needs to explain to daddy she is breastfeeding, but moomy needs to figure ut how daddy can see baby"



i totally agree with you on this point there are to many mums that have commented on this and have blown it into a full argument on breast feeding and daddys rights. ARE WE NOT ALL ADULTS? we all  have our own opinion as to what she should do some of who have been through a similar situation and others who just want to offer support. Please dont argue amonst ourselves were here to support and encourage others.

Keion - posted on 12/25/2009

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The baby is not ready for that yet! Yes, he should have a right to see his baby but the week away from mom is not even practical! He should wait until the baby isn't breast feeding before he tries to make these kind of demands! He needs to do what's best for the baby!

[deleted account]

since when is the only benefit from breastfeeding the milk??? The act of breastfeeding and bonding is also very important. There are reams of studies on this. As a mom who breastfed both her kids, I wouldn't have done it any other way. The closeness you achieve with your child can't be duplicated with a bottle. I am not knocking moms who choose for whatever reason to bottle feed either. We make choices and compromise every day of our lives. I just know that for me, I WAS JUST NOT A SOURCE OF NUTRITION!

Gloria - posted on 12/25/2009

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Danielle,

Have her go to Family Court to get research on Texas Law. They will do this for FREE. He does not have the law on his side. Google: Texas Family Law

Gloria - posted on 12/25/2009

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And unless he earns that $100k at home with a nanny present-he'll be fighting for a few hours a night because he'll be working in the daytime and putting the infant in someone else's care.

Gloria - posted on 12/25/2009

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When one parent thinks they should have equal custody of a newborn because "they can afford it" brings up some serious red flags.



No good judge will grant an estranged man equal custody of an infant because of income and assets.



her best bet? BREASTFEED exclusively (wow-who'd have thunk???duh!) and get support from a lactation consultant and yes, family court can provide free/low-cost counsel for her.



How selfish of that man? Fighting just to win, regardless of baby's best interests. Studies show that baby can still bond with the father, but an estranged situation is not the same as with a father present. Any shared custody for longer than 5-6 hours should wait at least 9 months, in the case of breastfeeding and the waning of separation anxiety.

Gerri - posted on 12/25/2009

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I'm so sorry. It's very scary fighting for custody, especially if you can't afford to retain an attorney. Did she try to contact legal aid? I am in a custody battle of my own. If it wasn't for my parents who are paying my legal bills, I don't know what I'd do. I'm on disability and can't find a job. Good luck, and if you need a shoulder, I'll be here!

JoAnn - posted on 12/25/2009

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The most important thing here is that she does need an attorney. If she spends some time looking, she can probably find one who will take a retainer and then take payments on the rest. There probably is little chance of him winning custody if she is employed, has an adequate place to live and a reliable child care plan. However, a person who tries to go into a custody battle without legal representation will only come out on the short end. His attorney may well find ways to twist things she says and get her to say things that could end up hurting her cause. An attorney can help guide her through the process and make sure the playing field is even. She may even be able to get him to pay her attorney's fees if he's the one who files the lawsuit in the first place.

User - posted on 12/25/2009

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Quoting Jane:

Amanda if any father realy loves their baby he should leave the baby with the mother untill the baby can understand what is going on and he should forget about court all together



is that supposed to make sense? seriously i love you so i'm gonna leave you with this other person? hes' the father and has as much right as she does... she should of thought about having to share her child with him even 50/50 before she laid down with him

Jane - posted on 12/25/2009

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Amanda if any father realy loves their baby he should leave the baby with the mother untill the baby can understand what is going on and he should forget about court all together

Jane - posted on 12/25/2009

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it is not how much monie you earn and as for as the looking after the baby if he wants the baby he should wait untill atleast the baby is at leats 5 or six years old that while child is at school he can work between 9am and 2.30 pm but the baby should stay with the mother

Amanda - posted on 12/25/2009

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wow,what a dickhead.that poor woman,she must be out of her mind with worry.im with the father of my 3 kids and when mine were born i wouldnt let them out of my sight.As much of a good dad he is i just dont think men have the instincts a mum has,not with a newborn anyway.Does the father want to take the baby because he genuinely wants to or is it to upset the mum,maybe he s just being spiteful and enjoying the anguish he s causing the mum.either way what a bastard,i hope his money doesnt buy him the baby time that teuly belongs to the mum at this early stage of the babys life,unfortunately money talks,but hopefully common sense will prevail.Amanda

Amanda - posted on 12/25/2009

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wow,what a dickhead.that poor woman,she must be out of her mind with worry.im with the father of my 3 kids and when mine were born i wouldnt let them out of my sight.As much of a good dad he is i just dont think men have the instincts a mum has,not with a newborn anyway.Does the father want to take the baby because he genuinely wants to or is it to upset the mum,maybe he s just being spiteful and enjoying the anguish he s causing the mum.either way what a bastard,i hope his money doesnt buy him the baby time that teuly belongs to the mum at this early stage of the babys life,unfortunately money talks,but hopefully common sense will prevail.Amanda

Kerry - posted on 12/25/2009

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An earlier post said that the father earns $100,000, just who is going to be taking care of this baby when he is at work ? Its great that he says he wants to be involved but i think regular visitation is better than 1 week on 1 week off while the baby is so young

Jane - posted on 12/25/2009

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Quoting Danielle:

Custody Battle of a Newborn- please share your thoughts...

My cousin had her baby this week and the father wants 50/50 (her one week, him one week) custody of the baby. He is her ex-boyfriend. This ding dong doesn't understand that a NEWBORN can't be away from his mother for a whole week at a time. THEN...to top it off because she said no, she wont do that, he threatens to take the baby away completely!!! What an idiot...the state of Texas wont even take a baby from a drug user/addict alot of the time much less a regular person. He thinks he's better suited since he owns a home/makes $100,000+ a year and she makes less than half of that and has an apartment. He's already hired a lawyer and about to file a suit, she can't afford a lawyer and Is scared to death that he'll win. It's hard enough to raise a baby on your own, then to have someone putting all of this stress on you and trying to take him away. Share your thoughts please, be brutally honest.


Tell your cousin that there is nothing to being a single mother as i have a 19 year old daughter that has a (3) Three year old daughter and she is doing very good at bringing up a little girl that is so lovely kind and caring to every and my daughters x only see his daughter when it is up to him that might be once a year up to four times a year and I AM REALY PROUD OF MY DAUGHTER AND MY GRANDAUGHTER

Cheryl - posted on 12/24/2009

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you know what let him keep the baby for a week. Cause when he has to get up and change diapers in the middle of the night and do feedings. He won't last the week, before he is calling her saying come and get the baby.

Maria - posted on 12/24/2009

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This post really caught my attention and I'm glad I read this because you should let your cousin know to never underestimate a loser who you think can't get custody of a newborn or child. Losers think of clever ways before a baby is conceived to see what they can do. Maybe not in this situation but seems to me he has a plan. Why? If he really cares as a father the ding dong would know that the baby needs to be with his mother full time while an infant. I can't go into sharing my own experience because it

would take too long but this is what I would do if I was your cousin. 1) Don't discuss to anyone your friends or family to your plan of action. 2) Go straight to the social services and explain your fears that you as a mother is being threaten. Social services take these issues very seriously and they are not against a Mother when she goes for help. Usually there is a motive for wanting to take a small baby away from its mother.

Melanie - posted on 12/24/2009

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It is so very hard to prove a mother unfit. A father could Handel it sure!! but if he loved and cared for the well being of the child he would want what is best for the child, taking a new born from her mother after being in the womb for nine months would be traumatizing to the child. Guardian Adlitums can be requested to represent the child and a separate attorney for the mother. That way they will not look at the parents but at the child's well being!!

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