How do I handle my daughter going back and forth at only 3mo old

Jenny - posted on 11/07/2012 ( 10 moms have responded )

16

0

0

My daughter is 3 months old, and has never been away from me for more than five hours at a time. Her father never even made one phone call throughout the entire pregnancy and I have been doing it on my own for the past year. And I LOVE it. A few weeks ago though I got served papers. He is taking me to court for joint custody. Out of nowhere. He now has her overnight once a week and every other weekend. I am so scared of what this will do to my daughter and how she will handle it. It breaks my heart. I am literally crying every day worried sick. She's not going to understand what is going on.. all she will know is that she's not home and that mommy's not there. If anyone else has gone through the same thing I really need some advice right now on how to cope with her being away from me for so long. It is heartbreaking to say the least. I know that I have to eventually find a way to handle it, but right now it seems like the end of the world.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Angi - posted on 11/08/2012

12

0

0

My daughter's father did the same thing, asked for full days and nights when she was still an infant. Fight it! They should not do that to a breastfed infant. You have to show that you do want him to have a relationship with her, though -- just not such long times right away. Go to court with your own proposal for a schedule that starts with him meeting her in your presence, then an hir at a time several days a week, and work up gradually from there. No overnights until she's well over a year old, no full weekends until she's at least preschool age (3 or 4). But plenty of frequent shorter visits.



You will need a lawyer. Get one, no matter how much you have to pay. Your daughter is worth it. I was able to find the writings of an expert on the needs of breastfed infants and young children in custody situations, and that helped a lot. I think her name was Liz Baldwin, but this was 1997-8, so I'm not sure she's still around. Google. Bring in whatever you can find on the needs of breastfed and attachment-parented children. You should be able to support your case and get a schedule that makes a lot more sense for your baby.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

10 Comments

View replies by

Mary - posted on 11/12/2012

4

2

0

Hi Jenny, I also live in Iowa and went through something very similar to you with my dd father. I hate to tell you it will be an uphill battle. Iowa does very much take fathers rights into consideration and typically side on the side of the father as far as visitation/extended visits. I also learned this the hard way - my dd is now almost 16 and no matter what anyone says it does not get any easier! Iowa does not have a children's bill of rights as some states have, which makes it much much harder to stop/lessen the time spent with dad. I do believe some fathers do deserve to see their children and I believe some do not - it comes down to the intentions behind the wanting of visits. Of course, as moms we feel we are the best caregiver for our children and rightfully so we should be! I do however believe that there are excellent fathers out there too! You will find in time which your "sperm donor" is, he will either step up to the plate and be an excellent father or I'm sure the novelty of having a child will wear off and you will be able to go back to your normal life. As far as the judge not allowing overnight visits, I doubt that will happen. Unfortunately not everyone looks at the best thing for the child...

Jenny - posted on 11/09/2012

16

0

0

Hey Angi, what types of documents did you need to bring in to court? Because I have found many websites and posts online about the development of young infants being in jeopardy with such long overnight stays, but I am not sure how to use them in court. How do I get official studies and such? And do I need to actually try to contact experts and have them write me things?



Also I do have a lawyer.. she basically said there is not much I can do because it is his right as a father.. I asked her about infants, especially breastfed, being completely dependent upon their mothers.. and she said the judge already knows all that so there is no point to re-iterate.



And the order has already been made so I don't know if they will re-do it with less time, but I really, really hope so. He could come see her every day as long as it wasn't overnight. That's what I'm most concerned about. Especially the Friday through Sundays. That kills me.

[deleted account]

All these answers are excellent answers You also need to check and see if he's leaving her with someone else while in his care. Her being with the father is equally important for bonding purposes but if he's off and gone all the time and she is with a sitter more times then the normal hours... might be leaverage to re-negociate visitation schedule until she is older.

Jenny - posted on 11/08/2012

16

0

0

Hey Amanda, I live in Iowa. And I didn't think the court would allow that either with her being so young. But he got a Father's Right's lawyer, and right now they are more concerned about his rights than the best interests of our daughter. It sucks and it's really hard not to hate him for it. He's getting Tuesday overnights and Friday through Sunday. It just seems really unfair to her.

Whitney - posted on 11/08/2012

33

14

0

It's easier on babies. My daughter went with her father for the first time for a weekend right after she turned 2. He was never there beforehand. I was more upset then her. She cried when I first left but when I called to say goodnight she was fine. She'll be OK. Don't stress yourself.

Dove - posted on 11/08/2012

6,366

0

1337

♥ I'm sorry you have to go through this, but Jodi is right. She is so young that she will adapt quickly and visits with her father will just be a normal part of her life.

Amanda - posted on 11/08/2012

377

33

2

where do you live????? I know in Texas babies that young are not allowed overnight visits.... not until they are 3 years old

Jenny - posted on 11/07/2012

16

0

0

Thanks so much, I really appreciate the advice. That's what I've been trying to tell myself.

Jodi - posted on 11/07/2012

26,465

36

3891

Your daughter will be fine, children are very resilient. She is only 3 months old and she will adjust. I think you will find it will be harder on you than on your daughter. Do you think my children were all upset when I went off at that age and left them for a full day with their father? No they didn't. So I assure you, your daughter won't be upset by it at this point in her life. It is actually probably a better age to get her to adjust to the arrangement than it would be in a few more months.



With regard to how you are feeling, you will adjust too, and you will eventually learn to enjoy your time. Find a hobby, or use it to go out with friends. Consider it time for you, and use it wisely. Hey, it might even be a way for you to catch up on much needed sleep!!



Good luck!

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms