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Infants and Separation

(45 Posts)
Brela Mon 01-Jun-20 06:55:08


I have come here for some advice and views.

My partner and I have a 9 month old baby and we have split up.

He wants to have her 50/50. He works full time and wants me to drop her off on Thursdays and then he will take her to nursery or a nanny on a Friday then have her the whole weekend every weekend.

I don't work at the moment and luckily don't need to until she is 2.

I am free to take care of her on the Friday. It doesn't sit well with me her going to him to straight to a nursery and I have said I don't want that arrangement.

I feel that she is too young to be moving about so much and then throwing nursery into the mix.

He is a great dad but a very controlling partner which is why I left with the help of a women's charity.

There is so much more to write but I don't want to write an essay and my main question is -

Do you think 50/50 of an infant is fair for
a baby?

It makes me feel sick that he is not taking into account her age and developmental stage but I don't know if I'm being too sensitive.

Thanks for taking the time to read this.


OP’s posts: |
lonelySam Mon 01-Jun-20 07:12:01

Don't agree to that nonsense, is he doing that because he doesn't want to pay maintenance? I think there was a rule for no sleepovers under two years old? Or did I read it wrong?

Cutangle Mon 01-Jun-20 07:14:51

Ask for this to be moved to relationships. There’s lots of women on there who have been through similar.

PeppaisaBitch Mon 01-Jun-20 08:39:39

I am sick of people saying the only reason a dad wants 50/50 is so they don't have maintenance. No wonder we dont have maternity equality when people still think like that. How hard is it to imagine a father having the same bond as a mother.

Op you need to be able to have a civil conversation about what you want and what is best for your child. Being able to talk will help create an effective co-parenting relationship. I don't think 50-50 is unreasonable but you need to find a solution you are both comfortable with.

millymollymoomoo Mon 01-Jun-20 12:59:56

I don’t think it’s overly unreasonable to be honest, although I’d probably question the every weekend part as that’s not something you’ll want once you do start working

It’s not popular opinion on here but I know several people who have gone about 60:40 with v young children and it’s worked out fine - and it wasn’t because dad only wanted them so not have to pay maintenance!

Of course I get that you will miss your child but regular overnight and consistent contact with dad should be seen as a positive ??

Cheyanne2013 Mon 01-Jun-20 21:47:01

Hi , I want my children’s dad to have his kids more then 4 days a month and start taking them over night but he’s telling me if I go court they would tell me because he’s a full time working man they will only make him see them for 4 hours on a Sunday

Ostanovka Mon 01-Jun-20 21:56:34

No, that's not fair on the baby. Why does he want her on Fridays if he's not even with her? I just had a quick search, here's a page with examples of timings of contact for different aged children.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 02-Jun-20 07:21:10

His is her care split currently? How does what for her?
If it went to court this what they would look at? It is about what's best for her maintaining a relationship with both parents whilst also making sure that she feels secure.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 02-Jun-20 07:22:03

Sorry I have been on call last night how is her care currently split? How much does he currently do for her?

PlanDeRaccordement Tue 02-Jun-20 07:43:06

I don’t think 50/50 is unreasonable with a baby. Dads can care for babies just as well as mothers can. If you were working and had the baby, the baby would go into childcare for your work hours. So I don’t see a problem with him using childcare on the Friday while he is at work as he will be paying for it. Also, it’s only 8 of the 24 hrs of Friday so he’s still spending the morning and evening and night with baby.

BeesElbows Tue 02-Jun-20 07:52:08

You’re not being too sensitive, you’re being appropriately sensitive to your baby’s needs. Please keep on doing that.

I seem to pop up on 50/50 threads as the resident doomsayer but I rarely see anyone else posting about this arrangement from their own personal experience as the child in the 50/50 set up. I lived like this from babyhood until I was 18. I hated it. My relationships with my parents are not easy now. It has affected how I parent too.
I was very unhappy, anxious and insecure as a child, I still have various emotional problems as an adult that I blame entirely on 50/50 custody.

I’m really sorry to be entirely negative about it but in my experience 50/50 is an awful burden to put on to a baby or child.
Your baby needs to be with you, her primary carer, her mother. Her dad can come to visit her with you there, at your place, for short times. Your child can have a lovely time doing that and can still build a great relationship with her dad one-on-one with slowly increasing time alone, when she’s older.

Sorry to be so blunt because I’m sure you’re both trying to do the right thing in your minds, but a great dad would have some respect for attachment. You don’t mention if you’re BF your baby, even if not though, that doesn’t make the baby portable for overnights, even if the dad used to do every night feed when you were together.

And also you say he’s a great dad but controlling, so that’s not a great dad. That’s someone with major red flags around him.
Your baby isn’t an asset to be split, I have lived that situation and for me personally it was very emotionally damaging. Your baby still has the same basic unchanging emotional needs as every other baby has. Whatever her parents’ relationship, living arrangements, and preferences are. Please carry on trusting your instincts because they are completely right.

millymollymoomoo Tue 02-Jun-20 08:39:08

I’m sorry but why should dad only get to visit his own child for a few hours with mum there? That’s ridiculous. No reason at all why baby us not ok and settled with dad away from mum!
Presuming he’s a present dad now ( as I’m a good bond? Your child knows him etc and he hasn’t been absent) dad would definitely get more time than that and away from your home

madcatladyforever Tue 02-Jun-20 08:42:01

No he's being a twat, go back to court and get a proper order, she is much too young to be carted about like a sack of potatoes.

madcatladyforever Tue 02-Jun-20 08:42:59

I think 50/50 is very wrong too, no child want to live like that.

Ginntoniconpause Tue 02-Jun-20 08:45:19

Why cant he pick her up after work on Friday's? I wouldn't agree to every weekend either.

millymollymoomoo Tue 02-Jun-20 12:33:39

Ok so dad can have residency then and mum can visit fir a few hours at dads house when he’s present? No? Thought not but it’s no different

BeesElbows Tue 02-Jun-20 16:03:01

Obviously the needs of the child must be paramount in any arrangement about access. Tbh personally I can only see exceptionally rare circumstances where 50/50 would serve the child’s best interests. So I hope court decisions are informed by evidence from talking to children about how they find this 50/50 two-centre life when they are making it their recommendation.

With that in mind, it seems quite odd, if 50/50 is neutral on children‘s interests or even preferable to other access arrangements, that nobody ever recommends putting in place constantly shifting locations and carers as a good way for us to bring up children in any other situation..

Most adults given the choice generally wouldn’t want to move constantly between two homes themselves and would miss not having a ‘main home’ even for a short time. So it’s odd to me that some adults- not all- would be perfectly happy for that to be a whole childhood for someone else. hmm

PicaK Tue 02-Jun-20 16:46:28

I've read courts take a dim view of parents who want the child only to put them into childcare for the majority of time WHEN there is a parent available.
Every weekend is also not fair.
But some overnights are understandable and to be encouraged tbh.
But don't let him bully you. Do make sure you are RP.

PlanDeRaccordement Tue 02-Jun-20 17:57:38

“if 50/50 is neutral on children‘s interests or even preferable to other access arrangements, that nobody ever recommends putting in place constantly shifting locations and carers as a good way for us to bring up children in any other situation..”

50/50 doesn’t have to result in shifting locations. There is nesting. Nesting is where the children stay in one home, and the parents swap out for their time. That is no different than a child with parents who are not divorced but work opposing schedules so that the child has minimum childcare.

PlanDeRaccordement Tue 02-Jun-20 18:00:35

Hit post too soon.
And on the carers thing, actually studies show that babies do better with both mother AND father for development. Children raised by one lone parent are more likely to do badly in school, engage in antisocial behaviours, and suffer mental disorders.

The studies about not having different carers was in relation to children in foster care or who are constantly switched between different child care settings. Not children with two primary carers who are their parents.

BeesElbows Tue 02-Jun-20 20:35:31

Agreed nesting sounds lovely and child centred. That’s not what is being proposed here.

BeesElbows Tue 02-Jun-20 20:40:14

We’re talking here about a baby not a child, so studies of children are a different matter.

Obviously there’s lots of reasons why children with single carers could be disadvantaged (in some ways, and not in all cases) but that doesn’t = best course is 50/50 custody for a baby with a man OP describes as ‘controlling’. hmm

BeesElbows Tue 02-Jun-20 20:53:56

This is from 2011 so not very recent but is an independent assessment of lots of different studies and it sums up some relevant issues so may be of interest OP.

See p8

Very young children
‘There has been debate, particularly in the US, about whether shared parenting is developmentally risky for infants and young children (Solomon & George 1999; Kelly & Lamb 2000; Warshak 2000; McIntosh et al 2010). Recent Australian research, drawing on national random samples found

‘Regardless of socio-economic background, parenting or inter-parental cooperation, shared overnight care of children under four years of age had an independent and deleterious impact....‘ (McIntosh et al 2010: 9)

This finding challenges the view that cooperation and goodwill are enough to make shared time ‘work’ regardless of children’s developmental stage. It is particularly worrying that even in cases with parental cooperation, very young children could be adversely affected by overnight agreements. These new data suggest that shared care has special risks for children under 4 years of age.’

millymollymoomoo Tue 02-Jun-20 21:12:18

Ok then baby can live with dad and mum can visit so as to avoid overnights? Why does it only have to be the mother ??

Op if he’s a good dad there’s no reason why overnights cannot happen now. That’s not to say 50:50 or every weekend is right but work towards an agreement to which allows dad to be an active and present dad

Dads on here are vilified - if they want 50:50 they’re accused of only doing so to get out of maintenance. If they want less they’re accused of being a Disney dad,

He should just get the fun bits, but learning to co parent and having some flexibility will be beneficial all round

IvinghoeBeacon Tue 02-Jun-20 21:17:17

“ Ok then baby can live with dad and mum can visit so as to avoid overnights? Why does it only have to be the mother ?? ”

Mother is currently primary carer and is still in the position to be. Keeping it close to the status quo in terms of primary carer benefits the baby. Hope that helps

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