Ex wanting overnights(9 Posts)
My DD1 is 18m/o. Her father began regular contact at 12 months after seeing her once every month or 2, showing very little interest before that. He now see's her once-twice a week for 4-5 hours. He wants overnights and is threatening court although we are otherwise amicable.
The problem is DD is still co-sleeping and BFing during the night. She wakes up 2-3 times, and doesn't cry as long as I am in the bed, just has a little comfort feed for a few minutes then goes back to sleep. If I have snuck out of the bed while she's asleep and she wakes she will cry until I am physically touching her again. Just being in the room doesn't calm her yet.
None of this bothers me and I preferably would like to continue co-sleeping as I find it a lovely experience. I am also hoping to let her self wean so the feeds aren't much of an issue (yet.. I would like to cut it down to max 1 during the night by 2 y/o preferably)
The problem is she doesn't seem at all ready for overnights yet. I have tried to get him to do 3 bedtimes at our house after him saying he wants overnights, and he gave up after 20-30 mins of her crying each time. He is now saying that he wants her in her own bed and weaned from breastfeeding within 2 months, then staying at his every other friday a month after that or he will go to court.
I am unsure what a court would say at this age, but I don't want to stop co-sleeping or breastfeeding until DD is ready, though if necessary I understand she may have to go for overnights before she is ready.
Is there any sleep evidence on young toddlers that I could show him about overnights, or any advice on what to say to him to get him to understand that she isn't ready yet?
I have offered more daytime contact, but he said he only has time for overnights.
Don't want to read and run.
Can't he co sleep with her?
There was a case recently where a judge ruled against overnights until the child was 3 because they were still bf (maybe around 18 months at the time). Depends on the judge I think with bf as some will say at 18 months they won't allow it to stop contact.
However....I thi k he is being a bit unreasonable about not r tending day contact. Also what you say about him giving up after a short time trying to put her to bed. This is v relevant because he hasn't really proved he could manage.
Get some legal advice
I'd suggest Citizens Advice for this one - they usually know the legal stuff around relationships. You can check their website, or call them. If you know where you stand legally might be easier to argue your case. (Evidence on toddlers and sleep may I suspect be divided into the "pro-weaning when ready" vs the against.) Good luck!
Research is conflicting. Both you and the father might find The Parent Connection website a useful resource to assist with negotiating arrangements.
Also there is a publication from CAFCASS the organisation that advises courts about child welfare. Pages 12/13 are about making arrangements to suit children and it says under 3s may find overnight contact difficult.
That's not to say some children aren't fine but it does depend on the individual child and how much involvement the parent had with child care during the night before separation.
PS Although it's better to agree arrangements between yourselves, perhaps with the help of a mediator, I wouldn't worry unduly about threats of court.
Will she take a bottle as a comfort feed during the night? No reason not for you to bf still.
I think you should just say no and forget about it.
The courts are that backed up by the time you get there she'll be ready
Just be very non committal and say she's still breast feeding and keep offering (by email so you have a record) extra daytime contact.
Yy to pp.
Refuse overnights she is too young and still breastfeed.
Provably offer more daytime contact
If he actually takes you to court explain your reasons? They won't punish you (that only happens if there is court ordered contact you have repeatedly blocked)
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