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Working out custody of a newborn

(38 Posts)
pyjamapyjama Tue 20-Dec-16 16:47:59

Hoping someone who's been in my situation can help, anyone in my family has been married/together when having a baby.

I'm due my first baby in a few weeks and have recently split up with the baby's dad. To avoid drip feeding, we had been arguing constantly, trust issues and with this pregnancy being unplanned he couldn't handle it and had suffered from depression throughout the last few months as he thinks he's losing his freedom etc. I did really try to make it work with him but it just isn't working at all so I'd rather go alone.

Anyway, he says he wants to be involved with the baby (although he hasnt bought anything for him. His dad bought a crib but he hasnt set it up at his house or prepared anything.), says he's looked into how much child support he has to pay and that he'll pay me that so I can buy nappies etc. But it'll be me paying nursery fees etc when I finish mat leave. I'll be living at home with my parents when baby arrives and I want to discuss contact with him. Personally I dont think my baby should be without me overnight for the first few months, i'm planning on breastfeeding. But he says I can express and problem solved. I'm just worried about him going there overnight, and about possibly being unable to express if its too sore etc.

Does anyone have any advice on how to go about discussing it or be able to tell me what their schedule for a newborn is/was? Thanks in advance!!

lovelearning Tue 20-Dec-16 16:54:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FaFoutis Tue 20-Dec-16 16:54:36

If breastfeeding you couldn't be apart from a newborn. It would be painful for you.

Your problem might go away on its own. He doesn't sound interested enough to deal with the reality.

user1480946351 Tue 20-Dec-16 16:56:17

Baby stays with mother, simple as that. No court would give him overnights with a newborn, even if he takes it that far.

Hulababy Tue 20-Dec-16 16:57:38

I doubt even the courts would go for overnight visits when the baby was so small, even if not breastfeeding tbh.

MakingBaconPancakes Tue 20-Dec-16 16:58:40

Don't make any promises about custody before the baby is born. You really have no idea how you will feel until he/she is in your arms.

Astro55 Tue 20-Dec-16 16:59:41

Just say he's too young - he's in for a shock of he thinks having a newborn overnight is that easy -

My DD was always wide awake unless next to me - they need their mothers

NerrSnerr Tue 20-Dec-16 17:00:10

I agree that the baby shouldn't be going on overnights. It really isn't as simple as just expressing when they're tiny. I would start by having him come and visit when the baby is newborn and take it from there.

cansu Tue 20-Dec-16 17:00:11

Tell him clearly that there wont be any overnights for a while. Visits initially will be at your parents house by arrangement. Dont let him push you around on this. Also he wont bw just giving you money for nappies. He will be paying maintenance for his child. This covers food housing clothing heating etc etc. You may be better off letting CMS sort this out.

abbsisspartacus Tue 20-Dec-16 17:00:18

I think its three before overnights are granted?

Heirhelp Tue 20-Dec-16 17:02:39

Many breast feeding women are unable to express.

Go to cms to arrange maintenance.

lovelearning Tue 20-Dec-16 17:06:55

he says I can express and problem solved

He gets no say whatsoever in such matters.

I dont think my baby should be without me overnight for the first few months, i'm planning on breastfeeding

There's your answer.

pyjamapyjama, all the best. x

Coffeelover56 Tue 20-Dec-16 17:12:48

Even if you could express, lots of breastfed babies refuse to take a bottle (even if it contains mammy's milk).

Heirhelp Tue 20-Dec-16 18:54:02

It is also advised not to introduce a bottle to a breast feed baby before 6 weeks as it can cause nipple confusion.

I agree that a young baby should not be separated from it's primary carer.

After birth you will be tired, emotional and trying to establish breast feeding. You can dictate when he can come and visit baby but I strongly suggest that you have somebody else there as a gate keeper. If you don't want to feed in front of him and baby needs feeding them take your baby upstairs. You are in charge. If he is unhappy with access then he can go to court. For at least first 6 week just focusing on establishing breast feeding.

I would also mention your concerns to your health visitor.

Congratulations on your pregnancy and good luck.

Starlight2345 Tue 20-Dec-16 19:07:40

I suggest you change your wording...You are talking about arranging access...A new born stays with mum. little and often visits are encouraged.

As for maintenance CMS is the legal minimum ..However how it is spent is up to you. Do you think he has calculated it correctly? Do you think he wants to overnights to reduce maintenance.

I also advise to try and keep contact to a minimum as baby not here..( though realise it won't be long) nothing to discuss till baby is here.. LAst few weeks get as much rest as you can

HappyHedgehog247 Tue 20-Dec-16 20:18:02

What everybody else has said. I posted on here under a different name at the time and thought everyone sounded harsh and that I(and ex) were different and we could sort it all out in cosy chats.

CMS is there for a reason. We still haven't actualky gone through them but used their calculator to agree an amount.

Re contact. Don't agree anything right now. You have no idea how you will feel. I used to be v feminist/equal opportunist. Having to leave my screaming baby with rock hard painful boobs with an ex who was clueless on how to comfort DC felt like having a bit of my insides ripped out. It's the worst feeling in the world.

You can always grant more contact but it's very hard to reduce once established so start small and build as he gets confident and yoy get comfortable.

pyjamapyjama Tue 20-Dec-16 23:19:24

Thank you for the replies everyone. Definitely reassured me that baby's best place is with me!!

heirhelp the nipple confusion thing was something else that concerned me, I'm worried about getting the hang of b/f so don't want to make it even harder

Happyhedgehog - Having to leave my screaming baby with rock hard painful boobs with an ex who was clueless on how to comfort DC felt like having a bit of my insides ripped out. It's the worst feeling in the world. - this couldn't be worded better it's exactly how I know I'd feel if I agreed to the overnights straightaway

I want to give my ex the chance to bond with his son but itll definitely be with me. Since its my first baby and I wasnt expecting to be a single mum before my baby is born, i wasnt sure of how it all worked and how custody should be arranged! The whole thing's really overwhelming

ageingrunner Tue 20-Dec-16 23:26:14

You need to concentrate on looking after the baby and yourself. You're the boss here. Don't let your ex dictate terms. They can gradually build a relationship as the baby gets older.

JellyWitch Tue 20-Dec-16 23:34:47

Breastfeed - as long term as you can. That's definitely an extra point in your corner. Newborns need to be with their mothers; there is no way I would even leave my 2 year old overnight (she still nurses on demand, especially at night).

Expressing doesn't work for everyone and definitely isn't something you should be doing for the father's sake.

If he wants to build a relationship with the child, that can be done without him/her needing to be apart from you in the early months. You can work out as that time goes on how much time is right for the baby to spend apart from you. If he can provide some of the childcare when you return to work, you might find you achieve a natural point to do this?

ZuzaPa Tue 20-Dec-16 23:35:07

There are good fb groups for lone parents where lots would have dealt with this. He is deluded if he thinks having the baby overnight is even an option so early on. Baby will be attached to you. Literally. I tried expressing (didn't work out im sorry I wasted time trying) and no hope would my lo take a bottle... but thats not even the issue. Baby should not be separated from the mother (or primary carer) overnight until 3 years old. He has every right to be given the opportunity to bond... and Learn... if he can prove he's going to be a constant & put best interests of baby first, then wonderful... but he has to show it... and alot of what ive seen is the father takes it personally against him... ' I can't have my newborn overnight, poor me' then getting angry, making unreasonable demands, then being threatening with money.... hopefully won't come to that.

Above all, on both sides, it always has to be about best interests of baby.

BlackeyedSusan Fri 23-Dec-16 00:07:14

new born has known nothing but being inside you, your smell, your voice, your taste. dad is a stranger at first. little and often contact so that baby will get to know dad and dad needs of baby. my dad used to have my children sleeping on his shoulder when they were babies so they got used to him really quickly as well. )one of mine would only sleep comfortably propped up over a shoulder and one with rocking) maybe dc's dad can try that at first. if he is not an arse like my ex who could not cope with a crying baby

queenbeeee Fri 23-Dec-16 00:20:13

I dont think any mother should be away from there new born overnight at the very least until 6 months old. Breast feeding or not. If your ex is really committed to your unborn child why hasn't he brought anything? That is not on I bet you have already brought things for your baby. I wouldn't stand for that start as you mean to go on planned or unplanned you both still have a child that you Both need to look after for the rest of your don't let him get of lightly he has a duty to your baby. Do you get on okay with him if you do maybe he could stay overnight a few times at your yous on the sofa of course that way he can spend time with the baby even do a night feed or something its important that they both bond with one another. My advice to you would be to wait and see how you feel and don't allow him to push you into letting the baby spend the night with him if your not ready. Dont set anything in stone because when your child is born you might feel very differently. You will know when you are ready but make him contribute. Its so not on if he doesn't but still wants to be treated as a trustworthy father.

FTMum2016 Mon 26-Dec-16 22:36:04

I was in the exact same boat, we split when I was pregnant. When I was pregnant her dad said he was going to take me to court to have her for half a week every week. As I was breastfeeding he came to my parents house to see her for 1 hour on a Tuesday and Thursday evening and the only thing that has changed is he takes her to his mums for 2 hours on a Saturday and that started a couple of months ago. She's nearly 6 months and he hasn't asked for any extra contact yet. Don't panic too much until babys here as things change and if he's anything like my ex he will change his tune once he realises how hard it is smile

Cakeycakecake Sat 31-Dec-16 22:48:19

My ds is almost 5months and dad takes him at least once a week for about 4hrs. We started at 1 and a half but quickly increased it to 2. From there he's taken it as I'm comfortable with, so now working to increase to 5/6hrs with a view to overnights when I'm properly ready. Baby is formula fed.

In fairness, his dad is and always has been a truly wonderful father to him. He's proven himself to me over and over, and we get along really well now despite the initial DNA

Op in your circumstances I'd play it by ear as you feel when your baby arrives. Don't set it in stone yet. I thought I'd not be letting ds go off for months when in reality he was about 7weeks old and I'd seen nappy changes bottle feeds bath times etc to reassure me.
If your ex wants to be involved properly he will respect your boundaries and want to do things to create a positive coparenting relationship. I have an older child who's dad isn't involved so I've seen both sides. I prefer this a million times over. Good luck x

pyjamapyjama Sun 01-Jan-17 16:34:39

Thank you all for the responses!

Update - baby due in 2 weeks and he hasn't bought anything. Hasnt set up his cot or made any arrangements, says baby can nap in his carry cot at his house, however he'll say he still thinks he can have him overnight at his house confused ?

FTMum I'm hoping he'll be like your DDs dad and realise how hard itll be and give up on the idea that he'll be having so much contact so early on.

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