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Thread: legally separated: overnights w/dad

  1. #1
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    Jan 2007
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    Default legally separated: overnights w/dad

    I am placing this on the Nursing-Beyond-One-Year forum, because I think you’ll appreciate the rest of the world’s view on “extended” nursing best and can lend perspective to my situation.

    My husband and I separated last month, and things have not been going great between us. He has never been supportive of my nursing. With our twins nearly 18 months old, he thinks continued nursing is abnormal behavior. I work f/t and nurse first thing in the AM and to put them to bed at night. They will take a bottle from him with no trouble normally.

    Now, he wants more (consecutive) time with our 3 children, and while I’ve been pretty liberal in giving visitation, I won’t allow him to have the twins overnight two nights in a row because we are nursing. He is not happy about this. I don’t need to be convinced of the value of BF, but I think it may well come before a judge (or possibly a mediator) as a complaint that I am using this to withhold reasonable visitation. Anyone have any thoughts or experience in this?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    Only given the info you've mentioned I would bet to say they (the court) might "side" with him since you're not nursing through-out the night. Since they'll take bottles/cups, they'd most likely reccomend that.

    good luck
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    Hi momma2bgtwinsplus1,
    You might be interested in several of the articles here in the Breastfeeding and Family Law section:
    http://www.llli.org/Law/LawUS.html
    The first one is the most recent, "Information for Mothers in Family Law Situations" and a couple of the links specifically address extended nursing.
    The rest of the articles are by Elizabeth Baldwin, who did extensive research into legal issues relating to breastfeeding.
    I hope something in there can help you come to a resolution!
    Mary

  4. #4
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    Jan 2007
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    We both have attorneys. We are legally separated (limited restraining order and all). We are in counselling, but while I thought reconciliation was possible before, it is looking a lot less like it now. I have been absolutely honest in therapy, but he has lied, and it really hurts. In addition, he has done things (especially through his attorney) that are adversarial and put more distance between us. I keep hoping somewhere there is a gem of information that will convince a judge, or a legal precedent that I can stand on, should things progress in the same direction....

    You're absolutely right that the money (and energy) would be better spent on the kids. The conflict they endure (between my husband and I) is unhealthy, though. I never thought I'd be in this position.

  5. #5
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    Feb 2006
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    I went through this, and my daughter is now 2+ years old and still is an active nurser.

    My estranged husband takes the children friday night until sunday night, the normal every other weekend.

    Your children may adjust quite well. Does he have them at least one night? Start off on that.

    I always nurse before they leave, and immediately when she gets home.

    It seems to work for us.... I also didn't send expressed milk as my X didn't approve of nursing for so long either.

    Good luck!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    i just wanted to send you good vibes thru this difficult situation. my heart breaks for you having to go thru this... i'm very very happy that your twins aren't any younger tho, cause i've heard of this happening with newborns where the father wants the baby for a few nights (when they shouldn't be away from mom at all!) and the courts rule with the father. it infuriates me so! no advice as i have no idea what legally can be done... but i will be thinking of you! there should be a nation wide law stating that nursing children can NEVER be separated from their mom unless she allows it!!!!! regardless of the age of the child.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    just a thought, but can you pull up every article on breastfeeding to two years and maybe reach a settlement that as soon as the twins turn 2 you will be more than happy to allow him to take the twins for two nights in a row? At least that's negotiating and making it that long.

    You know, when I first starting leaving ds with anyone I freaked out thinking he would want to nurse but it was almost like out of sight out of mind because he was always so happy. As soon as I returned he of course wanted to nurse, but when he was around others he knew they couldnt nurse him so he was happy. If worse comes to worse, its great they'll take bottles so hopefully your husband will give them to them. But maybe by telling your husband that you want them to be with him and if he'll just wait until they're two then he can have them longer.

    I really hope everything works out!
    ~Melanie

  8. #8
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    Oct 2007
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    Hi I am new here.

    It's awfully cruel and inhuman to seperate a breastfeeding mother from her offspring. I think mother's rights are fading fast, because the formula companies had now made it possible to seperate a mother from her baby. Fathers are now wanting a slice of the pie, it's not natural and right. Some fathers are very jealous of breastfeeding woman, even though their young is getting the best.

    This is very hard especially if your twins are over 1, because doctors say toddlers can live on cow's milk at this age so all your excuses are all gone.

    Sorry I am not any help at all, I will be thinking and praying for you. Be strong, perhaps you can express if your twins have got to stay at their dad's. Your milk will still be strong when, they come home to you. Or perhaps the twins will miss you so so much, that their father will change his mind and understand.

  9. #9
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    So sorry you are going through this. Judges are becoming more aware of the active role some fathers play in their children's lives (which is different from a few decades ago). I see it as a positive sign that your children's father wants to spend so much time with them. I know it has to be hard for you but just to add another perspective: I mentioned to DH myself (and DD, we are nursing of course ) going to my parents one weekend that I knew he would not be able to go so I could do some Christmas shopping. His response was that he did not want to be away from DD overnight either. I really had not considered his perspective in that he is really close to DD too and loves his time with her and the rituals they have .

    The best solution is probably one you and he can work out together. It is a shame he is letting his lawyer's tactics interfere with your either reconciling or coming to a mutual agreement. You should definitely emphasize the importance of bf if this does go to a judge, this is one plus you do have. I am just not for sure it will be enough to deter a judge from allowing a father more consecutive time with his children. I like the pp's suggestion that you compromise on a date where you would consider more consecutive time (such as 2 years of whatever you decide).
    Mom to Lainey (11-8-06)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Texas
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    Default Re: legally separated: overnights w/dad

    I just wanted to let you know that I posted a reply on the single mothers site. I know this is hard and I have been through a similar situation with my ds's father, although we were never married.

    I wanted to add to what I wrote. Research is always a plus, but your best bet is if you can have an expert testify that it is not in your children's best interests. Unfortunately that is really hard to find. Most Pediatrician's will back what the AAP says, and that is that breastfeeding exclusively until 6 months is what is recommended. And that bfing beyond that is only a supplement. Although we all know better . Find law to support you. Find an attorney that specializes in family law. I did most of the research for my case myself.

    good luck
    Proud Mama to Caleb
    Born on my Birthday Sept. 19, 2006
    6 lbs 15 oz

    Proud Mama to Evie
    Born 9/25/12 4 weeks early
    5lbs 6oz

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