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Sharing custody of a breastfeeding baby

On Behalf of | Aug 30, 2021 | Family Law |

While many individuals plan to conceive a child, pregnancies come as a surprise for others. In the case of the latter, prospective parents often try to make a troubled marriage work leading up to their child’s birth. Things don’t always turn out as they’d hope, and they may decide to divorce.

The prospect of negotiating a parenting plan and visitation or custody schedule for a newborn can be challenging. As a mother who carried your baby for nine months, you might worry about the impact not being close to your child might have on them. You might also not be confident in your parenting skills during the early days and months of your baby’s life – especially if this is your first child. You may also worry that your co-parent won’t know what to do if certain situations arise when they’re the one caring for the baby.

Babies aren’t born following a certain sleep or eating schedule. It may take time to get your child on set schedules. Having a plan and following it are key to getting your baby on a predictable schedule as quickly as possible. Breastfeeding is important for both a mom’s and a baby’s health. Building a parenting plan that allows you to work around this is key.

How do you craft a parenting plan that allows for breastfeeding?

Child psychologists agree that children should spend equal time with their parents. Judges often find themselves being tasked with deciding what parenting arrangement is in the best interest of a child. Judges must do this whether they have to decide for the parents (because they can’t agree) or when they’re signing off on a court order. Breastfeeding adds a whole other dynamic into a judge’s decision-making.

Parents of newborns may start with a visitation schedule where the co-parent stops for short daily visits at the mom’s home. Eventually, a co-parent may be able to have longer visits away from the mother and ultimately have the child overnight as each parent grows in parenting skills, the mother works out mild supply issues and the baby feeds on a set schedule or starts bottle feeding.

Developing a parenting plan that works for both parents and the baby will take some negotiating, but rest assured that it is possible to do so with experienced legal guidance.