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#1 of 4 Old 08-13-2002, 02:02 PM - Thread Starter
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hey everyone!

Well me and my ex split up about 2 months ago now. He is in TN and I moved to FL and am living with my mom. We have a 23 month old dd and I am really disagreeing wtih him on custody issues.

Right now she is visiting him she has been up there for 2 weeks. It was an abrupt stop to nursing and I miss her so much. I am goin up next monday to get her. I would have gone up there right now but I couldn't get off work. I work in the evenings now so my mom can watch her at night for me.

Anyways, my ex is wanting physical joint custody of her, and we live 12 hours away from each other right now. He is wanting to do 1 month with me and 1 month with him. I think this is nuts! I know he wants to see her and I don't want to be away from her that long, But I am trying to think of her first! I honestly think that that type of an arrangement is going to be too hard on her.

She needs some kind of stability and moving every month , I think, is going to be to detremental to her emotionally and mentally! Does anyone know of any links to information on the effects of this on a child?

He has mentioned maybe moving down here, but he changes his mind every week. He says "I miss you, I want to try and work things out" then in the next breath " I just really don't want tolive in FL"

I just don't know what to do. We haven't filed for anything legally yet. We weren't married, lived together for 6.5 years. I found out I have to be in fl for 6 months for it to be considered my dd's home state. Otherwise I would have to go to TN to file for custody. Everything has been pretty amicable so far. I am afraid that if I start to make a big stink now, he will file up there.
Sorry for rambling so long! Any advice would be helpful!

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#2 of 4 Old 08-14-2002, 01:25 AM
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I kind of went through the same situation that your baby's father wants. When i first hooked up with my now dh, that is how he and his baby's mother were sharing custody. Both in different states sharing custody 1 month at a time. I noticed that arrangement was hard on dsd by the time she was 2 1/2(that is when she was able to start expressing her feelings with words) It was like as soon as she got used to one enviorment and one routine, it was time to switch. It was hard on myself to because it took a couple of weeks for her to get used to our ways then it was almost time for her to leave again. I personally don't think that that is a good arrangement for a child. To much back and forth. Our situation has totally changed now, we moved to the state her mom lives(and the same town) and after 2 more years of switching back and forth weekly, we all decided dsd would live full-time with her mom. I think it is easier for her now also since she is older and she understands the situation better, but when they are so young , I believe stability is probally in the best interesst of the child.
I send you my support, I know how hard of a situation this can be. Love
Jade Harvest
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#3 of 4 Old 08-14-2002, 10:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks Jade for replying!

I am getting the impression now from talking to him on the phone that all he can handle is about 2 weeks at a time by himself with her. I am going to put my foot down with him and if he wants to take me to court than I will just have to do that. I just don't feel that a constant change in environment is healthy for my dd.

I am also getting the impression now that he is not going to try and move down to FL now to be closer to her. He is talking about buying all kinds of things, so I know he is not concerened about saving up money to move on.

Oh well!
Thanks ..... Melissa
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#4 of 4 Old 08-20-2002, 08:38 PM
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slinkypea --
I recommend a book I recently read called "Children of Divorce" by Baris and Garrity. You could probably find it at a local library. It is a small book and it goes through the potential issues for a child at each major stage of development. I found it so helpful to me when my ex was proposing some outlandish visitation ideas.

The main point with infants/toddlers was frequent short visits, no overnights until after age 2 1/2, and maintenance of a primary caretaker. Their point is that it is really important to the infant to 2.5 year old to have a consistent familiar environment and a trusting attachment to a primary caregiver. Up to 5 years, they recommend only 2-3 days in a row overnight visits. There's lots more in the book because it discusses the "why's."

Not to say that one book should be the final authority, but it did help me understand the issues and have a reference point to talk to my ex from.

Good luck to you!
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