Mamas, you've been so wonderful to take the time to respond and send your support. Thank you.
I did follow on the suggestion of thismama and cross post this thread in Single Parenting ... hope I did it right!
To give you a little more info, especially in response to huntersmommy's post, the courts have been involved in our life since my DD was 8mo; it's unfortunate the way the family court laws are written & interpreted. If I don't allow my DD her time with her father, I would be violation of a court order and risk losing my status as having primary physical custody (even being a good mama causes risk; for example, my DD recently had the stomach flu with fever and was too ill for her outing with her father. Her father focused on his loss of rights in terms of visiting her -- rather than on her well-being -- and has threatened filing violation paperwork on me).
When it comes to domestic violence issues, at least as the family court here is concerned, everything I report is considered an allegation until proven. So in turn, my ex will report all sorts of lies and nasties about me. His tactic: The best defense is offense. It's a very ugly situation.
As for DD's visits with her father, generally she is happy to go with him. Though today she did not want to go and was very clingy, nursing non-stop before the pickup.
As much as I worry about how the overnights will go, I have to have faith in my little one's guardian angel(s) and in her strengths. She is very fluent for her age and will be able to express with words her wants and some of her feelings.
And while I think her father initially might make an effort (assisted by his mother or girlfriend because he can only parent when someone is telling him what a great dad he is) at somewhat responsible parenting, I don't think he'll have the patience for the long-term. But his ego will probably get in the way. That's when I fear for my daughter's well-being the most. The courts here have a wait-and-see attitude, which I find shameful.
|hopefully he will be one of the ones who limits his violence to big grownup ladies, eh?
suseyblue, I would like to say that he has limited his violence to me, but he has acted out in her presence since she was in the womb and engaged her in his violence in some subtle and not-so subtle ways.
The idea that toddlers adapt better to not nursing during overnights when they're not expecting to nurse is encouraging. My fingers are crossed!
I hope I'm not blabbing on too much. I'll end for now. Thank you very much for the support. I appreciate it very much.