losing custody because of attachment parenting - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 10 Old 08-16-2004, 12:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Mothers,

I'm planning on writing an article for Mothering on mothers who have actually lost custody of their child(ren) because of attachment parenting practices, such as extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, home-schooling, alternative medicine, not vaccinating, etc.

Would you write if this has happened to you?

Many thanks,

Carrie
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#2 of 10 Old 08-16-2004, 07:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Also, if you know of any friends who have lost custody of their children because of any kind of attachment parenting practice. I've spoken with one of the reps at Mothering, and she said they do get calls from women that this has happened to. It happens for lots of reasons. It's actually become "fashionable" for mothers to lose custody of their children these days.

Let me know if it's happened to you, or if you know of anyone else.

Many thanks,

Carrie
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#3 of 10 Old 08-16-2004, 10:28 PM
 
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Fashionable? to loose your kids? I guess i am lost here but why would it be fashionable????
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#4 of 10 Old 08-16-2004, 11:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyWulf
Fashionable? to loose your kids? I guess i am lost here but why would it be fashionable????
This is just a guess(though a fairly thought out one) but I think more states are giving more weight to fathers rights, which isn't in and of itself necessarily a bad thing. However, I think parenting practices like AP are being twisted to look neglectful or substandard. I don't know how many of these cases turn into one's where custody is taken from the mother, but I can see less weight being given to a mother's BF relationship(i.e. one or two nights won't hurt the child/baby -"mentality")

Anyways...just a thought.
Kathy
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#5 of 10 Old 08-17-2004, 12:18 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, it seems that father's rights groups have become so strong and vocal that fathers do win custody now at least 50% of the time that they ask for it. Sometimes more.

Judges very much look with disgust on things like extended breastfeeding, and have taken children away from a mother simply because she breastfed until age 2 1/2.

All the "preference laws" which used to favor mothers as the primary custodians have been taken out of the legal system. With nothing to give preference to mothers, it's often whoever has the best lawyer that wins the children, and since women are often financially disadvantaged, it's the men who often win. And it's not just a night or two that the mother doesn't have the children, sometimes a mother is lucky to get to see her own children for a night or two!

If there was any kind of abuse by the father, and the mother makes good faith allegations, then the court may decide that the mother is lying and not allow her to see her children at all. There are many reasons judges are taking children away from women now, attachment parenting is just one of them.
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#6 of 10 Old 08-17-2004, 12:35 AM
 
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Just wanted to agree with what was said- fathers are being given more parenting time and/or custody these days. I just got in a conversation with our local Judge about this last week. He says that he 99% of the time gives joint legal custody (meaning both parents have a say in church/school/doctors/ect) and that he give primary physical custody (where the child will live) to men just as much as to women. Fortunatly he gave ME primary physical custody of DS In an *ideal* situation in his courtroom he normally gives 1 parent the child/children from the day before school starts until the last day of school. During that time the other parent has Wednesday nights and every other weekend (fri night to sun afternoon). Then during summer they switch. And yes, this goes for young children too. Even infants (if they are FF or if the mother can/does pump, he does take into consideration BF'ing.... THANK GOD).

As far as AP coming into it.... I hope to God it doesn't. I know ex has some big beef with me co-sleeping. He has since the night DS was born (even though he never ONCE woke up to help me at night so I say *I* get to chose how to handle nightime if he's not going to help anyway). Thankfully he's not smart enough to use that against me He also hates that I breastfeed. Again, he always has. He actually told me when he was trying to get DS for 3-4 days a week, 4-6 hours a day, and every weekend that it *wasn't his problem* that DS didn't take a bottle or cup when I asked how he planned on feeding him during that time. Again, thank God the Judge we got was awesome and knows the importance of the BF'ing relationship.

I feel for all the mamas who are just trying to do the best for their children only to be told by Judges/ex's that if they don't change they'll have their kids taken away. That's just aweful.

Steph, DH Jason (1-1-11), DS Owen (10-3-03) and DS Kai (10-13-11)

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#7 of 10 Old 08-17-2004, 12:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Steph,

I'm so glad that you got a judge with some understanding of how important breastfeeding is. You're also lucky that your son is still young enough that most people do not look down on the fact that you're still breastfeeding. Hopefully, your ex will cooperate in the future, and support a healthy co-parenting relationship.

Some mothers do have their children taken completely away. I don't know why judges decide to do that. If the woman accuses the ex of any kind of abuse, that seems to be a hot-button for judges these days. It's very hard to prove abuse, and if it isn't proved, then the judges may allow the mothers only supervised visitation, which means she may have to pay as much as $75 an hour to see her own children.

That happened to Wendy Titelman, whose website is found at www.kourtsforkids.org.

I'm not sure how badly women get treated just for attachment parenting. I know some judges consider it child abuse if you don't vaccinate your children.

Carrie
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#8 of 10 Old 08-17-2004, 10:40 AM
 
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Me losing custody was never an issue in our divorce, because of other circumstances my ex had, but it is a very real possibility for mothers everywhere.

I coslept with my youngest son when my ex first left, and I was told by the counselor at the Domestic Violence center to get him out of my bed and discontinue breastfeeding immediately..that at his age..almost 2 and a half at the time..the court frowns on that.

I did not remove him out of my bed, but I did go out and buy him a toddler bed just in case there was an issue brought up by my ex. I also did not discontinue breastfeeding.

It is sad, because my ex was always supportive of the parenting choices I made, and in many situations, that is the case. Then the marriage ends, and the fathers want some kind of control..suddenly you see them do an about face and say they never supported some of the AP practices. All in the name of spite and control, without thought of the damage it does to the kids. That breaks my heart.
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#9 of 10 Old 08-17-2004, 11:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm glad that you weren't put in the situation of losing custody of your son. I think you're right about ex's who once seemed supportive wanting control for reasons of spite when the relationhship ends. Sadly, some of them go so far as to sue for sole custody, and they do get it. This is sometimes a tragedy for all concerned.
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#10 of 10 Old 10-23-2013, 08:00 AM
 
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I was divorced for 10 years and had 3 children with my first husband.  They are now adults (25, 21, 18) My oldest graduated from William and Mary University and is now working in DC. My daughter is in her first year of nursing school and my 18 year old is in his first year in college. I did the attachment parenting with them due to their father was in the Navy and out to sea a lot then transferred over seas.  After 10 years of divorce, I remarried a second time at the age of 45 with my husband 50.  During  our marriage my husband who never had children asked if we could have a child which I was reluctant due to my age but I decided to go ahead and have a child for him so we went thru IVF 3 times and had a beautiful healthy boy who is now 3 1/2 and a stay at home mother.  During his birth I breastfed, rocked him to sleep and just loved him so much.  After 6 months of breastfeeding, I was told by my husband that I was too attached to the baby and wanted me to stop so he could bond with the baby or this marriage was over.  I finally gave up nursing at 8 months and then by age 2 he ordered me to stop rocking so then again I gave that up too or this marriage was  over. Back in July he  filed for divorce due to attachment parenting which I lay down with my son in his full size bed to read books to help him fall asleep because of night terrors. In his filings he has accused me of sleeping with our child, I over mother him, the baby is not pooped trained (he is potty trained but not pooped), and I favor my 3 adult children over the marriage.  He has asked full custody of our son and has asked that I pay him child support.  My husband who is very well off  has hired a high priced lawyer and he ordered a guardian ad litem (not court appointed) for our son and ordered me to take a psychological evaluation.  Because I haven't worked in 4 years I don't have a whole of money but my retirement money and hired a reputable attorney.  I feel that this guardian for my son is going to side with my husband seeing that he has already racked up $15,000 from my husband and counting. Having gone thru one divorce and now 51 years old I do believe a child needs both parents and have told my attorney I am  not looking for full custody  but would like to have primary physical.  Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

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