When parents of a baby get divorced, odds are both have concerns about the ideal way to co-parent. Unlike older kids, babies and infants need regular contact with each parent to form a lasting bond.
Family courts in Massachusetts understand the unique challenges of co-parenting an infant during and after a divorce. To help parents create a plan that will allow their babies to thrive, the state Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC) has some words of wisdom.
Nine months and younger
In past eras, child experts believed that infants could only attach to one caregiver (parent) until they grew older. Today, we know differently, and courts encourage regular contact between infants and parents.
Each parent should spend time with the baby, engaging in feeding, bathing and other activities as equally as possible. Modern co-parenting plans should give each parent time to build a bond with their infant.
Eighteen months and younger
As your baby transitions from an infant to a toddler, their caregiving needs also change. However, growing babies still need frequent, ongoing contact with both parents to cement these critical bonds.
The AFCC encourages each parent to continue spending ample time with the child to avoid disrupting the process of forming healthy attachments. It also urges parents to establish similar routines for the baby in each household.
Planning for older kids
As your toddler grows older, your co-parenting plan will likely become obsolete. Some parents try to anticipate their child’s changing needs in their initial plan. Other parents choose to create a new arrangement for Franklin, Massachusetts, family courts to consider.
It is also vital to understand Massachusetts child custody laws when creating a co-parenting plan regardless of your child’s age.