Is there something special about nighttime? Applies to: England (see guidance for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland). Overnight Visitation. Warnings against infants and toddlers spending overnight time with each parent are inconsistent with what we know about the development of strong positive parent-child relationships. The days are past when experts advised divorced dads to make a clean break from the family and remain, at best, visitors in their children’s lives. It has long been established that good childcare provision does not damage early child development by separating the child from the mother. Both parents should be encouraged and permitted to be directly and maximally involved in every important aspect of their children’s lives during the day and at night. The report is endorsed by 110 of the world’s leading researchers and practitioners. The research shows that children develop multiple relationships at around the same time. He shouldn't have to come to your place for contact either. A number of studies have examined this hypothesis to see if it reflects infant experience. Decide whether to count by hour or by overnight visit. Having two parents also means greater access to grandparents. If we value Dad reading Goodnight Moon to his toddler and soothing his fretful baby at 3am while the parents are living together, why withdraw our support and deprive the child of these expressions of fatherly love just because the parents no longer live together, or just because the sun has gone down? In Steven’s situation, there will be a lot of crying at his father’s home during the overnight stays. These data point to the need for particular support for the father-child relationship for younger children when parents separate. He has a new partner and you will too at some stage. Warshak RA (2018), Night shifts: Revisiting blanket restrictions on children’s overnights with separated parents, Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 59.4, This website is managed by The Family Initiative Registered Charity No. The endorsement by these scholars reflects a groundswell of concern among experts that misinformation about research evidence is impoverishing custody decisions and public policy. Until well into the 19th century, fathers had absolute custody after divorce. She enjoys being with him. In short, after their separation, both parents should maximize the time they spend with their young children, including the sharing of overnight parenting time. The visitation agreement may include overnight visitation stays, which can leave the household very quiet and lonely. Of course, shared parenting is not for all families. Doing so doubles the infant’s chances of having at least one high-quality relationship. Attachment theory is not the only source of evidence that children benefit from having multiple carers. The general advice to parents of babies is that both parents need to spend adequate time with their children, establish routines, and show affection. Judy Cashmore: It was written by Dr Richard Warshak, who’s a US academic at The University of Texas in the department of psychiatry. Having primary custody of a child is not without its struggles. Babies regularly sleep in different places. It is time to resolve our ambivalence and contradictory ideas about fathers’ and mothers’ roles in their children’s lives. These attachments start in the same period, in the middle of the first year. Children whose parents divorced when the child was younger than six years are more likely to suffer problems than children of later-divorcing parents.