Posted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 5:07 am
Post subject: When is a breast fed baby able to be away from Mom
I am the Father of a 3 month old Son. His Mother and I just split up and she is moving in with her Mother two hours away. I am afraid I am not going to be able to see him as much as I'd like so I am thinking about trying to get joint custody. I really don't want to involve the law. I am just afraid that she is going to call all of the shots. I am very supportive of her breastfeeding and believe that it is my responsibility to make sure he has as much of a natural, healthy bond with his Mother as possible. What I want to know is how soon is too soon to be away from Mom over night? I want to have my Son as soon as possible once it is healthy. I need all the advice I can get!
Posted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:04 am
first of all sorry to hear about your break up, and secondly well done for wanting to be a part of your sons life.
Your ex could express breast milk for you, but she might not be able to, or produce enough for a few feeds. Also she may not feel ready to leave her son for long periods of time until he is older.
The recommendstion is to exclusively breast feed until 6 months then start solids, and a lot of women will start to reduce breast feeding around then, especially if they are going back to work.
Is there anyway you could go to where they are living and maybe stop in a hotel on a weekend? or do you have any friends that would put you up so that you can spend some time with your son?
Posted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:22 am
I really feel for you & your situation and I'm not sure where you would stand legally, however my baby is nearly 9 months & she still wakes at least once in the night often 2 or 3 times for feeds and a bottle would never do as it's about comfort as well as food but also it is very common for breast fed babies to refuse a bottle full stop, even mum's expressed milk. 3 months is still very young to be away from his mum, regardless of being breast or bottle fed.
If the plan is to breastfeed him for as long as possible, then that plan shouldn't change because your relationship has broken down, sorry if it sounds harsh but your son should be the last person to lose out because of it. Both you & your ex should make the sacrifices needed to ensure he has a good bond with you too. Could you not alternate weekends where one of you travels to the other....so one weekend you go there & spend the weekend to be with your son & the weekend after your ex travels to you? It's not ideal & may not be possible for a while yet (at 3 months I could just about manage a 30 min drive without little one screaming for milk!) so it may well be you having to do all the running until he is a bit older. But that doesn't mean it's your ex calling all the shots, it's your baby (and rightly so).
There will come a time when he's old enough to spend time with you away from his mum. Good luck with it & hope you can all work something out x
After a horrible few years, life is good.
Posted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 7:20 pm
I breast feed my daughter and find that she can still wake in the night at nearly 6 months because of teeth coming through etc, so even if your Son does start going through the night, things might change.
Do you know how long she intends to breast feed for? If so you could discuss possible plans for when she stops.
I think its great you want to be so involved, I would avoid court too - much better if you can be civil and work together to raise your Son. Make sure you try to have some empathy towards the mother - leaving your child is very hard (I dont think men feel it quite as strongly as women - I might be wrong) I sobbed the first time I left my daughter with my parents for a couple of hours (she was 3 1/2 months old and I've never left her overnight - she's nearly 6 months.
I hope you can find someway to visit him as much as possible!