The introduction of a child into the picture can make an already rocky relationship even more unstable. If you and your ex split up while your baby is still breastfeeding then you may wonder what impact this may have on your custody arrangements.
Currently, there are only a few jurisdictions in which a judge is required to consider your breastfeeding when making custody decisions. In others, it's urged, but it's not a requirement.
A judge may limit your baby's overnight visits if you can convince them that your son or daughter needs to receive breast milk. They may also order you to continue pumping while your child is with their other parent so that you'll have some milk stored up to send with your child on those visits.
With personal parenting matters like this, judges generally prefer for moms and dads to try to work out custody agreements among themselves. They may even encourage them to pursue mediation when they're struggling to reach a compromise.
If a Florida judge ultimately has to step in, they'll often take into account the same factors that they do in any case in making a decision here. They'll take into account what type of home environment each parent can provide and the age of the child. They'll also want to know more about the mental and physical health and financial means of mom and dad and whether they have any history of abuse before awarding custody.
A judge's job is to make decisions that are in the best interest of a child. This often leads them to approve a parenting plan that allows the child an opportunity to bond with both mom and dad.
If the child is able to drink from a bottle, then a judge may order the breastfeeding mom to send enough milk for their child's stay with the other parent. Once they are able to drink from a cup or can eat solid food, there's little excuse for why they can't spend time with their other parent.
Children are our most precious resource. As a parent, you have every reason to stand up for what you believe is in your child's best interest, including advocating to breastfeeding. If you and your ex can't agree about how to raise your son or daughter, then a child custody attorney can help you negotiate a parenting plan.