This is a good question. I am not sure. I think it depends on the court and on the judge and the circumstances in the case (is there drug use? instability in the living conditions? Things like that) but my knee jerk reaction is that the court is likely than not to grant the mother custody of the newborn – at least for the first year or so – until the child no longer needs to be breastfed and things like that. This would seem to be in the child’s best interest. Now, of course, courts are all about joint custody and co-parenting and equal rights and access to children. This is trending globally. But let’s face it, until the baby is off breast milk it probably is just easier to leave the child with the mother. I have heard of courts ordering that the child not be fed breast milk because in theory, judges do not have to take the fact that the child is being breastfed into their decision. I don’t think the statute requires any consideration being given to breast feeding of a newborn.
The issue usually though is decided in favor of giving the mother temporary custody till the child is not being breastfed (even if the court may not say that outloud) but with visitation to the father (maybe even overnight). And it makes sense from the standpoint of parental bonding with the child. Both parents need to bond with the newborn and if dad is kept away and apart just because he does not have milk in his breasts, this may not be fair to him.
Anybody has a different take on this?
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