Dads really do a lot these days, including caregiving tasks that used to mostly fall to moms. Unfortunately, this does not mean much when it comes to child custody. Fathers in Alabama still face an uphill battle when trying to show that spending more time with their infants — especially overnight — is in their best interests.

Studies from some of the best researchers in the world show that infants and toddlers should spend nights with both of their parents after divorce. Their research supports the idea that children of all ages thrive when they have two involved parents, even when that means sometimes going to bed in different houses. The benefits of splitting custody this way are long-term, too. Infants and toddlers who have the opportunity to spend nights at both parents houses after divorce form lifelong, stronger bonds with parents.

This contrary to the long-held assumption that kids younger than 6 need to spend almost all of their time with their moms. When moms do take on nearly all of the caregiving after divorce, dads have to squeeze their parenting time into small time frames where there are not many opportunities for bonding.

Kids of all ages benefit from consistent and affectionate care from both parents, and they need the opportunity to form secure relationships with them. This is why in Alabama, child custody agreements must always focus on children’s best interests. If a parent is worried that those interests are not being respected, he or she may want to consider seeking experienced guidance.

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