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The importance of fathers' overnight visits with infants

Infants have a strong need for stable relationships and dependable caregivers. In the event of a divorce in North Carolina, both parents should consider the needs of the child and attempt to maintain as much consistency as possible. Psychology Today argues that, in most cases, the needs of the child involve regular exposure to both parents. This viewpoint is influenced partially by the phenomenon known as Attachment, which is an infant's intense connection to his or her caregivers. The bond established in the early years influences the child's mental and emotional development and affects virtually every area of life. If both parents were involved in the child-rearing process before divorce, they should continue their involvement afterward in order to avoid disrupting the infant's emotional security.

Furthermore, the organization argues that overnight visits with each parentshould be included whenever possible. The reasoning is simple: Overnight stays often involve activities which promote deeper bonding between parent and child than daytime activities alone. Waking up to each parent helps infants feel secure in their love and protection. Bedtime routines and bath times are intimate experiences that help young children bond with their parents. These times should be shared by the parents whenever possible in order to solidify the child's relationships with both mother and father.

Research shows that children who experience an abrupt separation from one parent may suffer from depression. Other concerning conditions are listlessness and irrational fear of abandonment. Continued, extended time with each parent may help avoid these conditions as well as make the process of divorce less traumatizing for young children.

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