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TOPIC: Tips for bonding with Toddler

Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 4 days ago #107711

  • Desh
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Am father to 15 month old girl. Divorce in progress. Mother very hostile and will only communicate through her solicitor. She does not want daughter to know me or my family. She denied contact for 6 months then only in fortnightly contact centre on 10 occasions.
I applied for joint custody. At FHDRA court ordered weekly contact in my home pending fact finding hearing. Having refused to comply with court order for last 4 months, she now agreeing to contact.
Because of erratic contact, feel daughter forgotten me.
Looking for suggestions to get daughter to bond with me. Will have her for 2 hours per week. Mother has discouraged contact, tells me nothing about daughters development, routine.

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Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 4 days ago #107712

hi,

how far do you live from ex? if travel time is 30 mins and above then I don't think its worth taking her to your place. is there a local park you can take her to? or maybe a library if their open.

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Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 4 days ago #107718

Just be yourself mate, try not to worry your daughter will remember you, kids love routine, find out her fave toy and make sure its there when you meet with her, contact was so difficult at first as i didnt see my girl until she was one, I found distracting her was great with toys and games as she was unsure of me at first.

I used to turn up at the contact centre with boxes of toys each week and my girl looked forward to seeing daddy as it was fun, youll naturally build up your bond once you start seeing her regular, 2 hours a week is short I'd be pushing to increase it or get back to court is she hasnt complied with anything for months.

take care mate

slim

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I'm no way trained in Family court matters so don't take my ramblings as gospel but I've been through the Court mill and learned so much along the way I just like passing my experience on to other Dads who face this absolute nightmare from hell, you might not be able to beat the system but don't let it beat you :)

Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 3 days ago #107726

Hello Desh,
One to one time with your daughter will be precious, so here are some suggestions of activities you can try, that will hopefully enable you to strengthen your bond with her. Some of these ideas will work, some may not, but you can adapt them to the resources you have around you.
1. Any household item that makes a noise that you can both pretend to make music with - pots and pans, wooden spoons, plastic jugs. Putting dried rice or pasta in a sealed bottle is another good music maker. If you use a funnel your daughter - with supervision - can help you make it.

2. If you already know of a type of toy that your daughter really loves, for example simple wooden jigsaws - then first spend some 1-1 time with her doing an activity she is familiar with. This will help build confidence and reassurance with her and help the bonding.

3. Water play is a great one when the weather is fine, or sitting together with different containers and a bowl full of water, my kids used to laugh at the noise the water made !

4. Perhaps introduce a cuddly toy that you have two of - one for her to keep and one for you to keep.

5. Keep a memory box for when she is older, perhaps about you and your family, what you like, favourite book to read with her etc, this again shows your daughter that you love her.

6. Building a den

These are just some suggestions, but there are lots of ideas out there on the internet, of activities suitable for different ages. You don't have to spend a lot of money either, and me and my family as we are shielding have bought things on line from places like The Works - drawing paper, crayons very reasonably.

I hope this helps, and I really hope that you are able to form a solid relationship with your daughter. Try keeping a journal each time you see her and list all the positive things you did together, and also jot down things she did that made you laugh or any observations you have. They are good to look back on.

Kind Regards, Fegans Parent Support Volunteer.
The following user(s) said Thank You: fegans

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Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 3 days ago #107736

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quick question - is the mother on legal aid? If not, then I would compy with her request to direct all queries through her solicitor, and make lots of queries. Solicitors usually bill in 15 minute increments, so even a 5 second query will usually result in a 15 minute bill (say £50), so you make 10 separate queries (instead of one query with 10 different things to address) and her bill is soon going to rack up - that might make her a little more communicative. Just make sure the queries (or follow up questions) are relevant.

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Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 3 days ago #107755

  • Desh
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Thank you Mr slim for your words of encouragement. Am feeling so excited but so anxious.

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Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 3 days ago #107757

  • Desh
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No she's not on legal aid but spending money she stashed away whilst I was left broke paying for everything. Good advice thank you.

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Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 3 days ago #107758

  • Desh
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Thank you for really good tips. My main concern is at drop off and how to get dd to not be clingy to mother.

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Tips for bonding with Toddler 1 week 1 day ago #107815

Hello Desh,
Are you able to do handover at a neutral place to avoid meeting at each others homes? The age your daughter is at the moment, she won't be able to fully understand all that's going on, so I think that on your part, keeping as calm, positive and as reassuring as you can be in front of your daughter when she leaves mum is going to help. Keep talking to her and reassure her that both you and her mum love her, despite the situation that is going on privately between yourselves.
Perhaps take a toy or teddy that is hers from your home when she sees you, so upon handover it gives her a sense of familiarity that she is going to daddies house.
Another suggestion, and it may or may not work, but why not try a "1-2-3" method, where 1 is giving mum a hug goodbye, 2 is coming to you and then waving at mum, then 3 you being your journey home? It will hopefully distract your daughter a little from the issue of leaving mum and make things easier for you.
I appreciate it is difficult dealing with a little toddler that is clingy, but keep smiling, keep up the reassurance and see how things go.
Kind regards, Fegans Parent Support Volunteer

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