Social science and parenting plans for young children: A consensus report. Warshak, Richard A., Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, Vol 20(1), Feb 2014, 46-67
DALLAS — Feb. 4, 2014 — When parents are married, they generally share the care of their
babies —diapering, feeding, bathing, putting to bed, soothing in the middle of the night, cuddling in the morning. But if parents separate or divorce, should children under four spend every night in one home? Or will infants and toddlers benefit from spending overnight time in the care of each parent?
To answer these questions, Dr. Richard Warshak, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, spent two years reviewing and analyzing the relevant scientific literature. His conclusions garnered the endorsement of 110 of the world’s top experts. “Just as we encourage shared parenting in two-parent homes,” Warshak said, “the evidence shows that shared parenting should be the norm for children of all ages, including sharing the overnight care for very young children.” To maximize children’s chances of having long lasting relationships and secure attachments to each parent, Warshak’s consensus report encourages both parents after their separation to maximize the time they spend with their children, including the sharing of overnight parenting time.
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Purchase the consensus report (.pdf) at psycnet.apa.org