This means whatever had been effective for a toddler might not work anymore when he is a teenager because his needs constantly change. For example, being a weekend parent from the time his child was a preschooler all the way up to being an adolescent may be a routine that provides a comfortable rhythm to a father. However, there are times when a child might need him more, especially if the child is a growing boy who needs a male role model in his growing up years.
With this knowledge, parents and legal practitioners must make better decisions in designing a parenting plan for the children. This particular article by Hartson (2010) focuses on the infancy to toddlerhood stage of development of a child.
Each developmental stage comes with its own challenges. The infancy to toddlerhood stage is a critical since an infant is a fully dependent being who cannot communicate his thoughts and feelings on how his parents’ separation affects him. Parents need to rely on his cues and research from child development studies to understand what he needs. Infants and toddlers, in particular, are yet in the process of establishing attachments to the significant people in their lives and when this is disrupted, may have serious implications in the development of their personality.
An important factor to consider is the infant’s temperament since this gives a clear indication of how a parent should deal with him so they get along well. Some children may easily transition from relating to one parent to the other, some may be more difficult, and some may just be slow to warm up. The parent has his or her own temperament to reckon with, and the compatibility of the parent-child temperaments would constitute Chess & Thomas’ (1987) “goodness of fit” factor. In order to have a harmonious relationship, parents need to be able to adjust to their infant or toddler’s temperament.
The child’s concept of time,