Visitation centers provide a protected environment for meetings between noncustodial fathers and their children. The aim of the study was to analyze fathers’ experiences with the visitation center. This qualitative study is based on 12 interviews with fathers who had been meeting their children in visitation centers. Findings show that the fathers’ experiences were structured by two poles. On one pole were fathers who experienced the visitation center as a hostile place designed for supervision, limiting their parenthood role. On the opposite pole were fathers who experienced the visitation center as a secure and enabling space that helped in the continuity of relationships with their children. Another group of interviewees expressed both dichotomous voices, experiencing the visitation center as a positive opportunity to meet children, but as negative due to supervision. The discussion focuses on masculinity as constructing the fathers’ experiences.
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- nonresidential fathers
- visitation centers
ASJC Scopus subject areas