Losing the pacifier can be tough

A PHOTOGRAPH of famous preschooler Suri Cruise sporting a dummy at age four attracted much comment this week. It inspired this week’s poll and sparked a bit of a conversation on our Facebook page.

One of my favourite contributors, Barb, joined in on the conversation and had me crying from laughter. So we had to share it. “I knew of a girl (school age) who had a dummy and would carry it in her pocket at school and go to the loo for a quick suck a few times a day.’’ Hmmm, I’ve heard of people hiding out in the toilets to feed some strange habits, but dummy sucking?!

Feli from My Life In Mono also had a cute tale to tell. “Mum told me that I was on the dummy at age four. She weaned me by telling me the dog ate my dummy and that was that’’.

Exactly when your child loses the binky is really a personal choice. For Princess Ella, who was only ever allowed her dummy at bedtime, it was two and a half years due to the seed of Baby Holly being sown. It happened pretty easily, thanks to flagging the idea with her weeks in advance and being positive about it. But every child is different.

If you’re in the midst of losing the pacifier or about to, here’s some suggestions. We had success with a combination of the first two.

  1. Tell them how the Dummy Fairy will come and get it one night to take it to a li’l baby who needs it more than they do. This idea makes them feel like they’re helping someone else.
  2. Provide them with a gift (either from mum and dad or from the Dummy Fairy) in return for the pacifier. It’s always fun for them in the weeks leading up to it to guess what the gift might be.
  3. Just go cold turkey.  Yes, surprisingly this sometimes can work, especially when they’re really young.
  4. Cut the tip off the pacifier. The child is unable to suck and loses interest. Prepare for the fact they may carry it around with them for a while though.
  5. Tie it to a helium balloon and release it into the sky or pop it in the post (addressed to grandma, maybe) so it can be delivered to a baby who needs it more.

Getting rid of the dummy can be tough. Share with us your story of losing the binky.

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13 Responses to FEATURE: Five super techniques for losing the pacifier … for good!

  1. all 3 of my kids gave up the dummy by them selves.
    mr 10 gave it up at 7 months
    miss7 gave it up at 4 months
    mr 3 gave it up at 18 months

    • Kel says:

      Wow, if only all our children did the same – and so early! You’re very lucky!
      I can only hope Baby Holly decides to give it up herself too when the time comes. 🙂

  2. Caz says:

    I was in a bit of a dither with the littlest pink. She was the only one not to do it early all by herself. She only ever had it for night time – so it wasn’t a huge worry. But a month or so ago I asked one night if she wanted to be a ‘big girl’ and go to bed without it and she said YES!! We’ve not looked back since. I was thinking it would be horrible – but nope – easy peasy 🙂 love it when they surprise me like that!

    • Kel says:

      That’s wonderful, Caz! Sometimes I think it’s more about us than it is about them. We fret about (and often put off) changing something in their lives, when they easily adapt to it. I like the “big girl” idea too. I think that’s always a winner. 🙂

  3. Glowless says:

    Originally I gave Tricky a dummy whenever he wanted because he was just using me as a dummy and I did actually need to get up and have a shower and eat something! But since he was 6 months old he’s just had it for sleep or lately to stop him grinding his teeth as new ones come through (the most awful sound in the world!). I like the idea of the fairy 🙂

    • Kel says:

      Hmmm, maybe I should be using the dummy more for Baby Holly (five months old). She never stops feeding!! LOL! 🙂
      It’s a good option for teething too. Great tip. Not looking forward to going through the whole teeth thing again! Fingers crossed Baby Holly gets through it better than Princess Ella did!

  4. Tracy says:

    I’m a little worried about the whole dummy-weaning so thanks for the tips! My son never took a dummy so I didn’t have to worry about this. Wriggles though loves her dummies, they are her friends.. she doesn’t always suck on them but just likes to play with them. We have a whole bunch of different ones so she isn’t fixated on just one. My younger sister had her dummy until about 4 and mum was always having to go from shop to shop trying to find the exact same colour etc because that was all she would take.

    • Kel says:

      LOL! I love that she refers to them as her “friends”! That’s cute.
      Good tip on giving her different types too. You never know when a brand could cease stocking your favourite.
      Let us know how you go with the dummy weaning and which option worked best (or if something completely different worked). Best of luck, Tracy! 🙂

  5. I didn’t think Erin was ever going to give up her nummer. In some ways I wish she hadn’t because it kept some of her oral issues in check–rather than licking and biting things (like she does now) she just sucked the dummy, but I guess that’s beside the point.

    I’m very glad that Abi isn’t interested in them.

    • Kel says:

      At least you’ve got one less thing to worry about with Abi. Did Erin give up hers herself, or did you have to do some negotiating?!
      The downside for us with Ella giving up hers was she stopped having day sleeps. Mind you, she sleeps from 7pm till 7am, so I shouldn’t complain!! 🙂

  6. We tried taking it away a few times and it just didn’t work, so in the end we just let her decide when it was time. Once she found one that she’d stashed away in the wardrobe and put it in her mouth for bed time, I just pretended it wasn’t there, waited for her to go to sleep and for it to fall out of her mouth and took it away. She didn’t ask for it or even mention it again, she wasn’t even particularly interested when we bought some for Abi.

    • Kel says:

      That’s great, Bec. So much easier if they can do away with it themselves. Less stress for mum, I reckon!!
      Thanks so much for sharing. 🙂

  7. […] through Ella’s twinkling, Holly decides to talk about the wonderment of wee while her dummy is in her mouth. Which is not a good idea when your head is over a toilet bowl. As expected, she […]

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