Love Affair With Pacifiers

If loving you is wrong,

I don’t wanna be right!

-Luther Ingram

When parents tell me that they do not want their babies to have a pacifier I weep inside.  Why?  The pacifier is a magical, wonderful invention that my oldest used every day until he was about 2 years old.  He and his binky had a passionate affair and he went everywhere with it.  It helped him sleep.  It calmed him down.  He liked it.   Pacifiers have also been known to reduce SIDS and decrease stress in babies.  That does not sound like a bad thing.

My Love Affair With The Pacifier 3

Max used his binky while he was at daycare! It helped when he was stressed and stopped him from biting when he was teething!

In fairness, the pacifier has some down sides as well.  Studies have shown that it increases the chance of ear infections, and might damage your child’s teeth (depending on how long you use it).

When I first brought home my oldest, Max, he had a hard time falling asleep.  When I introduced the binky, it helped immensely.  It calmed him enough to lay in his crib and fall asleep.  Later when he attended daycare it was a wonderful tool to help him adjust.

I know the biggest complaint is how to wean your child off of the pacifier.  I have to say for a boy who was in love with it, I had no troubles taking it away.  I did it slowly, giving it to him less and less.  If he asked I tried to distract him with toys and stories.  In the beginning it might work, it might not work; but, by the end it worked every time.  Soon the binky was a thing of the past.

Suggestions on what NOT to do to wean your child (after working in daycare for years I met parents who did the following)

-Do NOT leave it out for Santa to take.  We want Santa to be a good guy.

-Do NOT leave it for other babies.  If you decide to have another baby you might be creating animosity to new baby brother or sister.

-Do NOT take it away cold turkey.  I have never met a child who was able to handle cold turkey.  It often makes them want it more.

-Do NOT take it away because they have been bad.  When you finally take it away for good, your child will think they are bad.

My Love Affair With The Pacifier 2

Max loves getting his hair cut. I think it had to do with his first hair cut being such a great experience! He used his binky to help him with the new situation!

My youngest son has refused the binky.  Where Max loved it beyond belief, Lucas hates it with all of his heart.  When I would attempt to give it to him, he would purse his lips together and give me the stink eye!

All I can say is HEART BROKEN!  I was heart broken!  There would be no more love affairs with the pacifier in this house.  I did not press it.  I was fully accepting of his request, but it came with some downsides.  He had a hard time falling asleep at night.  He wanted to eat ALL THE TIME!  My poor boobs!  He seemed like he was always trying to get comfortable, but just could not quite get there.

Once he was able to sit up right and roll back to front/front to back I tried a lovey.  A lovey is a doll used as a security tool for your baby.  I started to incorporate it into our night-time routine.  It gave him something to focus on and hold.  It is still a work in progress, but it is definitely working.  Right now I am currently looking for a second lovey.  This way if I lose it I will have a back up and while I wash one, I can still use the other.

Good bye, binky!  It was quite a ride!  Hopefully, my next love affair will be with Lucas’ lovey (we named him Monkey).

My Love Affair With The Pacifier

Lucas started to fall asleep with Monkey. I know it is working because he is always holding it close!



Categories: Parenting

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7 replies

  1. I suppose opinions on pacifiers would depend on individual experience. We weaned cold turkey (after trying Pantley’ gentle removal plan) when my son was 5 months old because he was waking up 15 times per night just to get it plugged back in. After a month of hardly sleeping, it had to stop. I was great when we first introduced it, because it really helped him fall asleep. It was great when he was teething for the first time too so I was quite sad to take it away. We did introduce a lovey instead though which he’s starting to adopt. I’m glad the pacis worked for you though!

  2. My son also has a love affair with his paci. He is over 2 now, so we are starting the weaning process – only at night and naptime. However, I am reticent to get rid of it before he is done teething (2 yr molars), but it seems to get in the way of his speech, so we are trying really hard to keep it out of his mouth during the day. I have noticed, if we take it from him, he screams, but if we ask him to put it away, he always complies. It’s all in the presentation, I guess!

  3. right there with you sister! We told my oldest that 2 year olds don’t need binkys and HE threw them in the trash on his birthday. We’re 2 months out from #2 turning two and we’ve started telling him what is coming his way. (He has been good about ‘only having it in bed’ – so we’re that far in the weening process). So..we’ll see how it goes. 7 week old baby girl is sucking away on hers right now and that = good sleep for baby, quiet time for mama and a happy house!! Thank goodness for binkys! 🙂

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