Wednesday, June 5, 2013

If Pacifiers Are Wrong, I Don't Want to Be Right

I think this counts as a confession...

Not long ago, Jeff and I kept a neighbor's little boy for a very short amount of time so he could deal with a car issue.  Let's just say Little Man wasn't having it, and he spent the entirety of that short amount of time absolutely wailing.  I held, I coddled, I distracted with silly faces and our most favorite toys, but nothing could calm him down.  And, as ashamed as I might be to admit this, I couldn't help thinking "if only he had a pacifier..."

See, in our house, pacis rule.  (As if you didn't know that.)  Really, Sam is a pretty good kid these days, but even the occasional meltdown is pretty easily managed with a pacifier.  Dude LOVES them. In fact, he has chewed through all three of his Wubbanubs now, and we are struggling to manage with just regular old pacifiers... Sure, we try to limit its use to crib/car/crisis; but, sometimes we splurge a little bit.  Seriously, I've become a FIRM believer that we might just find world peace if adults used a pacifiers.  (Think about it.)

And now, as we approach Sam's second birthday (howintheworld?), I'm all kinds of conflicted about the pacifier:

On the one hand, two seems like a reasonable time to give it up with no real stigmas attached to the "big kid" that still has a paci in his mouth. (Look, I've judged it before too.)  It also seems early enough that no real damage will have been done to his teeth yet (let's hope), and he'll probably grow up to be a functioning member of society.  Not to mention, I'm home in the summer, so it is the prime opportunity to go through the dreaded "three days" of misery it might (read: WILL) take to wean.

BUT... On the other hand, Sam still really likes the pacifier.  He's a good napper, a good night-time sleeper, and he doesn't cry all that much.  Why rock the boat?  Plus, letsjustbehonestforaminute, Mama likes the pacifier.  It has become my #1 parenting tool since the early throes of colic and, well, let's just say it is probably just as much my crutch as his.

What will I do when we are in the car he won't stop crying?
How will I soothe him back to sleep in the middle of the night?
How will I ever get through another phone call or grocery trip again in my life?

Last night, after we did our nightly walk through the house gathering up random pacifiers to take to bed, it occurred to me that whether Sam is ready to give up the paci or not (I'm voting not), I don't think I am ready.  Maybe my attitude will change soon (hopefully before he starts Kindegarten at least), but for now, I'm not in a hurry to break the addiction.  I'm just not.

Does this make me the worst mom ever?  Maybe. (Probably not.) But, we choose our battles as moms all the time.  And, well, if pacifiers are wrong, I don't want to be right. :)

P.S. In unrelated confessions, I only put eyeshadow on one of my eyes today.  #Whathashappenedtome?


  1. I'm glad neither of my babies wanted a pacifier. There were times where I wished I had one to calm them down, but I am really happy I don't have to deal with the battle of taking it away! I think the #1 rule in parenting is: do what works for YOU. You know what is right for you and your family. Maybe you could gradually have them around less, saving them for meltdowns or nighttime. It certainly doesn't make you a bad mother for him to hang on to it for a bit longer!

  2. Neither of mine ever took mine, and other than the fact I felt like a boob-pacifier for the first few weeks, that's the only time I ever felt I needed one. They don't whine or cry much, so I never felt like I wanted or needed to shut them up in that way. Although I do know some people, friends and family, whose kids are like that. And trust me, if I babysit them, I want their pacifier too for them. I think it must have something to do with just getting used to it? I don't know. I think kids going out of the house with pacifiers at age 2 & 3 (and beyond) look silly, but if they need it to calm down at home and before bed, etc? Who cares! Do what you gotta do--we all have our coping mechanisms!

  3. Our Lydia looooved her paci, I think she thought that Paci hung the moon. We were going on 3 and only had 1 paci left in the house and we kept building it up telling her that when she turned 3 the paci fairy scooped up all the pacis that the big kids didn't need anymore and took them away for other babies who needed them. Unfortunately or fortunately we lost the single paci one night soon after we moved into our new house and it forced her to give it up. It wasn't easy but she took a few days to adjust and doesn't even ask for it now! No hurry I say.

  4. Piper has a similar addiction to her mimi (aka- tiny crochet blankets that my mom made, which is why she calls them mimis). She sucks her two fingers whenever she has them. We are trying to limit them to just nap and bedtimes.

    Does Sam have any other lovey that he likes as much/sleeps with?


  5. Uhh- Sister here. Maybe you don't remember that I had a paci til I was like 5.. lol (no joke). However, I was ALSO the ONLY person in our entire family to have braces...coincidence- probably not. Im up in the air about this one, because I see (personally) the good and bad of both.. but I also dont have kids, so take it for what its worth. Love u

  6. I was never a big fan of pacifiers...then Avery was given one at 2 days old by a nurse in the hospital and it was like magic! And then she stopped nursing - another story for another day. So we stuck with the paci and I said that at a year we would get rid of it. Well, a year came and went and I said at 18 months and then she got sick. So as her 2nd birthday approached, I started to tell her and my husband and my sister (who watches her when I work) that we would be getting rid of the pacis for good on her 2nd birthday. I had no idea HOW, but I was adamant April 25th would not only be the first day of her 2nd year on earth but the first day of NO MORE PACIS. Plus, she was starting to talk with the paci hanging out of the side of her mouth, which drives me NUTS and she was getting an addict mentality about the stupid things. Like one in her mouth and two in each hand. I would watch my husband and my sister enable this behavior and it would drive me crazy. I was realizing that I would not only be breaking Avery of her paci, but I would have to break it with the husband and sister.

    Sooooo, on her 2nd birthday we took her to the zoo. She was in the habit of throwing her paci back in her crib when we would get her up so she had not seen it since then. When we got home and put her down for her nap, she asked for her paci and I told her that we gave them to the monkeys at the zoo. She laughed then rolled over and went to sleep. I immediately went on a mad search throughout the house and found and hid all pacis - from Avery, her father, and her aunt. She asked again that night at bedtime and then the following day at naptime. Each time I told her that we gave them to the monkeys at the zoo and she still laughed. There was little more crying when we would leave her room. But after a few days, she stopped asking all together.

    It has been a month now and her "paci teeth" have straightened out, they no longer look all pushed out and the only time she says anything about a paci is when she sees a baby with one. Like everything else with parenting, it is what works best for you guys. Everyone has an opinion and everyone judges and everyone has a story. Sorry for the novel length comment, I probably should have just emailed you.


  7. Isaac never seemed that interested in a pacifier, although in those first couple of weeks, we did all but duct tape that thing into his mouth. He'd just spit it out and keep on going.

    I'm minimally conflicted about this... I mean, YAY! We don't ever have to worry about cutting out paci's! Buuuuuut, sometimes (on crowded airplanes or in quiet restaurants) it'd be nice if he'd go to town on a pacifier to keep from screaming.

  8. My son Michael used a pacifier. A nurse gave him one in the hospital. The crazy thing was that Michael only wanted the paci from the hospital. No other would do. And we tried plenty. When the babysitter lost his one and only paci (I didn't notice until Michael actually needed it.), I thought he was going to die. I could do nothing to calm his cries/screams. Luckily his doctor at the time, who I had on speed dial, told me to pop over to the office and she would give me another paci. This was 11 in the evening. We packed Michael up in his bucket seat and headed for the doctor's office that was 20 minutes away. Not only did the doctor meet us at the door, she also gave us like 10 pacis. We placed pacis in each of the cars, in both diaper bags, gave one to my mother, kept one in Michael's room, one in the kitchen, . . . you get the picture. Then one day he just wasn't interested anymore. Just like that. I wouldn't worry to much.

  9. david was a thumb sucker, a habit he weaned himself of (he sucked a huge blister on his thumb and then was scared to suck it again. we had a hard few days...) and never used a paci (of course...until recently...
    so i have no advice
    my mom always says babies are always ready before the mamas. my mom says some crazy stuff, but that little anecdote has proved to be true in our home :)

  10. We got rid of the pacifiers at 27 months, or so. Now at three years, I sometimes still wish I could give them a pacifier for falling asleep at nap time. Our pediatrician was please at their 2 year appointment, that they only used the paci at nap and bed times, and said she wanted them gone by 3. The couple of rough nights weren't nearly as bad as I anticipated. Good luck, when you do decide to take away the pacifiers, but until then, I won't be judging!

  11. Hey Elizabeth! this is Sarah C. I seem to be with the majority of commenters in that it will happen when it's supposed to happen. Neither of mine ever took a paci but they BOTH suck their thumbs - and you can't take that away! So, I almost wonder if the paci is the better alternative. If he is only using the paci in the car / at home / bedtime . .who cares? He'll give it up when he's ready. I would reasses at 3 yrs old - plus he'll understand more then so when you explain what happened to all his paci's he'll really get it. I'm with you - pick your battles and I think you're right - this isn't a battle worth fighting right now :)

  12. Sorry but time to give it up!!! He'll get over it quick, and he'll soon be able to self soothe and be happy without a "plug." You can do it, mama!

  13. I was also a big fan of the paci! My first two loved their pacis and around 2.5 or 3 years old, when they were old enough to have a conversation and explain to them that they were too big for a paci, we gently took it away. It ended up pretty darn easy for both of them. I always feel sad for those 18 month old babies who get their pacis stripped away from them, and in their little minds they have no idea why?? LOL (not judging just my thoughts)

    Anyway, to each his own and if you aren't ready to fight this battle yet, then I wouldn't worry about it. There aren't many kids I know these days that don't end up with braces any how, which could be some sort of conspiracy in the orthodontics association! lol jk

  14. Two things for you....1) I sucked my thumb until I was 7 or so. I needed braces but think I would have needed them anyway. But I am a (mostly) well adjusted adult so I would worry about it too much.

    2) When Sawyer was born, my niece was 2 1/2 or so. My brother got her to give hers up by giving it as a "gift" to Sawyer because he was a baby and needed the paci and she was a big girl. So she wrapped it up in wrapping paper and a gift bag and "gave" it to Sawyer and we made a big deal about how nice it was. They said she had a couple of rough nights without it but then was fine. So, when you guys are ready if you know someone with a baby that might be something to try.

    Either way, you and Sam will both know when you are ready to give up the paci. I'm sure we will be fighting the same battle with Sawyer - he loves his wubbanub.

  15. I have a thumb sucker and the older she gets currently 14 months. The more she sucks her thumb. I think she'll be 15 and still sucking her thumb. She used a paci until 6 months then the thumb won. I think 3 is when it gets borderline too old. If its just in the house/car no one but you will know anyways

  16. First of all, you put eye shadow on one more eye than I did!! I didn't even get that far this morning. :)

    And, as far as pacifiers go, we are the last people to judge. We would not have survived Cam's 1st year if it wasn't for MAMS pacifiers, and we aren't ready to quit yet, either. We keep saying we need to, but honestly, we really love those quiet moments when he's just sucking away on his pacifier (like right now). :)

  17. I am a firm believer that momma has to be ready and completely on board with making a transition or it won't be successful. I just went through the pacifier transition with my youngest who is 28 months old. That boy (and this momma) were totally addicted. However, he has done fairly well. (We did have one night that he was up from 11:45-3am pleading for his paci!) If you aren't ready, then don't get rid of them yet! You won't be able to make it through the 3 bad days if you aren't ready. Don't let people judge you because they don't know your child and what is best for do!

  18. hai, i'm new comer here.
    really thanks. i will back. Nice admin.

  19. No judgement here! I got the talking to from our pedi because my almost 10 month old is still on jar food instead of full blown table food. He chokes so much that I'm totally stalling. But you have to go with your gut. You know your little guy the best :)

  20. I really don't think keeping the paci past two is a big deal, but my husband was ready to drop the pacifier. We did it about a week and a half ago and it really wasn't bad! It sounds like we used it about the same as y'all did. The naps weren't a bad adjustment and the car has been really easy. In fact, I just drove 2 1/2 hours to visit my family (and the same back) and Jack did great without the paci. The nights were the roughest, but it was only bad for about 4 days. So don't let the actual giving up process scare you!

  21. Once again - keepin' it real. Gotta say, I love you and your posts.


Your comments are what makes this thing fun! I LOVE to hear from you and do my best to respond to everyone! THANK YOU!

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