Colton took a pacifier early on. We were worried he was going to be a thumb sucker, so offering him the pacifier was a no brainer for us. We established pacifier guidelines though right away. The paci was for naptime and bedtime only. Granted we broke our own rule from time to time, but we tried to not make a habit of it and we certainly did not allow him to run around with it while playing or trying to make conversation. There was the exception of one of Chris’ two week China trips when I was about 7 months pregnant with Claire and I let him run around with non-stop for the entire time Chris was away! Hey, what is a momma to do!?
We did allow him to have it in the car quite frequently when he was younger. As he got older he could have it if it was around nap time or when we were trying to make the nine hour drive to the beach – can you say, exhausting!?
Then there were those special events where bedtime was delayed and we popped that sucker in – such as Aunt Allison’s Wedding…
or yeah the occasional outing where I just did not have it in me to take it away… what can I say, I’m a wimp sometimes!
No matter where we were, even on the boat – if Colton was tired we could hand over the paci and out he went. Ahhh how I
sometimes often wish this were the case for Claire!
Most people try to ditch the pacifier by age two. Well, I thought about it, but there was so much other stuff going on then. Colton was moving into a big boy bed which was a big adjustment because he loved his crib so much, then along came Claire and then we were starting to potty train – all this within a month. I did not want to throw too many things at him at once, so I let the “security blanket” stay.
After much discussion about it I chatted with some other moms and received some great advice! You can always get great advice from fellow mothers who have been in your shoes! One mom said to me, “he will not be taking that thing when he graduates high school or walks his bride down the isle so do not stress over it and stop worrying about what other people think!” Another mother said that she had known of several people who had taken it away cold turkey and others that took the longer approach and let the kid give it up on their own (with parental help of course) and then ones who gave it up on their own did so much better with the process.
We decided to go with the cut away method. I did this when I was a nanny in college and it worked perfectly! I first poked holes in all 50 pacifiers – probably not literally 50, but there were a ton. When you poke a hole in them they lose some of the suction. It did not seem to bother him too much at first. So I poke more, even larger holes. We eventually got to where we did not use it AT ALL outside of the bed. Not even in the car. The holes eventually did not faze him too much, so I then cut the tips off. This he was a little perturbed about. He would suck on it for a minute and then exam it and then suck on it some more… he finally got to the point that he was just chewing on it. Finally I started noticing that they pacifiers where no where to be found when we went to get him up in the morning or at nap time. For a while he would still ask for it and just hold it in his hand, but now there is no sign of the paci, except for the one I have in the drawer just for memories sake ;)… so there you have it! Ding Dong the Pacifier is gone! Yee-haw!