Pacifier Nightmare Going On-Any Advice?

Lounge By SueW Updated 12 Dec 2006 , 5:57pm by SueW

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SueW Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 2:14am
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Well I dont know what possessed me but I decided last night that it was time for my 3 1/2 year old to finally give up the pacifier. She still had it for naps and nighttime but not during the day at all. Last night she seemed OK because she knew she'd get a toy today if she slept w/o it. Tonight has been a nightmare and it's going on 2 plus hours now. She is screaming and crying for it. At first I felt so bad I was crying too, now I just have a huge headache and hubby FINALLY got home to help out.

Should I have just let her keep the damn thing? Help please icon_cry.gif

24 replies
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veejaytx Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 2:30am
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You got this far, if you give in now, it will just be harder the next time. Just my opinion. Janice

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cookinnut Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 2:38am
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Just stick it out, I went through the same thing. She carried on the first day then during bedtime the next night then that was it. When mine asked for it I just told her it went bye bye and that she was doing such a good job and that she was so big she didn''t need her little binky. As with everything else, keep your patience, this too shall pass. Good luck!!!!!!!!!!!

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SueW Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 2:47am
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I am trying so hard to stick it out. I told my DH that we came this far we can't give in now. Gee, he has only been around for 30 minutes of this 2 1/2 hour nightmare and already wanted to give in icon_mad.gif I just pray tomorrow night isn't this bad. Oh and she refused to nap today w/o it and I NEED her to nap or I'll go crazy icon_cry.gif Also have a 1 1/2 year old, I think I need a vaction icon_lol.gif

At least she fell asleep 10 minutes ago out of exhaustion while DH was reading to her.

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dldbrou Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 3:12am
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Make a hole in it so that when she sucks on it, it will collapse and won't work. If she gets upset, just tell her it's broken. If you have a dog, tell her the dog ate it. Okay, I am not sure if these crazy suggestions would work, so I would just get a few good books, lay down with her and read till she falls asleep. If she has a favorite doll, she could snuggle up with the doll while you read. She just needs to learn a new way to fall asleep that is comforting. Good luck

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SueW Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 3:17am
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I should have tried the hole in it first. I made the mistake (because so many people suggested it to me) of telling her she was such a big girl now and we had to give them to the babies at the hospital now so they could use them. Now I am afraid she is going to punch out the next baby she sees icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

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missyek Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 4:31am
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We did the hole thing with my son (well he actually created the hole by chewing on it) and he did not care for it so he was done around 2 1/2. But we kicked ourselves in the butt for waiting that long because it (along with other things) led to the speech problems that he has and is still dealing with now (he is 5 1/2). My daughter we had to just take it away and deal with the frustrations for a few days. She would chew the entire tip of and still want it. She was done around 2 1/2 as well, but we did not have to worry about speech issues with miss chatty! icon_lol.gif

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butterflyjuju Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 4:42am
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With my son he chewed a hole in his ate age 1 so no more plug after that. With my dd(at around age 6 months), my ds would take it out of her mouth and put it on the table when she was in the floor playing and tell her it was nasty. By the time she was 9 months old she no longer wanted it. Some people thought it was mean of him but we allowed him to do it. He didn't make a fuss and neither did she. It was just plain and simple. Made it so much easier on us.

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NEWTODECORATING Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 6:46am
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Is she a Dora fan? Tell her Swiper -swiped it. Worked for a friend of mine. icon_lol.gif

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MissBaritone Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 7:29am
post #10 of 25

Try the santa bribe. Santa exchanges the dummy for a toy when you visit the local grotto.Just get santas elf to brief santa before you go in

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jen1977 Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 1:12pm
post #11 of 25

We never gave them to our boys. My mother never took mine from me...I was 4 and it fell out of my mouth while we were riding a scenic train. I had a horrible overbite as a child, braces, and now tmj problems all of my teen and adult life. They think it started from the pacifier...thanks mom!

We had some friends who theirs to a bunch of helium balloons and let the child fly it away. Also knew someone who took the child to Build a Bear, and put the paci inside of it. They still "had" it at bedtime, but would cuddle the bear instead of sucking on it. Good luck!

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bluehen92 Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 1:45pm
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Originally Posted by jen1977

Also knew someone who took the child to Build a Bear, and put the paci inside of it. They still "had" it at bedtime, but would cuddle the bear instead of sucking on it. Good luck!

That's a really cute idea. My daughter never wanted one, and we actually wanted her to use one because she had periods of colic and we just wanted her to stop crying! But she was never interested. My son used one I think until he was around 1. We started only giving it to him at naptime and bedtime and slowly phased them out. I don't remember how long it took, but it was pretty easy, I think because we did it when he was that young. IMO, they really shouldn't have one after that age anyway, and my doctor discouraged it as well. My friend's daughter (age 4) sees a speech therapist for her problems, which her parents believe is due to her pacifier use - she used it almost constantly until she was about 3 1/2.

Stick to your guns and keep hanging in there! You're doing the right thing icon_smile.gif


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Loucinda Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 2:00pm
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You're doing the right thing. Just hang in there, it won't take long once that first night is over with. DON'T GIVE IN ~ if you do, the next time you try it she will remember you giving in, and it will take twice as long.

I LOVE the idea of the build a bear with the binky in it, I will have to remember that!

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mmdd Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 2:02pm
post #14 of 25

Whatever you do, don't give in.....if you give in now and try to take it away later, it will just be harder. She'll know you gave in once already, you'll do it again.

Just completely throw it out and get rid of it and any others, so you're not tempted to give it back to her.

My oldest only got his pacifier when he slept and when he was about at a year, I decided to take it away, it took him a few nights, but he got the idea. I think back on it and it sounds mean to me now, but I'm glad I took it away when I did, or it would have been harder.
As for my younger son, he played with it all of the time so it just "disappeared" one day....he was 9 months old...he never missed it.

We had some friends that kept trying to take the pacifier away from their daughter...finally got it away from her when she was 5 or 6, no I'm not joking!!! She's 9 now and her teeth are messed up and you can't understand what she's saying a lot of the time. They would take it away, do the santa thing, give it to babies...all kinds of things, but they never worked for them, because a day later, they'd give it back to her.

Good luck to you!!!!!! Let us know how it's going....keep us updated!!!!

Hang in there, we're here for ya if you need us.

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lilladycreations Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 3:23pm
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SwampWitch Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 10:02pm
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I guess I've got the unpopular opinion, but I'd give it back to her and not make a big deal of it. If she knows it's a issue with you, it becomes a power struggle.

I don't think it hurts anything to let her decide when she's ready to give it up.

Cheers, from

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bonnscakesAZ Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 10:11pm
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I think she will be fine after a couple days. We have a different issue. My husband decided to take away my dd's binky one night when I was away. She was 18 months. She started sucking her thumb though and she still does it when she is really tired or trying to go to sleep. We have tried lots of things to get her to stop and it hasn't worked. icon_sad.gif So I wish we would have waited just a little longer although I don't know if it would have helped anyways.

good luck!

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drazil Posted 7 Dec 2006 , 11:56pm
post #18 of 25

I know someone who told their kid that the Easter Bunny was going to take the pacifier away and bring it to a new baby that needed it. They counted down the days and such until Easter. They had this whole story about it and went over "the plan" everyday with the child and then put the pacifier out with the carrot they left for the Easter Bunny.

With Santa coming a similar thing could be done....

Of course, my concern was that the kid might end up resenting the Easter Bunny forever!!!!

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mocakes Posted 8 Dec 2006 , 1:43am
post #19 of 25

Here's what worked like MAGIC for us!!!

It was a little bit of a challenge taking the pacifier away from our 2 sons, and I was dreading it when it came time for our daughter. She was almost 3 when we tried this and it really worked!!! Wish we had heard of this or tried this when we were going through this with our boys!!

We started preparing her about 2 months in advance, but we told her that one day when she become a "big girl" and she would know that she has become a big girl when one day, all of a sudden, her pacifier didn't taste good anymore. So every know and then we would even ask her, "Does it still taste good?"...and she would answer "yes". So we would reinforce that one day it won't taste good anymore, and that would mean she has become a big girl! Like I said, we made this an issue for about 2 months to give her time to let it sink in and to prepare her. (It is WAY too traumatic for child and parents to go cold turkey!!! We tried that before!)

Sooooo....after about 2 months, DH and I decided it was the right time and while she was playing somewhere else, we soaked her pacifier in vinegar. I know, I sounds cruel icon_surprised.gif , but we use vinegar to cook with and we eat it so we knew it would be safe! Stinky, but safe! icon_wink.gif

When it came time for nap, we went to the special place where we kept pacifier and handed it to her as normal. She popped it in her mouth, immediately pulled it out and stared at it. I asked her what was the matter and she said, "Mommy, this tastes yucky." I clapped and happily said, "That means YOU'RE A BIG GIRL NOW!!!"

From that point on, she never had it again. thumbs_up.gif Every now and then she would ask for it or say she missed her pacifier, but we would just remind her that she wouldn't like it because it tasted yucky....and she would remember that moment!

It worked! It really worked!!! It saved our sanity as well as Grace's!!

Sorry this is long! Best of luck and let us know what happens! thumbs_up.gif

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Momof4luvscakes Posted 8 Dec 2006 , 5:30am
post #20 of 25

My girls have never used them. Thank goodness!! I'm a dental hygienist for a children's dental office, and we have people all the time asking what they should do to get their child to quit using a pacifer. Take it away. It is awful for a few days, but in the long run it is better. It causes problems. It causes overbites, etc. They are fine for up to a year, but then it is time to get rid of it. I had one that was a thumb sucker. We had an appliance put in her mouth that would poke her thumb when she put it in. She was broke of that habit within a week and we had the appliance removed. You just have to stick it out, it should only last a few days at most! Good luck!!

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SueW Posted 9 Dec 2006 , 2:02am
post #21 of 25

OK so this is what is happening. We packed up her pacifiers in a small box to mail to "the new babies at the hospital" and she put a not in it to the babies saying she was big now and didn't need them. I think that was more because I TOLD her she was a big girl not so much that she felt she was ready to get rid of it icon_wink.gif She went to the PO with me and handed the box over without a scene.

The first 2 nights were a nightmare! She was crying and begging for it back, I ended up quietly crying in the dark in her room while trying to calm her down icon_cry.gif She eventually fell asleep about 3 hours later than her usual bedtime but at least she was asleep. Every morning I made a huge fuss about how proud I was of her and told her she could have anyting she wanted from Toys R Us icon_eek.gif Thank goodness she is only 3 and has no concept of cost etc, she picked a coloring book 2 days in a row icon_lol.gif Boy did my wallet get lucky! Yesterday I even got her to nap without it but today she cried for it at nap time and wouldn't nap at all. Her grandparents are visiting so she is still awake icon_surprised.gif I am not happy about that but we'll see what happens tonight.

She may end up giving up her naps which KILLS me but we have taken it this far now so I just can't turn back. I am hoping by the end of the weekend she stops crying and gets back to the normal schedule, in bed by 7 PM. Thank you all for making me feel like I am doing the right thing. I just felt so guilty icon_cry.gif

mocakes- I think the vinegar story is a riot icon_lol.gif

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oceanspitfire Posted 9 Dec 2006 , 2:27am
post #22 of 25

hang in there, it's gutwrenching to listen to the crying. But it'd be harder if you didnt stick to it. You'll be fine, your baby will be fine and lots of good suggestions posted.
Re: speech problems- I've read numerous articles on that (never sucked a thumb or pacifier as a kid so I don't know firsthand lol) but also found out something disturbing at my child safety First Aid course last week, which I researched further , that pacifiers cause oral yeast infections. UGH that sounds nasty lol.
The way I see it- I've heard the idea that it might seem cold or like abandonment to let a child cry at night or not let them have that comfort thing. Psychologically/Emotionally, if you're giving your child lots of love and attention and feelings of security during the day there's no reason they would feel like they're being abandoned or neglected at night if theyr'e in bed without a soother or crying or have serious repercussions. Hope that makes sense. It's not the clinical explanation but I'm tired tonight lol. The whole switcheroo from sleeping with you and having you breastfeed or hold them every few hours to sleeping through the night and what not, while those transitions are huge, they're just natural. They get over it.
Meanwhile you feel bad about letting him cry and that's justified, but there are ways around that, the ones suggested and others I've seen elsewhere. When you're not feeling upset (cause it's hard to see things clearly then) stand back and see it as one of those transitions or steps he's going to get through/survive (as many kids before him have survived giving away blankie or soothy or sucky or whatever they call their 'security blanket' lol. You sound like a really caring and sensitive person icon_smile.gif

Edited to add: I find it's a challenge when I'm upset- or impossible, to see longterm effect of a choice I make. Whereas when I'm feeling levelheaded, it's easier for me to assess say the shortterm effect of bribing or whatever other action making my life easier for the moment, or the child's life, versus the longterm effect an action like that has on that child (or anyone for that matter).
I dont want to say creating a monster, but I use the following TV commercial as an example, where a kid is throwing a tantrum in the kitchen. To quiet the kid, mom makes him a milkshake (cant remember the brand LOL). Shortterm effect, child is quiet and happy, mom is happy. Longterm, child is going to associate food or drink or treat /sugary something when he doesnt get his way or when he's having a tough time. Therefore, if it happens in a place where there is no milkshake to come to the rescue, Mom is SOL lol. Hope that makes sense. It's just one perspective thumbs_up.gif

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spottydog Posted 9 Dec 2006 , 12:50pm
post #23 of 25

Funny this topic is here. My dh & I decided to do the same with my 2 1/2 year old. He only used it for naps & bedtime. It was a huge part of his rutine to go to bed. Well it's been about 5 days and the result has been he no longer naps icon_sad.gif !!!! He cried alot the fist 2 or 3 days but doesn't even ask for it now. I was sooooo nervous and felt so bad taking it cold turkey.Iam so glad I did.
Good luck and hang in there! I feel your pain! And really miss the nap times!!!!

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Ohara Posted 9 Dec 2006 , 1:21pm
post #24 of 25

Ok, I'll put in my two cents worth.... I had one that sucked his thumb and one that had a pacifier. Atleast you can take the pacifier away(and hope that they don't switch to their thumb as stated already) but you can't remove their thumb. We had to have an appliance installed by the orthodontist so that our sons thumb wouldn't fit in the roof of his mouth, he was 9 or 10 yrs. old!!!
So, words of encouragement....hang in there, you can do it. As far as nap time goes, I told them when they started not going to sleep, that was ok but it was quiet time(Mommy needed it). They had to stay on their bed, quiet, for a set time, usually an hour. They could look at books, or if you have a bedroom with a tv that you can let them lay down in they could watch a movie or tv show. They can't get up until you come in and say so. Alot of the time mine would fall asleep. Good luck! the new avatar...that would describe me, flypaper that attracts freaks.

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SueW Posted 12 Dec 2006 , 5:57pm
post #25 of 25

spotty dog

I can't believe you said that, it is happening to me too....she no longer naps icon_cry.gificon_cry.gificon_cry.gificon_cry.gificon_cry.gif I don't know why that is happening, this is a kid I NEED to nap. She is not really asking for it anymore and the screaming at night has stopped the problem is it takes her FOREVER to fall asleep now. She used to go in at 7PM on the dot and be asleep within 5 minutes now it takes her about 2 hours to fall asleep icon_eek.gif I am glad I took in now at least is it over with and I am proud that I stuck to my guns thumbs_up.gif My whole family was saying to give it back to her, nice support right icon_rolleyes.gif

Ohara, I took your advice and told her about "quiet time" in her bed. It seems to be working although she walks all over her room now and never did before but at least she is up there thumbs_up.gif

The one bonus to all this is I decided since I was miserable already I may as well take it from the baby too ( 1 1/2 year old). He transitioned like a champ! Barley even noticed thumbs_up.gif At least I won't have to go through this with him now.

Thanks for all your great suggestions and listening to me complain icon_razz.gif

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