Monday, April 16, 2012

How do you stop a pacifier addiction?

This is definitely one of those situations I said I'd never be in. You know, those things you say you'll never do before you've actually become a parent?

My daughter never liked pacifiers as an infant. Oh how I wanted her to. But she just spit them out. Always preferring to use me instead.

We ended our nursing experience about gosh... Four or five months ago. Could it be that long? I think so.

Even still, since then, from time to time she'll give me hints that she remembers the experience--and even seems willing to give it a go again, if I were open to it. Which I'm not. Eew.

The last time she nursed I knew it was time to be done because it just didn't feel right anymore. She had gone days without it, then sporadically she tried again and that sweet feeling I use to feel was gone. And I knew we'd never do that again.

Sometimes she'll watch me changing and open her mouth like "yea mom, I remember that!" and I'm thinking "child, you crazy." But I know at certain times she misses it more than others. Like when she's sick.
She likes to stand up on the counter tops and choose what snacks she wants to eat from her cupboard. A few weeks ago, the day she threw up before we were leaving for work and school, I stayed home with her. She had opened the cupboard next to hers with the bottles and pacifiers and reached for a paci.

I thought nothing of it. It was cute, and she wasn't feeling well so I let her play with it. She mostly chewed on it and didn't seem too extremely amused so I let her hang on to it the whole day.

She was able to nap in my arms and stay relatively calm the rest of the day. At first I thought this was because she wasn't feeling well, but I later learned it was a symptom of the binky.

It quickly became an addiction of ours more than hers. I'd hand it to her while I prepared her lunch, or if I just wanted to snuggle with her in bed. Otherwise she'd be busy and all over the place, or giving us orders. My husband would use them to get her down for naps so she wouldn't need to cry.

The pacifier was good but oh so bad.

It's only been a few weeks but this casual toy has turned into a full blown addiction.

The other day when my husband and I picked her up from school Lil' J asked:
"Binky? Binky?"
"Your binky is at home baby, we'll get it after we go to the store ok?" I told her.
Second later...
"Binky?... Binky?!! BINKYYYYYYYY!!!"

Within moments she was hysterical and my husband was detouring to our place to get her dang pacifier so she could calm the freak down.

We have become this thing's slave.

I had no idea kids could get hooked this late in life.

While this is adorably cute, I know something needs to be done. It won't be good for her pretty teeth, and she's almost two for heaven's sake.

Luckily I already have ground-rules in place so this isn't a complete worse-case-scenario. For one, she doesn't get it at bedtime, at school, or when we're playing outside. Basically she only uses it for a little while in the morning (it's the first thing she asks for) and on the ride to and from school. Sometimes she'll sneak in some more paci time on our days off but I've tried to limit that.

Now I'm ready to be done completely and I'm thinking our move this week is a great time to kick this bad habit to the curb.

Here are my ideas:

Plan 1: Throw them all away the day we move. Once we're in the new place and she asks for it, explain they're at the old house and that there are no binkies here.
Suffer through a few days of whining.

Plan 2: Blame it on the dog. She's seen Snoop go for her toys before, and she knows he's capable of toy destruction. She may understand better if I tell her Snoop ate them and they're all gone.
Sure, she may be bitter at him for some time but he can take one for the team.

Plan 3: Cut off the nipples. Ouch, that no only sounds painful, it seems the most cruel. She'll get her hopes up only to be completely deflated by a broken binky. I'm not sure I could do this unless I felt like this was somehow humane.

Plan 4: Let her trash them. She loves throwing things in the trash and maybe if I tell her to throw them away and that they're "all gone" she'll get it.
Then again she may be obsessed with the trash after that and keep getting into it months later thinking her binkies are still in there.

Plan 5: "Donate them" to another baby. Let her help me give them to either a neighbor, or a doll, or some baby so she feels like she's a big girl helping someone younger than her who needs it more than she does.
I'd like to think she gets some of my sympathetic attributes and that this technique would solve all our problems, however I have a feeling I'm being extremely optimistic.

What do you think? Have you had experience with dumping pacifiers? I'd love your advice!

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home