Saturday, February 19, 2011

The great Paci Dilemma!

I have a confession to make . . . my 3-year old (who just turned 3 - 2 weeks ago) still uses pacifiers to sleep for naps and at night. She MUST have one in her mouth and one in her hand for complete comfort.

I thought she'd be ready at 3-years-old to give it up but now I'm not sure. I live by the rule in parenting that I try not to mess with a good thing unless absolutely necessary. Abigail was 2 1/2 when she moved out of a crib, a little older when we started potty training, etc. And it has worked . . . marvelously!

I am home alone with the girls a few days ago. I put Abigail to bed (maybe I'll post another time about how she's fighting bedtime like crazy these days!) and then headed upstairs to read in bed myself. About 1/2 hour later I hear her start to wail in her room.

I gave her a few minutes but she did not calm down so I went to check it out.

Her answer when I opened the door to ask what was wrong . . . . . . . . . "I can't find my PACI! Waaaaa!!"

Oh my goodness!

She got a scolding from me about how crying over a paci is not appropriate and that she is a big girl and can get out of bed and find the paci without disturbing me.

I had no problems with her after that.

Now . . . on to nap time the next day. Upon closer examination of the four paci's in her room - I found minuscule holes in all of them. I'm not about to let my child suck on a pacifier that has a hole in it so I threw them away. Bring on the tears!

I know that I should have been strong and just said, "Well, I guess that's the end of the paci's honey" but I wanted her to nap so I broke down and gave her one of Elsie's newer paci's. Ugh! She, of course, still continued to cry because she didn't have a second paci.

So . . . any other moms have experience with giving up the pacifier? We're about to give her a twin sized bed instead of a toddler bed and she wants it so bad. I'm thinking that might be good leverage for her to try and give them up all together - that a big bed means she's a big girl who doesn't use pacifiers.

I don't want to ruin the good pattern that I have worked so hard to put in place - a good sleeper (for the most part) - but I don't want her to have to bring a paci with her to sleep at college (okay, so I realize that's a big far fetched).



Jennifer said...

I haven't had trouble with pacifiers so far (Anna just gave hers up at 9 months and Jacob refused one...we'll see what Isaac does since he takes one). But with giving up bottles, I just decided when I was taking them away (at one year) and that was it. There was drama with Anna (of course!!) for a couple of nights, but then she was fine. I think it's probably like everything else in parenting...decide if it's what you want/need to do and don't back down. I know how hard it can be when it affects (or is it effects??) sleep time. Especially when Mama is pregnant! Anna's transition from crib to toddler bed was a nightmare (I was pg w/ Jacob)!! Good luck!

Melanie said...

I haven't dealt with this yet (Johnathan's pacifier use seemed to increase once he stopped nursing and he sleeps better with it yet) but my cousin once mentioned that she got her daughter to give it up by offering something else she really wanted--a toy of some sort. She was old enough to understand the exchange, which is sounds like Abigail is too, so maybe using the big girl bed as leverage would work with her, since she sounds like a logical little girl :)

Anonymous said...

we recently had to deal with this one for the exact same reason. Here is what we did: for about a week we talked about how good it is to give to other people. We also talked about what a big boy he was, in a big bed, going potty, etc. then we talked about how there are some babies who don't have pacis. And we asked him to box them up and give them to the babies in the nursery at church. He was wonderful about it. Everytime we walk past the nursery he talks about how his pacis are with the babies. -amy fletcher

Jaime said...

Thanks, guys! I think we just need to break down and do it. She's physically old enough but she's so emotionally attached. We won't be getting her big bed for another week or two so I really think I'll talk it up and try it then!

Duncan Cole Family said...

Well this will sound a little strange, but being a farm girl yourself I know you'll appreciate it. We used the Farmer's Almanac to find the right day to wean Elmyra off of the pacifier. I looked up the best wean date online and that's the day we went with. That morning I gave Elmyra her pacifier and told her to throw it away in the trash can, which she did. And we said 'that's it, no more paciifer.' Now I don't claim any miracles, she did cry at nap time, but by that night she just let out a few whimpers, and by nap the next day the pacifier was long forgotten. Good luck!