Friday, March 23, 2007

Pacifiers Suck

Hello, my name is Jenn and my daughter is a paciholic. We both need help.

You think I'm joking. I am not.
It is completely our fault for not getting her off the pacifier before age two. When she had her teeth grinding issues, the dentist said the pacifier would at least help curb it and prevent further injury to her teeth. Apparently, that didn't happen since she had to have surgery anyway.
I'm sure all you moms have heard it debated: thumb vs pacifier.
Bottom line, neither is good!
What I have now is a nearly 3 year old pacifier addiction. She seriously thinks she has to have it. It is no longer a want, it is a need. The dentist explained this to me and we witnessed this weekend just what he meant. When it came naptime for an extremely exhausted little girl who couldn't find her pacifier, the drama that played out deserved an Oscar. We were in the country and my husband was ready to drive 30 minutes to the closest store for a pacifier. We found it, thank God, and the poor thing slept for 3 hours.
Amanda, wise as a teacher and wise as a sister, has told me what I know deep in my heart. We're gonna have to just take the pacifier away and deal with the tsunami of tears, hurt and heart-wrenching begging.
I can't stand for my children to cry. I truly believe there are better ways to handle things than to let a child go from tears of unhappiness to sobs of desperation. However, I cannot let her go beyond age 3 with a pacifier. Her upper jaw is unable to grow properly because of it. She can't put her teeth together in the front! If we end the pacifier use by age 3, she has a 99% chance of her jaws righting themselves.
And it is our fault that we are in this situation. As parents, we should always have our children's best interest at heart. But knowing when to intervene is the tricky part.
If your child is using a pacifier and he or she is past age 2, be prepared for the ugliness of pacifier addiction. If yours weans herself on her own, be very thankful!! If not, my heart goes out to you and your little one.
Thank goodness Ava takes neither thumb nor pacifier. Just boob. And that is A-Oh-Kay. For now. :)


Shoshana said...

I am sure Jenn that she'll quit when she's ready. Isn't paci-addiction just like toilet training?

I can't relate because none of my children took to pacifier at all. My first born just went from breastfeed to sip-cup, so is my second child. The others tried bottle for a while, but got off real quick...

Except for Yossi who's going to be 3 in June. He still drinks from a bottle and when he's tired and I refuse his bottle, it gets ugly.

Oy, I get I get to take back my frist 3 paragraphs.

T-girl said...

Have you tried "replacing" it? My SIL did this with the fingers... now the kid can't go anywhere without her blanket... purple one and STOP THE WORLD should she not have it! I watched the poor thing have a complete melt down the other day over Mommy and Daddy forgetting it at home. God bless the MIL who was like "here baby, this is my favorite and makes me feel better just be carefull it is my favorite!" and she handed her a purple bath towel! LOL Totally worked, maybe if it is another family member or friend she will buy it? You of course would not do but someone else may work!

Another option is to put that yucky stuff you put under the thumb for thumb sucking on it! Not sure if that would work, it may tick her off but you might try it.

Either way, I am hesitant to say "just take it away" since it is an emotional thing, it makes her feel secure. Ya know? That is why I suggest replacement. I did this with Joci for bed... every night we took Pablo with us until he went EVERYWHERE with us. She is doing better for naps now (I am her pacifier according to my doc! :( )I am such a softie when it comes to my kid, I really am so I totally understand how you would get here. At least it is the pacifier and not the fingers-baby J likes to chew (not suck thank goodness) on her fingers- and you CAN take it away, how do you cut off their thumb though! LMAO

Good luck and let us know what works- T

HEY! My word verification is mojopoc... what is poc? LMAO Sorry to much autin Powers for me! LOL

Michelle said...

Okay, so I got this idea from a friend of mine whose daughter also was a drama queen about the pacifier. She cut off the tiny tip at the end of the pacifier, so that it didn't have any suction anymore. Every couple days, she snipped off a little bit more, until there was almost nothing left, and then there was nothing left and she would sleep with just the plastic part on top of her lips. Then the little girl didn't want it anymore.
When I tried it with my child... the first snip took off the suction, and he threw a fit. He wanted another one, and I told him the it was the only one we had. So, he tried to make do, but then he decided he didn't need it anymore. And now it's gone.

I know you'll get plenty of advice, but it never hurts to try something new!?! Right?

Good luck!

I'm Just a Girl said...

Aw Jenn, I know this is hard. There will probably be no easy way to get through this. At least you have it better than one of my friends...she let her son have the paci until he was almost five. I remember being around him and he could really fight back when Mom didn't give it to him!

It's so hard to watch our kids cry and know that we are part of the cause. However this is for her own good, and you know it is. That's what makes it even harder, because we can't explain that to them! What you could do is remind her that the dentist said she has to stop, and also that it will help make her smile really pretty for the rest of her life (not that it isn't now, but you know what I mean!)

Or you could, as a family, throw all her pacifiers into the garbage, to say goodbye to them. You could make a really big, positive deal out of it, having a BYE BYE party or something! Make a cake, celebrate that Bella is being a big girl about it and doing a great job.

The Boy found his thumb around 1 month old so he didn't care for the paci after that! However our dentist did tell us to "make him stop" sucking him thumb. He always loved the burp cloths and had several that he slept with and carried with him, and he pretty much only sucked his thumb with the blankies. So Spouse was like, "Burn the blankies!" And I said, "NO!" That was just mean. I knew that he would stop when he was ready, but it would take time.

So what I did was tell him for awhile, he could only have the blankies in the house. Couldn't take them to other people's houses, to church, in the car, etc. That was okay. Then after awhile I said, "Okay, now you have to leave the blankies in bed." And they had to stay in bed. If he snuck one out, I would make him put it back. Then after awhile he stopped sucking his thumb about 99% of the time, even in bed. I still refuse to "burn the blankies" because he loves them and they aren't causing any harm. He doesn't even suck his thumb really, his thumb is in his mouth but just the tip, sorta hanging there. Once he falls asleep his hand falls away from his face. So the "little by little" approach that was suggested by someone else, to cut the pacifer up, may work also.

Just stick with it, whatever you choose. GOOD LUCK & HUGS!!!

MeesheMama said...

I'm officially paranoid now. I've been telling Kin to see how long he can hold it in his hand before he puts it in his mouth when he goes to bed. He holds it all proud and obedient, but as soon as I leave the room he scoops it right in! (I peeked thru the door today, the little sneak!) I like the snip it idea.

Jennboree said...

I tried the snip it idea. I think she's too old and too smart for that one. She said the "air got out of it" and we needed to go to the store for a new one cuz that paci was broken. Drama took over. Then she found an intact one and hasn't let go.

I'm trying something new. She can sleep with me if she doesn't bring her pacifier to bed. She really thinks hard about it. So far pacifier is winning but I imagine not for long.

Also, we work hard to remove it from her mouth as soon as she falls asleep. She never wakes to find it and I'd rather 1 hr with it in her mouth than 10 hours!

Thanks everyone!

Michelle Ugarte said...

I was going to give you the same advice as Michelle did. But then I read that you tried it and it didn't work.

I'm not sure of any other options, but the one you are using sounds good. And I hope, for your sanity and your hubby's that it works. =)

tallulah said...

Sorry Jen. I'm having the same problem with Izzy but it's with his thumb. And it is very hard because you can always have a thumb handy.
I guess if he needs surgery later because of his thumb sucking than so be it. I know he won't be 8 and still sucking his thumb so I need to let him wean himself away.
I don't believe in letting your children cry either. It's very, very hard.

Jennboree said...

I sucked my thumb till I was five. My only problem is TMJ, the thing that causes my jaw to inflame and pop when I eat. It doesn't hurt usually, just weirds people out.

Maybe I'm feeling panicky/guilty cuz we've already forked out three grand for her pearlies?

She's doing great though. Sleep removal works just find for now!

YankeeAmanda said...

I am very glad that Jadyn only uses it for sleep. She's 18 months old - I guess it's time to start taking it away now, before there are issues that grow into full-blown subscriptions.