Weaning off our son from his beloved binky was hard. I don’t know how some parents are able to do it cold turkey without shedding a tear. I can only assume that the child is not that attached to the pacifier. Hearing my son cry was hard–and we did not do it cold turkey!
Considering how attached our son was to his pacifiers, it was hard to imagine a time when he didn’t like them. But that was the case for his first three months of his life. We hoped we were one of those lucky couples whose baby did not really care for them and, therefore, you never had to struggle with weaning them off it.
Well, we were not the exception.
We never forced our son to like pacifiers, but we certainly encouraged it. See, Jason was not a good sleeper as a baby. After the first three months, we couldn’t get him to sleep on his own or without the aid of us rocking him to sleep. We were lucky that it was the only thing we struggled with. But he woke up several times after going to sleep. So we barely slept. We looked for ways to get him to sleep and stay asleep.
When we heard that pacifiers provide comfort and help babies sleep, we tried to get our son to like them. After refusing them for so long, we were surprised when he finally did. He loved them so much that he sought them for everything–sleeping, comfort, you name it.
By the time he was two years old, it was time to wean him off. We were afraid that it would be harder to get him to stop using one the older he got, we feared that his teeth would be affected, and, according to his pediatrician, that it was likely not helping with his recurring ear infections.
We couldn’t cut him off cold turkey so we started slow…and it was working! If he had a pacifier during the day, we asked him to give it to us and surprisingly, he did! But he still called out for it at night. When we decided to wean him off it during his naps and bedtime, it was hard. He cried very much and begged for them.
I admire parents who easily cut off a child’s bottle or pacifier cold turkey. But that is just not in my blood. Also, every child is different. So, what may be hard for one child, may be easy for another. So I had to keep reminding myself that it will happen. That is where we are right now.
I am grateful for all of the comfort the binkies provided my son. Their job is done and we must move on!