My two year old loves his “mine”. He calls his pacifier his “mine” in case if you were wondering :)
I had full intentions of getting Andrew off of his pacifier before he ever said his first word; because I can’t stand it when kids talk with pacifiers in their mouths. But he loves his mine. And it would be terrible for us as parents to take away something that gives him such comfort. So we limited its use. So these were my guidelines for the most part – if Andrew was well enough/awake enough to talk or laugh – he was fine enough that he could not have his mine. But he could have it for nap time and bed time, and of course if he was sick, sad, or in pain. This is a hard set of rules to have – and I think we created a “whiney-head” because of it. So we decided that he could have it at Nap/Bed time ONLY. no exceptions. Out of sight – Out of Mind. As soon as he’d wake up, the pacifiers would go into a cupboard or tucked under the bed pillow; and as soon as nap/bed time came, he was allowed to have it again. He was doing so well with this – but then we moved. I was originally planning on (WOOPS!) “losing” the pacifiers in the move. But after day one of this, I realized we needed him to nap – so we could get some work done around here! So that idea quickly went out the window. And even worse? He reverted back to constantly wanting/needing his mine.
Joe and I discussed that we would just have to ‘DO IT’ one day and just take them away and suffer for a few days while he grew accustomed to not having it in his mouth. (Its so funny to watch him before he takes a drink of water to try to “Remove” his pacifier even though it’s not there..) But we tabled the idea until further notice.
Well this last week Andrew was sick and his affinity for his ‘mine’ grew really strong. Then, Saturday morning Andrew came up to me and was trying to tell me something – but had his pacifier in his mouth. I pulled it and said ‘I can’t understand you when you talk with your mine in your mouth’ and immediately he replaced it with the pacifier he had in his other hand.. and he started trying to get the one I pulled out of his mouth back in his hand for another back-up. I didn’t let him have it. He threw himself to the floor hysterically crying about not being able to have his other pacifier in his hand.
That’s when it just burst inside of me. “Ok. We’re Done.” and I got up and got a ziploc bag – grabbed every pacifier that I could find and all the ‘stash’ pacifiers and then tried to explain to him as I took his Mine out of his mouth. I told him he should say goodbye to them because they’re going to a new home with a new baby; and he was not going to see them anymore. and he screamed hysterically some more. He cried for about the next hour or so and Joe and I discussed doing a consolation prize for sharing his Mine’s with a new baby – And so we packed up and went to the store – and got him a new little bike (which we were planning on getting him anyway) and a baseball bat for this summer – which he is pretty excited about and we’ve been reminding him that he has his bike and baseball bat because he doesn’t have his mine anymore.
He didn’t nap Saturday afternoon because he cried through his nap time wanting his mine and being angry that we weren’t letting him have it. Night time was a little easier because he was SO tired – and chanted ‘mine, mine, mine’ until he fell asleep..
Sunday’s nap time went a little better, but was still a little rough – and then going to bed last night was even a little better. We could hear him having a conversation with himself about.. “mine, all gone – no mine, gone. gone – mine.” in a very “Rain-Man”- like speech.
It breaks our hearts as parents to see him struggle through this – but I know its just something that has to be done. His addiction to his pacifier was growing and we were just getting weaker as it continued. It had to just be a cold-turkey sort of thing.
We will continue to have discussions with him over the next several days/weeks about his ‘loss’. But I’m sure he’ll do just fine without it.
Any advice on the topic is greatly appreciated!