Soooooo …. Just read a whole bunch of threads about older toddlers/preschoolers and binkies and now I just don’t know what to do.
Never planned to let DS have all-day binky access, but like many pp have said, he really really REALLY is attached to his “goo-bee” as he calls it. It’s getting harder to distract him from it and I just feel like maybe it’s time to get him off it, at least during the day.
I had thought about doing a “binky is for bed,” routine – keep it only in bed (he cosleeps – no crib) but I’m just on the fence about whether it’s even right to force him to give it up during the day. Right now he asks for it a lot – wants it during TV time, reading, car, grocery shopping – I can distract him during a lot of playtime and especially if we’re outside or out of our home.
The only people who seem to understand this are Mothering people – everyone else is “just take it away – he’ll scream for a few days ..” blah blah blah … But I do see that there is an issue of respecting his very real needs. EVERY day at 10:30 (which was his AM nap/nursing time for a long while) he finds me, wants his goo-bee and crawls into a nursing position. I would ABSOLUTELY still be nursing him if he had wanted to (he weaned at 2) – why should the binky be different?
BUT I am worried that it is very hard to soothe him without the binky – for a bonk on the head, a melt down, etc. I do know that it diminishes the amount of time he interacts with other people, it does reduce the frequency of his speech. He is in EI and his speech therapists are AMAZING and have always supported my desire to help his speech but also respect his needs for comfort. (He’s not on the spectrum, but I believe a little “behind.”)
I do know that part of me is looking for an “excuse” not to force the issue – but I also know he can’t take it to preschool with him in Sept. He is not asking for it less and frankly, he would not understand the concept of “giving it to another baby” or “leaving it for the goo-bee fairy” or something. He’s just not intellectually there yet.
So what to do?
You can wait if you want, and let school take care of it. "You have to leave it in the car while you go to school, it will be in your carseat when you get back in the car".
But, don't make the teacher take it away. Just do the "leave it in the car".
When you decide it's time (you will get to that point) You can bribe him. (that's what I did) or take them all away and put them into a Build A Bear. Or you can start losing them, and not replace them. Or all of the above.
My child turned three in Sept, and had her pacifier til February, when I bribed her with $40. She willingly gave them up for $40. We had also been reading the book "The Last Noo Noo". It's a cute book about an older monster named Marvin who had his noo noo for too long, and people would make comments about it. One day, he just decided to give it up. But, he'd planted a noo noo in the yard...just in case. On the last page is a giant noo noo tree full of colorful pacifiers. That book was probably the biggest reason she gave it up.
She had a slight lisp that was caused by the pacifier. Plus, her front top teeth were a tiny bit shorter than the rest of her teeth. When she gave up the pacifier, the teeth grew in normally, but the lisp never went away completely. By six, it was more obvious. The dentist took one look at her teeth and said "She used her pacifier for a long time, didn't she?".
By age 10, her front teeth were forced out because of the lisp (tongue thrusting) and then her orthodontist said "She used her pacifier too long, didn't she?" Lots of long painful dental work and six thousand dollars, she now has pretty good teeth. In the long run, other than the dental work, it wasn't THAT big of a deal. She was a sick child, and sometimes the pacifier was her only comfort. She had many painful procedures, and the pacifier was a big help. IF she had been healthy, maybe I would have regretted it more...but, it did help some. So, I don't totally regret it.
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