Before I had children I was in the ‘I won’t give my children a dummy’ camp. I don’t have anything against them, or anyone who choses to use them, I just didn’t want to use them for my children.
Of course you can never make any decisions about how you would like to parent before you actually become one. You just don’t know how you’ll feel when the time comes. I found myself doing a few things I said I would never do ….. one for instance was giving them a dummy. Both L & C had dummies. It didn’t do either of them any harm and it worked for us.
I remember back to when L was younger and how much of a nightmare she was trying to get rid of it. She was 3 and she was really attached to her ‘friends’. I stopped her having them during the day a good year or so previous, she would only have them at bedtime … but she would have one in her mouth and one in each hand, plus I’m sure she had a few more stashed beside her in the bed. We decided to go ‘cold turkey’ with her and one night just sent her to bed without her dummies. Obviously we talked about it on the days leading up to it, we weren’t that mean. However she spend two or three nights crying and calling out for her dummies … she did eventually get the message and after a few days she never looked back. But it was tough and we felt so mean.
So when C had dummies we decided to try a different approach with him when the time come to say goodbye! Again once he reached a year old we would only give him his dummy at nap times and at night (or if he was feeling poorly and lying on the sofa with me having cuddles.) He did really well accepting he could only have it at certain times.
C was 3yrs 4 months in January of this year. My Sister was also due to have her first baby during the middle of January. C had spent her pregnancy eagerly awaiting the arrival of his baby cousin, he would place his hands on her tummy to feel him kick, he listened into headphones to hear his little heartbeat via the doppler and he would excitedly chat about when the baby would be here.
A few week before Baby H was due to arrive I started chatting to C and explained to him that seeing as he was a big boy now, perhaps when baby H arrived he might need his dummies because he would be a little baby. He seemed to accept what I was saying, agreeing with me but lets face it I didn’t in a million years think it would be as easy as that!
Over the coming weeks he would often chat about how he was going to give baby H his dummies when he was out of Auntie C’s tummy.
The big day arrived and baby H made his entrance into the world, a few days later once they were home from hospital it was C’s turn to meet him. He was SO excited to meet this little baby we’ve all been talking about for months and months.
To my utter surprise as we were getting ready to leave the house he announced he had to collect all of his dummies first so he could take them round to baby H. I got him a plastic food bag and he rounded them all up himself and popped them in and off he went to get into the car.
He sat and held them the whole journey and when we got to my sisters, he quietly went up to little H and placed the bag od dummies on top of his tummy.
Just like that. We were all stood there pretty speechless to be honest, he spent the afternoon cuddling his new cousin and without him knowing I swiped the bag of dummies back and placed them into my bag ….. you know just in case tonight was going to be a nightmare!!!!!
But sure enough it wasn’t – he went to bed that night and never asked for them. He never looked back after handing them over and just seemed to accept baby H needed them more than him. I can’t tell you how proud we were of him and how well he handled it.
Did your children have a dummy? How did you manage to when the time was right take them away from them?