How I Got My Three-Year-Old Off of the Pacifier

How I Got My Three-Year-Old Off of the Pacifier

Dear Dumplin,

Confession time. I just got you off of the pacifier a few weeks ago. I know, I know! You were way too old to use a bobo. The truth is, I got lazy. You would literally tell me you were sleepy, go get your pacifier, and lay yourself down. I mean how good is that? As time progressed, you got more and more attached. No matter what I did, you would not relent or consent to throwing your bobo away. Here’s how I finally got you off of the pacifier.

Once I made a decision that enough was enough, I knew I needed a game plan. What would that game plan be?  I scoured the internet until I found the idea to create a “Bobo Fairy.”  Just like a tooth fairy, the “Bobo Fairy” comes one day and takes the pacifier away. In exchange, you were to receive a “Big Girl Toy.”  I started talking to you about it.

“Dumplin, you are getting to be so big!  The Bobo Fairy is gonna come soon!”

“The Bobo Fairy?”

“Oh, yes sweetie!  The Bobo fairy takes your Bobo away.”

“BUT I NEED MY BOBO.”

“It’s ok sweetie.  The fairy will leave a big girl toy.”

“A big girl toy?”

“Oh yes! Because you are just such a big beautiful girl now!  What toy would you like me to tell the Bobo Fairy to get you?”

Now why did I ask?

A KITCHEN MOMMY.  I NEED TO COOK.”

*Insert Sigh Here*

A kitchen sweetie?  You sure you don’t need a doll or a puzzle or some legos?”

“No, Mommy!  I need a kitchen!  To make apple pie cake!  With Vanilla!”

“Apple pie cake with vanilla?”

“YES MOMMY.  But I still need my bobo too.”

I let it go.  A couple of days later, I asked her the same thing.  Each and every time I asked, she said, “Mommy I need a kitchen.”  I had to ask huh?  You were consistent.  You wanted a kitchen.  You wanted to make food.  Your Dad and I discussed it and we decided to get you the kitchen.  We get the kitchen and we hide it in the garage.  The night before we give it to you, we decide to ask you one more time.

“What do you want the Bobo Fairy to bring you sweetie?”

And do you know what you said?  “A TOY TRAIN!”

Well, you did not get a toy train.  You got a kitchen.  And we made a big production out of it too.  We put it in the kitchen so you and I could cook at the same time.  We waited until you woke up from your nap.  I walked into the kitchen before you and said, “Oh my goodness!  The bobo fairy was here!”  You froze in your tracks.  I said, “Where is the big girl toy!  Do we have to find it?”  Your Dad chimed in, “Yes, we have to look for it.”

Then we proceeded to walk you everywhere BUT to the toy kitchen.  Finally you said, “I don’t see ANYTHING!” Then we took you to it.  And you were happy.  Very happy.  You played in that thing all day.  You still play with the kitchen every single day.  It was money well spent.

Toy Kitchen

The first night without the pacifier was not easy.  I won’t lie.  You went to look for your pacifier.  I had previously cut off the rubber part that goes in your mouth while you weren’t looking.  I showed it to you and said, “See!  The Bobo Fairy took it.”  At that point, you proceeded to have a melt down.  You cried, I rubbed your back, you cried some more.  I gave you water.  Then finally you stopped and went to sleep.

The next morning, the very first words you said were, “I NEED TO SEE MY KITCHEN STILL HERE MOMMY.”  I told you it was still there but you needed to see if for yourself.  I took you to it and you relaxed.  You pulled your chair up right in front of the kitchen and sat there.  You watched it for a while and said, “Bobo gone?”  Yes, baby it’s gone. You did not cry that night but it took you a little while to fall asleep.  By the third day, you were used to not having it.  You only ask for it when you get really over tired.  I just tell you it’s gone and you sigh.  Kind of like you lost a good friend.

In hindsight, I realize I really didn’t need to give you a pacifier in the first place.  I felt guilty because I couldn’t breast feed you and give you as much skin-to-skin time as I would have liked.  In exchange, I gave you the pacifier.  You weren’t a cranky baby and really didn’t need it.  I created a monster with the pacifier but I’m glad you got something fun out of it!

Sorry to take your friend away baby but Mommy’s gotta do what Mommy’s gotta do.

Love,

Mama

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