I was pretty lucky to have only one twin who used a pacifier. The one who was not a “paci” user really didn’t know what to do with it – it was more of a chew toy. I vowed at age three there would be no pacifiers used (by anyone). Unfortuantely my pacifier user was my “not so easy to get to sleep child”. We ( I ) had been pretty militant around 18- 24 months that the pacifier was for sleep time only – all family members were to adhere to this rule OR ELSE! I figured that was one way to start breaking her off “the sauce”.
I tried to mentally prepare her for the coming day a number of different ways. I had a friend who had just had twin boys and asked my daughter if she would like to send the boys her pacifier – “they need a paci so may be we could give them yours” – “no mommy”. I tried “when little boys and girls turn three they no longer want or need to use a paci” – “I need mine and mommy I am a girl not a boy”. So as her third birthday approached I wasn’t so sure how I was going to get her to give up the goods. I have heard of putting bad tasting food stuff on pacifiers to make them less appealing, but that just struck me as sorta mean. We were already down to one pacifier (as far as she knew) and were going on a family vacation that would required a boat and a car ride to get to the store. Running out to find a replacement at bedtime would not be an option. As luck would have it her remaining pacifier ripped about 2 days into vacation (tragic) – actually not to bad. I told her it ripped we couldn’t get a new one and it wouldn’t be safe to use the old one. Also we all gave her the “your such a big girl” business – always helpful depending on the mood. Surprisingly it worked! I was prepared for the worst and was rewarded with better than I ever could have expected.
When we returned home from our trip I instructed one of my older step-daughters to run up to the twins room as soon as we came home and search everywhere for any remaining pacifiers and throw them away. It was like a Special Ops mission for her! Get in and out – leave no trace. I am sure the Mission Impossible theme was playing in her head.
How did you get your children to give up their pacifiers? What worked and what didn’t?