Breaking the Binky

Picture this: You go to the store to pick up some things and see a child who you swear must be over 2 years old walking around sucking on a pacifier. How does that make you feel?
For me: horrified.

Never did I want Holden to be a ‘binky baby,” in fact, I tried to keep him off of the binky for as long as possible. Then the nights of constant screaming came along and the only thing I could think to do to stop him from crying (after i’d tried everything else) was to pop a pacifier in his mouth. Instant gratification for the whole family. He would happily suck away, and Thomas and I saved our sanity (and saved ourselves from being strangled by one another out of frustration).

The days where his reflux acted up the worst, I swear he must have been sucking on his binky for the majority of time he was awake. Nothing else seemed to make him happy- and when baby isn’t happy, no one is happy.

Worrisome mommy that I am, I always felt guilty about giving him the pacifier to make him happy. I didn’t want it to be a crutch, I didn’t want him to think he NEEDED it in order to be happy, or in order to sleep.

The happier Holden got over time (as the reflux faded), the less he needed the binky. I’m sure he would take it if I gave it to him- but I started to hide it so it just wouldn’t be around for him to reach for. We’ve gotten him to the point where he only uses it at nap time and bed time now.
This obviously still poses a problem.

Thomas and I would like Holden to be OFF of the binky by 2 years of age- but I have a feeling it’s going to be a pain in the ass because it’s just become an integral part of his sleeping ritual. When he wakes up in the middle of the night screaming- pop a binky in and he literally flops back over in his crib like a dead fish and goes back to sleep.

So what happens when we go cold-turkey and make him ‘quit’ the binky? Will he have withdrawals like an alcoholic? Will he just NOT sleep? I don’t even want to imagine the long sleepless nights of Holden crying because he wants to be sucking on something while he sleeps. And the whole “cry it out” method.. it doesn’t work for us, we tried- it ended in Holden working himself up so much that he vomits all over himself. I fear it being like having a newborn again- constantly having to rock a screaming child back to sleep.. except Holden is a 27 pound (Thomas swears he’s 32 lbs, I don’t believe it!) toddler and not a 7 pound newborn.

Do they have Binky Addicts Anonymous for children?
“Hi, my name is Holden.. and i’m an addict. I can’t sleep without my binky! Mommy and Daddy won’t give it to me! I just need ONE MORE SUCK! PLEASE! LET ME SUCK MY BINKY!”

Of course, what has to be done just has to be done. As i’ve said MANY times before, there are many unpleasant things that come along with being a parent.. and the last thing I want is Holden running around sucking a pacifier just because he can at 2+ years of age. The thought alone makes me cringe. Binkies, in my opinion, are for BABIES and not CHILDREN. If you can avoid them altogether- you’re golden.

It’s better than having him sucking his thumb though- ’cause you can’t take a thumb away. I mean.. you CAN.. but you risk getting CPS called on you… and your kid will most likely end up sucking a different finger anyways.

Posted on December 3, 2008 by Holdin' Holden 6 Comments
Holdin' Holden

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  • So true! Ally has done good without a binky. I guess bc she had um “other” things to soothe her. I think you know what I mean. And we tried all kinds of pacis too!! What were we thinking?!

    But yeah, it’s going to be pure hell at first. Have you tried changing his routine any recently? I couldn’t get Ally to sleep in her crib alone before, but after she turned a year old it took like a week for her to get used to our routine with the music and word cues and sleeping in her own twin bed. It seems they’re always changing, so you never know when it could work out.

  • Do you mean the DREADED THUMB?!?!

    Holden was a thumb-sucker in utero.. forgot how once he was born I guess! I snatch his fingers out of his mouth when I catch him doing what I think is sucking on them! Sucking my thumb SERIOUSLY messed up my teeth for life.

    Holden’s routine changed when he decided he was going to almost never take a morning nap, and never take a late afternoon nap.. but still, he HAS to be put into his crib asleep or he completely freaks out.

    Just one more thing we’ll have to break him of, AWESOME!

  • I think we can start the no binky process by starting with the afternoon nap without one. He pretty much passes out right at that nap a lot of the time anyways, so it might not be that difficult for him.

    As for the sleeping in his room without the rocking, I think that might be harder to accomplish. We really don’t do the cry it out method, it just irritates us. And we end up disliking Holden for it. Not something that I want. Hopefully, soon he will understand the “be quiet” method.

  • err you’re not around for the afternoon nap. He probably doesn’t need it to FALL asleep, but to STAY asleep is a different story.

    And as far as NOT LIKING Holden because of trying CIO? not true, not on my part anyways. I feel bad for HIM more than anything

  • LOL I didn’t mean the thumb! 😉

    I think when we first tried the transition, she was as freaked out as Holden which is why it didn’t work out. Bc it was bothering me MENTALLY having her with me ALL the time, I had to make a change which is I why I just had to let her CIO for a little bit. It tore me up inside. I even cried myself. That’s how hard it is for us as mothers!

    I would give it another shot to see how he does. He is so used to the routine that it may take some time to break him of it, but he has to see that you mean business. As much as I wanted to go in and grab her and hold her when she was crying for me, I couldn’t. It was better for the both of us and it has turned out to be the best thing I did for us. I just say to try again now bc I think you know the longer you wait the harder it is going to be.

    **Hugs** It will get better! 😛

  • haha oohh.. i THINK I know what you mean now 😉

    We’ve tried CIO a few times. He cries for hours on end, never goes to sleep. The last time it was upwards of 2 hours before we gave up. Not healthy to be crying for that long!!

    It doesn’t take as long now as it used to to get him to nap at least. I’m not the one who puts him to bed at night anyways 😉