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How to Get Your Child Off the Pacifiers

5 ways to get your child off the pacifier. Moms share what worked for them.
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Is your child so attached to his binkie that you worry he’ll head off to college with the darn thing? Relax: There are ways to separate them. Now. Moms share what worked for them.

Donate them (so to speak). "I created a ‘letter’ from my son’s favorite cartoon characters that we put in an envelope and slid into our mail. The letter explained that pacifiers were needed for baby animals at a far-away zoo. I packed all of the pacifiers in a box and told my son I’d mail them off for the baby animals. After that it just took a reminder that we’d given the pacifiers to the baby animals. Soon he quit asking for his."
—Stacey Sphieler, mom of one, Jackson, Mississippi

Try the-dog-ate-my-pacifier trick. "When I thought my daughter was old enough to give up pacifiers, I took them away and told her the dog ate them. After that, if she asked for a pacifier, I’d just say, ‘Oh, sorry; the dog chewed them all up.’ She thought it was funny and just let it go after a few days. The key is to be consistent: Once you take away the pacifiers, keep them away."

–Tiffany Morris, mom of two, Fayetteville, Arkansas

Put them out of commission. "We tried everything with my daughter—big girl ceremonies, bribes, sending them off to other babies—and nothing worked. One day, when she wasn’t looking, I cut a tiny slit in each of her pacifiers. After that, they stopped making the desirable sucking noise. She declared them ‘broken’ and threw them away herself."
—Catherine Calhoun, mom of two, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Blame the great outdoors. "When we decided it was time for my daughter to stop using a pacifier, we stopped buying new ones so her collection dwindled. Then, when she left the very last one in the backyard, we told her squirrels had carried it away. I didn’t feel bad about the little fib—she was way too old for pacifiers at that point."
–Renee Cole, mom of four, Lombard, Illinois

Do it on vacation. "When my oldest daughter was about 2, we went on a family vacation and I ‘forgot’ to take the pacifiers with me. She was upset, but there were plenty of grandparents and cousins to distract her. It didn’t take her long to adjust to sleeping without one, and she never went back."
–Kelly Clower, mom of two, Ft. Worth, Texas

An article from the HUGGIES® Brand

  • Rated 0 out of 5 by 4reviewers.
    Rated 0 out of 5 by These are fantastic ideas but what can I do for a thumb sucker? Its actually his index and middle fingers, not sure how it started but he's 14 months now and it's time to put this to an end. April 12, 2013
    Rated 0 out of 5 by Very interesting article. Thank goodness my son never took to a pacifier. He never wanted one! January 27, 2013
    Rated 0 out of 5 by my son is a little young to understand the trick stories but im going to try cutting his and see if that works. March 26, 2012
    Rated 0 out of 5 by These are some awesome ideas. My son is not old enough to take away pacifiers(5 mo.) and he won't really use one anyway but it is good to know in case he does start wanting it more. December 17, 2011
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