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Has anyone let their toddler decide when to ditch the dummy?

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#1 tickledpink72

Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:04 PM

My almost 3 year old DS still has a dummy.  He does use it during the day, but not all the time.  He likes to know that its nearby, and will use it if he is getting tired or is upset.  But a lot of the time its just sitting on the cupboard.  He uses it at sleep time, and can't get to sleep without it.

I personally have no problem with any of the above.

However, I am getting increasing pressure from both my Mum & MIL about it.  Every time they come over they make comments to him like "Why have you got that thing in your mouth" and "You don't need that, give it to me".  My mother has gone as far as to say to me "Well he's going to look pretty funny on his first day at school with a dummy in his mouth" (This earned her a fair telling off from me).

My question is, has anyone just let their child decide when they are finished with their dummy?  I'm not sure if I should allow him this or should I listen to the mothers and arrange a visit from the "Dummy Fairy".

#2 mum2jp

Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:20 PM

My DS is almost 2. He has a dummy for sleep time. When I check on him before I go to bed he has usually spat it out so he really only needs it to get to sleep. I am not ready to push him to get rid of it yet as I know he wakes sometimes and puts it back in himself during the night as I hear him fussing around on the monitor so f it wasn't there he would probably wake right up. At almost 3 I would be worried about the effects on his teeth and speech for a lot of day use. Maybe you could try weaning him slowly by restricting day use and only having it only for bed. We do this by having DS give it to his sleep teddy that stays in his cot during the day, so it's out of sight out of mind.

#3 overthehill

Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:29 PM

DS is almost 3 and has his dummy still for sleep only, I pick it up and hide it during the day. With DS1 I took it off him at 2, which wasn't too bad but DS2 is much more fiery a d also wouldn't understand the whole dummy fairy thing yet. So I'm waiting it out hoping he will decide to get rid of it, if not I will give it maybe 6 months and then have to deal with taking it from him.  I have put pin pricks in them but he still sucks it!  
Good luck!

#4 tibs

Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:29 PM

A girl in my mothers group has a dummy she uses like your child.  Her mother always said she give it up when she is ready.  Well our kids are starting school next year and she still has it.  She was carrying it at school orientation last month, no joke  ohmy.gif  Not cool IMO and the poor thing will probably be picked on because nobody taught her any different sad.gif


Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:44 PM

DD gave hers up a few months after turning 3, when she started 3yo kinder. She just said they were for babies and she's a big girl now and that was that original.gif

#6 sarkazm76

Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:44 PM

My DS uses his for nap time and bedtime at night only.... or if he's really sick we migth let him have it during the day at home.   I recently wanted to see if he was ready to get rid of it so used a technique I think I got from EB... cut a hole in the dummy so when he sucked it didn't work properly.... I do not recommend doing this to the only one you have left in the house.  It was very hard and night 2 I ended up dashing to Wollies for a new one- he wasnt' ready.  He woke on night one and got very upset and so I gave him his water bottle just for something to suck on and then he wanted to sleep with THAT and it was jsut awful.  He had refused his nap that day too.  We just decided he's probably not ready yet.
We'll try again every 6 months ansd see what happens.

#7 iwanttosleepin

Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:49 PM

At nearly 3 years old I'm in the 'why on earth have you got that thing in your mouth' camp.

I'd be restricting it to sleep time only and setting a time frame for ditching it.  Maybe 3rd birthday and swap it for something like a toy.

A 3 year old does not need a dummy hanging out their mouth all day.

#8 girltribe4

Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:54 PM

I was getting pressure about my 3+yr old DD having her dummies so we took them away which was all very easy except now she is a very happy thumb sucker rolleyes.gif

#9 girltribe4

Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:58 PM

I refuse to fight the ''thumb battle'' with her , I have never forgotten or forgiven my parents for the plasters or yucky stuff on my thumbs to stop me . It didn't work either , if anything it made me more determined. I have let my 2 previous thumb suckers give up in their own time .

#10 Ice Queen

Posted 23 December 2012 - 11:03 AM

Yes, my DD decided herself just after turning 3.  I had no problem with the dummy by this age as long as it was only at sleep time.  I was also getting pressure from people which tbh I ignored.  It shat me.  I know my DD and she is pretty shy and not very confident and this was her security blanket.  She never had a 'blankie' or teddy or anything like that.  What grated on me the most was that a mum who kept hassling me (she had done the dummy fairy thing at around 2) has to drag grotty teddies to the shops, in the car etc and cue meltdown if it is ever forgotten with her kids.  I figured my dummy was much easier!

Anyway all we did was talk about growing up, being a big girl etc and how big girls dont use dummies.  We didnt pressure her, just discussed it in conversation.  One weekend she went for a sleepover at the IL's and her 6yo cousin also slept over.  My DD loves her cousin and I suspect the cousin said something to her when they went to bed.  I know my MIL never would as she didnt care about the dummy.  Anyway the next day she came home, told DH she wanted to put the dummy in the wheelie bin and that was it!  Gone forever.  eexcite.gif

I am a fan of letting kids do things in their own time.  My DD is a pretty stubborn personality so this approach works for us.  You know your child best so ignore advice and do what you thinks works for them and their personality.

Edited by Ehill, 23 December 2012 - 11:05 AM.

#11 Isolabella

Posted 23 December 2012 - 11:17 AM

My folks took the dummy from me as I turned four..... Yes I do remember that.

I took DDs dummy at 2.25 yrs. even at. Just turned 3she still asks me where her dummy is and has a cry about no dummy.

#12 BabyHopeful

Posted 23 December 2012 - 11:35 AM

I do think at some stage you need to intervene. There is a girl in my sons Grade 1 class (7 years old) who still has a dummy as a security thing!

That being said DS2 had a dummy until he was almost 4, but he ended up giving it up under his own steam (kind of). He fell asleep on the couch 2 nights in a row so we put him to bed without it. And that was it.

This was part of the reason DS3 never had one. He got hold of DS2's a couple of times and thought it was a great toy, he had no idea what to do with it lol

#13 Guest_divineM_*

Posted 23 December 2012 - 11:40 AM

My younger sister had one till around 4 years of age. I think you could start the whole "big kids don't have dummies" thing and see how that goes.

#14 tickledpink72

Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:36 PM

Thanks everyone.

We have started the whole "Dummies are for babies, you're a big boy" but as yet it isn't having much impact.  He does have a development delay so doesn't REALLY understand what it means.

Looks like the dummy fairy will be coming soon..

#15 Madeline's Mum

Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:45 PM

We would have but it started effecting his eating and speech so we went cold turkey last Monday. DS was totally addicted, it was getting to be worrisome, so at 16 months they suddenly disappeared and he has actually been quite good. I think cold turkey is best, but a 16 mo is much less aware than a 3 year old..

#16 niggles

Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:50 PM

We let our DD keep using hers while she still had to wear a hip brace. As it turned out that meant she was 4.5 before we got rid of it completely. It went quite easily with lots of forward preparation and talking about the dummy fairy. I waited for a day she fell asleep on the couch without her dummy watching a movie after a big day at a party. She had been given a 'magic crystal' which was in her hand at the time so I used that to convince her she had special magic and didn't need the dummy anymore. I woke her up very excitedly and showed her the Transformer she'd wanted for ages that the fairy had left while she was asleep and then the next morning it was a box full of ponies I'd pulled out and placed on the end of her bed. I had to lay with her for about 3 nights and teach her to breathe herself gently off to sleep and after that she hasn't looked back.

So in short I'm a believer in letting them keep it as long as they need that extra comfort and then ripping off the bandaid so to speak. I don't think the 'big kids don't need dummies' bit really helps them to get over that psychological barrier although it might be a way to start the conversation.

#17 L&E

Posted 23 December 2012 - 02:19 PM

DS was about 2.5 and he kept biting holes in his (he only had it to get to sleep). I told him I couldn't buy any more as he was too old now, so what we had left was all there was. He hated them when they had a hole in them, and as they got chewed we'd say "ok, only 3 left now! Then that's it!" When he hit a hole in the last one he said "that's the last one!" and had a cry, sleep was a bit harder that night but I kept telling him we'd get to choose a prize from the shops the next day if he was a brave big boy. We never looked back.

I actually had two stashed away in my bedside table in case it was horrible, but didn't need to use them.

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