The reason they call it a dummy
The reason they call it a dummy
I was never going to be one of those parents who said never – I would never do this, never use that. I knew enough about parenting to know that when the situation arises, you do the best you can at the time – even if it means doing things you hadn’t wanted or intended to do…….or later wished you hadn’t done at all.
For me, one of those things was giving my child a dummy. When DS1 was born we did not buy any dummies – that is how sure we were that we didn’t want to use them!
But………given he had a bit of reflux and wasn’t the easiest baby to settle, the midwife suggested we get some to try. The thing was, DD1 did not like the dummy. He would do everything he could to refuse it……..and inwardly I was relieved (sigh).
Then DS2 came along. This time we were prepared with the dummies from the get go, but, being an easy going baby, we didn’t really find the need to use them………..fast forward one week, feeding every two hours, DS2 stacking on the weight too quickly, we were told to stop demand feeding and switch to routine feeding. This meant at the two-hour mark when he was normally fed, he was given the dummy instead……and he took to it like a duck to water.
Using a dummy seemed like a good idea at the time, but two years later it has turned into a parenting nightmare.
When he has his dummy he is content. DD2 self-settled from two weeks old and would sleep for some good stretches at night.
While I knew it would be something we would have to deal with later, I was just reveling in the relief and calm of having a baby that slept and settled.
As DD2 grew older, we didn’t have as much trouble with teething, getting him down for day time naps or his nigh time sleep…..something we really struggled with his brother.
We just figured that we would deal with the dummy issue down the track.
Then he turned one………then 18 months. We decided we would tackle it at 2 years old……….then he turned 21 months……..and his dummy has turned him into a monster. He wakes up in the middle of the night screaming “where’s dummy”………..he will pull out everything in the kitchen cupboards, looking for the latest place where we have hidden his stash. He gets frustrated and angry when we don’t give it to him.
We have managed to keep the dummy just for sleeping, but sometimes it does creep out during the day.
And now we are at a complete loss what to do as he quickly approaches his second birthday!
Do we wait until he is older and understands a little better, and can try and give them up himself?
Do we take some time off work and go cold turkey and battle it out for a few days and nights until he adjusts?
Do we cut the tips off and hope he doesn’t like it anymore and gives them up voluntarily?
I can’t stand the thought of him going through so much agony giving up something that he loves and that brings him comfort – I would never make him give up a favourite toy.
And I can’t see how any of the above solutions would work?!?
While I have heard cutting the tips off has a lot of success, I can’t help but think he will just scream blue murder!.
So I now see why it is called a dummy!
Because we were dummies for relying on them so much. For letting it go on so long. For not stopping it sooner when it may not have been as traumatising for him.
All I know is I have created this problem, and now I am the one who will have to do the hard yards to solve it.
If anyone can help with success stories or ideas, I would love to hear them.