12.20.2007

The Spirit of Giving Strikes Again.

The binkie addiction is a frightening thing. It starts innocently enough--one for naptime, maybe the occasional car ride--and yet it grows with an irrepressible intensity that is almost beyond comprehension. One night you're tucking the little silicon nub between your slumbering baby's lips, blessing it for providing your child (ahem, you) such sweet nighttime solace...and the next you're frantically tearing up the house, digging through coat pockets and upturning couch cushions in search of the blasted things, while a teary two year-old beckons from her crib, mooooooooore biiiiiinkiiiiiiies!

I feared it would never end.

An intervention was called for.

A good sign that things were reaching critical mass

On Tuesday, inspired by the BFF who told her toddler son that it was time to "give his binkies to the babies," I made my move.

(Actually, her story is even better than that: Just before they all moved to Tanzania, she told him that the babies in America needed the pacifiers. It was a great twist on the old "starving children in Africa" schtick.)

Thalia and I had a little chat about how binkies are for babies, not big girls like Thalia. And that maybe it was time to give her binkies to babies who need them more. I expected a good fight. But remarkably, she loved the idea.

Thalia's a giver.

And so we ran around the house, gathering all the Nams and Nuks and Avents we could find, and dropping them into an aqua Bliss bag. The irony was not lost on me. Then we said goodbye to the binkies and thanked them for serving us well, then had some ice cream to celebrate.

She hasn't looked back since. And in fact, she tells everyone she meets how she gave her binkies to the babies. Also, how the 4 and 5 trains were not working but now they're working again. But that's another story.

Yesterday I rushed home late to relieve the sitter and discovered our dog, in a fit of excitement, had tried to dance with Thalia, ballroom-style, leaving two crimson clawmarks down her right cheek from her eye to below her lip. (She was fine, but of course all I could think of was this. Good God.)

While she cried, she never once asked for a binkie.

She did ask for ice cream. I can live with that.

One down, one to go


35 Comments:

Anonymous carolyn said...

When my 15 year old (!!) was a baby, she refused to take a pacifier, so when her brother came along, i didn't have much hope. I did try with him, tho, and he refused too. She was 2.5 at the time and she decided she would try the pacifier. And she liked it, thus beginning a 2 year struggle to get rid of the stupid things. Luckily, she was never rabid about it and I finally gave her the responsibility of keeping track of it. When my nephew was born we gave them all to him. She liked helping her baby cousin, and that was that.

12/20/07, 9:36 AM  
Blogger Lola said...

Brilliant! I'm not yet to the point where I am willing to give up the bink (Ellie goes to sleep so well when she has it), but that day is fast approaching. I am totally going to keep this story in mind. With any luck, my daughter will be as empathetic and giving as Thalia.

**crossing my fingers**

Bytheway, I love that brown blanket in the picture with Sage. And double-binked Thalia? Too funny!

12/20/07, 9:42 AM  
Blogger Susan Getgood said...

the more verbal they get, the more it gets in the way as well. at least that's how it played out for us with Douglas.

12/20/07, 10:13 AM  
Blogger Motherhood Uncensored said...

Quinlan thought that picture of Thalia was pretty dang funny.

She's still giggling.

12/20/07, 11:23 AM  
Blogger Mayberry said...

We are going to try this trick when the mothergoose baby arrives ... he is going to be the lucky recipient of all our gently, lovingly used Nuks. Fingers crossed.

12/20/07, 11:25 AM  
Blogger Fairly Odd Mother said...

We left the binkies and bottles and nipples for Santa one year who took them to kids who needed them. This only worked for one child; the second child fought us tooth and nail to give this stuff up.

Glad that Emily's scratch wasn't worse. Our cat got Jilly on the eyelid once---pretty scary stuff, even when you know the animal didn't really mean to harm.

12/20/07, 11:39 AM  
Blogger Redneck Mommy said...

I remember the binky wars. Not fondly either.

Thalia did much better than Fric did. She, apparently, was not a giver...

12/20/07, 11:39 AM  
Anonymous NR said...

My little cousin left his binky for Santa on Christmas Eve with the milk and cookies. Never looked back!

12/20/07, 12:57 PM  
Blogger Loukia said...

OMG as if it was taht easy for her! You're very lucky! I've talked about it with my son, to give up his bibila (he calls them beee or b-o)and he laughs at me like I'm crazy!

12/20/07, 1:10 PM  
Blogger The Hotfessional said...

Shortman (the 16 year old) gave his to my father for "Tata's Birthday". I took a picture to commemorate the eventful day. Shortman was 3 at the time.

Unfortunately, that oral fixation? Has turned into pen caps. I'm considering a Nuk(ker) for his Christmas stocking if I end up grabbing one more chewed up pen off my desk. :-)

12/20/07, 1:14 PM  
Blogger Mrs. Chicky said...

In the early days with Chicky I used to beg God to please, make my child take a pacifier and give my poor boobs a break. Then when she hit about six months I started to feel smug. Yeah, my kid didn't use a pacifier. No pacifier wars for us. That line of thinking will probably come back and bite me on the ass with baby number 2.

12/20/07, 2:47 PM  
Blogger Jennifer aka Binky Bitch said...

This little tip isn't going to help when I need to get my daughter to stop sucking her thumb.

12/20/07, 4:14 PM  
Blogger Lara said...

when i was a child, i had a bad habit of hiding my pacifiers all over the house, then crying when i didn't know where they were. my poor mother had to keep tracking them down and/or buying new ones. when she decided i needed to be weaned off of them, she just stopped looking for them. eventually i had lost them all, and i went around crying for my "pats" for a few days before giving up and moving on.

for years after that we would find random pacifiers strewn about the house. i think we found the last one when i was about 11.

12/20/07, 6:44 PM  
Anonymous A. Beaverhausen said...

My husband used to be an archaeologist, and our oldest and middle boys loved stories of the Ancient Egyptians. About the time we wanted him to give up the binky one of our cats was killed by a neighbor's dog. We used that opportunity to tell him about the Egyptians who buried their loved ones with tokens of food and comfort and...in that same tradition...didn't he think that Simon could use those binkys in the afterlife more than our son did? Miraculously...he agreed. We gathered them up and we buried the cat with them. We had one night where they wavered...and then they never looked back.
http://wordgirl5.typepad.com/apathy_lounge

12/20/07, 8:54 PM  
Blogger mothergoosemouse said...

Mayberry Mom's little guy is shipping all of his binkies off to our new bebe. Or so he thinks.

12/20/07, 8:59 PM  
Blogger Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah said...

Good for you! My kids are 3 1/2 and I just weaned them off of the pacifiers two weeks ago.

I'm really bad at the parenting thing.

12/20/07, 9:46 PM  
Blogger Petunia Face said...

I just blogged about this myself last week! My daughter is 19 months old and it was time for us. I likened it to watching a friend of mine kick heroin. And I'm not exaggerating.

12/20/07, 9:52 PM  
Blogger Patois said...

My eldest went off them with nary a hitch. My daughter, um, well, she's not using them anymore now. (She's 9.) While at the time I'd have given anything for the youngest lad to take to a plug, I was mighty grateful I never had to go through it with him. Here's hoping you give Sage just a bit more time!

12/20/07, 10:17 PM  
Blogger Mahlers On Safari said...

LOL. Jaden still talks about how he sent his pacis off to the babies in America who needed them.

But I would kill for a pacifier addiction for Rowan. Getting rid of a pacifier is a piece of cake, compared with stoping a thumb sucker. No amount of promises of ice cream, barbie dolls or new puzzles phases Rowan. If only I could send you her thumb.

12/21/07, 4:45 AM  
Blogger ~Kat~ said...

We just did this with Iris recently... but we made the mistake of telling her that they were all going to our little baby-friend Bodhi, (the one and only baby we know) without consulting his hippy-chick mama Brooke first....
So- the next time we saw them Iris asked Brooke about Bodhi and the binky's and Brooke was all like, "oh Bodhi doesn't have any binky's, they aren't good for babies" (damn natural mama!)
Iris is heartbroken that Bodhi doesn't have the precious binkies that she thought she was giving him... but at the same time she has truly given them up and only occasionally asks for one.
(she still asks to nurse too and we stopped 9 months ago or so)

12/21/07, 9:13 AM  
Blogger sweetney said...

dude, so feel you. getting M to give up the binky (or "pinky" as she called it) was a task only completed when we went to disneyworld and "forgot them". cheers to you for doing it without an elaborate vacation ruse!

12/21/07, 1:55 PM  
Blogger LCM said...

My dear friend's little girl loves her binkys too. When I came to visit, I found that she sleeps best with one in her mouth and one in EACH hand! Talk about needing to have an extra supply on hand. DD#2 only took boob, which made me crazy for about 8 months. Then, when it came time to make DD#1 stop sucking her thumb (she was 7!) I was finally glad that I only had to break a habit on one of them. I would've given really money, at the time, to get DD#2 to suck something else.

12/21/07, 2:36 PM  
OpenID wheelsonthebus said...

I'd take ice cream over binky any day.

Emily R

12/22/07, 5:18 AM  
Blogger mama bird said...

Well done! Who says we can master this parent thing?! Very fabulous photos of your babes.

12/22/07, 2:57 PM  
Blogger GIRL'S GONE CHILD said...

You're my hero, Liz. I have a feeling we'll be "binkying it" until Arch hits High School.

12/22/07, 3:40 PM  
Blogger Jozet at Halushki said...

Ugh...Johnny Joe's binky is my boob.

I'm going to try the old trick of putting band-aid on my nipples and telling him that the boobas have boo-boos.

12/23/07, 12:14 AM  
Blogger the new girl said...

I LOVE the binkies for the babies and that sweet, giving Thalia isn't even crying for them. That's great.

I have to say, as much as I cursed the non-binkie-taking early on, I am a little glad now that it's one less thing that I am going to have to 'face' one day.

Great post.

12/23/07, 11:45 AM  
Blogger nomotherearth said...

Would you say the binky is better than athumb? We're having this debate for our second.

12/24/07, 3:21 AM  
Blogger Carmen said...

We are doing a binky chart this very week for my four year old. I know, I know, she's FOUR. She's SID and we've held on to it as long as we can.

We are packaging up the bubbies (her word) for a new baby at school.

12/24/07, 6:59 PM  
Anonymous dorothy said...

We had some issues with the pacis as well. The little angel is quite orally fixated. It did go well, though. Strength to you, my friend.

12/25/07, 11:05 AM  
Blogger Becoming Mommy said...

ai,
We have a finger-sucker and I don't think it'll be as easy to wean him from those. While we don't have to worry about the panic he'd have if he couldn't find them, like with a binky, I really would prefer the bink.
Because you CAN lose them.

12/26/07, 9:01 AM  
Blogger Mom101 said...

nomotherearth: I'm going to go with binkies, based on what I'm seeing here. But then, we don't generally get a choice either.

12/26/07, 2:39 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

Just be glad you got them to take the binks in the first place. I managed it with my first but #2 and #3 and die hard thumb suckers.

How do you take a thumb away?!!

12/26/07, 5:54 PM  
Blogger Little Jules said...

OMG - I am trying to get Julian to take a binkie to get OFF the bottle. Yep, my almost 3 year old still takes a bottle. He calls binkies "baby bottles".
Basically, I'm screwed.

12/29/07, 2:08 AM  
Blogger Rachel said...

Where to begin? My girls love their passies too. When Alex was 2 1/2, we took it away cold turkey and had her throw them away in the garbage. She screamed for an hour that night and then that was it. With Aliyah, she is now at that 2 1/2 mark and we did the same thing. But to no luck because she has a different kind of freaky crying that rattles you. So we let her have one. Then we tried the "give it to your new baby cousin" because he needs it more. Ya, right. THAT was a no go. Oh and she also calls it her "sassy" because she could never pronounce her p's. That's right people, her sassy. Ahhhhhhh....what to do?

1/3/08, 12:55 PM  

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