The Dummy Dilemma

21st August 2009 21 Comments

Second baby syndrome has suddenly hit hard. Baby Fifi has been a dream child compared to her brother. She doesn’t hold her breath, she can be persuaded to do things and she laughs and smiles all the time. I am more laid back with her and I find it all together much easier. However, with this I realise that I have made a terrible mistake.

With Toddler Boy, I followed Gina Ford’s instructions and removed the dummy after 3 months. With Fifi I forgot to do this and I have let her have it for too long. At about 5 months me and hubby decided that perhaps we would let her carry on for a bit longer as it might save us having to drag around a stinking comforter.

Now, at 7 months old, she really cannot be parted from the dummy. She drops them around the house and seeks out old dirty ones which she re-docks. She cries if she cant find it at night in her cot. Perhaps more annoyingly, I realise that most of the pictures in existence of her show her with a little dummy.

Fifi loves her dummy, even more than food, which she really, really loves (at 7 months she happily eats her way through pizza, pasta and full sized dinners). Can I be a cruel mummy and take it away? I’m not so sure. This means that I might actually end up being one of those mothers who I used to scorn, pre- baby. There is a real chance that my toddler might have a dummy and yes, I do give them crisps to eat in the pushchair!

Claire Walsh

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  • Emma 21st August 2009 at 10:01 am

    Oh no! Maybe I should wean Oli off it now before it&#39;s too late!! <br>Was it easy to wean Toddler Boy off it at 3mths? <br>:)x

  • Jennysnail 21st August 2009 at 12:40 pm

    If she enjoys it and it keeps her happy what&#39;s the problem? It&#39;s better to have a dummy than to suck a finger or thumb and end up with sticking out front teeth (like me!) my eldest had a dummy when tired until he was 6. I threw out all the dummys on his 6th birthday which meant my youngest had to give them up at only 3 1/2 which he wasnt happy about!

  • Coding Mamma (Tasha) 21st August 2009 at 12:46 pm

    It&#39;s easy to scorn pre-babies. Once they&#39;re there, you do whatever you need to do to keep them happy and you sane! I have also been known to be a dummy scorner and, fortunately, Rosemary never took to them, but I would have happily let her, if it had helped her get to sleep on her own. Who knows what Eleanor will end up with!

  • Metropolitan Mum 21st August 2009 at 1:24 pm

    Ok, here&#39;s me softy soft side speaking: let her have it and explain to her later why it&#39;s not good for her. Or bribe her with chocolate to give it up :-)<br>Little L decided to suck her thumb. How could I take that away from her?

  • Insomniac Mummy 21st August 2009 at 2:46 pm

    Big E had his dummy for naps and to settle him until he was almost 2 and at night &#39;til he was 2 and a half.<br><br>And to think, before I had children I always said no child of mine would have a dummy LOL!<br><br>:)

  • Pippa Haines 21st August 2009 at 4:11 pm

    Great blog, I&#39;m from the other camp. Both of mine became thumb suckers. Which while stops the problems of losing the dummy, is going to be difficult I think for them to give up.<br>Like you I didn&#39;t want my little ones being dummy dependent when toddlers etc. So although my first did have a dummy for a little while, he didn&#39;t take to it too much and preferred his thumb. Number 2

  • The wife of bold 21st August 2009 at 5:30 pm

    As long as you don&#39;t progress from crisps to sausage rolls in the buggy then you&#39;ll stear clear of being labelled a slummy mummy 🙂

  • Amy 21st August 2009 at 5:39 pm

    please don&#39;t scorn me but 22month old still has a dummy for bed, 3year old still has a dummy for bed. <br><br>4year old gave hers up at easter last year, we gave it to the easter bummy and he gave her chocolate. She never complained and has been dummy free every night since then. <br><br>If that gorgeous baby of yours loves her dummy leave her be, she will give it up one day i promise i am

    • Rachel Mairs 10th August 2015 at 5:51 pm

      Hi there,

      I work for ITV’s Good Morning Britain we are looking for a mum who will defend the dummy on our programme tomorrow morning? If you could drop me an email on that would be great!


  • Anjie 21st August 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Let me reassure you they grow out of it, how many adults do you see sucking a dummy? It is better than sucking your thumb, which is very hard to takeaway! A friend of mine had a bent nose through sucking her thumb. Another objection to a dummy is it can damage their teeth, my son had a dummy and he has perfect teeth. My daughter didn&#39;t have a dummy and we have spent years with the

  • zooarchaeologist 21st August 2009 at 7:29 pm

    Thanks for all the comments. Glad you all think I should leave her be. I don&#39;t reckon I have much choice. Interesting to hear peoples experiences too!<br><br>Emma: Yes toddler boy was off it over a 24 hour period. But it was replaced by a toy bunny comforter….

  • Café Bébé 21st August 2009 at 7:48 pm

    Hey Mrs…my Little Miss has a dummy still at 14 mo. I swore I wouldn&#39;t let her have one. One of those nevers that went out the window fairly quickly. I WILL wean her off it and in fairness, she really only has it for bedtimes (naps and night) but we do use it in the car as well. I don&#39;t see anything wrong with dummies when used this way. I do not subscribe to Gina Ford…she scares

  • Kat 21st August 2009 at 8:09 pm

    I don&#39;t see a huge amount of harm. We limit dunnies to bedtime for our toddler and have done since she was 4 months old. Our 5 month old won&#39;t take one, he believes that nothing but a genuine nipple is good enough 🙂

  • BNM 21st August 2009 at 8:23 pm

    Well we did dummy and we didn&#39;t dummy here.<br>Bel was my first and I was (oops am) a thumb sucker I believed that she would too. We even tried her on a dummy but she would spit it out so she slept.<br>Car is a clingy child of Satan (I love her dearly but after days of non sleep unless on me I relented and gave her dummy that had been given as part of sterliser and lo and behold here she is

  • Staci 21st August 2009 at 10:23 pm

    I always said I&#39;d never use one with my little one. Until I had him that is. Then it became a lifesaver. Good luck getting rid of it!

  • The Dotterel 22nd August 2009 at 10:55 am

    It&#39;s a small (and relatively harmless) pleasure, isn&#39;t it? And the scorners – as often as not – are also the childless. But did you know that Father Christmas takes dummies away from all three-year-olds in exchange for a sackfull of presents?

  • Kelly 22nd August 2009 at 11:43 am

    The hospital gave Piran a dummy because he wasn&#39;t allowed food for 48 hours after birth so we wanted him to have something to suck. So we have just continued with it.<br><br>I am not sure what to do about taking it away from him, so it is interesting to see what everyone has said here. I do try and take it out just before he goes to sleep. Perhaps when she is a little older the dummy fairy

  • Crystal Jigsaw 23rd August 2009 at 12:42 pm

    I wouldn&#39;t know where to start weaning her off the dummy. I guess you could give her something to hold and safely put into her mouth, like a rattle or whatever. Amy was 5 when she gave her dummies to Santa! Long story, autism didn&#39;t help..!<br><br>CJ xx

  • A Modern Mother 23rd August 2009 at 6:55 pm

    Just make sure you wean them from them by age 3 or 4. I didn&#39;t (shock, horror) and now they will probably have to wear braces!

  • Irish Mammy 25th August 2009 at 9:49 pm

    Removing the dummy at 3 months news to me? I thought that it was the comfort factor and I heard it excercises their muscles and helps with speech…<br><br>Anyway my first boy spat his out at 11 months, it was really worn. I never bought him another and threw them out. He now loves his bottle and I think that is his replacement dummy.<br><br>2nd baby at 2 months seems to spit it out however it

  • Laura McIntyre 28th August 2009 at 3:07 pm

    I don&#39;t think its a big deal , if there happy and you are happy then why the rush? <br>It is horrid seeing an older child wonder about with it in but she is only 7 months. I know after about a year we would only let my eldest (and only dummy baby) have it at night and she gave it up just after she turned 3 .

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