Ava is now Three and for the last 6 months I have been thinking about taking away her dummy. Not for any reason other than I think she’s getting too old for it. The road to getting rid of the dummy has been a long one. This is because Ava isnt one for change she likes to know when things will happen and how they will happen. So we she started back at nursery we started to really reduce the amount she had her dummy.
I think seeing other children at nursery not having a dummy work wonders for her. She was never one to have it in her mouth all the time but she always had to take it with her where ever she would go. Something in her just changed after being at nursery a few weeks. She started to tell me just to leave her dummy and bunny at home. She didn’t want to take it to nursery at all. Which was fine by me. It’s as if she had noticed only the younger children of the group had dummies and she wanted to be a big girl.
With her not wanting to take it out the house meant she wasn’t having her dummy a lot at all. She would literally only have it to go to sleep. She was starting to get used to sleeping in the car without needing a dummy. Which after a long day at nursery she does need 20 minutes nap otherwise she is a right moody sod. Luckily for us Ava can sleep at any time of the day so I have never really had to worry too much about when her last sleep is. Which is a blessing as I see so many of my friends talk about the danger nap time.
We then started to make more of a point of telling her not to have her dummy in her mouth. Especially in the mornings and she was trying to talk to us. The more we went on at her about taking her dummy out when she talked the more it sunk it. She would often say dummy out and then carry on with what ever she wanted to say.
We started to think about the end goal of having no dummy at all. This is the first year Ava has got excited about Christmas or even known what it is. So we thought we would tie this new love of Christmas into getting rid of the dummy for good. So we made a basket that we would put her dummies in on Christmas Eve so that Santa could take them and leave her a present.
We left this out for her to see and I think this really helped her. As every time she saw it she would tell me that Santa going to take didi and give her a purple bike. Which was the one thing she wanted for Christmas. She would tell anyone that would listen that Santa would give her a bike and take her didi. She was really excited about it.
We did have a bit of a false start about a week before Christmas. As one night Ava said she didn’t want her dummy to go to bed. So we went with it then an hour later she woke up in floods of tears. So we gave it her back as after all it wasn’t the date we had agreed on and I didn’t want it to put her off.
The night we said goodbye to the dummy
Then came Christmas Eve and it went scarily well. She went to bed asked me where her dummy was I explained we had left it for Santa to take. She agreed and went to bed without a fuss. She did wake really early on Christmas day but that isnt unusual for kids. It’s like they can sense something exciting is happening.
We are now over a week into no dummy and it’s gone so much better than I expected. She has maybe cried two nights asking for it but it was a short lived cry. She has slept well which was my only worry I just had visions of her waking up constantly. I do wish though I had done what I said I was going to do and get Alby new dummies and throw away all the old ones. As they used to just share what ever dummy was around. So I have seen her looking at the dummies that Alby is using. I have now brought him some new ones that are completely different and I have got rid of all the old ones. I just wish I had done this firstly so it wasn’t confusing for her.
Preparation really helped Ava she knew what was happening and when it was happening. Plus a little bit of bribery doesnt hurt and she did get her bike so everyone’s a winner right !
If your a parent out there that wants to get rid of the dummy. I want you to know it isnt that bad as long as your child is old enough to understand what’s happening it can go smoothly.