The rambling thoughts of a Modern Orthodox Chassid (whatever that means). Contact me at emansouth @

Thursday, July 05, 2007

A War of Wills

MHW and I are engaged in a war of wills with The Toddler. The issue. Her pacifier. Until now she has been content chewing on it while in her crib. Sometimes we'd let her have it if we were in the car for a very long time.

Recently, she started asking for it all the time. With her new and improved language, she can be quite a sympathetic character: "I need pac-i-fi-er" while touching her chest.

This is one of those times when big will power is needed. Luckily, MHW has that in abundance. I just get in line and follow her lead. As MHW's explained to me, if we hold the line now, TT will get over this phase in a matter of days or a couple of weeks. But, if we give in now, we will have to deal with this for years. Using a pacifier is bad for her bite and bad for language development. And getting it away from her later will be brutal.

This is similar to our bedroom policy. We have never permitted any of our kids to sleep in our beds (while we were in them). This was an absolute rule that could not be violated. If one of the kids felt it necessary to be near us in the middle of the night, he or she could come into the room with his or her pillow and blanket and sleep on the carpet next to our bed.

I know couples who have not had a peaceful night's sleep in years because their kids share their beds (Indeed, one of my co-workers, an otherwise intelligent women, has had her three year old in her bed for almost two years; she now finds breaking her daughter of that habit impossible).

So, we will have to endure a couple of weeks of whining, feeling sad and guilty, but we know what we are doing is better for us and, more importantly, better for TT, in the long run.

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  • At 10:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Cut a tiny part of the tip off. It'll lose suction and she, by herself, won't want to suck on it. At least that is what I read in some Parenting magazine, as if they know all the answers.

  • At 12:14 PM, Blogger Jacob Da Jew said…

    Be strong!

    My 20 mnth old daughter has this annoying habit of begging for nosh from anybody, even complete strangers.

    So now my policy is not to share with her something that I am eating so she will get used to eating her own food.

  • At 7:01 PM, Blogger tnspr569 said…

    MOC- that's what we call good parenting.

  • At 11:32 PM, Anonymous megapixel said…

    when you feel tempted to give in think of the $$$ braces will cost you. I told my 2 year old daughter she can either have braces or a shmorg at her wedding, but not both!! ( i dont think she got my drift)

  • At 10:32 AM, Blogger uberimma said…

    We got lucky. Our boys both, as toddlers, came down with nasty colds and for a couple of days couldn't suck and breathe at the same time. All the pluggies magically disappeared right around then. By the time they were clear enough to suck on them again, they'd been gone long enough that it wasn't that big of a deal.

  • At 11:14 AM, Blogger ClooJew said…

    I agree, lulei demistafina, with your bed rule. Not so much with the pacifier rule. Does it really hurt the bite? And language development? I have nephews still sucking their thumbs at five and six, and they speak impeccably. Is the pacifier worse?

  • At 11:59 AM, Blogger MoChassid said…


    Three of our four have had braces (without being pacifier suckers) so I feel your pain.


    MHW is a speech and language pathologist. If she says it can affect your bite and language development, who am I, a mere country lawyer, to disagree.


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