Becoming Binky-Free

I must disclose that we have not broken the pacifier (aka ”a binky”) habit in our household, yet. My son is almost 16 months old and currently uses his binky in the crib and car.  I have also been known to sneak it in my pocket during shopping trips in case of emergency.

I decided it was time to start weaning him off the binky when he recently found one under his crib and had a massive meltdown when I told him it was not the time for his binky. I mean a major tantrum, complete with head-banging on the hardwood floor and juice cups being thrown at the dog.

I’ve asked all of my Mom and Dad friends about how they said goodbye to their kids’ pacifiers. There are a couple different theories that my friends have shared with me regarding becoming binky-free.

My favorite idea is the one my friend Neile shared: cut the tips off all the binkies in the house and quit cold turkey. You’re not the bad guy and you can console your toddler while they lament the loss of their intact binky. Another variety of this theory is to cut off the tips slowly until there isn’t much left for them to “pacify” themselves. I believe our first plan of action will be the first. After all, I live down the street from a 24 hour CVS if we HAD to get a replacement binky. There is an entire web site devoted to this theory,, if you’d like to read more.

Another theory, which would be more appropriate for an older toddler, is the “Binky Fairy.” After discussing the Fairy with your child, you set a night for the Fairy to come and take away all of his or her binkies.  The Fairy leaves a small gift for the child in exchange for all the household binkies. A variation of this theory is for the Fairy to take the binkies to a baby who needs them, maybe a little cousin or friend. Packing up all the binkies before the fairy comes can be a special going away ceremony for your toddler to participate in. I’ve also heard that Santa collects binkies for other little boys and girls during Christmas. Maybe the distraction of all the new toys would help ease the pain? I believe my son is a little too young to understand the Binky Fairy or Santa at this age, but if he was older I would definitely try it out.

These two theories were by far the most widely used in my social circle, but before my husband and I embark on this parenting journey I would love to hear your advice. Did your child use a binky and how did you say goodbye?




*This originally appeared on a new web site I contribute to: A Mom Know’s Best. Check it out!


  1. Aunt Suz says

    My guys didn’t use them. Some days I wish they would’ve! I have heard about the binky fairy, but agree that Jackson is a little young for that theory. One of the first two ideas sound really good. I would also suggest that in the whole scheme of things…he is still young, he recently quit BF and many new changes are coming his way & yours. It’s not like he’s attached to it 24/7 :-)

  2. Eric Costantino says

    Don’t feel bad. My daughter is 3 and is still in love with her bink. It is time to break the habit though!

  3. Kerri says

    I used a pacifier (which I called my “nunu”) until I was about 3, which is clearly way too long. My mom said that I’d have it in my mouth all the way to preschool every day and then as soon as we pulled up to the parking lot, I’d sink down in my car seat and pop it out of my mouth because I didn’t want the other kids to see I still used one. So, clearly I also knew I was too old for it! Anyway, my mom took me to Toys R Us after preschool one day and told me I could pick out any toy I wanted– in exchange for my pacifier. I excitedly agreed and then (oddly enough) selected an electric toothbrush with Strawberry Shortcake on it as my reward. I handed over my pacifier happily.

    Fast forward to bedtime that night. My mom said I yelled, screamed, cried, and negotiated (“I’ll give you back this toothbrush if you give me my nunu!”). No dice. She didn’t cave and I learned to sleep without a pacifier. I think that’s the key part– not caving once you make the decision to get rid of it, no matter which method you use. Good luck! I’m sure it won’t be easy. I always wished my 16 month old son would take one when he was an infant, but now I’m glad he didn’t.

    (I’m a new follower, btw. I came across your blog & was interested while reading your FTT posts since I also have a skinny-minny. Oh, and congrats on your pregnancy!)

  4. says

    We got super lucky–Ryan stopped using his paci on his own a loooong time ago. I’ll guess he was like 6 months old! Yea there are probably times it’d be really nice to have him take one – but he used it so rarely that it’s like I don’t even know what we’re missing. And now we don’t have to go through weaning him off of it. Sorry, I’m no help at all!!! Good luck!

  5. says

    omg he was so wittle!!!

    I haven’t taken it… He really only uses it for car rides and sleeping anyways. occasionally for those times when he’s super fussy.

    My friend did the paci fairy. Her daughter was just a little older than J & A probably, but she’s super duper smart, even smarter than our little guys (how that is possible, idk…) and she totally understood the fairy. fairy left her some awesome awesome presents.