Friday, October 29, 2010

Where's his...?

Why don't you get his...? Why doesn't he have a ...? Where's his...? You should just give him a... He obviously wants a... Blah, blah, blah... All those sentences end in pacifier. So I figure I'll answer/address this once and, hopefully, for all. The short answer is, he doesn't have one. He doesn't take one. We're not planning on giving him one, though it's not something we've completely ruled out. We tried to get the kid to take one, mostly so he'd sleep longer, but he refused; he was never interested in the least. As for baby E, here's the long answer...

To start, in the hospital they don't give breastfed babies pacifiers, because it can lead to nipple confusion. This is also why he didn't have one when we first got home. That, and one night shortly after he came home, hubby gave him one and all night I kept hearing the following: slurp, slurp, slurp, plop, rustle, rustle, rustle, rustle, screeeeeeeeeeeeeeeam. We'd stick it back in and the whole thing would replay. And then apparently that whole nipple confusion thing is real because the pain, oh my, it was toe curling. I gave hubby the whole, "if you ever give that to him again, I'll kill you" speech.

So, we gave him our finger instead, because he does like to suck, like a lot. Breastfeeding experts would recommend I let him comfort nurse when he wants to just suck, but he's not really interested in that. That, and when he does, it hurts. He sucks really hard and pulls back, twisting his head all around, that's right, with my nipple still in his mouth. It hurts super bad. So, that's also a no-go. (And perhaps I am a pain wimp, but whatever.)

Our fingers it is. And he loves our fingers. I always know where they are. In the car, at night, they're much easier to locate than a paci would be. They don't fall out of his mouth just as he falls asleep. I'm much more likely to wash them off before giving them to him than I would a paci (be honest - how many people have you seen pop the baby's pacifier in their own mouths before sticking it in baby's? Ew. We have dirty mouths, people. Just ew). Also, he's starting to find his own hands. And those, again, will be much easier for him to locate at night, in the car, all the time, than a pacifier will be. I know there are all kinds of opinions about pacifiers vs thumbs/fingers, but we're fine with him sucking on his hands, if that's what he wants to do. (It's that whole I-sucked-on-my-fingers-til-I-was-like-10-and-I'm-a-fairly-functional-adult-with-good-teeth argument).

So, there's the detailed answer to your question. We use our pinky fingers because that's what works for us. That's what works for baby E. And today's lesson - why, as parents, do we have to criticize each other's choices? Now, obviously, if I am shaking my baby, please step in and offer your very critical opinion. But otherwise, how about instead of getting all defensive about our own choices by attacking someone else's, we just step back and try to respect that we have different ways of doing this. None of us is going to be right all the time. And just because something is right for your kid or family, doesn't mean it is for mine. If I would like your advice, I promise I will ask for it. Or, if you feel compelled to share (which I'm not opposed to, btw), can you please do it in an nonjudgmental way? Okay? Thanks!

Oh, yeah, and you sticking your kid's paci in your mouth grosses me out. That's not a lesson, it's just my opinion. And I'm not judging you. I'm just saying. Ew.

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