Toddler Tips: The Pacifier Fairy

First of all, I don’t claim to be an expert on parenting. Parenting is a thing most of us figure out as we go, and I don’t believe there’s any one right approach to anything. You have to do what works for you. But as I find things that work for us, I like to share in case your kids are at all like mine. We had been struggling with weaning Raya from her pacifier (and were in fact, going in the wrong direction for a while). So I wanted to share our success this morning!

Getting Rid of the Pacifier For Good at

Now… don’t judge… my daughter is 2 1/2 and we JUST got rid of her pacifiers.  It started out as a night time soother, and as she got older she got more attached – and in the past few weeks with moving – its had gotten to the point where she wanted it all day long.  But there was always a reason we put off taking them away – either we couldn’t afford a few nights of losing sleep for work stuff, house stuff, pregnancy stuff, someone had a cold, we were transitioning another part of life… well, it just became clear that there was never going to be a GOOD time to do it.

Pacifier Fairy

A friend of our told us about the pacifier fairy, who – much like the tooth fairy – collects those old pacis and leaves a treat.  We finally decided that between the new house and Raya becoming a big sister this month that now was as good a time as any to make it official that she is now a big girl.  We had planned to celebrate that milestone with a new bike, and realized that would be a great treat for the fairy to bring.

Pacifier Fairy

We talked about it for about a week, we let her look at bikes and helmets to get excited about it, and reminded her when she had her paci that it was going away soon.  I even sneaked the last one out of her mouth at 5 am for the fairy to be able to take it – a move that was met with immediate crying in her sleep.  So I was doubtful… but IT WORKED.  When she woke up in the morning, she stared for a minute and said, “Hey!  That’s my bike!” (Yes, I may have been spying on the video monitor, LOL.)


She was SO excited about the bike that we were able to get her on board with the idea that she was growing up and the pacis were a thing of the past now.  (And yes, she wears the helmet ALL. THE. TIME.)

Pacifier Fairy

Don’t get me wrong – there were plenty of wake-ups in the first few nights.  But NOT ONCE has she asked for her pacifier during the day – and in recent weeks, not having it 24/7 was becoming a meltdown issue several times a day.  We are still transitioning, but it’s been a great way to get her on board with being a big girl!

Pacifier Fairy

I’m so proud of my girl!

Fellow moms – how did you break the pacifier habit?  I’d love to hear your tips in the comments!



  1. Kirsten says

    Great job Raya! So proud of you! :)

    Adrianne, I actually got VERY lucky with Marley’s paci addiction. We were on a road trip and she wanted the window down. So, with the window rolled down about halfway, Marley asked me what would happen if she let go of the pacifier she was dangling out the window. I told her it would be gone forever. She smiled, dropped it out the window, and said “Bye bye binky!” And that was the end of it! We threw away all the others we had and she never asked for it again.

    Now, she’s 11 1/2…and if you can tell me how to get her to stop biting her fingernails, THAT would be awesome! :)

  2. says

    YEA! Raya is such a big girl. All 3 of my kiddos were thumb suckers so the pacifier wasn’t the issue in our house. My daughter is the oldest and she was quite motivated by “big girl” things….like her big girl bed for being potty trained! I’m so glad to hear that the pacifier fairy worked for you! :D

  3. says

    We definitely need to take action on my almost 3 year old and the paci. He has it around the house and at times out of the house. He leaves it in the car for school and camp. I know my daughter was a little older when she stopped sleeping with it, but my son definitely should only have it in bed by now!

  4. says

    Oooh, I thought maybe J would still be too small for a bike, but if Raya is big enough, than he should definitely be big enough. Where do you go to look for bikes? I think he might really like one, since he scoots around on his car inside the house all the time.

  5. Alleluialu says

    Well, my youngest daughter loved her bubba (pacifier), but one day our dog got hold of it and was chewing on it. It was a pretty funny sight to see the dog with a bubba. She never wanted it again after that. Apparently she was ready to give it up. Heaven knows it wasn’t anything I did.

  6. says

    Hi Adrianne! Congrats on getting rid of the “foo foo.” That’s what we called it. I certainly remember those days. Don’t worry that she was getting too old to have it. It’s not an easy feat! I would be too embarrassed to admit how old my daughter was when we finally got her to give it up. She was older than 2 1/2…that’s all I’ll admit to. Great way to go about it. What an adorable little girl your daughter is and it looks like she’s loving her new bike! :)

  7. Robyn S. says

    We did something similar when my daughter 3 (!). We started talking about it a couple weeks before her 3rd birthday that when she turned 3, she was going to trade in her pacifier for any toy she wanted. We collected all the paci’s in a box and went to Toys R Us and she got to pick out any toy in the store. She ended up picking a set of Cars 2 cars, handed her box of paci’s to the cashier, and that was that. She was a little sad that night at bedtime, but she got to take her cars to bed with her and she never asked for her paci again. I think it helped that she was a little older because she understood that she was trading the paci’s for something she really wanted.

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