My Baby Is Not Using Me As A Pacifier

When my baby was around a month old, we offered him a pacifier.

He spat it out.

I remember my husband and I exchanging glances...our eldest child had adored her paci...why was our new baby rejecting the wonders of a silicone nipple?!

We kept offering and he kept spitting and so it came to be that we somehow managed to live without a pacifier.

My baby boy is now a thriving one year old and I have literally lost count of the number of times that well-meaning people have told me how much he needs a pacifier...

"Louise!  He's using you as a pacifier!"

Here's the thing.  He's not. He really isn't.  Because boobs came first.  Before silicone and plastic and glow-in-the-dark teats, there were plain old ordinary human nipples.

And babies are born knowing this.

The mighty paci is a very clever imitation of the human nipple and can be a wonderful source of comfort for babies and toddlers who decide not to spit it out. Pacifiers were designed to replace the nipple, though, make no mistake.

Don't believe me?  Here's the clincher...

A couple of weeks ago, my little guy noticed the box of still-hopeful pacifiers that we absent-mindedly left in the cupboard.  He pointed at them, "there!"

I figured I'd let him try one again, all these months after we all gave up on the paci dream, so I handed one to him and watched as he held it in his toddler vice grip and turned it over, examining it.

Then he put it in his mouth, paused for a moment and started sucking, before shouting triumphantly:


He grinned and shouted again:


I couldn't make this stuff up.  In one word, my kid laid to rest one of the biggest lies society tells new breastfeeding moms, before (of course) spitting the thing out again, only this time with a laugh.

Mamas, your babies are not using you as pacifiers...they're using their pacifiers as boobs.  Truly, if you trust anyone on this, trust my expert one year old.


Related article: Yes, I Breastfeed My Baby To Sleep