I saw this question posted in answer to one of the questions I posted, and suggested the poster pose it as her own question. Since she has not done that and I have been curious about what the answers would be, I thougth I'd just post it. My own little girl had multiple loveys and never got terribly attached to anny of them and refused pacifiers so I've never had to deal with this one.

The little girl in the original posting had a Baby Anabell from http://www.smythstoys.com, and had grown extremely attached to it. I've also had numerous two's kids that had to have a blanket, doll or other toy with them to feel secure all the time. These things are helpful at early ages in sleep training and while traveling, but what do you do when the child is just to old to need it, but still isn't ready to give it up?

3 Answers 3


Basically, if the child still needs it, it is too soon to give it up. There is no medical or psychological evidence that there is an age too old for comfort objects, eg Lovey's. Many children keep them until they make friends at school. Comfort objects are very important for children.

Teaching children to cope with stress will help with transitions. Even toddlers can be taught self calming, deep breathing, and excercise as forms of stress reduction. Once children can comfort themselves, they will not need comfort objects. It is very important to encourage healthy and safe methods of stress reduction. While there are countless examples of adults who engage in unhealthy comfort measures, such as alcohol or cigarettes, there are reports of healthy and normal adults who use comfort objects. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comfort_object

It is important for children to be able to express their worries to a confidant who does not judge them. For some children, comfort objects serve this purpose.

Comfort objects also help children cope with transitions and disappointments in life. Children used comfort objects for support and solace too.

It is important for parents to understand the role the comfort object plays in the child's life so that they can help the child make a smooth transition. If the child is comforted by the object, parents should provide the child with another source of comfort, such as a blanket, hugs, a shirt, or other object that the parents find suitable that the child finds comforting.

The best way to help a child leave the Lovey behind is to teach him or her to comfort herself or himself. Think about the healthy ways you calm yourself when you're stressed, and teach your child some of those ways. Some ideas: singing, yoga, deep breathing, talking to a trusted friend, running, dancing, stretching, a nap.

Threatening, bargaining, bribing, and shaming don't help children learn to sooth themselves. If the child doesn't say it's time, then it isn't time yet. There is so little in the world that children control, choose your battles. The comfort object means much more to the child than it does to the parent. Try giving comfort instead of taking it away.


The lovey is a beautiful thing...but its loss is a necessary evil. Obviously this post is IMHO- so here goes my comment

I am 32. My DH is 36. My husband is 'Linus' from Peanuts. While many younger readers won't understand that reference I mean to say that my husband is smart and tall and handsome and well adjusted...except for his 'blankie'. He gets weird attachments to comforters. No one ever made him put his lovey away. It never "got lost" or got so destroyed it needed disposal. He is one of the rare cases in which sociocultural norms did not discourage his blankie use. Broken home + abusive father equated to low self esteem - so there were few friends and thus there was no social pressure to encourage his detachment from the rectangular poly-cotton blend of fabric.

We got into a fight this evening because its night time and 60° outside and the windows are open but he was all sweaty and cranky because he was covered with a giant heavy winter duvet that he refuses to put into storage for the summer.

He is a wonderful husband and father. I've read lots of blogs devoted to relational issues and his issues are most certainly NOT as problematic as lots of other wives encounter. He does laundry and washes dishes, he thinks I'm hot after 7 years/two kids/and the 60lbs my thyroid goiter has helped me keep.
BUT his lovey attachment is much like one to a ratty old recliner that gets put in a man cave...except I'm on the couch while he and his giant heavy winter duvet hog the bed.

Our culture is not designed to tolerate the perpetual use of a lovey unless that attachment is transferred to a (socially deemed) appropriate object such as a lazy boy recliner (For men). As for me- my blankie lovey got "lost" when I was seven and I remember feeling the safety and security of the attachment which has only been mirrored by how I feel when my DD's ages 4 and 7 come into my room to snuggle on weekend mornings. The point is that the 'lovey' level of attachment is healthy and helps make social connections but it can also be a crutch and cause social development interruption if not appropriatly mitigated. I firmly believe that the lovey's purpose is to teach the feelinng of safety and security BUT it needs to make its exit at an age or developmentally appropriate time to encourage bonding relationship building with people Not things.

  • A very nice first answer. Welcome to the community, I hope you came to stay!
    – Dariusz
    Commented May 14, 2014 at 11:33

Sooner or later your child will be playing with one of their friends who will comment on their security blanket / lovey. Depending on the age of the children, this comment will either be empathetic or derisory. IE, they will either relate to it, or think that it is babyish. Once your child knows that it is not the done thing, in the eyes of their friends, they will be far more likely to abandon the item than if you try to convince them yourself.

So don't worry about it.

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