your baby need a comfort toy? How do you choose the right one? Should you let
them choose? Discover the stories of these mums and how their kids came to find
their one special toy.
When I was a newborn, my grandfather came to visit me in the hospital and gave me my very first teddy bear. She was named Boom Boom bear thanks to the little heart inside her that made that noise every time I gave the bear a hug. Boom Boom Bear was my comfort toy and saw me through my childhood years and she now sits on top of my daughter Cassie’s wardrobe keeping a watchful eye over her.
Comforters are the most magical thing in the world for little children and they come in all shapes and sizes. When I found out I was expecting my little girl, my mum told me that Dad wanted to pick her comfort toy, just like my Grandfather did for me. For some, this may go against the idea of a comfort toy (you know, where the child is meant to choose their favourite), but for me, this was going to be a special teddy that would grow with Cassie. Plus, if it’s the one we gave her each night in the cot, I was sure she would learn to love it most. And she did. Roo Roo, as her pink Jellycat Bashful Bunny is so fondly nicknamed, enjoys daily cuddles from Cassie, and even more importantly, my dad bought her two. This means if ever we leave one at daycare (which we have!), or need to give one a wash, we have a spare up our sleeves to avoid meltdowns.
All I have to do is hand Roo Roo over to Cassie, and she will now trot off to her cot ready for nap time. Comfort toys really do hold some magical powers. Here are some stories from other mums about what their children love to snuggle.
Fi & Reid (18 months)
I picked the muslin for Reid, because it holds the least SIDS risk as they can still breathe with it over their faces, and Reid has been attached to that one since about six months old.
From about eight to ten months we put a selection of soft toys in his crib and bunny was the one he just seemed to pick. I didn't really realise he was attached to bunny until maybe a couple of months ago when I picked him up from Kindy and he was clinging to it and had been carrying it around during the day.
While these are the toys that help comfort him to sleep at night or when he needs it during the day, neither of these are actually his favourite toy. His metal Thomas the Tank engine is his absolute hands down favourite – to the point where he asks for it first thing when he wakes up and has done so for the last nine months
Mel & Reuben (18 months)
Reuben didn’t have a comforter for a while. We instigated a bit of a bedtime routine at four months, but it wasn’t until eight months when he went through a sleep regression that we started using ‘ZeeZee’. After some frantic online chats with Tresillian, they suggested we included a comforter in Reuben’s bedtime routine and something that could go to daycare, day naps and also on holidays with us so that he had a familiar face around the place.
Daycare quickly reported back to us that he would carry ‘Zeezee’ around with him after his nap, and we started getting worried that we only had one. We had been gifted ‘ZeeZee’ at our baby shower, turns out we picked the hardest toy possible to buy more of, as they had come from England! However, one of our amazing friends managed to pick up two more ‘ZeeZee’s’ for us. Thankfully we did this as now at 18 months ‘Zeezee’ has started going everywhere with Reuben. Only in the last few months has he started becoming really attached to her, and he will head back to his cot to collect her if he has forgotten her. Thankfully he hasn’t seemed to notice that ZeeZee is actually one of three!
Janna & Henry (17 months)
Henry's special comforter is his foxy blanket or 'shi shi' as he's named it. We were given one similar when he was a baby which is a blue bear and we started giving it to him when he went to daycare, just so he had something cosy and familiar. We ended up with Foxy as I tried to buy a duplicate bear to make it easier to wash them on rotation and so we couldn't lose one and be left in the lurch with a devastated child.
He has become very attached to it through daycare and when I couldn't get the bear in duplicate, I bought two Foxys’. Now bear is just for daycare and Foxy is just for bedtime, we really try to avoid letting him have it outside of those times as it can cause huge tantrums as he's obsessed. It can be a lifesaver on long car trips and when he is babysat. If he can't have Mummy and Dada it's his next best thing.
I think he loves it so much as it smells like home, it’s super soft and snuggly and he loves to chew on it and wrap his fingers in it. Once we started putting Foxy in his bed overnight (at around the age of one) he started consistently sleeping through as he would just find it in the night to cuddle instead of me. We tried dummies, muslin blankies, teddies, etc., but nothing ever stuck until Foxy. Very grateful he has a cosy little friend for reassurance when we can't be there.