A blankie may be your child's best friend, but let's face it -- that tattered-looking thing needs to go by the wayside. How do you separate your little one from his prized possession? It might not be easy, but you can wean your child away from a blanket over time using a set of calculated moves much easier than just ripping it away. Don't make your child's blankie separation traumatic -- make it feel natural and simple.
Blanket Weaning Through Compassion
Get out a few other small blankets and a few stuffed animals. Do not tell your little one what you are doing; just take out the supplies quietly. Act on your child's natural compassion to encourage him to detach from his blanket.
Play with the stuffed animals with your child, and after a while start to pretend that winter has arrived and that the animals are very cold.
Wrap each animal up into a cozy bundle, leaving one of the animals out in the cold.
Act like you feel sorry for the animal. You could say something like, "Awww, this one doesn't have a blanket to cuddle up with. He looks so cold. Look, he is shivering." Your little one will naturally want to wrap his blankie around the cold animal.
Praise your child for thinking of such a great idea, then pretend like the aniamls have fallen into a warm, cozy sleep. Say to your child, "shhhh...they're sleeping. Let's tiptoe out so that they can sleep more quietly."
Repeat this game to help your little one feel OK without the blankie for short periods of time.
Weaning Through Distraction
Collect toddler- and preschool-safe art supplies, such as construction paper, glue sticks, crayons, child-safe scissors and washable markers. Distract your child in a positive way to help her detach from her blanket.
Set up the art supplies in front of your child on a low table or on the floor when she seems overly attached to the blankie. Do not draw her attention to the blanket.
Scoot the blanket a short distance away from your little quietly without her seeing you, once she seems thoroughly involved in making things with the craft supplies. With time, your little one will want to work on the crafts without even thinking about her special blanket.