I secretly enjoy sucking a dummy but I’d feel so ashamed if anyone found out

DEAR DEIDRE: Even though I’m a grown woman, I still enjoy sucking on a baby’s pacifier.

It feels so comforting and it doesn’t hurt anyone, so why am I ashamed?

I’m 28 and have always had a strong oral fixation. I suck my thumb, bite my nails, chew pencils and used to smoke but have stopped.

I started this new habit when I saw a woman pushing a toddler in a stroller and the child happily sucking on a pacifier.

I suddenly felt the urge to buy one for myself. It was so nice to put it in my mouth. I felt happy.

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Since then I have purchased several pacifiers and use them regularly.

No one knows that I use pacifiers when I’m stressed. I even have one under my pillow.

I would die of embarrassment if my friends found out.

Is there something wrong with me? Should I stop?

DEIDRE SAYS: Oral fixations are not uncommon.

Psychoanalyst Freud believed that some people develop an unmet oral need in childhood that continues into adulthood. However, this idea has been largely discredited.

Using a pacifier to relieve stress is pretty harmless.

Nobody has to know. However, it could cause problems with your teeth and jaw. Therefore, visit the dentist regularly.

If you want to stop, ask your primary care doctor about cognitive behavioral therapy, which might help.

Images posed by models.

Emma James

Emma James is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Emma James joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing emmajames@ustimespost.com.

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