"That's not to say that I'm not pretty worried about the day when we have to get her to stop: I AM WORRIED," Eva Amurri Martino admits of daughter Marlowe

By Deirdre Durkan
January 25, 2019 11:55 AM

After Eva Amurri Martino — actress and popular blogger behind Happily Eva After — noticed an influx of questions and comments surrounding her daughter Marlowe Mae sucking her thumb, she knew it was time to open the discussion with her readers.

“I can’t tell you how many people reach out to me on a regular basis to share their concern over Marlowe’s thumb sucking,” Amurri Martino, 33, began in a lengthy post about her older child, 4.

“Why wasn’t I concerned? I realized in giving it some thought that it’s actually a really interesting topic for discussion, and it’s perhaps one of the few parenting topics that I don’t feel conflicted about,” she continues.

Julia Dags for Happilyevaafter.com

In the blog, Amurri Martino (who is the daughter of Susan Sarandon) pinpoints the origin of her daughter’s thumb-sucking to weaning her off pacifiers. To manage the habit, she was proactive in getting Marlowe to associate sucking her thumb with a “lovey,” a special blanket.

“At first, we would only give her the lovey at nap times, bed times and on car rides/plane trips,” she explains. “Then, as she got older and started getting bumps and bruises, separation anxiety and during the phase when she became a big sister — we allowed her to have it a lot more.”

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In comparison, her younger child, 2-year-old son Major James, neither sucks his thumb nor uses a pacifier.

“When Marlowe became a thumbsucker, I was actually beyond happy about it. The fact that she had an object on her person with which to self-soothe made life so much easier for me,” the mother of two writes.

“My only concerns about the thumb sucking were speech delays and problems with her palate and teeth long-term,” Amurri Martino continues.

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After taking Marlowe to her first dentist appointment, Amurri Martino was surprised to learn the habit hadn’t affected her teeth. That moment gave her relief and reinforced Amurri Martino’s pride in her daughter for finding “something that makes her feel so secure.”

“All of a sudden, I really wasn’t worried about this so-called ‘bad habit,’ ” she reflects. “Marlowe has also been through so many changes the past couple of years, with a new brother, moving across the country, a few home moves, and another on the horizon.”

“That’s not to say that I’m not pretty worried about the day when we have to get her to stop: I AM WORRIED,” Amurri Martino admits. “She’s obsessed, and I’m not quite sure what the gentlest method is to encourage her to stop without fully traumatizing her.”