I have a LDS friend who has a boatload of kids under the age 6. She is a harried, busy mom. One of her boys was in my nursery class at church. One day her son, who is about 20 months old and a man of few words, was having a bad day. He didn’t want to stay in class, etc.

My friend took out her son’s “lovey” and handed it to him. It was a square of silky garment fabric with an edge of lace that is distinctive to women’s garment tops. He immediately calmed down, rubbing the fabric on his cheek and sucking his thumb.

It was quite magical. Instantaneous calm. And stunning. Since my kids are long grown up, I can act all appalled at using a sacred cloth as a soothing tool. In a million, zillion years I never would have thought to give my child a piece of garment to carry around in public.

But then again, I never had a kid attached Linus-style (1) to a security blanket. My kids preferred, in order of child:

1. A pacifier (that public/grandparent pressure squashed before I was ready to give it up.)
2. A thumb (which was awesome because I never had to crawl around in the dark under the crib to look for it.)
3. Nothing. Just screaming, non-stop for hours. I would have killed to have a piece of cloth that made that baby happy. Instead I was driven to become an alternative medicine guru just to get a decent night’s sleep.

I am not judging my friends parenting style. Some kids respond to a comfort item. As a mom, I did all kinds of things to keep the peace. It is just this nagging feeling I have that using garments for anything other than their intended use seems disrespectful in a major way.

Is it a big deal to use garment material in this way? (2) At least she cut it down into a discreet square, instead of letting the little tyke drag the whole shirt.

1. You know, Linus from the comic strip Peanuts. Old school entertainment. I carried a Peanuts metal lunch box with matching Thermos to school from 3- 5th grade because I liked it that much. I only gave it up because 6th grade was at middle school with 7th and 8th graders and I knew I would get teased mercilessly for such a babyish lunchbox. I switched to paper bags with no Thermos. What a downer. I hated middle school.

2. I knew someone who used old garments as cleaning cloths. That seems 100% completely wrong to me.