The internet has been buzzing about The Breast Milk Baby, a doll designed to teach little girls about breastfeeding. Berjuan Toys, a 40 year old, family owned company based in Spain is the culprit of this new toy that simply isn't getting much love in the U.S. Aside from the crazy concept, it's price point of $89 doesn't make it any better.
Critics are raging and retailers are afraid to show any type of support it seems. The Breastmilk baby consists of a collection of 8 dolls with different skin colors and facial features. The dolls suckling sounds are prompted by what appear to be pasties sewn onto a makeshift bra looking halter top. As if marketers aren't encouraging our little girls to act more like little women, now us parents have to worry about our little girls wanting to breastfeed a baby for Christmas.
The doll is said to be a big hit in Europe where breastfeeding is embraced. Supporters of the doll feel that it's a good way to help a child understand the needs and arrival of a younger sibling. I on the other hand agree with all of those in opposition of the doll for so many reasons. I don't feel it's necessary to teach a young child about breastfeeding, where babies come from or anything of the sort before they are truly old enough to understand what they're being taught.
Now if this doll had been created for teenage students enrolled in a sex education course, it may be a different story. I just don't think this is something toddlers or tweens should be engaging in. Some people feel that this doll is going to sexualize children, I wouldn't take it that far. I just think that it is way too much, way too soon. Baby Alive and other toy babies have been around for years, those are just fine in my opinion. Most little girls adore babies, especially those who don't have siblings.
This doll is taking things much farther because it opens up a whole new world of curiosity. Children are naturally inquisitive and there's nothing wrong with that at all. I'm just not sure if strap-on boobs and a breastfeeding baby is the best way to introduce a child to womanhood. Breastfeeding goes a lot deeper than attaching a baby to a boob. Are we ready to have those conversations with little girls as young as three and four years old?
I may be over-reacting, but the whole idea of a breastfeeding toy creeps me all the way out. I have a daughter who is still a baby herself and I'd be upset if someone ever bought her something like this. There was pregnant Barbie doll around for a short period of my childhood. Even that isn't as creepy as this, but still creepy nonetheless. Little girls see pregnant women everyday, some of course see their mothers carry their younger siblings. I'm not sure how many children witness breastfeeding first hand. Some women do it in public, but for the most part its a private thing.
I'm not against breastfeeding at all, I actually wish I could've breastfed Go-2-baby in the beginning. I just don't think I want to think about my child breastfeeding before she even has real breast.... what happens when a toy manufacturer decides to make masturbating dolls for boys or fake breast implants. I just don't think we should be bringing our children too far into adulthood too soon. These are my two cents on the issue, what does everyone else think?
Is this doll being frowned upon because our country hasn't completely accepted breastfeeding? Are we ashamed to present reality to our children? I don't know, I'm still creeped out by the idea.