A breastfeeding doll that has been selling in Europe is poised to start selling its suckling here in the U.S., amid controversy that the doll’s target market is young girls. Some argue that the doll makes little girls grow up too fast while others think it’s the best thing since Nutella.
This morning I heard two male hosts on some random radio station talking about the doll, which works by having the child wear a halter top of sorts which electronically sets the baby doll to sucking. The male radio hosts kept saying how uncomfortable and “dirty” the commercial for the doll made them feel, which was kind creepy in and of itself, but that’s a different post. The commercial shows a little girl, probably around the age of 7, putting on the halter top and then putting the doll to her undeveloped breasts.
During the show, they played clips from mothers who like the doll, telling tales of their child breastfeeding stuffed animals and even remote controls — anything that’s broken that the child thinks needs comforting.
One of the hosts said that a child that would try to breastfeed a remote control must have been dropped on its head as a baby, and the host who was presumably a father said that he never witnessed his two daughters trying to breastfeed random objects.
This doll will likely be a huge hit with breastfeeding advocates who are trying to promote breastfeeding as a women’s rights issue and societal influencer. Since breastfeeding can be thought of as a cultural phenomenon nowadays, many moms want to start influencing their children’s behavior towards full breastfeeding compliance and this could be a tool to help them do that. They would likely argue that breastfeeding is completely natural and that a breastfeeding doll is more natural than a bottle-feeding doll and represents the ideal feeding situation.
Problem as I see it though, it’s NOT natural for a 7-year-old to breastfeed a baby.
View the video below and tell us what you think. (I have to admit, that I did get a chuckle out of the comment about what was next — fake tampons? LOL!)