"Parents fury over breastfeeding doll"

Stifler's - posted on 03/29/2011 ( 44 moms have responded )

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The toy market is constantly innovating when it comes to baby dolls. But a new product designed to simulate breastfeeding has sparked widespread anger among parents.

Makers of The Breast Milk Baby claim that their new doll allows children to experience the 'magic of motherhood'.

But parents have spoken out in anger over the toy, which they have slammed as 'totally inappropriate'.



Controversial: Spanish toy makers have launched The Breast Milk Baby on the U.S. market claiming that it lets young girls experience the 'magic of motherhood'

The doll comes with a bib for the child to wear, with pink flowers indicating the nipple area.

When held to the breast the doll makes suckling noises, and start crying if it is not burped afterwards.



Consumers took to the internet to express their disgust.

A comment on a New York Daily News article read: 'Why would a little girl need to learn how to breast-feed before she has breasts? Before she goes through puberty?

'This is another disgusting example of forcing adulthood on our children decades before they're ready to absorb it.'



Another, speaking in response to a story in the American Chronicle, added: ' The Breast Milk Baby is totally inappropriate for young girls; breastfeeding is a skill that comes naturally to a mature woman.

'Let older girls play with a doll that poops, cries, burps, and needs to be breast fed. It might discourage girls from having sex, or at least motivate them to practice safe sex.'

Dennis Lewis, U.S. spokesman for Berjuan Toys states: 'The whole purpose of The Breast Milk Baby is to teach children the nurturing skills they’ll need to raise their own healthy babies in the future.

'We really don’t understand why this has created such controversy.'

And though the overwhelming response has been negative, there are some parents that believe the Breast Milk Baby is harmless and fun.



Writing on the Today show website, Jennifer Langston said: 'This IS just a toy (though at $99, a pricey one). Kids love to mimic things they see adults doing, whether that’s using a stapler, brushing their hair or making a grocery list. Why is this different than a doll that comes with a bottle?'

Blogger fineandfair added: 'I think it's fantastic that there are dolls that promote breastfeeding.

'I don't see a young girl imitating breastfeeding as any more inappropriate than a young girl imitating bottle feeding, whether at home or in public.'

The range of six dolls are available in both sexes and a range of different ethnicities, retailing for $89 each.

Released in Spain two years ago under the name Bebe Gloton, meaning greedy baby, the toy was widely criticised by parents that felt it promoted the sexualisation of children.





Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/articl...





I'm not sure whether we have debated something like this before but what do you think of this?? Are you morally outraged? Does this "sexualise children"? (Last I checked breastfeeding was no a sexual act). BAHAHAHA. What's the difference between this and a baby doll you bottle feed?



Edited to add: Do you think your opinion of this is swayed by whether you breast or bottle fed?

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Candice - posted on 04/03/2011

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Now don't even get me started on those Bratz dolls...those are foul. People should pitch a bitch about toys that sexualize our kids.

Kunang - posted on 04/03/2011

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It's silly to be outraged but such an innocent toy. In no way does this sexualise children. With or without this specific doll, if a girl sees her mother breastfeeding a younger sibling it's most likely she will pretend to breastfeed one of her toys. It's a classic case of monkey see monkey do. If you want to complain about toys sexualizing children, go for the bratz dolls, now with even younger toddler versions. Get it in perspective. Breastfeeding doll or dolls that resemble adult film "actresses". Sheesh, some people need to get a life.

[deleted account]

I do agree it is a waste of money, but i don;t see the harm....and breastfeeding coming naturally?? BULL
I worked my butt off to BF..i had a great deal of obstacles because my c-section and uninformed nurses...

Sneaky - posted on 03/30/2011

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The comment I took issue with was: ' The Breast Milk Baby is totally inappropriate for young girls; breastfeeding is a skill that comes naturally to a mature woman. '

Breast feeding is a skill that comes naturally?????? Since when? I had to work my butt off to figure out how to do it with my first!

Jenni - posted on 03/30/2011

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Boobs bad. Bottle good.



Ummm no it is not sexualizing children. I am really anti-commercialism using sex to sell merchandise to children but this isn't the same thing....



Breasts have two funtions... the main function is to provide nourishment to babies.... sexuality comes in second to that. As you said... feeding a baby is not a sexual act.



They don't like it.... don't buy it... but I think it is a very useful tool for parents who want to promote breastfeeding to their daughters. As a BF advocator I believe having only bottle fed dolls is not realistic and sends the wrong message; that bottle feeding should be/is the norm.



Really, parents should have a 'choice' as to what idea (or both) they want to promote to their child.

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44 Comments

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Sylvia - posted on 04/12/2011

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I'm not outraged, but I wouldn't spend $100 on it. My DD used to nurse her stuffed animals all the time -- she knows what nipples are for, and she wasn't bothered by the lack of actual milk coming out of hers. (Although sometimes she would bring me her toys and make me nurse them.)

If anything about this toy annoys me, it's the co-optation of children's play by adult intentionality -- but I feel that way about practically everything at Toys R Us these days :P

Jennifer - posted on 04/11/2011

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oh, i should also note that when i was nursing my song, my daughter would sit down with her baby, pull up her shirt and pretend to nurse the doll. kids will model what they see, even if there isn't a doll intended for that particular use.

Jennifer - posted on 04/11/2011

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How is it that people are offended by a natural act, but will run right out and buy the new bratz doll that looks like a street walker? i nursed and bottle fed, so i don't think i'm overly swayed one way or the other. as long as the doll doesn't want to nurse every 90 minutes, or cry when it doesn't get nursed, then i don't really much mind this.

Christina - posted on 04/10/2011

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Oh, and I completely agree with everyone who says breastfeeding DOES NOT come naturally. My 5 year old was a preemie, and I could not get her to nurse. I was a new mother and did not have a good support team, and I eventually gave up. My second daughter, though still nursing, did have issues with latching for the first 3 or 4 months, so I pumped all the time to make sure I would have enough to feed her. It was not easy, but I did it.

But again, I still don't like this doll....

Christina - posted on 04/10/2011

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Oh, and I completely agree with everyone who says breastfeeding DOES NOT come naturally. My 5 year old was a preemie, and I could not get her to nurse. I was a new mother and did not have a good support team, and I eventually gave up. My second daughter, though still nursing, did have issues with latching for the first 3 or 4 months, so I pumped all the time to make sure I would have enough to feed her. It was not easy, but I did it.

But again, I still don't like this doll....

Christina - posted on 04/10/2011

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First off, I just want to say that this is just ridiculous. Now, with that being said, I have to say that I don't agree with this doll. I am a breastfeeding mother, whom is still nursing my 17 month old daughter. My 5 year old always sees me nursing her sister, and yes, she mimics me with her dolls. I DO NOT discourage this behavior from her in any way. In fact, I laugh when I watch her doing this.

HOWEVER, children should enjoy being children. having her pretend to nurse her baby dolls is fine, but I could do without the suckling noises. My own 17 month old nurses quietly, and I honestly think that in a way the doll could end up discouraging children to breastfeed if they have to deal with a doll crying at them. I want my girls to look at breastfeeding as being a BEAUTIFUL thing in life, not have to worry about dolls discouraging them!!

And also, why would I pay $100 for something my daughter could pretend to do with a $10 doll???

Christina - posted on 04/10/2011

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First off, I just want to say that this is just ridiculous. Now, with that being said, I have to say that I don't agree with this doll. I am a breastfeeding mother, whom is still nursing my 17 month old daughter. My 5 year old always sees me nursing her sister, and yes, she mimics me with her dolls. I DO NOT discourage this behavior from her in any way. In fact, I laugh when I watch her doing this.

HOWEVER, children should enjoy being children. having her pretend to nurse her baby dolls is fine, but I could do without the suckling noises. My own 17 month old nurses quietly, and I honestly think that in a way the doll could end up discouraging children to breastfeed if they have to deal with a doll crying at them. I want my girls to look at breastfeeding as being a BEAUTIFUL thing in life, not have to worry about dolls discouraging them!!

And also, why would I pay $100 for something my daughter could pretend to do with a $10 doll???

Amanda - posted on 04/05/2011

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I especially loved the "breastfeeding comes naturally" comment. Spoken by someone who has no idea.
But, like most everyone else, I think it's expensive, and silly.
A child is going to pretend to breastfeed their baby whether or not the doll comes with a special bib and sucking noises.

Britany - posted on 04/04/2011

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It is not about bottle feeding vs breastfeeding rather a discussion of whether this doll is age appropriate. I personally feel that this concept is not age appropriate. Seriously, what is next . . . an attatchment uterus so children can birth a doll baby? There are some things we don't need in pretend play.

Pauline - posted on 04/04/2011

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What is the big deal about this doll? My son already pretends to breastfeed his cars and other toys on mommy. How is this toy doll any different. I think this toy is great as it encourages breastfeeding as a natural process just like eating, peeing, pooping!

[deleted account]

I don't think this 'sexualizes' children any worse than other toys out there such as "Bratz" dolls. (hate those little hussies...)

I was a weird girl growing up. I never wanted to see my baby pee, poop, etc. Therefore I just don't get the need to make toys that do those things. I'm sure if a girl is used to seeing Mommy nurse or other women nurse, she may stick her non-sound effect doll to her chest and pretend to feed her dolly. That would be preferable to me on the simple basis of making a kid use their imagination.

The total cynic side of me sees pedos using this on themselves the first chance they get.

Abby - posted on 04/04/2011

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I think its amazing that someones made a doll that encourages breastfeeding! OK the price of it is ridiculous i'll agree, but the idea is brilliant. the bib... ok maybe a little weird but if it activates the doll.. im sure eventually someone will design one that works better for less. breastfeeding is defiantley not the norm, its not something that just comes naturally to most women, or even all babies! my daughter (5 now) wouldnt latch at all, and i didnt have the support to really give it a go. with my 2nd (a boy 18 months now) i gave it a real go and was lucky enough to get a midwife who'd fed her own children so she was able to really help me. but without her and finding a breastfeeding support group (which helped when my own family couldnt understand why i'd breastfeed) i probably wouldnt have fed my son, so something that promotes the idea in children, the same way the bottles that come with them normally do, is a great idea, it allows them to learn that theres more than one way to feed a baby and isnt that really what toys are about? allowing children to have fun and give them an understanding about how things work?

Brooke - posted on 04/03/2011

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I think it's great, and natural. Why is it okay to bottle feed a doll, but not okay to breastfeed them? Cmon? What's wrong with people. The misconception that breastfeeding is somehow "sexual" is totally upsurd.

Candice - posted on 04/03/2011

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Now don't even get me started on those Bratz dolls...those are foul. People should pitch a bitch about toys that sexualize our kids.

Candice - posted on 04/03/2011

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I think it's great. My babe makes me "nurse" her toys all the time.She doesn't have that doll but gets where babies eat. I purposely do not buy dolls with bottles,so I'm stoked to see something like that.

Candice - posted on 04/03/2011

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I think it's great. My babe makes me "nurse" her toys all the time.She doesn't have that doll but gets where babies eat. I purposely do not buy dolls with bottles,so I'm stoked to see something like that.

Heidi - posted on 04/03/2011

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I don't get the outrage. Both of my girls pretend to breast feed their dolls and stuffed animals without any prompting from me or anyone else. What's the big deal if the doll they are using is designed to mimic that as well? I say "Big WHOOP!" and "Get over yourselves" to the people who think this is a big deal. Kids will model what they see. They see me breast feeding, they will model that behaviour. No different from kids bottle feeding their dolls, IMO.

[deleted account]

I think the bib is a bit much. I mean really? Do kids not know where their nipples are?? LOL!!! I know they need the bib for the sensor in the doll to activate, AND for the $89-$99 price tag. My 5 year old son nurses his stuffed animals and my 19 month old girl does the same.
I view the dolls that come with bottles as right to choose dolls hehe! You have the boobs, they provide the bottle. You decide if it's pretend pumped breast milk or pretend formula.
I feel kids are "forced" to grow up too fast these days, but I don't think it's entirely because of the toys we give them, it's much more. Shows on "junior" tv channels that are normalizing age INappropriate things at progressively younger and younger ages. Songs on the radio that our children are singing and speaking out detrimental lyrics over themselves and a lack of protection from those thing by us as parents. The toys simply follow a demand. But back to the toy at hand. The bib is what makes it a little weird for me. The price tag is what makes it absurd.

Lucy - posted on 03/30/2011

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I am in no way outraged by the idea, I don't really see the difference between this and the baby dolls that "bottle feed", but I wouldn't bother to buy one either.

My kids (including my son) pretend to be Mummy or Daddy to all their teddies, dolls etc. My son has a particular penchant for breast feeding his telly tubby! I'm not into dolls that cry, poo, suck a dummy and dance the highland fling. I don't think it's necessary when a child's imagination does just as well.

Jenni - posted on 03/30/2011

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Gotcha!
Well with any new innovative product or technology the first available on the market are always inflated in price. If this does catch on I'm sure it will eventually go down in price. But now I'm curious... what is the difference between this doll and others? It doesn't assume you need bottles? :)

Sarah - posted on 03/30/2011

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Oh I know it's not an anti-bottle feeding movement, but I wanted to point out a quote that irritated me. That's all. And like I said before, I have absolutely no problems with breastfeeding or children acting like they're breastfeeding a doll. Kids imitate what they see constantly. My 18 month old son "puts on makeup" because he sees me doing it. No big deal. I just wouldn't invest in a $99 breastfeeding doll when any doll will do. ;)

Celeste - posted on 03/30/2011

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I don't have a problem with the breastfeeding doll itself but I have a problem with it being sold for $99 when my kids can take one of their own dolls and nurse them for free.

Jenni - posted on 03/30/2011

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@Sarah I wouldn't call this an anti-bottle feeding movement. It's a breastfeeding promotion. There have been no dolls on the market that promote breastfeeding and it is a little one sided.

Sarah - posted on 03/30/2011

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Dennis Lewis - "The whole purpose of The Breast Milk Baby is to teach children the nurturing skills they’ll need to raise their own healthy babies in the future."

And if you bottle feed, you don't know how to nuture your children? Umm okay.

Even though I bottle fed my son, I have no problems with breastfeeding. And I plan on breastfeeding my next one. But, a $99 doll that breastfeeds? I think it's a bit silly, considering that a child can pretend to make ANY doll/stuffed animal breastfeed. I don't necessarily think it's innapropriate, just a waste of money.

Happy - posted on 03/30/2011

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In America today, women have to fight for their right to breastfeed in public because of the sexual taboo placed on breastfeeding. Although I agree that I do not need to buy the doll for my children because they see breastfeeding as a normal everyday occurence at their house,but maybe, just maybe the breastfeeding thought will stick with a little girl who sees the doll at the store but whose Mom is so anti-breastfeeding, that she only hears about it in a negative light. Maybe, just maybe, she will rememer that doll when she is a Mom and at least consider that there might be a possitive to this whole breastfeeding thing after all.

Bonnie - posted on 03/30/2011

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As for the doll itself, there are reasons people don't buy other dolls, for example the doll is dressed too provocatively, so if you don't believe in dolls who breastfeed or show them giving birth, don't buy them either.

Bonnie - posted on 03/30/2011

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IMO breastfeeding is a natural want for our babies whether it works out or not, but yeah it definitely doesn't just happen on its own for most babies and moms. Practice makes perfect.

Stifler's - posted on 03/30/2011

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Ohh so true. I had no idea when my baby was born either and had a major fail at breastfeeding because I thought it'd all come naturally and I didn't have to listen to anyone's advice.

Nadia - posted on 03/29/2011

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i think that the stupid part about all this is the fact that people think kids need a doll to learn how to nurture and be a good parent. NO!!! What kids need is nurturing parents themselves! A girl will learn to feed and care for a baby when she is old enough to have one. Or if this girl is lucky enough to have a younger sibling. My oldest (almost 5) knows plenty about feeding and caring for a baby because she has a little 7mo old sister that i breastfeed...and at first she was confused why i didn't feed the baby a bottle (her little cousin is bottle-fed) but i exlained that there are 2 ways to feed a baby, and one day when she's all grown up and married and has her own baby she will have breasts and can feed her baby with them or with a bottle. that took 2 minutes to say and not $100 bucks! there's no reason to be outraged (though i think it IS a little weird) about this doll. But kids really don't need a new baby doll that breastfeeds. They learn by watching... my daughter "breastfeeds" her cheap baby dolls because she sees me do it. She will be a wonderful, caring,and nurturing mother one day because she has a wonderful, caring, and nurturing mother now, not some overpriced plastic plaything.

Becky - posted on 03/29/2011

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I think a doll is a stupid thing to be outraged about. If you don't want your daughter learning how to breastfeed her doll, don't buy her a breastfeeding doll. Oh, but you'd also better not breastfeed in front of her, or buy her any dolls, because she just might learn some nurturing skills from playing with them!
I wouldn't buy it simply because I am not spending almost $100.00 on a doll. I do think the whole flowers in the breast area thing is a bit silly and I think that a child who sees her/his mother breastfeeding a younger sibling is going to think that is the way babies are fed anyways and will imitate that with any doll, or other toy. Just ask Cole how babies eat. He'll tell you it's not out of a bottle! My guess would be that few of the people expressing outrage over this doll are breastfeeding mothers.

Stifler's - posted on 03/29/2011

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I think this is awesome and a good way to get out of the whole 'bottle feeding is the norm' thing doll manufacturers have got going on with kids toys.

Marylea - posted on 03/29/2011

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I think there's nothing wrong with a child pretending to breastfeed a baby doll but the whole apron with the pink flowers that look like nipples is kind of weird. And the fact that this doll is a 100 bucks is nuts. No child needs a doll worth that much. Its funny that people have such a problem with this considering its alot more natural to teach a child to breastfeed a baby doll than for them to use a bottle (which all baby dolls come with) you can see a video of the doll going at it here http://thebreastmilkbaby.com/

Jodi - posted on 03/29/2011

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I think part of the issue is the way in which they are trying to promote it as an "educational toy". I mean, come ON, children do NOT need to be taught how to breastfeed, so to call it an educational toy is just bullshitting a little now, isn't it?



However, having said that, I don't believe it is in any way WRONG to have a doll that pretends to breastfeed, although personally I think it is a waste of money because a child can pretend just as easily that ANY doll can breastfeed and be just like mummy feeding a baby sibling.



The claims that it is sexualising our children are ridiculous.



If you don't like it, don't buy it. Simple.

Jennifer - posted on 03/29/2011

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i think the claim that it sexualizes children is outrageous. people get so crazy about anything that involves the word "breast."



with how many baby dolls that come with a bottle included, i thinks its about time that there is a product that is trying to balance it a bit...does it need to come with a $99 price tag, fuck no. children that have younger siblings that are being nursed don't really need a doll to teach them about breastfeeding, but i do think that it is common for bottle feeding moms to not really even think about it. i remember being around 11 years old and seeing my neighbor nursing her little one and thinking something along the lines of "what the fuck is she doing?" i have a clear memory of sitting in my room, playing with dolls and wondering to myself how people fed babies hundreds of years ago because i honestly just didn't know. i was bottle fed and all my younger cousins that i grew up with were bottle fed...all the dolls we played with had bottles.



in our culture, breastfeeding absolutely does NOT come naturally. the only time it is safe to assume that breastfeeding came naturally to a woman is when her mother, her aunts, and her grandmother all breastfed. breastfeeding is a skill that is learned through exposure. if while growing up you saw all the women around you breastfeeding, your chances for success are so much higher than those that were surrounded by bottle feeding mothers.



i exclusively pump so i am both a breast-feeder, and bottle-feeder.

[deleted account]

I think it's a foolish waste of money since all 3 of my kids have 'breastfed' (yes, even my son) their regular dolls, but I have no outrage at the doll. I just think it's unnecessary.

Laura - posted on 03/29/2011

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This weekend my 4 year old SON took a stuffed Elephant, put it in his shirt and "had a baby" then lifted up his shirt and "fed" it. I'm a currently breastfeeding his 7 week old brother. Kids don't even need a specific doll for it

Lady Heather - posted on 03/29/2011

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I don't see what the big deal is. I bottle fed, but I'm all for breastfeeding.

Nearly all children's toys are modeled after adult things. That's how they learn. Last I checked little kids don't work at the farm (well...most don't), cook dinner or change babies, but we have toys for all this in our house.

Katherine - posted on 03/29/2011

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When is the debate EVER going to end? I mean really? I can see why it would piss people off who bottle fed, but these babies do everything nowadays.
Some pee, burp, give birth, poop, and a myriad of other things.
I think it's an awesome idea, jeez maybe they've been around Mark Zuckerberg too long or something.

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