Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Breast Milk Baby

  As a child I remember always receiving baby dolls as gifts. Along with those dolls were diapers, clothes, bibs, and you guessed it a bottle! While there is nothing "wrong" with a baby using a bottle, there is something wrong with the fact that as a society we have normalized bottle feeding and deemed breastfeeding sexual.
  A company in Spain, Berjuan Toys, decided to make a change. Instead of a doll that takes a bottle, they have designed their dolls to breastfeed. This has made quite a splash in the United States. People are screaming that this over sexualizes little girls, encourages teen pregnancy, and is all around "inappropriate."

 If the argument is that pretending to be a mother is going to encourage teen pregnancy, then we have a bigger issue at hand. I know very few girls that have never actually played with dolls, or imitated their mothers. If this doll does anything it teaches girls what your breasts are for. To feed children.

 People scream that this doll sexualize girls and that it is all around inappropriate. Yet they slip tiny girls into skimpy clothes and parade them around. It looks like this company is being faced with the same discrimination that women who NIP face everyday. 

 It is socially acceptable to wear short shorts, tight jeans, low cut shirts, and bikinis.. It acceptable for a woman to bare her cleavage to impress a man or to catch his attention, but it is almost social taboo if a woman shows her cleavage to feed her child. While some are fighting to correct this cultural issues, others are fighting to keep things the exact same.

  The reality of this issue is that we as a society are uncomfortable with breastfeeding. In the US the breastfeeding statistics are down right sad. Only 42% of babies are breast fed until 6 months of age, and only 22% are breastfed until the age of one.

  Women are bullied into bottle feeding. Right from the start we are taught to feed our babies with bottles, when motherhood actually approaches we are then  told that we are unable to produce enough milk, that our milk isnt always good enough so we need to supplement with formula, that breastfeeding your child in public makes you some kind of exhibitionist, and what gets me the most is that breastfeeding in public is often compared to public urination.

 If we as a society are uncomfortable with a real mother breastfeeding her child of course we are going to be uncomfortable with a girl nursing her doll. Until we as a society fix the social stigma surrounding breastfeeding this doll will never be acceptable. Nether will breastfeeding.

  To those of you who are interested in this doll you may order one at On the main page they have a demo video that will show you how the doll works. There are 6 dolls with 3 different races, and the option of a boy or girl for each race.  I wish this company lots of success. I believe it is vital that our society learns that there is nothing wrong or sexual about breastfeeding. Doll or not.

1 comment:

  1. My older kids watched me breast feed the younger babes. It is quite normal to them. They know both. Breast feeding as long as possible and bottle only after my milk runs out (due to hypothyroidism). The parents set the tone.
    I have relatives who only breast feed behind doors while I breast feed wherever and whenever the newest baby needs me. That is the joy of the stay-at-home-and-loving-it mom of 5 kids:)
    I am grateful that laws are being put into place to secure the rights of the breast feeding mom...public or private.