Breast feeding doll? Creepy or progressive?

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by made_in_canada, Nov 16, 2012.

  1. Twilight1

    Twilight1 Well-Known Member

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    I haven't but I am going to now. lol!
  2. jeffisjeff

    jeffisjeff Well-Known Member

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    If you just want plain legos you can buy something like this:

    http://www.amazon.com/LEGO-Ultimate...s&ie=UTF8&qid=1353096471&sr=1-1&keywords=lego

    They come in a few different sizes, and there is a pink box for girls (if they insist on pink, as mine did ;)).

    We also have the Creationary game, which is like Pictionary but with legos. That is a fun way to get kids to be creative in their building.

    I find that Blokus is a good game for working on spatial ability. Plus it is fun for all ages.
  3. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    I didn't say the doll would help. I didn't actually give my opinion of the doll at all. I am commenting on all the people comparing breastfeeding to having sex and saying that little girls don't need to learn to breastfeed when there is plenty of evidence that they do.

    Breasts are not an inherently sexual organ. Their only actual function is to feed babies. Therefore, there should be nothing creepy about a doll that is meant to be breastfed or a toy that mimics breastfeeding. It's no more creepy than a toy oven or toy car or any other toy that mimics adult activities. People only are reacting this way because they've been raised in a society that has decided to sexualize breasts and don't have the self-awareness to realize that's where their reaction is coming from.
  4. Twilight1

    Twilight1 Well-Known Member

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    There is no evidence stating little girls need to learn breastfeeding. When they are older and expecting a baby, having someone counsel them would help.. But I am sorry no pre-menstrual child needs to learn that.

    An age appropriate discussion could be had if required...just like age appropriate sex talks can occur when required. Or a little girl can pretend to breastfeed with their doll as stated above
  5. Angelskates

    Angelskates Active Member

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    Is there evidence that little girls need to learn to breast feed? Or is there evidence that some mothers need help learning to breast feed? There's a huge difference, IMO. Little girls do not need to learn to breast feed. Mothers, with real breasts, and real babies, may need help; little girls without breasts or babies, have no reason to learn.
  6. Rafter

    Rafter Well-Known Member

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    This doll is beyond creepy. But I'm sure the breastfeeding nazis at the La Leche League are thrilled with it! :scream:
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  7. TheGirlCanSkate

    TheGirlCanSkate New Member

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    My daughter played store. She would be the cashier or shopper. She was 2 or 3. She had no job or money or car and couldn't count change correctly. Does this mean she shouldn't have been able to play store?

    She also loved to play doctor. She had a stethoscope, box of bandaids, gauze, toy thermometer, and blood pressure cuff. She was a preschooler and had no license to be a doctor. Does this mean she had no reason to play doctor?

    Playing mommy, in some houses means using a pretend bottle. In others the child holds the doll and pretends the baby is nursing. In my house she pretended to nurse and used a bottle (the kind where the liquid looks like it disappears). There is nothing about sex in that, nothing dirty that needs to be behind closed doors. They are all natural ways to parent and children mimic important people in their lives. It is part of socializing.

    I am thinking for many who are horrified by a doll (it does not suck, it makes a sucking noise) that mimics breastfeeding by sound triggered by a vest with flowers on it, that having a breastfeeding doll as a child may have helped them deal with a woman's body being used for something other than sex.
  8. Rafter

    Rafter Well-Known Member

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  9. Rafter

    Rafter Well-Known Member

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    Coming from our resident "attachment parenting" practitioner, why am I not surprised by this comment?

    But hey, to each their own.
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  10. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

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    I don't think a lot of people are horrified - it just seems silly. C'est la vie.
  11. Twilight1

    Twilight1 Well-Known Member

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    TheGirlCanSkate- my boobs are more than just for sex. They fed 2 babies till they were 9 months and I went anywhere and everywhere with them as babies and had breastfed wherever.

    They are also great food catching tools when I am eating, they assist in remote control placement, great place to hide money and fat that allows me to keep warmer in the winter.
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  12. TheGirlCanSkate

    TheGirlCanSkate New Member

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    I thought it was a little for the young side, but my daughter looked and said she thought it looked really fun. She is going to think of another toy using "simple machines" for her science project this year. Kickstarter IS awesome!

    Maybe they should have a Sotomayor doll as well. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=EHICz5MYxNQ
  13. danceronice

    danceronice Corgi Wrangler

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    GIANT Tinker Toys. Even if I never managed to actually make a functional Ferris Wheel, which was why I wanted them because I saw it in some movie or other...
  14. Angelskates

    Angelskates Active Member

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    There's a difference between this and MacMadame saying that there's evidence that little girls NEED to learn to breast feed. They don't. Mothers may WANT to learn to breast feed, once they're adults and capable of deciding for themselves, and have breasts with milk and a also a baby, but even mothers don't NEED to learn to breast feed. Some mothers choose not to breast feed, and some mother choose to, and don't need any teaching at all. Just like your daughter isn't going to be a good doctor, or shop keeper, because she role played, these girls won't be better breast feeders because they had this completely unrealistic doll. This doll is supposedly a teaching tool, not just a toy. Your child was role playing for fun, not because you were teaching her to be a doctor or shop keeper.

    According to the website the doll is for ages 2 years and up and it does "suckle and swallow". Again, I don't think there's anything dirty about breast feeding, but if this doll is to teach, why not give them a realistic scenario with an actual fake breast? It sounds like they are very pro breast feeding, but not pro breasts, which doesn't make sense to me. Why not teach the girls to learn to breast feed like it's really done, covering the breast in public? Maybe it's because they think there's something sexual about breasts, so they feel the need to give a flowery top instead?

    Their aim, through this doll, is to let "young girls express their love and affection in the most natural way possible, just like mommy" - how ridiculous! Mothers and their children (hopefully) have a special and unique bond, just like husbands and wives. Mummy and daddy also "express their love and affection in the most natural way possible", but I don't see any dolls created to help teach young children about that. Little girls are not mothers, they can not "share in the wonder and magic of motherhood", they can share in the wonder and magic of being part of a family, which has a baby mummy chooses to breast feed. Saying young girls (ages two and up!) need to learn to breast feed is completely wrong IMO.
  15. Southpaw

    Southpaw Saint Smugpawski

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    Yeah, I never had enough of them to make anything REALLY cool. Just like I never had enough Lincoln Logs to make a McCabin. Lousy rotten childhood...
  16. triple_toe

    triple_toe Well-Known Member

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    Grotesque, creepy, and weird :yikes:

    I can't believe anyone would argue that this would have any impact on how women breast feed later in life. This has about as much resemblance to the real thing as driving a car does to playing with hot wheels.
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  17. TheGirlCanSkate

    TheGirlCanSkate New Member

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    Oddly, yesterday when I looked at the link I saw a photo of the girl and doll. NOT a video. This evening there is a video.

    The child in the video was clearly uncomfortable. And I was uncomfortable seeing her discomfort as well as close ups of nipples (I don't see my own on close ups).

    Breastfeed next to me on the bus - sure! - but I'm not staring at your nipples on zoom. Is that the commercial that will be on tv?
  18. Moto Guzzi

    Moto Guzzi Well-Known Member

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    I loved Tinker Toys and Lincoln Logs and was envious of my brothers who got chemistry sets and microscopes for Christmas while I got a Barbie doll I had no interest in. While my sisters and girl cousins were playing house or pretending to be nurses or teachers, I used to play millionaire. My younger sister and cousins always wanted to play with me so I let them be my servants and got them to bring me snacks and stuff and do my chores. Can't believe they fell for that. :lol:
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  19. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

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    That explains a great deal. (((Leftie)))
  20. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

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    I can see both sides of the argument. Breasts have a biological function and if I were a nursing mother I would be sick and tired of all the snickering and sexual innuendo every time someone mentions the word breast. But the fact remains that female breasts are prominently associated with sexual arousal in our culture, so yeah there is an ick factor in focusing on little girls' breasts for whatever reason.

    Personally I don't think dolls teach children about good parenting. Most dolls end up headless and naked at the bottom of the toy box.

    As to the people who think dolls are a limiting stereotype for girls my dolls were always actors in high drama involving kidnappings, bubonic plague, exotic trips, kings and queens and anything else I could dream up. I always felt sorry for the boys not having that outlet.
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  21. Flatfoote

    Flatfoote Active Member

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    I picked up on that little girl's discomfort as well. She really didn't want to be there, did she? And the "close up" of the doll "breast feeding," the doll wasn't really "latched on" to anything. So basically it was just holding up the doll in the vicinity of the child's breast, and the doll made sucking noises. So why even have that little smock with a fake nipple covered by a flower in the first place?
  22. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    You are misunderstanding my point. I never said little girls need to go to classes to learn to breastfeed or even that they needed to learn. I didn't even say this doll would teach them to breastfeed.

    I was reacting to a comment about how unnecessary it was to have anything that promoted breastfeeding to young girls because breastfeeding not something that needs to be learnt. When I was counseling breastfeeding moms, I saw how ridiculous this statement was every day. Tons of women need to learn to breastfeed because they aren't just naturally picking it up by watching the adults around them as they grow up.

    Nice ad hominem attack!

    I'm guessing they need someplace to put the receiver that senses when the doll is near and sets off the suckling sound.

    I really don't get the fuss over this doll. I think it's cute. I also don't think it's particularly necessary - as has been pointed out you can play at breastfeeding without it - but you can say that about a ton of toys. In fact, I do say that about a ton of toys. :lol:
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  23. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

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    (my bold) Actually, you did. Post 43. I'm still having problems with this multi-post quote thing. :blush:

  24. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    My bad then. That wasn't exactly what I meant. It would be more accurate to say "when there is plenty of evidence that they grow up into women who do need to learn to breastfeed."

    I was thinking more about modeling behavior and how in societies with higher breastfeeding rates this sort of doll playing happens all the time where it's rarer in Western cultures. Correlation isn't causation, of course, but I can't but think that more young girls just casually breastfeeding their dolls might help them grow up into adults who weren't so hung up on breasts and uncomfortable with breastfeeding.

    The thing is, if the number of women who think they can't breastfeed really physically couldn't, our civilization never would have survived. So there is something else going on and I am pretty sure our society's sexualization of the breast is a large part of it.

    And it's definitely a large part of what I am seeing in this thread with some fairly extreme over-reactions to something that is, in the end, just a doll.

    Now, if you want to see a truly creepy doll, there's this
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2012
  25. genevieve

    genevieve drinky typo pbp, closet hugger Staff Member

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    true!! :lol:
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  26. Angelskates

    Angelskates Active Member

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    That's the thing, MacMadame, to you it may be just a doll, to others it's about gender stereotyping and indoctrinating. Your statement about little girls needing to learn to breastfeed (which you have now retracted) was wrong and your statement "there is plenty of evidence that they grow up into women who do need to learn to breastfeed" is also wrong. No woman needs to learn to breastfeed. Some women may want to, but no woman needs to. Breast feeding is a choice, not a need.

    Maybe some reasons that women in Western cultures choose not to breast feed as much could be because many have careers which makes it much more difficult, because it is much more of a choice, because they're impatient, or simply because they don't want to. I don't think it has anything to do with not having a doll to help them model, or not having models. I'm not sure how you know "in societies with higher breastfeeding rates this sort of doll playing happens all the time where it's rarer in Western cultures", but I am interested - can you give me some more information? Every Western child (girl or boy) I have known who has seen breast feeding (by their mum or someone else) has modelled it at some time; some have modelled it because they've seen their friends model it. Still, I would much prefer a society making it a complete choice than a society that makes it feel obligational or a necessity, because it's not.
  27. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    In your opinion. Clearly I don't share it and this is not something where it's a fact.

    There was a time when I might have agreed with you about the stereotyping though. I used to have a much more complicated relationship with dolls. :lol: But I've come to realize that in my society at least we have toys for everything. We have Easy Bake Ovens and $400 cars that really drive (speaking of cute toys) and those toys for toddlers where they can stand up and lean on them and push buttons and lights flash and stuff. We even have toy computers!

    None of this really necessary. Kids can play with the pots and pans in the kitchen, help their parents out with the real thing, etc. But it's how our kids play.

    Plus little girls like to play with dolls. (All of them? No. But enough of them. More of them than don't like to.) Now that I have my own daughter I see that it's not all because they've been brainwashed by society to see being a mother as their calling in life as some people will tell you. Mini-Mac just really liked to play with dolls with absolutely no encouragement from me.

    So why not a doll that makes sucking noises when you feed it? That's actually kind of cool, IMO, in the context of a society where there's a toy for everything and those toys are often incredibly realistic.

    As for indoctrinating, it's no more indoctrinating than any doll including ones that come with a bottle and a pacifier. Where's your rant about those dolls?

    To call a breastfeeding doll a tool of indoctrination reminds me of political rhetoric when what one side does is labeled as propaganda but when your side does the exact same thing, it's perfectly okay. A breastfeeding doll is only indoctrination if all toys are indoctrination. (An argument I've actually heard people make but I'm betting you don't agree with.)

    In this case, we have women who breastfeed and women who bottle feed and women who do both so it seems to me that we should have dolls that breastfeed and dolls that bottle feed. But apparently a doll that breastfeeds is indoctrinating children into thinking that they must breastfeed and should feel obligated to breastfeed but a doll that comes with a bottle is just normal and natural and not indoctrinating children into thinking that they must bottle feed and should feel obligated to bottle feed....

    Also, there are many women who WANT to breastfeed, who intend to breastfeed. But when the time comes, they don't know what to do, it doesn't just all come naturally, and sometimes they get no help or worse they get all this bad advice from the professionals who are supposedly there to help them and instead sabotage them (sometimes even on purpose but usually accidentally). So they don't end up breastfeeding. Obviously, something in the entire process is missing for them and their needs are not being met. I really don't see how anyone can argue against that when we see it over and over and when breastfeeding rates in the US (and many other countries) are so low.

    It's easy enough to say well it's a choice and formula is adequate so it's not big deal, but IMO these women's choice is being taken away. To me that IS a big deal. It's not a real choice if it's not remotely practical for you or if people are actively working to take it away from you by sabotaging your efforts (even if that wasn't their intention).

    This doesn't even include the women who probably would want to do it if they weren't so caught up in the idea that a breast is meant for sex and not for feeding babies that they just can't bring themselves to do it. IMO their choice was taken away from them too even though they probably see it as they are making the choice not to breastfeed.

    Therefore, you can say it's a choice but for many women it's not a real choice and that's not okay with me. And I think this means that I am not wrong when I say that women need to learn to breastfeed. Clearly a lot of them do.

    I actually don't know any little girls or boys in real life who have ever modeled breastfeeding including my own child who was breastfed much longer than societal norms. This doesn't mean that NO child does it. I've certainly heard about it including from people I know online. But it's not as common as in your experience when you look at the entire world.

    As an example, I used to co-op in my kids' preschool and in the four years that I had kids there, I never once saw a little girl pretend to breastfeed. That's about 100 little girls from the age of 0 to 4.9 that I've never seen or heard about them breastfeeding their dolls.
  28. Angelskates

    Angelskates Active Member

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    MacMadame, do you think breast feeding should be mandatory, since you think it's a necessity?

    I'd still like to see more information on your comment that those in societies that have more woman choosing to breast also have more children modelling it. Or that modelling breast feeding as a child actually leads to a decision to breast feed as an adult.

    I've seen plenty of people's choices NOT to breast feed taken away by a (Western) society that makes some women feel bad for not breast feeding. My sisters and I were born in 1977, 78 and 79, my mother didn't breast feed and she received some horrible comments even back then; I think this is much worse now. My mum was a nurse, and a midwife, which made the harrassment even worse for her. Because people like you think a child MUST be breast fed, that it's a NEED. I wasn't breast fed, neither were my sisters . So clearly it's not a need. My mother didn't need to learn to breast feed. She did help my sister when she made the choice to breast feed her son.

    Some women who choose to breast feed, may choose to learn formally with classes. Some choose to learn in different ways. Some it comes naturally to; for some it doesn't. If they're not getting the information they need to learn properly, and they want more, there's lots of options if they choose to continue; many of them free. There is always the choice to continue or not. I find your comments about some professionals sabotaging the breast feeding learning process bizarre.
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2012
  29. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

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    There is evidence on both sides of the spectrum for whether or not breast feeding is better than formula feeding. I understand that it bothers you that your mother, and other women, have faced harassment on this issue, but as breast feeding will never be mandated by law I'm not sure why you would choose to write such an angry post directed at MacMadame before she's even bothered to answer your first question. And based on the post, I'm not sure why she'd answer it.
  30. nlloyd

    nlloyd Active Member

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    The issue, if you read up thread, isn't whether breastfeeding is beneficial or not, it's whether a doll that teaches young girls to breastfeed is a good idea or not. MacMadame thinks it is a good idea because it will help women feel more comfortable about the idea of breastfeeding and perhaps render breastfeeding in public more socially acceptable in the West. She sees this as a necessity. Angelskates feels the promotion of the breastfeeding doll is a form of gender stereotyping (associates girls with motherhood to the exclusion of other possibilities) and that it doesn't allow for the fact that women can be good mothers without breastfeeding. She believes that it intensifies the criticism currently levied at mothers who don't or can't breastfeed.

    An important, underlying issue seems to be attitudes towards women's breasts in the West and whether, in order to render breastfeeding in public more acceptable, it is necessary and/or possible to de-sexualize women's breasts. While some believe that having girls breastfeed dolls may accomplish the latter, others are concerned it will only sexualize girls.
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2012
  31. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    Yeah, I'm done with this conversation. If you want to know more about breastfeeding in other cultures, you can Google, it Angelskates.
  32. Angelskates

    Angelskates Active Member

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    Oh, I have. I can't find anything at all about how children modelling (or not modelling) breast feeding is in any way related to the number of woman who breast feed, or want to breast feed, or anything about how/if it makes girls feel more comfortable (or uncomfortable) about it at any stage (as a child or adult). That's why I asked you for more information.

    michiruwater - I think breast feeding is better than formula feeding in most cases, but I don't think that means all women need to learn to breast feed - I don't think it's a need, but a choice. I also think organic food is better than non-organic food, but I'd never say all women need to learn to shop organic or grow their own food. It bothers me a lot when people say women (or men, or children) NEED to do something, just because *they* think it's the right thing.
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2012
  33. Japanfan

    Japanfan Well-Known Member

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    It sounds like you are saying little girls generally like to play with dolls because they are girls. It would follow that little boys like to play with cars because they are boys. This view has huge gender assumptions and implications and aligns with other gendered views such as pink for girls, blue for boys, and throwing tennis balls for boys while girls get to help mom mix the cake batter in the kitchen. I played with dolls because they were the primary toys I was given. Fortunately I soon discovered books and abandoned the dolls. As an interesting aside - the fact that dads play ball with their sons is one of gendered reasons why boys are able to develop better visual spacial skills.

    I think that children like toys of various kinds. Boys play with action figures, which are really not that much different from dolls, expect of course that they are not pretty soft figures with fluttering eyelashes. But both boys and girls like toy models of humans and both boys and girls model human behaviour. And what differentiates male from female behaviour is to a large extent socialized. In this day and age, I'd hope that parents would give their children exposure to more toys, ideas and behaviours.


    As for indoctrinating, it's no more indoctrinating than any doll including ones that come with a bottle and a pacifier. Where's your rant about those dolls?

    When you create toys to replicate and promote specific gender views and norms, they do become tools of indoctrination.
  34. danceronice

    danceronice Corgi Wrangler

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    That's the part I find particularly creepy. Or nauseating. Also dolls that perform other bodily functions. (Doll that blinks: CREEPY.) It's as creepy as those stupid stuffed "sleeping pets" that look like taxidermy animals curled up "asleep" until you realize it's got some internal mechanism where it's "BREATHING." Freakin' creepy.
  35. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    Well at least you are consistent in what you find creepy. :D

    No, I'm not saying that. I'm saying that a lot of girls still want to play with dolls even when you want them to play with cars. I didn't say anything about the boys. Some boys want to play with dolls too. Especially if you count action figures as dolls, which I do. But that wasn't what I was addressing.

    There was a time when I thought I would raise my kids a certain way and I certainly wasn't going to foist gender stereotypes on them. I wasn't going to paint the girl's room pink and the boy's room blue. I wasn't going to give my girl dolls to play with while the boy got Legos. But then I had children, real children, and I discovered that real children have wants and needs that don't always line up with your ideas of how you are going to raise them.

    So now my boy child had a blue room because, when we moved to this house, we asked them what colors they wanted to paint their rooms and he asked for blue. My girl child is really girly too. She played with dolls when she was little and ended up with something like 35 Barbies at one time. She just LOVED Barbies. She loves make-up and clothes and started badgering me to let her wear make-up at an extremely young age. She never played with the Legos not even in pre-school where other girls played with them. It just wasn't an interest of hers.

    Perhaps people hear this and think, oh because you had gender neutral toys around and didn't paint her room pink, she must have been totally indoctrinated by society then to take on the traditional girls preferences. But I was there watching her grow up and I think that these are just her personal preferences. She isn't traditional in a lot of other ways including other non-traditional interests. Heck, she taught herself to use the computer at 18 months (we never bought all those fake toy computers for toddlers because we thought an 18 month old doesn't really need to use a computer) and she loves anime too. But she also loved dolls as a girl. Really, really loved them.

    I think no matter how you raise your kids, sometimes girls just like dolls because they like them and not because of gender stereotyping. In other words:

    Sometimes a doll is a tool of indoctrination and gender oppression but sometimes a doll is just a doll.
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  36. Really

    Really No longer just a "well-known member" Yay!

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    Granddaughter #1 plays with dolls and trains. Go figure. Granddaughter #2 has a couple dolls, and loves the Cars movie. Go figure. Indoctrination at its finest, I guess...
  37. rjblue

    rjblue Re-registered User

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    I'm tempted to start a thread pointing out how creepy dolls that pee in a diaper are. I doubt that it'd go to three pages long. It makes me so extremely sad that people find nothing creepy about feeding a baby stuff from a cows glands and even drinking it themselves, yet are completely disgusted by the idea of feeding a baby from a human's glands.

    If breasts weren't so sexualised, then children would put the doll up to their bare chest and the sucking noise would be just a novelty.

    Hopefully someday humans will look back on this period of time and find the current obsession with mammary glands as repellent as we find the historical Chinese obsession with feet. Walking normally, and feeding babies, both being a function that the female half of our species was evolved to do.
  38. PDilemma

    PDilemma Well-Known Member

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    Yes. God forbid that humans enjoy sexuality in any way, shape or form. We must put a stop to it.
  39. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

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    Who in the world posted anything like that? This thread is amusing in the sense that folk seem to be reading all sorts of things into other's posts. :)
  40. rjblue

    rjblue Re-registered User

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    I watched this documentary recently- Busting Out. It was an eye opener. If you think what I posted was in any way against the idea that people should enjoy sex, maybe you should find a copy and watch it too.