Quietly waiting on the shelves of Toys “R” Us is a baby boy that wets itself. But that’s not all—it’s hiding another secret under its diaper. The baby looks exactly like a baby, right down to its anatomically-correct penis.
One US shopper brought the You & Me Mommy Change My Diaper Doll home and when, she saw what the baby doll looked like in his nether-regions, published a photo on Facebook registering her shock and dismay that her little girl saw the penis. The picture went viral, along with the comments of outrage and concern over showing kids what a penis actually looks like on a baby.
There is no question, the doll is a little shocking at first—but only because we are used to that blank space between the legs of most dolls. The Facebook photo was taken down but, of course, the comments live on.
In my opinion, the biggest downside of this doll is that it actually wets its pants—and that’s just too realistic for me. The box is clear about the peeing part, but doesn’t mention that the liquid comes out of a little penis. So I understand the surprise. But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t buy it for my kids. In fact, knowing that it has a penis might motivate me to actually get it.
In no particular order, here are my top six reasons why every home should have this anatomically-correct doll (and it’s female counterpart, if there is one):
Teaching proper names of genitals: Kids are never too young to know the proper names for the body parts. Knowledge is power and, in this case, protection, too. Studies have shown that kids who know the proper words for penis and vulva are less susceptible to abuse. A child who knows all the parts of their body is not any less innocent than a child who uses nicknames. Body parts aren’t sexual in and of themselves, it is our perception of them that makes them sexy. To kids, body parts are body parts and that is the way it should be.
Dolls with negative space between their legs are weird: I don’t know about you, but my kids would ask me why their dolls didn’t have penises and vaginas. And then I would have to explain that the doll manufacturers thought it wasn’t right to put them there. I was never fully comfortable with that explanation, and the implied message that recognizing our proper body parts is wrong. Also, the painted-on underwear isn’t fooling anyone—not even two-year-olds.
Shock value: I am all for this doll, I think it’s great. But I am not going to pretend that isn’t shocking. It is. Think of the fun of surprising the in-laws with a penis doll. Or taking it out at work and passing it around the morning meeting. Or just surprising the other parents at the park. Priceless.
Showing the difference between circumcised and uncircumcised: From what I could tell, this doll is uncircumcised, which would answer some questions in my house where all the males are circumcised and some of them don’t understand the difference.
Weeding out the Sanctimommies: Posting this on Facebook is absolutely going to bring out the people who don’t think their kids should know the proper names for genitalia, or are uncomfortable with telling their kids about the facts of life. Do what you want with this information.
Good for Boys: It’s good for kids to play with all kinds of toys, and maybe a peeing baby is exactly what your son would like. Especially if it looks like him all over.
Would you buy an anatomically-correct doll for your kids?