Parents who purchased the new You & Me Mommy Change My Diaper Doll from the Toys ‘R Us chain discovered that the toy came with an unexpected accessory: a penis.
Nothing on the packaging or the company’s website indicated that the doll was anatomically correct, leaving parents to assume it came with the standard gender ambiguity, according to NBC’s “Today” show.
One mother who wrote about her surprise on Facebook drew lots of responses, with some calling the toy inappropriate for young children.
“These [are] little girls that don’t need to know the anatomy,” one commenter posted, while another said, “Little girls should not be shown that on dolls. The company makes me sick.”
But SheKnows.com writer Monica Beyer disagreed, saying parents’ exaggerated reactions to the doll’s anatomical accuracy contribute to “body-shaming” in children early in their development.
“What about a baby makes a penis or a vulva dirty or sexual?” Beyer wrote. “Because that’s what it sounds like when people say that it’s wrong for little girls to see it. The truth is, when a child points out the body part that she doesn’t have, all a parent is required to do is call it by its name.”
Whether you agree that the doll is appropriate or not, the toy manufacturer should at least warn shoppers that it comes with realistic body parts. Otherwise, the surprise inside could prompt the need for a “birds and the bees” conversation some parents aren’t prepared for.
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