a doll that breastfeeds

This just came to my attention from another blog, and I thought it would be a good topic of conversation for the parenting "wing" of this blog.

There is a new doll on the market that, instead of drinking a bottle, breastfeeds. Read more here on the breastfeeding dolly.

So, thoughts anyone?

Having nursed all five of my children, and feeling very much like a breastfeeding advocate because of it, I am intrigued by the concept of a doll that, instead of coming with a bottle and pacifier, insists on breastfeeding. That said, many parents around the world are apparently up in arms over possible repercussions, such as the possibility that maternal instincts will kick in early, and we’ll see a rise in early pregnancies because of these dolls.

I guess you can take it as far as you want, but the fact of the matter is, because I was a breastfeeding mama, the siblings of the infant or toddler being breastfed, very often the next child up, would frequently pretend to "breastfeed" his or her doll or stuffed animal, as the case may be, while I nursed the baby. And far from finding this strange or disconcerting, I thought it sweet when I would catch them feeding their "babies" like mommy was feeding hers.

I think, as is so often the case, it comes down to the parents and how they might relay this topic to their children. And it comes down to us challenging ourselves regarding our portrayal of breasts. Think of the Hooters billboards on so many major thoroughfares throughout our fair American cities, and then think of what breasts were truly designed for, and you’ll understand what I’m trying to say here.

I guess, in the end, my kids never needed a dolly that actually made the sucking noises of a nursing baby. All they needed was their imagination, which did the job just fine for them. And, I maintain, it was the most endearing thing in the world to see.

Would you buy a breastfeeding doll for your child or grandchild? Why, or why not? Come on. Don’t be shy!