Our Sentiments

Mothering and Life in General

Boys Playing With Dolls

Boy with a doll, 1922

Image via Wikipedia

Being a childcare provider, allows me to talk openly with other parents, to give and receive suggestions in parenting. As we all know, parenting is an art not a science. There is always a wrong way of doing things, but never a perfect way. There are also times when your parenting style clashes with another parent’s. I try to stay open-minded, with short implications that some things can be adapted during my care, however there are things I just simply will not do. One of these things would be not allowing a boy to play with dolls.

I can appreciate fears of boys partaking in doll playing. I can understand the concerns, however I can not, not state my disagreement. Playing with dolls will not make a boy more feminine, it will not change your son’s sexual preferences later in life. In fact, doll playing helps with so many important things, that is easily overlooked. Like introduction to dressing, being kind & gentle, and creative-role play.

Allowing your son to play with dolls can help with the concept of dressing, as it provides a different view-point that can make it easier to understand. Most of the Velcro in doll clothing is easier than other child’s dressing items, and the openings of these clothing are usually larger than in T-shirts and sweaters. The snaps are also larger to help little finger grasp and best of all no tying!

Introducing a new addition to the family, can be made a bit easier with doll playing, by showing him how to hold a baby and how to touch gently. Doll playing can reinforce gentle actions and empathy with the new baby to come. When the baby is brought home, you can have your older child diaper their baby while you diaper the ‘real’ one. You can also buy special fabric for your son to carry his baby, if you are a baby wearing parent. Dolls can also aid with reenacting the roles they have in their family.

There are also different types of dolls that use creative-role playing, some are potty training dolls, some are newborn dolls, others give the idea the child can be anything when they grow up, as long as they put their mind too it. Dolls help with providing a world where real-life and make-believe are joined, yet the child has the control to make up the ending. Doll playing also helps with balancing out the active, destructive toys, most boy toys provide, and changes the creative play feel.

Unfortunately as adults, we forget the power of play in general. No matter if it’s playing with action, ‘masculine’ toys or ‘feminine’ dollies, play is the basic need in teaching a child and having a child learn what is being taught. Any type of play is an asset to children, and every child should have many toy-outlets to use to move on to the next learning curve. In my house, play is important, I believe its first step to other things. Just like you can’t run without learning how to sit first. Without one step you can’t fully learn the next one without being stunted. Taking out doll playing takes more away from the child’s learning than what you are afraid is being added. So please parents I beg you, let your son play with dolls.

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