Friday, December 13, 2013

Genderless Dolls

This morning the kids pulled out the Barbie and Ken dolls to play with. The almost-two year old was frustrated because he found a dress he liked, but it wouldn't fit on his Ken doll he'd picked out. Trying to promote my feminist values, I wanted to choose my words carefully.

"That dress is too small for your doll. You'll have to find something bigger."

But after repeatedly picking out "girl clothes" for his Ken to wear, I found myself finally saying, "No, that dress only fits a girl doll. You need to find some boy clothes." As true as it was for the situation, I hated saying that. I hate saying something is only for a girl and something else is only for a boy. Specifically when talking about my daughter, I want her to believe that it doesn't matter what you wear or what you want to play with.

So, it got me thinking. Do sexually ambiguous dolls exist? Are there dolls out there that, depending on how a child styles them, they could be either a boy or a girl. I'm envisioning a young face with no make-up and no hair. The child can pick out a "wig" and there would be girlish clothes and boyish clothes to choose from to form an outfit that's feminine or masculine or somewhere in between.

Dolls are almost never given a penis or a vagina anyway. Why not let the kids decide who they're playing with? Why set so many limitations?

I didn't find anything on the internet, but if anyone sees anything, let me know. I would love to create a prototype, but I don't sew, I don't have any money, and I wouldn't know where to begin in creating something like this. But I do think it's a million dollar idea! Child-gender issues are only getting hotter!

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