Monday, February 9, 2009

Boys, play with dolls?

I read a wonderful article in the recent issue of Mothering Magazine (my dear friend Raissa kindly bought me a subscription to the magazine when Owen was born). The subscription has since expired, but then a co-worker picked up a copy for me. I guess people have been drawn to give me the magazine. Anyway, there’s an enlightening article about the benefits of doll play for boys. The article was written by a skeptical male, who in the end succeeds that doll play is a wonderful way for boys to learn how to nurture and father. Jeff is not as enthusiastic as the author, but he’s on-board and amused.

Nurture, mmmmm… I thought it would be perfect for Owen, because like other 2-year- old boys, he could use a bit more of that. I also am a big fan of gender neutral toys—and mixing it up—trucks for girls, kitchen/doll for boys, etc…..

So, Owen has “baby” now. Is it his favorite toy? No, it’s not. But he does enjoy playing with baby—feeding him a bottle, burping, changing clothes, pretending to change a diaper, etc. Also, he likes wearing him in this homemade sling for a little while.
Half the time he’s nurturing, the rest, well, I guess testosterone gets the rest. Baby is thrown across the room, bopped on the head or he’ll perform a wild rendition of “rock a bye baby.” These are the hide your laughter, and try and teach moments.

One very interesting coincidence about the doll’s arrival…Potty training miraculously started! mmmmm


Liz V. said...

Awesome post, Marlena. I totally agree with you that ALL kinds of toys are good for kids. I wonder what'll happen with Jonas. I imagine something similar--a gentle kiss on the head, followed by a rough and tumble "toss" across the room. Pic's really cute,too. :-)

....... said...

LOVE the dolly! I believe that depression is the most common thing that disables my male students- they are so trained to shut off emotions they can't deal with life by the age 14. It is a huge problem.

Plus, these pics are perfect for bribery during his teen years. muhaaa

Erin said...

Hi Marlena! this post cracked me up - Owen looks so adorable with the baby sling!

My friend Kelly is a PhD student in child psychology at Case Western and she contributes to a blog about creative play for children:

Thought maybe you'd be interested in checking it out!