There are some bizarre toys out there on the market, but the latest doll created for girls by Spanish-based company Famosa is one of the strangest I've seen yet. Why? Instead of closing its eyes to sleep or sitting on a potty like some other dolls do, this one has an especially weird gimmick: refusing to eat!
If that sounds inappropriate to you, you're not the only one. The doll is stirring all kinds of controversy among parents, many who claim the doll encourages unhealthy behaviors.
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The plastic blue-eyed baby, called Nenuco Won't Eat, is the latest in a series of Nenuco dolls, all of which boast various "life-like" capabilities, like giving kisses or getting runny noses. But this one's real-world action is shunning food. When a child tries to feed her, the doll turns its head away from a spoon several times before eventually giving in and taking "a bite."
And though the toy won a Best New Toy Award at a U.K. Toy fair earlier this week, many parents are not too happy about it and worry that the doll sends the wrong message to kids.
Obviously, eating disorders are way more complex than playing with a certain toy, but I don't blame some parents for feeling hesitant. I mean, what's the point of the doll? Even if kids don't understand anorexic behaviors, that doesn't mean they can't mimic them. After all, isn't that what young children do? Copy behaviors from the things and people around them?
Farmosa, for its part, maintains that all of the Nenuco dolls encourage positive learning. "In attempting to encourage his or her Nenuco doll to eat, the child learns about healthy eating habits," the company said in a statement. "The end result of this game is that the child clearly understands that his or her doll is mistaken in not wanting to eat, noting that in the end, thanks to his or her help and encouragement, the baby starts to eat properly."
Hmm ... that sounds like a bit of a stretch to me. Still, Nenuco Won't Eat is far from the most inappropriate toy available for kids. Below, check out some of the other craziest dolls ever:
Image via Famosa