These mums are giving our kids a choice as to what types of dolls they play with and for that we say thanks.
I consider myself lucky that my daughter doesn’t really play with Barbie dolls… yet…
Oh, she has a few, but she’s more prone to cutting Barbie‘s hair off pretending to be a hairdresser than dressing her in a wedding gown and walking her down the aisle with Big Ted.
Occasionally, I see her plonking spikey-haired Barbie on top of Sven, the Frozen reindeer, and riding her over the top of an imaginary ice mountain, but my four-year-old is much more infatuated with Arendale than Malibu.
Sure, she has other dolls but they are more the odd-looking baby-type ones that wee when you tip water down their tiny plastic mouths.
It could be the influence of two big brothers but she gets more delight from making her ‘baby’ wet her nappy than from any other form of play with her.
So I am well aware that so far, SO FAR I have managed to dodge the Barbie bullet.
But my daughter is just four, and the future is long.
I wonder how I will feel if she does become entrenched with that cosmetically enhanced plastic goddess? I wonder how I will react.
For many mums there is a very real concern that hyper-sexualised dolls, like Barbie may be harming our children. They fear they may be a factor in contributing to a range of issues we worry about our children experiencing.
We worry they will have body image problems. We worry they will develop eating disorders.
We worry that the dolls are too grown up, that they encourage our daughters to be too aware.
We worry about the way our kids are simply growing up too bloody quickly and we yearn for them to stay lost in childhood for as long as possible.
According to a survey by Mission Australia, poor body image is among the top concerns for young people with girls as young as five, reporting weight concerns and wishing they were thinner.
And so we say bravo to a team of New Zealand mothers who have established a line of dolls that simply celebrate childhood.
The Beetle Bottoms range of dolls was created by mum Fiona Whyte and her daughters Sarah Hill and Madison Holroyd with an aim of keeping kids kids.
They have strived to show racial inclusivity and natural healthy children’s bodies, not exaggerated, hyper-sexualised adult bodies.
“Children's dolls teach children about the world. They communicate what is normal, desirable and accepted,” says psychology major and mother of 3-year-old, Sarah Hill.