Comforting or just weird?

More about those dolls that look like real babies. I watched a clip from the BBC video (and 3 minutes was plenty). You can watch it too at the Reality Blurred website.Those babies look very real, but the thing that is missing is life, that spark that makes us human and alive. In fact they look like perfectly preserved corpse babies to me or zombie babies come back from the dead. They weird me out. I agree with the husband who saw his middle-aged wife pushing a stroller with one of these babies and said, “I don’t like it. I just don’t like it.”

As an adult, when the line gets blurred between a doll and a real baby, it’s pretty unnerving. How sad that some people are so desperate for something to hold and love that they carry a doll around the grocery store. There are plenty of alternatives in the world; pets often serve the purpose. But women who need to be with kids can also adopt, become teachers or volunteer to help with children at church or the many charities aimed at kids. You don’t have to have the real thing to know they’re a lot of work and every Mom could use an extra set of hands. Volunteer to babysit for a friend or relative. They’ll love you for it, and you’ll have a chance to bond with their kids.

***
On a totally different note—or not, depending on how you take it—I and all other employees at the Catholic church where I co-lead the contemporary choir are required to take a course this month in how to protect children from abuse. We’ll learn what kinds of touch are acceptable and what are not and what to do if a kid appears to have been abused. I don’t really work with children, unless you count the teen offspring of choir members who hang out with us sometimes. But we’ve got to do it every year. Should I report one of our members, a childless woman who hugs all the choir kids so hard they can’t breathe? She occasionally takes them on outings “because all the kids, they love me?” It’s perfectly innocent. She showers them with gifts, and their parents welcome a break, but technically it’s against the rules. Craziness. But not as crazy as a 50-year-old woman pushing a stroller with a baby doll inside.

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