Does Playing Barbie Automatically Mean Smooching and "Sex"

Updated on May 19, 2011
S.!. asks from Boulder, CO
19 answers

My goodness. My little girl is only 4 yet she already has Barbie making out with girls and Ken. I know she doesn't get "gay" and not to my knowledge has an older kid taught her to play Barbie this way, but it suprised me to watch her play this way. Maybe she just does it cause mom and dad kiss?

I remember playing Barbie as a kid and doing the same thing, but my parents were divorced so I never saw my mom with other men (she dated, but it wasn't like she brought them home or the guys were ever really around). My son was playing with her and he had Ken and Barbie in bed naked.. I asked why they were naked and said IDK I just like them to be naked.

What do you think? All innocent or something to worry about?


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So What Happened?

Rarely watch t.v. but we do movies alot. I would say the Pixar and Disney movies. If we do cartoons is old school all the way... Tom and Jerry and Looney Toons

My definition of "sex" in this case is naked in bed... lol I yes I realize they have no clue what sex means so that is why I was clarifying what "sex' means in this case. Sorry...

No.. no secrecy.. we were all playing in the living room together as usual.

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answers from Charlotte on


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answers from Dallas on

Totally innocent. It's really difficult to sexualize something if you don't even know what sex is yet, lol! Plus, every Disney princess movie ever made is about the prince and princess falling in love (Remember 'Kiss The Girl' from The Little Mermaid?) Innocent play, momma, no worries =)

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answers from Fort Wayne on

Totally innocent! My 4 year old makes Barbie and Ken kiss all the time. I asked her why.She said because they are the Mommy and Daddy and Mommies and Daddies kiss. My husband and I smooch (pecks not full on making out) all the time. :D She also makes the girls smooch each other. I asked her why. She said because they are friends and they love each other. I don't see anything wrong with it. I don't think she's thinking about sex. That's just a way we show our affection for each other. We have our grown up glasses on and we tend to view things like that in a sexual way. Little kids don't. It's just about love. :D

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answers from Lancaster on

All innocence. No worries. :)

We don't have Barbie in our house (I have an issue with the shape of them!), but generally speaking anything that CAN be made naked ends up that way. Kids are naturally curious about their bodies and the bodies of those around them.

And the kissing thing is totally natural. They watch Mom and Dad kiss, they see it on the street, in cartoons, in storybooks...Life imitates art? :)

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answers from Lincoln on

I think it is innocent. I don't think you should make a big deal out of it. When I was a kid my mom used to flip out when my Barbies were naked and send my friends home. I never tried to make Barbie naked I just wanted her dress for the particular Barbie I had. I never understood until I was an adult why she was freaking out about naked Barbie. I was an innocent kid and I didn't think about that stuff.

Good luck!!!

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answers from San Francisco on

In response to another post, the first Barbie was NOT a sex toy for men, but she was modeled after a sexy German (I think it was German?) doll or character that was targeted at men (my daughter recently did a report on the history of Barbie, lol!)
I'm sure it's totally innocent. I remember playing kissing games with my Barbies at a very young age and I certainly wasn't exposed to anywhere near the amount of explicit media images kids are exposed to today.
As far as the naked thing goes I think it's pretty normal for kids to be curious about that to. Oh do I remember staring at Ken's privates and wondering, I think there must be more to men than this!

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answers from Dallas on

LOL! Sorry!

I think the naked thing is normal. I remember when my daughters were younger whenever they got a Barbie or a baby doll, they immediately took all the clothing off. I have no idea why. I was told by another mom it was just normal. They are older now and their dolls and Barbies are fully clothed!

The kissing thing is probably her just mimicking you and your husband or even something on TV or someone she has seen in public. I would not worry about it.

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answers from Johnstown on

Innocent until taught otherwise.

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answers from Tulsa on

It bothers me, but I bet most responses will be it is all innocent. It could be.
Does she hide it from you or do it openly? Kids who are molested and acting out usually want to do stuff in secret.

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answers from Lansing on

My daughter despises Ken dolls. My mom actually has purchased 2 different ones for her and she gave them away. LOL She only likes playing with the girls. She even has the girls meet for special dances and so on. So I definitely don't think its an automatic.

And although I did play with Ken I don't remember making them smooch.

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answers from Houston on

Our Barbies were total feminist prudes, they wouldn't even change in front of Ken or any other dolls. We actually made some of them Amazon women who wore tissue paper dresses and tortured Ken dolls.

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answers from Portland on

Many Disney movies are *all about* getting Princess Whats-her-face together with her gallant hero, or the lead female protaganist hooked up with a Prince. In any case, all of those movies are sealed with a kiss.

For what it's worth, I don't think that many boys really enjoy the 'dressing dolls up' aspect of Barbie/doll play. Some do, but some don't. Wouldn't read more into it.:) Or have him put some pajamas on the dollies. Do they have pajamas? Might be a fun afternoon project!

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answers from Tucson on

Originally Barbie was a sex toy for men, don't ask me why, but it was. As for the kissing, every child movie has kissing it, even lion king has a version of it. So nothing I would worry about. As for the naked, i'm lucky if my kid's dolls are dressed. I would look into jammies for them for "bed time" to hopefully solve that problem.

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answers from San Antonio on

What kind of cartoons do they watch?

EDIT: Well, maybe they are looking at the cover of Little Mermaid too much? Or reading the dust in Lion King. Or turning up the volume on Aladdin and hearing that they should take off their clothes. :)

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answers from Orlando on

My daughter is a little younger than yours (about 2.5) but for Christmas she got a set of the Disney princess barbies. She makes her barbies kiss and hug all the time, and she tells me it is becuase they are friends and they love each other. SHe told me that Jasmine loves Snow White just like Madelyn loves Mommy. It was very sweet.

It's hard for us as adults to see things with the innoance of a child. I understand your concern, but I agree with everyone else, harmless!

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answers from Chicago on

Most of it is mimicing what they see mommy and daddy do, and possibly some from older kids who's homes do things differently. Remember kids are mimickers and teachers.

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answers from Philadelphia on

I was much older than 4...but my friends and i would make them naked and kiss. I think it is innoncent. She started a little young though. (not playing, the kissing etc.) Back in my day, we played barbies around 10 yrs old.

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answers from Dallas on

I'm sure it's nothing. I think kids are facinated by naked, I know my 2 year old is, and I wouldn't think anything about them kissing. It did bring up old memories for me though. I remember growing up Ken was not allowed on the same floor as the bedroom in Barbies dream house because they weren't married. They only rooms they were allowed to be in together were the kitchen and living room. That was the same rules for the house. Boys were not allowed on the floor where the girls bedrooms were and we were only allowed boys in the kitchen and family room.



answers from Boston on

Just keep an eye on it! When I was little my friend used to make Barbie give Ken BJ's... ALL THE TIME! I had no clue, but looking back on it now I'm horrified. Keep spying and make sure it's just innocent play :)

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